Phillip Dutton announced on his Facebook page that he has acquired the ride on Karen O’Connor’s 2012 London Olympic Games mount Mr. Medicott.
With the help of Dr. Mark Hart of the Event Owner’s Task Force and Experience Eventing, Dutton formed a syndicate with several of his longtime supporters, including Bruce Duchossois, Annie Jones, Stephanie Speakman, Tom Tierney and Caroline Moran.
“I was approached by Mark Hart to see if I had an interest in putting together some people to buy the horse, since Karen decided that she wasn’t going to be able to ride the horse in the future, and there are a lot of people who wanted to keep [him] with an American rider. I was fortunate enough to get some support behind me to buy into the syndicate,” said Dutton. “Karen’s done a brilliant job with the horse, and it was [good for] my situation where having a good, experienced horse like that was something I was lacking.”
The 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Cruising—Slieveluachra, Edmund Burke) was campaigned this spring by Marilyn Little, who took over the ride from O’Connor while she recovered from injuries sustained in a fall last October.
With Little, “Cave” finished fifth in the CIC** at The Fork (N.C.) and eighth in the CCI** at the Ocala Horse Properties International (Fla.).
The gelding has been settling in at Dutton’s True Prospect Farm in West Grove, Pa., for a few days, and Dutton has been riding him. “He seems to be settling in now, and everybody’s just trying to get to know him and what his likes are and taking our time,” he said.
Dutton has no immediate plans to compete Cave. “I certainly don’t know him very well yet, but he’s a very balanced horse, and he’s well educated and seems as if he would be a good match for me,” he said.