One of the All England Jumping Course’s eight rings has been given a major makeover ahead of this year’s international shows.
The Equine America Ring Three has been transformed from a grass ring to a state-of-the-art vast all-weather arena, measuring 65m x 127m. It has the same Andrews Bowen surface as used in the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Competitors will be pleased to know there is also a new warm-up area incorporated into the arena, alleviating the pressure on the other collecting rings. Elsewhere on the showground, the Hickstead team has extended the Airowear Ring 4 warm up by an extra 450 sq m.
Renowned supplements company Equine America has taken on naming rights to Ring Three, as part of a three-year agreement.
“Equine America is absolutely thrilled to support Hickstead as the title sponsor of the newly-transformed Ring 3 and the new Water Complex, which forms part of Ring 4,” said Lee Middleton, Managing Director of Equine America UK Ltd.
He added: “In addition, we also look forward to inviting our customers to The Equine America Pavilion, where you can chat with our hugely respected nutritionist, Deborah Lucas and benefit from the prime viewing location.”
Ring Three and Ring Four will later form the Hickstead all-weather cross-country schooling facility, which will be launched this autumn. Equine America have also taken on the naming rights of the Water Complex, which will be the main feature of this fabulous new addition.
“We are looking forward to the start of our international season next month, and we’re sure the new Equine America Ring Three is going to prove very popular with our competitors,” said Hickstead Director Edward Bunn.
“Not only will they ride on an Olympic-standard surface, but this gives us a contingency in the event of very wet weather and will allow us to hold more external events during the summer as well as forming part of our new cross-country schooling facility. We are also very grateful to Equine America for their support of Hickstead.”
Hickstead now has four all-weather arenas, including the international warm-up and the Bunn Leisure Arena. The famous Longines International Arena, however, which was given a £500,000 renovation in 2011 to ensure all-weather footing with a turf surface, will always remain a grass arena.
Tickets for the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting (June 20-23 ) and the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show (July 23-28 ) are on sale now from www.hickstead.co.uk.