New sponsor announced for Cob of the Year Championship

RONNIE and Debbie Harrod, together with their daughter Polly Coles, are delighted to be extending their association with Horse of the Year Show by sponsoring the Cob of the Year Championship in 2020.

The Cob of the Year Championship was among the first showing classes at Horse of the Year Show at Harringay in 1949 when Rosemary Cooke’s ‘Knobby’ took the title. Since then, the championship has seen many big names take the title including international judge, and top showing producer, Robert Oliver.

In 2019, the championship saw an emotional win for the returning HOYS 2016 Supreme Champion, ‘Our Cashel Blue’, after having been diagnosed with cancer in 2018. Affectionately known as ‘Blue’ by owner Caroline Tyrell, the handsome coloured gelding made a triumphant comeback to the show with Allister Hood, claiming the Cob of the Year title.

‘Our Cashel Blue’ and Allister Hood winning the Cob of the Year Championship 2019 Photo: 1st Class Images


The first and second placed Lightweight and Heavyweight Cob of the Year classes will feature in the Cob of the Year Championship and each, which will see new naming rights for 2020 to:

  • The Harrod and Coles Family Lightweight Cob of the Year
  • The Harrod and Coles Family Heavyweight Cob of the Year
  • The Harrod and Coles Family Cob of the Year Championship

Debbie and Polly are no strangers to the showing scene, having owned and ridden many champion Hunters and Cobs over the years.

Debbie Harrod commented: “We are delighted to extend our family commitments within the showing world, having been involved since Polly was competing in pony classes from a young age. The Ridden Show Cob classes have always been one of my favourite sections, having admired the many champions over the years.

“It is an absolute privilege to be associated with one of the most famous horse shows in the world and we look forward to presenting this supreme accolade to the newly crowned Cob of the Year Champions in October.”

Horse of the Year Show Event Director Emma Williams commented: “We are thrilled that the Harrod and Coles family have extended their class sponsorship at the show to not only include the Catplant Group of Companies Ltd. Show Hunter of the Year Championship, but also the Harrod and Coles Family Cob of the Year Championship. The family’s sponsorship over the last five years has been greatly appreciated and we look forward to working with them once again this year.”

For more information on Horse of the Year Show 2020, please contact Horse of the Year Show Press Office, Grandstand Media Ltd. Tel: 02476 858205.

RDA group rider selected for top dressage programme

Katie Radzik, a dressage para rider from Canterbury’s Cobbes Meadow Riding for the Disabled Group, has been selected by British Dressage to join the prestigious Podium Potential Pathway Programme (P3) in 2020.

“I am stunned, excited, delighted and over the moon to have been offered a place, “ said Katie. “Thank you to everyone who has helped me on my journey so far; I’m determined to make you proud” she continued.

Katie and Razdik in winning form Photo courtesy of RDA

Carole Mounce, RDA Kent County Chair said “Katie started with me at Cobbes Meadow many years ago and she has been working up through the ranks, so it is very exciting news indeed. We are really thrilled for her as she has worked hard for this and is an inspiration for all those other RDA participants to follow their dreams”

The Podium Potential Pathway is supported by both UK Sport and Sport England and has been brought into the performance pathway. The programme looks to identify, support and develop athletes who demonstrate the potential to progress to Podium Potential in the future, by providing education to develop the foundation skills required for future performance.

The two year programme provides selected riders with the opportunity to have access to top equestrian specialists including: international coaches, human sport science and medicine practitioners (physiotherapists and psychologists) and equine sport science and medicine practitioners (farriers, saddlers, vets and equine physiotherapists) via a series of squad training sessions.

A Media Day at Warwick University in January kicked off the year to be followed by a Squad Training Weekend at Solihull Riding Club in March.

In the South East there are 35 groups across Surrey, Sussex and Kent with motr than 2,000 riders of all ages. They come to enjoy the experience of riding, carriage driving, show jumping, dressage endurance and western style, with opportunities to learn a new skill, enter competitions or even take a holiday.

This can bring a new dimension to necessarily restricted lives, encourage independence and does much to improve a wide range of medical conditions. RDA has the commitment of more than 1,000 volunteers who regularly and cheerfully give up their free time.

Instructors work closely with physiotherapists and other health professionals to encourage every individual to aim for attainable goals – some modest, others far more ambitious.

Unmissable Moorcroft event featuring Dr Sue Dyson

MOORCROFT Racehorse Welfare Centre,  based at Huntingrove Stud, Slinfold, is thrilled to announce that Dr Sue Dyson MA Vet MB PhD DEO DipECVSMR FRCVS has agreed to pass on her vast knowledge and years of experience to Veterinarians, Physiotherapists, Animal Therapy experts, animal carers, riders, trainers and anybody interested in improving horses’ lives.
Moorcroft has a sound reputation for retraining ex racehorses, stemming from the extensive expertise of its chief executive, Mary Frances BHSII & BHS.SM.

Vocal in poor condition on arrival at Moorcroft

This prestigious demonstration will take place at a special event on Saturday April 25 2020 from 10am – 1pm at Moorcroft. The cost is £60 per ticket  (CPD certs available). For more information email: Email: Tel: 07929 666408 Web :

Vocal now in fine condition at Moorcroft

Refreshments will  be available along with the excellent facilities at Moorcroft  which include a large indoor school. The session there will focus on how to do a complete orthopaedic evaluation of a horse .
This will include:
Static examination
Assessment in hand
Evaluation on the lunge
Ridden exercise
Plus How to investigate any problems further – showing that diagnostic imaging can be misleading.
Please book your place online at or ring Mary on 07929 666408.

Timetable for Horse of the Year Show 2020 released

 Ahead of tickets going on general sale at 9am on Wednesday 11th March, the timetable for Horse of the Year Show 2020 has been released allowing time to plan your visit in advance. With exciting display announcements still to come, you can view the timetable on the HOYS website:

Along with exceptional entertainment and displays, the first part of the week is packed with all the fan favourites including the Mountain and Moorland classes on Wednesday through to Friday, the Dressage Future Elite Championship on Thursday evening, and the prestigious Supreme In-Hand Championship showcasing on Friday.

Emile Faurie in action at a previous HOYS
Photo courtesy of HOYS

Things hot up on the weekend, as the Saturday daytime showcases championships galore in both the TopSpec Arena and the Andrews Bowen International Arena.

The evening performance is equally exhilarating with the final installment of the Osborne Refrigerators Scurry Driving Championship and the continuation of the international showjumping classes including the highly anticipated Puissance.

Sunday remains the ‘day of champions’ as the show comes to a climax with the crowning of the Horse of the Year Show Supreme Horse and Pony of the Year and the Leading Showjumper of the Year.

There is also get the chance to see the awarding of the much-coveted Prince Philip Cup to the Pony Club team who have raced their way to victory in the Mounted Games heats. Rounding off a fantastic programme of equestrian talent will be the finale celebrations on Sunday evening marking the end of another fantastic edition of Horse of the Year Show.

Set your alarms for 9am on Wednesday March 11 when tickets go on general sale through website and the Box Office: 0844 581 8282 (calls cost 7p per minute plus your phone company’s access charge).

Disabled bookings can be made by calling 0800 640 5001 and discounts are available for groups of 10+ through the Groups Booking Line on 0800 358 0058 or by emailing









BHS focus on equestrian road safety

Following the announcement by The Department for Transport (DfT) in 2018 that the Highway Code was set to be reviewed to empower cyclists and pedestrians, The British Horse Society (BHS) is pleased to announce that over the past six months it has been actively involved within the Highway Code Review Stakeholder Focus Group representing the safety concerns and needs of equestrians.

Horse safety in traffic
Photo: Sussex Safer Roads

The BHS, along with Cycling UK, Living Streets and The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency was invited to assist in reviewing the Highway Code to better protect vulnerable road users such as horse riders, pedestrians and cyclists.

Alan Hiscox, Director of Safety at The BHS said: “The British Horse Society works tirelessly to protect and promote the interests of all equestrians, and safety on roads is of huge concern to many riders and carriage drivers.

“Each year the number of road incidents reported to The BHS continues to grow and it is clear that better education is needed on how to safely pass horses.

“Having the opportunity to represent equestrians’ concerns as part of the review of the current Highway Code literature is an incredibly positive step forward in helping to improve conditions for equestrians.”

BHS on Tour delivers coaching sessions

NEW for 2020, The British Horse Society (BHS) has introduced ‘The BHS on Tour’ as part of its National Conventions – a day for recreational riders, packed full of inspiring coaching sessions from top coaches, riders and industry experts.

Yogi Bresner MBE FBHS, Equestrian Team GBR Performance Director and Eventing Performance Manager Richard Waygood MBE and Corinne Bracken will be delivering coaching sessions and offering their expert tips to riders looking to improve their skills and get the most out of their riding and horse care.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall with Richard Waygood and Yogi Breisner at British Equestrian Federation World Class Owners’ Day – Knightsbridge Barracks, London Photo by Jon Stroud

Hosted at four venues across the UK throughout the year, The BHS on Tour (supported by EC Pro) will also feature informative sessions on equine fitness and feeding, conformation, showing, riding out and course walking.

Tickets for The BHS on Tour are priced at £25 and more information plus ticket links can be found at


15 March – Addington Equestrian Centre, Buckinghamshire

29 March – Cavan Equestrian Centre, Republic of Ireland

04 October – Bishop Burton College, East Yorkshire

01 November – Scottish National Equestrian Centre, West Lothian, Scotland


The BHS is also continuing with its National Coaching Conventions for 2020, kindly supported by EC Pro.

The four coaching conventions, hosted at the same venues as The BHS on Tour events, will feature inspirational demonstrations from top equestrian coaches and expert advice from industry professionals on how to get the absolute most out of coaching.

Tickets are priced at £45 for The British Horse Society Accredited Professional Coaches and £60 for Non-Accredited Professional Coaches.

More information about the events and tickets can be found at


Galbraith to sponsor Belsay Horse Trials 2020

Galbraith, a leading property consultancy and land agent, is delighted to sponsor the Belsay Horse Trials again in 2020.

The event takes place from May 28-31  and this year the focus is international – with a CCI-S** competition for seniors, as well as the British Pony Championships for riders aged 16 and under; arena eventing; a hunt relay and Country Show with activities for families on the much-loved Belsay Sunday on May 31.

Belsay Horse Trials: Laura de Wasselow, owner of Belsay Estate and Matthew Williamson of property and land agency Galbraith

Matthew Williamson, from the Galbraith office in Blagdon, said: “Belsay is one of the best-loved events in the north of England and we are delighted to continue to offer our support. The horse trials are a wonderful showcase for Europe’s best eventers and attract a very high calibre of rider.

“With it now also playing host to the final for the British Pony Championships, the opportunity to see the country’s best young riders is very exciting. Belsay has grown to become an unmissable event in the equestrian calendar.”

Laura de Wesselow, of Belsay Estate, said: “This is a wonderful event that means so much to competitors and their families and it is an absolute privilege to host this competition. We look forward to welcoming a wide range of riders, from the elite to the amateur and novice. Belsay has something for everyone and this year we have more of an international focus, which is even more exciting.

“We are grateful to our sponsor Galbraith. Their brand values of local knowledge and international reach perfectly complement our approach. We look forward to working with them again this year to make the horse trials a great success.”

Preparations under way for the expanded Belsay Horse Trials 2020

In addition to the equestrian competition, Belsay offers a wide range of family events across the weekend. There will be a dog agility course, a display by Lammermuir Gun Dogs, fairground rides, go-karting and the opportunity to explore Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens. Belsay also offers a shopping village, hospitality tent and a wide range of premium local food and drink stalls.

Galbraith is known as one of the UK’s leading rural property consultancies with particular expertise in estate management, sales and valuations of land, farms and rural properties, forestry and energy advice and residential property expertise. The firm has 14 offices across the North of England and Scotland.

Sam Gibson, a chartered surveyor with over 20 years’ experience has been appointed to lead the new residential agency team for Galbraith in the North of England. Sam said:

“Our market is buoyant and there has been no downturn this year despite some stagnation in other parts of England.  In fact there are 15% more registered active buyers than at the same time last year*.

“Quality residential properties in the Northern Counties offer excellent value for money compared with many other parts of the UK and there is a good market for second homes, especially in the coastal strip and serviced villages.  2020 is going to be an exceptional selling year.  We have already agreed some landmark sales with some more exciting houses to launch through the spring and summer.”





Ponies Association UK joins sponsors of HOYS 2020

Horse of the Year Show is delighted that Ponies Association (UK) has joined the line-up of sponsors looking forward to continuing their support of HOYS 2020 and the competitors involved in showing.

A dedicated society with a rich history, Ponies Association (UK) is a group widely recognised by everyone in showing.

It offers the opportunity for members to compete at the most prestigious equestrian events of the year and hosts its own Championships; Ponies Association (UK) Spring Classic and Ponies Association (UK) Summer Classic.

P:ast winner Janet Cox’s Rivervalley Flash Jack ridden by Ms Amy Tate -Photo courtesy of 1st Class Images

The 2020 season will once again see the Ponies Association (UK) Summer Classic host the Junior Mountain & Moorland Ridden Pony qualifiers, where two qualification places for Horse of the Year Show are on offer.

In 2019, HOYS saw Janet Cox’s Welsh Section C pony, Rivervalley Flash Jack, take the title in the Junior Mountain & Moorland Ridden Championship sponsored by Ponies Association (UK), ridden by Amy Tate.

Julie Templeton of Ponies Association (UK) commented: “We are proud to be sponsors of, and part of the Horse of the Year Show 2020. We are an association made up predominantly of volunteers who are working extremely hard to bring the fun back into showing, and to be part of the prestigious Horse of the Year Show gives us the opportunity  to help our members achieve their dreams, and we look forward to  giving our continued support to the show.”

Horse of the Year Show Event Director, Emma Williams, commented: “We look forward to working together with Ponies Association (UK) to promote showing for everyone. This is something which is of great importance to the ethos of the show.”

Horse of the Year Show takes place from October 7-11 , 2020 at the Resorts World Arena, the NEC Birmingham bringing another year of breath-taking displays and unbeatable competition.

Tickets and a full timetable of events will be released in March. To stay up-to-date with the latest HOYS news and to be the first to know what’s happening, sign up to its newsletter here:

Moorcroft schooling session for your horse

Moorcroft Racehorse Welfare Centre at Huntingrove Stud, Slinfold, will be offering an opportunity for supporters to take their own horses to the centre next month for a short schooling session.

The short constructive session on Saturday February 22 is aimed at giving confidence and is a great opportunity to learn to improve individual riding skills and understanding  in a safe and quiet environment.

A retrained racehorse being ridden at Moorcroft
Photo: Mark Beaumont

The session will be held in the indoor school with Mary Frances BHS11, BHS and BHS.SM. The cost for the 30 minute sessions will be £30 each. All proceeds wil go to help horses being retrained at Moorcroft so that they can go on to a useful and happy life outside racing.

Mary, who has managed the centre for the last 12 years has 40 years experience with many breeds and types of horses.

Book online at


Colne Stud to sponsor at HOYS 2020

Horse of the Year Show is pleased to once again welcome The Colne Stud as class sponsors for 2020. Founded in 1972, The Colne Stud has been going for 45 years under the care of wife and husband team, Ann and Alan Overton-Ablitt.

The stud was started with the aim of breeding Welsh Mountain Ponies suitable for the youngest of children to show and enjoy and has found great success providing starter ponies for professional and home-produced riders.

The Colne Stud will be name sponsors of the Mountain & Moorland Lead Rein Pony of the Year which takes place in the TopSpec Arena, where the highest placed ponies will go on to the Colne and The Feed Shed Mountain and Moorland Mini Pony of the Year Championship.

Thistledown Van Der Vaart in superb form at last year’s event Photo courtesy of 1st Class Images

Alan Ablitt of The Colne Stud commented: “It has been a great pleasure to sponsor The Colne Stud Mountain and Moorland Lead Rein Pony of the Year for the past 22 years. This class is a wonderful showcase for the small Native Breeds of Great Britain.”

Horse of the Year Show Event Director, Emma Williams, commented: “We are incredibly grateful for the long standing support of The Colne Stud, on behalf of our competitors and the show itself. To have the backing of the showing community is incredibly important to the future of the sport.”

Horse of the Year Show takes place from October 7-11 2020 at the Resorts World Arena, the NEC Birmingham bringing another year of breath-taking displays and unbeatable competition.

Tickets and a full timetable of events will be released in March. To stay up-to-date with the latest HOYS news and to be the first to know what’s happening, sign up to the HOYS newsletter here: