MARLBOROUGH-based eventer Tim Price is hoping some valuable lessons can be taken from the heat of the Kentucky Horse Trials last weekend.

Having put himself in a nice position on Ringwood Sky Boy following a dressage score of 46.9, which left the New Zealand rider in 17th spot, the combination had a cross country stage to forget as they picked up 40 penalty points, with a runout at skinny brush into the water and crossing his own tracks two fences from home, leaving them well down the field in Lexington.

Price put the uncharacteristic performance down to the humidity and Ringwood getting hot in the warm up and did not want to pull up, using the remainder of the course as a chance to get some much-needed work into the legs of his steed.

“I had quite a lot of time to contemplate whether to keep going or not,” he said.

“He fell at Badminton, Luhmuhlen is quite flat and easy, Rio, we did seven minutes and then Burghley, we had a break halfway round, so I thought it was good for him to go all the way and get into him a little bit so he can get stronger for next time.

“It’s just part of the game, it doesn’t always go the way you want but I’m pretty happy actually.”

Price now turns his attention to Badminton, an event he is looking to win for the first time on Xavier Faer, who is experiencing the Gloucestershire competition for the first time.

Price did have two horses entered until last week, withdrawing Bango, and hopes that ‘Hugo’ can catch a few people by surprise.

“Even though there were some slip ups last year, all the horses gained some valuable mileage and I think that is going to do them really well this year and I’m really excited about it,” added Price, who fell at the infamous Vicarage V last year, a fence that is not on Eric Winter’s course this year.

“(Hugo) will come up in the background and just a tidy top-10 on him would be nice, thank you very much.

“This is a big step up for him in level, he has never done a four star before.’’