Win earns him National Championship of Eventing and Spring Three Star Championship Title - David O’Connor, of The Plains, Virginia, riding the 14-year-old New Zealand Thoroughbred gelding, Outlawed (Thoroughbred: Our Westminster (NZ) - Outline (NZ); bred by Gillsepie, McNamee, Oak & Samson (NZ)) owned by Jennifer Taxay of Agua Dulce, California, finished in the top spot to win the Foxhall CCI***, held at Foxhall Farm in Douglasville, Georgia, April 15 - 18. As the top placed American rider, he also won the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) National Championship of Eventing and the United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation Spring Three Star Championship.
O’Connor grabbed the lead after Dressage with a score of 41.8 penalties and held on through the stadium jumping phase to end the event with a score of 49.8 penalties. This was O’Connor’s first win aboard Outlawed. “I took him to Fair Hill last year but didn't get to ride him due to a fall I had there,” said David. “He’s the real deal, a good mover and very fast and straight forward on the cross country. He always tries hard and he has definite potential,” he added. Kim Severson and He’s Got Rhythm (Thoroughbred) placed 2nd with a score of 53.6 penalties and Tiffani Loudon and Above N’ Beyond (Thoroughbred: Colonel Stevens-Sasudio; bred by Jacqui, Samantha & John Shone (CAN)) placed 3rd with a score of 55.8 penalties.
O’Connor, two-time Equestrian of the Year winner, is best known for his individual gold medal winning performance at the Sydney Olympics, where he rode Custom Made, an Irish Thoroughbred gelding owned by Joe Zada. While at the games, O’Connor turned in the best eventing dressage score in Olympic history when he opened the individual competition with a score of 29.00 penalties. He was the first U.S. athlete to take the gold medal in the sport since 1984.
With his win at Foxhall O’Connor will have his name inscribed on the USET Foundation Challenge Trophy and the USEF Guy V. Henry Trophy, joining that of his wife, Karen O’Connor, Tiffani Loudon, Bonnie Mosser and Darren Chiacchia. Skyeler Icke, the highest placing American young rider, will have her name engraved on the USET Foundation Markham Trophy.