Polo in the Park

London’s first event of the summer season returns to Hurlingham Park, Fulham to host its 10th birthday. Kicking off the change in seasons with an ultimate three-day summer celebration, Chestertons Polo in the Park takes over the capital’s social calendar from June 7-9 2019.

Limited ‘Early Bird’ tickets have now been released with new prices in celebration of the event’s 10th birthday. Chestertons Polo in the Park will reward the keenest ticket buyers with £10 off. Group bookings of 10 tickets but only pay for 9 and finally, to celebrate the event’s 10th birthday, children 10 and under are now FREE! Tickets available now viahttp://polointheparklondon.com/

One of the biggest social sporting events of the summer,Chestertons Polo in the Park is one of the largest and most popular polo tournaments in Europe combining world-class sport in the perfect setting of sunny champagne gardens with fantastic food and music.

Polo in the Park is an event not to be missed

The three-day sporting spectacle has firmly established itself as one of the most anticipated and sought after events in South West London. Perfect for polo fanatics and social enthusiasts in equal measure, the rules have been uniquely simplified so that newcomers will be able to follow the fast and furious polo without needing any prior knowledge of the game.

International Day, Friday June 7, is set to be an action-packed opening day featuring the Flannels England Polo Team as they take to the hallowed turf against a rival country in a thrilling international match to kick start the tournament.

Ladies Day presented by Lancaster, Saturday June, provides the perfect excuse to dress up and enjoy a day out with your closest friends, watching quality sporting action while sipping champagne in the sun.

Finals Family Day, Sunday June 9, rounds off the weekend with a world-class finale match to crown the tournament champions. A day for all the family where parents can watch on from London’s best cocktail bars or Champagne Lanson garden while the children are entertained at the Little Hooves Kids Club and stampede onto the Sharky & George Pitch Invasion.

Over the course of three days, teams representing six different cities from around the world will be taking part in the hotly contested event. There is plenty more to see and do all weekend with the Grazing Paddock hosting top restaurants and delicious street food, the Champagne Lanson Garden returns alongside the iconic Mahiki pineapples, Slingsby Cocktail Bar and Fever-Tree Garden. Splash out in the Luxury Shopping Village housing, and on Sunday bring the whole family to enjoy our Little Hooves Kids Club and Sharky & George Pitch Invasion.

For more information and to book tickets http://polointheparklondon.com/

HOYS hosts UK premiere of My Little Sister

Horse of the Year Show is thrilled to introduce French performer Mélie Philippot and her dancing duo (Quizas and Diego) as the second entertainment display to be announced for 2019.

Making her UK debut with the display ‘My little sister’ trainer Mélie combines liberty work and dressage movements with a little light comedy in this thoroughly entertaining performance; a perfect interlude to the nail-biting competition.

Mélie first came to fame with her pony Luma who did a display disguised as a lion as seen at HOYS 2013; with his incredible charisma and great talent, Mélie had trained Luma to do a range of tricks and stunts which saw them perform to international audiences around the world.

Melie Philippot and Diego performing  at HOYS
Photo copyright and  courtesy of HOYS  and Grandstand Media

Diego who will feature in the display at HOYS 2019, is Luma’s son and has inherited his ‘showman appeal’. Diego is a small pony with a huge personality, providing naturally funny, yet wonderfully skilful moves. His athletic ability and love for his work allow him to mirror the moves of 14-year-old Breton draft horse, Quizas who is ridden throughout the performance by Mélie.

Guaranteed to both astonish and delight, you won’t want to miss Quizas and Diego’s debut UK performance at this year’s Horse of the Year Show.

Mélie commented: “I am very honoured to have been invited back to Horse of the Year Show with my new display and I hope the public will enjoy by my performance with Quizas and Diego.

“When I get back in the ring with Quizas, the public expects a classic dressage display, then Diego enters the arena and the audience laughs. This show offers a moment of poetry and laughter, with horses that we are less used to seeing in this discipline of dressage and they are best friends outside of the arena too!”

Emma Williams, Event Director of Grandstand Media Ltd commented: “We are delighted to be welcoming Mélie back to Horse of the Year Show this year with a fresh new act to perform for us. Diego’s wonderful personality is sure to bring the atmosphere to life in the Andrews Bowen International Arena and what he lacks in size he will be sure to make up for in talent and humour, providing great entertainment for all.”

Having celebrated a momentous 70th anniversary show last year, the 2019 show promises to be an equestrian spectacular with plenty to entertain every spectator. The show hosts the finals of the most highly regarded national showing and show jumping championships, three days of international showjumping, an immensely popular Retail Village and a full line-up of unbeatable entertainment, which makes for an unforgettable day out.

Tickets are on sale now, with prices starting from just £34.00 per person. Concession rates and discounts for group bookings are available. With popular performances selling out in record time last year, visitors are advised to secure their seats early to avoid disappointment. To book, please call the Box Office on 0844 581 8282 or visit www.hoys.co.uk/tickets

Hickstead charity run in memory of Tim Stockdale

A brand-new charity run will take place on the Saturday night of the Longines Royal International Horse Show (27 July 2019), to raise money for the Tim Stockdale Foundation.

#10forTim will see teams of up to 10 people take part in a relay run on the perimeter road around the Longines International Arena at Hickstead. Each lap is half a mile long, and runners are welcome to sprint, run or amble round at their own speed!

But for those who are more athletically inclined, there will be prizes for the team that crosses the finish line in first place. There will also be additional prizes for the team that raises the most money for the charity – each team of 10 must guarantee to raise a minimum of £2,500 in total in order to take part.

Tim Stockdale finishing fourth in Longines BHS King George V Gold Cup 2016 (c) Craig Payne

Tim Stockdale was one of the best-known faces in showjumping, having represented Britain at the Olympic Games as well as being a regular on championship and Nations Cup teams. He had many great moments during his showjumping career, but one of his proudest was winning the Longines BHS King George V Gold Cup at Hickstead in 2010, riding Fresh Direct Kalico Bay.

Tim was a superb ambassador for his sport, not just as a rider but also as a respected trainer and broadcaster.

Sadly, Tim died last November aged 54, just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer. It was a huge loss to the showjumping world, but his remarkable legacy is living on through The Tim Stockdale Foundation, which was set up to help support causes that were close to Tim’s heart.

The Bunn family, with the support of Tim’s wife Laura and their sons Joe and Mark, are inviting as many people as possible to take part in the race or to come along to cheer on the runners. A team from the All England Jumping Course will be pitting their skills (or lack thereof) against well-known faces from the horse world, including Shane and Trevor Breen, William and Pippa Funnell, Philip Judge, and commentators Steven Wilde and Nick Brooks-Ward.

The Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show always attracts many of the best riders in the world, and it’s hoped plenty will pay tribute to their colleague Tim by taking part in the race.

And if you’re an equestrian fan who has dreamed of competing against – or even better, possibly beating – your favourite riders, then now is your chance. If you have a team of 10 ready to run, and can guarantee to pledge the £2,500 charity donation, contact Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn on lizzie@hickstead.co.uk to apply to take part.

To sponsor the Hickstead team, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/teamhickstead

Atzeni to miss Guineas meeting

Jockey Andrea Atzeni cannot ride at the Guineas meeting at Newmarket next weekend after his appeal against a six-day ban was rejected.

The 28-year-old jockey was banned by stewards after they found him guilty of using the whip on four occasions in the wrong place aboard the Alan King-trained Beringer, when  winning a mile handicap at the Craven meeting.

Jockey Andrea Atzini
Photo: John Simpson

The appeal, held at BHA headquarters in London on Friday, was heard by a disciplinary panel which was shown video evidence of the four whip strikes which occurred in the closing stages of the race.

BHA interim head of regulation Andrew Howell presented the regulator’s case, using video evidence to identify the four offending strikes, all of which occurred inside the final two furlongs.

He argued that strikes four, five, six and seven were not on the horse’s quarters and that the jockey’s arm was not extended and the whip could be seen running down the back of the runner’s number cloth.

“While accepting the charge of improper use of the whip, Atzeni, who was represented in his appeal against the severity of the penalty by solicitor Rory Mac Neice, sought a ‘proportional’ two-day reduction to the ban on the grounds he was trying to correct the four-year-old from hanging left and it was only by accident that he made contact with the winner’s midriff.

Following a 30-minute deliberation, the panel, while accepting Atzeni’s mitigations, found in favour of the raceday stewards’ and upheld the six-day punishment. The rider misses rides from May 2-7 which includes the Guineas weekend.


Underperforming racehorses could have some form of asthma

For racehorses who are not performing at their best, the issue can often be traced to the lungs.

In one study of thoroughbred racehorses, published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 80 percent of them had mild or moderate asthma.

Laurent Couëtil, a professor in Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and director of their Equine Sports Medicine Center, has developed a new lung function test for horses that uses a series of tanks to mimic deep inhalation and exhalation.

A study led by Professor Laurent Couëtil found that 80 per cent of thoroughbred racehorses surveyed had mild or moderate asthma. (Purdue University Photo/Rebecca Wilcox)

The machine at Purdue, which can detect even mild asthma, is the only one in the world capable of such a test.

An equine treadmill housed in Purdue’s Equine Sports Medicine Center is used to test for cardiovascular and respiratory disease.

For those that don’t, the issue can often be traced to the lungs.

Laurent Couëtil and horseLaurent Couëtil uses an equine nebulizer to administer treatment for asthma. (Purdue University photo/Rebecca Wilcox).

“Unlike the heart or muscle, the lung in the horse athlete is a limiting factor,” said Laurent Couëtil  of Purdue University’s Equine Sports Medicine Centre.

“Even in healthy horses, breathing is a limiting factor on performance. So if you take a little bit away from that, the consequences can be severe,” he explained.

Couëtil, who is also a professor of large animal internal medicine in Purdue’s College of Veterinary Medicine,  has spent much of his career treating and researching equine respiratory disease.

However, it wasn’t until 2016 that “equine asthma” was an official diagnosis, when Couëtil collaborated with three other researchers to argue for the adoption of the term in the Equine Veterinary Journal.





Ride Out UK returns next month

The British Horse Society (BHS) has announced the return of Ride Out UK (ROUK) for 2019, with the campaign now running from May through to October.

Across the six months, the BHS, Affiliated Equestrian Access groups, BHS Approved Centres and British Riding Clubs will be hosting a range of events from guided rides to the ever popular pleasure rides on National Trust properties and large estates.

The previous two years have seen more than £18,000 raised for the BHS’ Paths for Communities Fund, a vital fund available to equestrians to create or repair multi-user routes in their local area.

Tracy Casstles, Director of Fundraising at the British Horse Society said: “ROUK has been hugely popular amongst the equine community and we’ve seen all ages and abilities getting involved.

Tracy Casstles

“From restoring unusable gates in Gloucestershire to draining and resurfacing routes in Somerset, the funds raised make a huge difference to local communities, by getting riders off the road and using their restored off-road routes, both now and in the future”.

As part of the campaign, the BHS is also challenging riders to become a ‘Platinum Rider’ by riding at least 70km whilst also raising a minimum of £70 for the Paths for Communities Fund.

This year’s Ride Out UK is kindly sponsored by Thorowgood.

To find an event in your area or to find out more about becoming a Platinum Rider, visit bhs.org.uk/rideoutuk

Goodwood’s opening fixture

Goodwood’s Opening fixture comes under starters orders on May 4 for an exciting afternoon of high-quality racing, food, drink, and entertainment.

Top class racing at Goodwood again this season

The races include two valuable Listed contests; the Daisy Warwick Stakes and The Conqueror Stakes, both of which are likely to attract some exciting fillies and mares aiming to get their seasons off to a winning start.

During the winter months, much investment has taken place at the racecourse. The inside of the March Grandstand has seen further redevelopment, creating a superb new betting facility and two new cafés.

Delicious Dogs, located in the Sussex Stand will offer racegoers a fabulous array of handmade pizzas. While the Richmond Enclosure boasts a beautiful new hospitality space in Long View which provides enchanting views across the racecourse and will be open in time for the May Festival.

Goodwood is excited to introduce its new ECO-Cup, helping forge a path towards eradicating disposables.

The season ahead will see a refundable £1 deposit taken when any beer, lager or ale is consumed, with a clean cup offered for each beverage thereafter.

During the 2018 season, more than 300,000 pints and half pints were served in plastic cups owing to sizeable levels of plastic being disposed of.

Alex Eade, General Manager for Goodwood Racecourse, commented; “Sustainability has been at the core of our thinking here at Goodwood over several years, and as we move into the 2019 flat season, we will be taking bigger steps towards lessening our impact on the environment.

“In essence, I want to make sure that our actions today preserve that famous and breath-taking view for future generations.”

He added: “Opening Saturday is a real family day out complemented by the high-class racing. With a children’s play area for the little ones, whether you are passionate about horse racing or want a really good afternoon out, Goodwood Racecourse is a fantastic place to come.”

Tickets can be purchased from only £12 in advance and children under 18 go free in all enclosures. Please call 01243 216610 or visit goodwood.com for tickets, hospitality, and further information.

Nearly two horses killed each week on UK roads

Alarming new statistics have revealed nearly two horses a week are being killed on UK roads, with 845 incidents involving horses and drivers reported to The British Horse Society last year.

The British Horse Society (BHS) collates statistics each year to understand the rate of incidents involving horses and riders on UK roads. In the last year alone, 87 horses and four people have been tragically killed whilst riding on the roads and 73 per cent of incidents reported occurred due to vehicles passing by too closely.

Slow down for horses and pass wide

The charity is urging drivers to be more careful when passing horses on the road, with the new statistics showing an incident increase of 109 per cent compared to the previous year.

The increase in incidents follows a partnership encouraging them to report all incidents involving feral ponies and horses to the BHS Horse Accidents website.

Click here to Report an Incident

Alan Hiscox, Director of Safety at the British Horse Society said: “The inclusion of horse incident statistics from Dartmoor and the New Forest allow us to have a much better understanding of the rate of incidents occurring on our roads. The dramatic increase in incidents is of huge concern, but we are aware that only 1 in 10 accidents are reported to us, therefore these figures are only the tip of the iceberg. We will continue to promote our key Dead Slow messages and strive to ensure all vulnerable road users are kept safe.”

Since November 2010:

  • 3,737 incidents have occurred on the road
  • 43 people have lost their lives and 1085 injured
  • 315 horses have been killed and 945 injured

The BHS launched its ‘Dead Slow’ road safety campaign to help better educate drivers on how to pass horses on the road. The key behavioural change messages to drivers are:

If I see a horse on the road then I will …

1. Slow down to a maximum of 15mph

2. Be patient – do not sound their horn or rev the engine

3. Pass the horse wide and slow, (if safe to do so) at least a car’s width if possible

4. Drive slowly away

The BHS is also currently working on a six month trial with Huufe, a new app that allows people to report incidents easily and quickly. The app allows the user to select the type of incident they were involved in whilst also recording the location and time.

The app records no personal data during its trial period therefore the BHS is still encouraging riders to continue reporting incident to its horse accidents website.

Jump racing at Plumpton today

Lewes trainer Sheena West has a good track record at Plumpton,  and Golden Cannon, which runs at today’s meeting, ridden by Marc Goldstein, seems to enjoy Plumpton, having won there previously.

Golden Cannon lines up in the Harry And Betty Savill Memorial Novices’ Handicap Hurdle over two miles one furlong, ridden as usual by Marc Goldstein- and is currently priced at 6-1.

Golden Cannon with trainer Sheena West and jockey Marc Goldstein Photo: John Simpson

 Sheen West also saddles up course winner Sixties Secret, a four-year-old, in the Mares’ Handicap Hurdle, where the favourite is 3-1 shot Our Rockstar, ridden for trainer Alastair Ralph by jockey Lee Edwards.

Sixties Secret is likely to be sent off at 16-1, while 3-1 favourite Our Rockstar comes to the race from a victory at Stratford in March.
The combination of Tom Cannon and trainer Chris Gordon should be back in winning form with course and distance winner The Tin Miner likely to be sent off as favourite in the three mile one furlong handicap hurdle of the day.

                                                                                                                                            The final race sees a match between 10/11shot  Darebin , trained by Gary Moore and ridden by son Jamie, and evens favourite King Cnut, trained by Chris Gordon and ridden by Tom Cannon.




Science Supplements® signs on line with Hickstead

The All England Jumping Course at Hickstead has welcomed Science Supplements® as a major new sponsor for the 2019 season.

The award-winning equine supplements company has been named as the title sponsor of the All England Jumping Championships in September, including the £6,000 Science Supplements All England Grand Prix on the final day of the show.

They will also sponsor a number of iconic classes at Hickstead’s international fixtures, including the British Speed Derby. Held on SaturdayJune 22 at the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting, the Science Supplements Speed Derby features a number of permanent obstacles including the Irish Bank, the Road Crossing and the less steep side of the Derby Bank, and sees horses and riders gallop round the Longines International Arena at top speed.

Matthew Sampson winning the British Speed Derby in 2018. The class is now known as the Science Supplements Speed Derby Science Supplements Speed Derby, as part of an extensive new sponsorship deal with the All England Jumping Course.

At the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain event in July, the company will sponsor the Science Supplements BHS Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Saturday July 27. This prestigious championship used to be restricted to women riders only, but since 2008 has been opened up to the highest ranked riders on the British Showjumping national rankings.

As well as the famous main arena, Hickstead has five other rings of competition running throughout their fixtures, with national showjumping from 90cm upwards and championship showing classes taking place in the outer rings. Science Supplements have also agreed to take on naming rights to ring 5 for the summer season.

“The British Speed Derby and the BHS Queen Elizabeth II Cup are two of our best loved classes, and are hugely popular with spectators,” said Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn. “We are hugely grateful to Science Supplements for coming on board as title sponsors of these iconic competitions, as well as our national fixture, the Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships.

“First held in 2011, the September show has gone from strength to strength, and we are delighted that Science Supplements has chosen to support this show and the Grand Prix of this fixture. We look forward to working with them this season and beyond.”

“We are delighted to be working with Hickstead and supporting some of the most famous classes in the showjumping calendar,” said Vicky Mitson, Commercial Director at Science Supplements. “By taking title sponsorship of The All England Jumping Championships we are equally looking forward to supporting our up and coming riders and horses and will have some fantastic prizes to add to the occasion.”

The international season at Hickstead gets underway with the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting (June 20-23 ), followed by the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (July 23-28  2019). Tickets are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk.

Admission and parking at the Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships ( August 29 – September 1 2019) are free to spectators.