The Hickstead season reaches its finale next week with the fourth annual All England Jumping Championships from Thursday September 4- Sunday September 7 inclusive.
First introduced in 2011, the All England Jumping Championships have quickly grown to become a favourite fixture in the national calendar, with dozens of classes for amateurs and young horses and heights starting at just 1m.
Hundreds of horses and riders will be in action over four days of national showjumping, from Thursday to Sunday. We are looking forward to welcoming many of this country’s top riders, including Derby winners William Funnell and Guy Williams, plus a host of Hickstead’s household names: Harriet Nuttall, Robert Whitaker, Shane Breen, Louise Saywell, David McPherson, Angelie Von Essen, James Davenport and those speedy Pavitt sisters, Louise and Nicole.
Ireland’s Michael Duffy will be returning to defend his All England Jumping Championships Grand Prix title, the class that is held on the final Sunday afternoon of the show- hoping the weather will be more favourable than the pouring rain of last year.
This year’s Equestrian.com Derby winner Trevor Breen also won the All England Grand Prix in the previous year, 2012 with his top horse Adventure De Kannan. “The All England Jumping Championships have been a great addition to the calendar, especially as it gives horses a chance to gain valuable experience jumping in the International Arena,” says Trevor.
Saturday’s main event is the Douglas Bunn 1.35m Challenge, the class named in memory of the founder of the All England Jumping Course. Featuring many of Hickstead’s famous obstacles set at a smaller height, it is a useful opportunity to put future Derby horses to the test.
It’s not just top riders who get to ride through Hickstead’s famous archway either, as the finals of each class from 1m upwards are held in the International Arena, with at least thirty combinations in each section qualifying to compete in the main ring.
Admission to the show is entirely free of charge for spectators, so go along and enjoy some sport, and even a little bit of shopping. The ringside Pommery Bar is the social heart of the showground, open for lunch daily and in to the evenings for dinner.