Virtual Windsor Autumn Horse show on streamed video starting today

ORGANISERS of CHI Royal Windsor Horse Show have announced the packed official programme for the Virtual Windsor Autumn Series 2020 Show, which takes place via a daily streamed video from today, September 25-27, starting at 1pm every day.

Available worldwide via Facebook, YouTube and the Virtual Windsor website, the Show will comprise the judging of the online Showing classes, plus The Omega Equine Pony Club Dressage Home International, The Riding for the Disabled Association Dressage Challenge, supported by Players of People’s Postcode Lottery and Wychanger, and The Omega Equine Equitation Jumping alongside regular Shopping Fixes, Horse Wellness and an exclusive masterclass from international showjumper William Whitaker.


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William Whitaker in competitive action Photo: Craig Payne

Virtual Windsor teams up with a loyal and hugely successful Windsor stalwart, William Whitaker, to deliver three fantastic Masterclasses covering a range of exercises which can be adopted by everyone.

The three sessions, which will be aired one per day on today, Saturday and Sunday of Virtual Windsor cover top tips on everything from walking a course, identifying and adjusting striding and lines, flatwork and polework exercises, and a range of improving exercises to suit different horses.

In the first, William talks viewers through his techniques for riding lines between fences and said, “I didn’t get them right every time, but then explained where I’d gone wrong and did it right. I think that’s good for people to see as they only usually see the end product – the 80 seconds in the ring – and think that’s how it is all the time but it’s not at all!”

For the third Masterclass William did some gridwork with a seven-year-old who can rush his fences, and adapted some of the exercises for his eight year old daughter Bella and her pony, proving that you do not need to be jumping 1m40 to practice.


He ended his Masterclasses with some wise words to remember in the lead up to any event be it Virtual or ‘real’; “Build up steadily so your horse knows exactly what’s being asked.”

Livestream Schedule for Autumn Series With three days of international competition across three disciplines, the Virtual Windsor Autumn Series is gearing up for an exciting weekend. Commentators Nick Brooks-Ward and Adam Cromarty lead the action, interviewing judges, competitors and viewers to bring a whole show’s worth of competition online.

The format of the show has thrown entries open to riders around the world, bringing the very best of the best together and pitching professionals and amateurs side by side to find some real world champions.

Today, the first day of the Autumn Series kicks off with a superb round of showing classes, with a judging panel headed by Senior Judge Nigel Hollings, accompanied by Julian White, Mark Broadbent, Anne Leaver and Patricia Pattinson. Nigel and the team cover a strong international entry from Hunters, Hacks, Riding Horses, Cobs, Private Driving supported by the Carriage Association of America, and the return of the Heavy Horse class by popular demand – guest judged by Steve Gregg, Vice President of the Clydesdale Horse Association of Canada.

One of the highlights of the Friday livestream is The Riding for the Disabled Association Dressage Challenge supported by Players of People’s Postcode Lottery and Wychanger.

The video dressage competition, which has been encouraging RDA and para riders to #RideUnstoppable through challenges posed by this difficult year, is won by the rider with the highest percentage score across eleven sections available. Judged by John Robinson, one of only three British para judges qualified to judge at 5* level, the class has been an opportunity for riders to get back to competition – with several entries competing in their first ever dressage test at Virtual Windsor.

SCHEDULE Class 1 ‐ Ridden Hunters (Small & Lightweight). Prize kindly provided by Brass Tacks Class 2 ‐ Ridden Hunters (Middleweight & Heavyweight). Prize kindly provided by Latham & Taylor Class 3 ‐ Ridden Hacks Class 4 ‐ Ridden Riding Horse supported by High Weald Horse Hydro. Prize kindly provided by Mojo Europe Class 5 ‐ Ridden Cobs (Lightweight, Heavyweight & Maxi) supported by Horses Inside Out Show Horse Championship Class 6 ‐ Private Driving supported by The Carriage Association of America Class 7 ‐ Heavy Horses & Draught Horses of the World supported by The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, Toronto. Prize kindly supplied by Estribos

THE RIDING FOR THE DISABLED ASSOCIATION DRESSAGE CHALLENGE is supported by players of the People’s Postcode Lottery. Prizes generously provided by Wychanger Equestrian & Country Store Shopping Fix: Fashion & Jewellery Horse Wellness with High Weald Horse Hydro Masterclass Part 1 with William Whitaker

SATURDAY 26 SEPTEMBER Saturday is a great day for young riders and jumping enthusiasts, with Show Pony, Show Hunter Pony, Plaited Mini Pony and Working Hunter and Working Hunter Pony classes coming to the fore. Highlights of Saturday include The Omega Equine Equitation Jumping – an all-new discipline designed with virtual competition in mind, which enables riders to compete in jumping classes from home.

The Autumn Series reaches a crescendo on Sunday 27 September with The Omega Equine Pony Club Home International Dressage. A competition usually held at Royal Windsor Horse Show, this time the event has gone virtual – with a new qualification system which threw open Team places. The riders representing each nation have won their spots through getting a top placing in an initial qualifying round, with the highest scores going on to the team.

The Sunday will also feature the highlight of the showing, as Nigel Hollings and his team judge the Side Saddle, Coloured and ROR classes, before The Voltaire Design Virtual Windsor Supreme Showing Championships take place.

It caps a veritable feast of Showing across three days which would not have been possible without the generosity of sponsors and donors.

Show Director, Simon Brooks-Ward, commented: “The organising team has done a tremendous job to put on what we believe will be another spectacular Virtual Show Week building on the excitement and fun of the Virtual Show in May.  We hope as many people get involved as possible and continue to enjoy their sport – even if it is from the sofa.’ The free-to-view content will begin at 1pm each day and be available on Facebook, YouTube, and on the Virtual Windsor 2020 website.

SCHEDULE Class 18 ‐ Side Saddle (including Best Costume) Prize kindly provided by Welligogs Class 19A ‐ Coloured Ridden (Plaited Horse or Pony) Prize kindly supplied by Country Frog Class 19B ‐ Coloured Ridden (Traditional & Native Horse or Pony) Prize kindly supplied by Country Frog Class 20A ‐ Coloured In Hand (Traditional & Native Horse or Pony) Prize kindly supplied by Country Frog Class 20B ‐ Coloured In Hand (Plaited Horse or Pony) Prize kindly supplied by Country Frog Coloured Championship Class 22 ‐ The Saracen Horse Feeds RoR Ridden Class 23 ‐ The Saracen Horse Feeds RoR In Hand RoR Championship
The Voltaire Design Supreme Championship THE OMEGA EQUINE PONY CLUB HOME INTERNATIONAL DRESSAGE Shopping Fix: Country Lifestyle and Living Horse Wellness with Saracen Horse Feeds Masterclass Part 3 with William Whitaker.
 

Holly Smith wins Hickstead Grand Prix

Leicestershire’s Holly Smith became the second female rider to add her name to the roll of honour in the Science Supplements All England Grand Prix.

The Grand Prix attracted a huge field of 76 starters, but the challenging course and tight time caught many combinations out, with the water in particular proving particularly influential.

Holly Smith on her way to victory at Hickstead Photo: Julian Portch

Only seven riders went clear in the first round, with most of these coming in towards the latter half of the class. A thrilling jump-off ensued, with all but one going double clear. Ireland’s David Simpson and Foudre F looked to have set a difficult time to beat, crossing the line in 48.67sec, but he was quickly followed by Britain’s number one lady rider, Holly Smith, with her All England 1.40m Open Champion Fruselli – and they were scorchingly quick to shave more than 3.5sec off David’s time, finishing on 45.11sec.

Shane Breen and Can Ya Makan – the winners of this week’s other 1.40m Open qualifier – set off on a mission to catch Holly, with the aim of adding a second Hickstead Grand Prix to their tally. But Shane had to settle for second with a time of 45.78sec, ahead of compatriot David Simpson in third.

Holly became the second woman rider to win the feature class of the show, after Harriet Nuttall’s win 12 months ago. 

“I saw David Simpson go and I thought my horse could go a bit quicker than that, but with Shane Breen behind me I knew I had to go for it,” said Holly. “I’ve had a really good week here, and it’s a pleasure to be back at Hickstead.”

Fruselli is a 10-year-old chestnut stallion owned by Sue and Gordon Hall, who also owned Holly’s top horse Hearts Destiny, who sadly died last month. 

“They couldn’t make it down today unfortunately but they’d have been watching on the livestream and cheering him on, and this win will have put a smile back on all of our faces,” Holly added. 

Lucy Townley crowned a brilliant week for the Billy Stud when she took both the first and last classes of the day in the Longines International Arena.

Her first win came courtesy of Billy Vitaini in the Stoner Jewellers All England Novice Championship, and she brought the show to a conclusion with victory in the LeMieux All England 1.30m Open Championship with the eight-year-old Bentley X. 

Sammie-Jo Coffin collected her second Longines International Arena win of the week when claiming the Voltaire Design All England 1.20m Open Championship with Habraxis.

Cornish showjumper wins Douglas Bunn 1.35m Challenge at Hickstead

Cornwall-based showjumper Sammie-Jo Coffin further stamped her Hickstead credentials when winning yesterday’s Voltaire Design Douglas Bunn 1.35m Challenge.

As well as taking top spot in the class on board Willem De Lux, with whom she has finished in the top 10 in the Al Shira’aa Derby on a number of occasions, she also finished third with Bellamy II.

Olympic rider Gemma Tattersall finished in second place with the 16-year-old event mare, Chico Bella P.

Sammie-Jo was drawn second to go in the Voltaire Design Douglas Bunn 1.35m Challenge, and she set the pace from the outset with a fast clear in a time of 92.67sec. None of the remaining riders could come close, with Gemma finishing more than 1.3sec in arrears.

Sammie-Jo Coffin on the way to winning the Douglas Bunn 1.35 metre challenge at Hickstead on board Willem De Lux. Photo: Nigel Goddard

“I’m thrilled, I didn’t expect it, but it’s always lovely to get to jump in the main ring,” said Sammie-Jo. “Willem loves the Derby fences but Bellamy had never seen them before. My plan with Willem was just to keep moving, stay smooth and see what happened, and he was just brilliant. It has quite a few of the Al Shira’aa Derby fences in there so it’s useful to see how they’ll react.”

In this morning’s Al Shira’aa Seven Year Old Championship, the Billy Stud team had further cause for celebration when they took both first and second place. William Funnell rode Billy Marmite to win, ahead of stable jockey Lucy Townley on Billy Pablo.

“Billy Marmite is a really special horse, and to have a one-two was great. I don’t like to beat Lucy but I do think Marmite deserved the win,” said William. “We had a great day yesterday with wins in the Four and Five Year Old classes and now the Seven Year Olds too, we just missed out on the Six Year Old but I guess that would have been greedy!”

Three other championship classes took place in the Longines International Arena on the penultimate day of the Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships.

Despite being drawn first to go in the jump-off in the IG Equine All England 1.10m Amateur Championship, Jasmine Gutsell set such a speedy time with Killuppaun Contador that none of her rivals could catch her.

In the GoodBye Flys All England 1.20m Amateur Championship, Amy Carnet took the win with Banderas, an 11-year-old bay gelding; while the final class of the day – The DM Horseboxes All England 1.00m Open Championship – was won by Jay Halim and Billy Cointreau.

Showjumping returns to Hickstead

Showjumping returns to Hickstead with a ‘socially distanced’ show.

Harriet Nutall winning the 2019 Science Supplements All England Jumping Championship at Hickstead Photo: Nigel Goddard

After the cancellation of both its international fixtures, Hickstead is ready to play host to its first competition of the 2020 season.

The Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships will take place from the 2-6 September, offering classes from pony and grassroots levels up to a 1.40m Grand Prix.

After a summer of cancellations, riders have been keener than ever to get out competing, and the national show has received unprecedented levels of interest, with entries selling out within the first 24hrs of opening.

“We were expecting quite a bit of interest when we opened entries, but the response took us by surprise,” said Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn.

A number of measures have been put in place to ensure the safe running of the show. No members of the public can attend, and only one rider, owner and groom are allowed per horse. Face coverings will be mandatory for all course walks and in the collecting rings, and over 40 hand sanitising stations have been installed around the site.

Because of the overwhelming response, a number of entries have had to be turned away.

“We’re sorry to disappoint any riders who have been desperate to get out competing this season, but we are delighted to even be able to run this event after the cancellation of our international shows,” said Lizzie. “We are especially pleased to be able to run some classes that were due to be run at the Longines Royal International Horse Show, including the British Showjumping Pony Winter Finals.

William Funnell coming down Hickstead’s Derby Bank Photo: Nigel Goddard

“Equally, for those who are keen to watch some live sport and who can’t attend because of current restrictions, the action will be livestreamed from the Longines International Arena every day on Hickstead.TV and ClipMyHorse.TV.’

A number of leading showjumpers are due to compete, including Great Britain’s Guy Williams, Holly Smith, Joe Clayton, William Funnell, John Whitaker and Robert Whitaker, while Irish entrants include brothers Shane and Trevor Breen, along with Michael Duffy and David Simpson. Olympic event riders Pippa Funnell, Gemma Tattersall and Christopher Burton are among those switching discipline for the week to compete in the showjumping classes.

As well as national classes at all levels, the show features Al Shira’aa Young Horse championship classes, arena eventing and the Total Waste Management Ltd 10 & Under Mini Challenge. The feature class of the show is the Science Supplements All England Grand Prix, a 1.40m competition with a £6,000 prize fund. Last September Harriet Nuttall became the first female winner of this class, and competition will no doubt be fierce as this year’s contingent of riders aim to take the title.

New documentary celebrates 60 years of Hickstead

This summer marks 60 years since the All England Jumping Course at Hickstead first opened, and a new documentary on Horse & Country TV will showcase the incredible history of the showground.

The one-hour documentary ‘Hickstead: 60 Glorious Years’ charts the development of Hickstead from its inception in 1960 to becoming established as one of the best-known equestrian venues in the world. The programme has been produced by Lizzie and Daisy Bunn, daughters of the showground’s legendary founder, the late Douglas Bunn. 

Exciting action round the showjumping course is always guaranteed.

William Funnell in thrilling show jumping action at Hickstead Photo: Nigel Goddard

The documentary features many of equestrian sport’s biggest names, including David Broome, Eddie Macken, Nick Skelton, Laura Kraut and John Ledingham. Recent winners of the Al Shira’aa Derby such as William Funnell and William Whitaker reveal what it means to win one of showjumping’s most iconic classes.  

Hickstead is and always has been a family business, and in the show the Bunn family give exclusive insights into running the international shows, what goes on behind the scenes and how the showground has developed and diversified over the years. Interviews include Douglas’s second wife Sue, who shares her fascinating experiences of the creation of the venue and tells the famous story of why Hickstead’s Derby Bank is 18in taller than its Hamburg counterpart.  

Over the past six decades Hickstead has been the scene to many of showjumping’s greatest moments, and this rich history will be explored in ‘Hickstead: 60 Glorious Years’. The documentary will also look ahead to what the next 60 years might hold for the All England Jumping Course.

A must-watch for any fan of equestrian sport, Hickstead: 60 Glorious Years will be shown exclusively on H&C+. It premieres on Sunday 28th June at 8pm and can be viewed on-demand thereafter. To find out more visit horseandcountry.tv.

Hickstead 2020 international fixtures cancelled

Directors of the All England Jumping Course have released an official statement below regarding the cancellation of both Hickstead international fixtures in 2020.
The All England Jumping course at Hickstead Photo:: Craig Payne

“Following further government advice, it is with regret that we have had to make the difficult decision to cancel both of our international events for this year.

“These are the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting originally scheduled for June 24-28, and the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ at the Longines Royal International Horse Show from 21-26 July. 

“At this time, the health of our staff, competitors, officials, sponsors, trade exhibitors and visiting public is our top priority.

“We are currently working with the relevant showing societies to ensure that qualification where possible will be carried over to the 2021 Longines Royal International Horse Show.  

“The Hickstead office remains closed but all stakeholders will be contacted directly by email and will receive a refund as per our terms and conditions in due course. Competition prizes and gift vouchers will be valid for the corresponding day next year.

“It is still our intention to run our four-day national show, the Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships, from 3 – 6 September.

“We wish to thank all of our partners and stakeholders for their continued support during these unprecedented times.  We look forward to welcoming you back to Hickstead in the future.

Hickstead Derby meeting postponed

The Directors of the All England Jumping Course at Hickstead have released an official statement regarding their forthcoming season, in response to the current Coronavirus situation.
The All England Jumping Course at Hickstead

The Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting, scheduled to take place from June 24 to June 28, has been postponed.

Organisers hope to be able to run in combination with their national show, the Science Supplements All England Jumping Championships, from September 1 to 6 September, subject to approval from the relevant governing bodies.

At present, preparations for the Longines Royal International Horse Show (July 21 to 26 ) are continuing, although this will be re-assessed on an ongoing basis.

The All England Jumping Course at Hickstead was first opened in 1960, and this season it is due to celebrate its 60th anniversary. The All England Jumping Course at Hickstead in West Sussex was founded in 1960 by Douglas Bunn, who had dreamed of creating a venue that could rival those on the continent.

In 2020, Hickstead is due to celebrate its 60th anniversary. The showground has been the venue for several World and European Showjumping Championships.

It now hosts two major international shows each year – the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting and the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Great Britain at the Longines Royal International Horse Show.

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: hoys.co.uk/timetable

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 hoys.co.uk/tickets 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 groups@theticketfactory.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hickstead show jumping news- and an important fundraiser

The International show jumping season  at Hickstead is only four months away, and the excitement levels are hotting up .

Hickstead has some news for anyone planning to compete there this summer. There has been a brand new development at the All England Jumping Course with annual membership giving accessto more than 70 days of sport.

From March, a professionally-built course will be set up in the 2plan Wealth Arena (the new name for the Bunn Leisure Arena), which is also used for polo during the winter months. Hickstead showjumping schooling will be open for March, April and the first part of May, ahead of the international show season, from 8am to 6pm.

The course height will be marked on the wings at 90cms, clients will be allowed to alter heights as required as long as it is reset at the end of the hour. Distances will also be marked on the sand and must be reset as before.

The courses will be designed by top level British Showjumping and FEI course builders and will be changed regularly. The arena will be hired out for exclusive use for £50 per hour, with all bookings to go through the existing hicksteadschooling.co.uk website.

A Hickstead fundraising target of £10,000 has been smashed within days, as the horse world rallies round to help support showing producer Rory Gilsenan. Rory, the winner of the Charles Owen Working Hunter Supreme Championship  at Hickstead showground last July, was diagnosed with brain cancer in November 2018, and since then has undergone two operations as well as chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Please support fundraising for Rory Gillsenan, pictured above.

Sadly, he has recently suffered a stroke that has left him paralysed down one side and almost unable to speak. This latest fundraiser aims to help support Rory and give him vital physiotherapy and speech therapy to help with his rehabilitation. If you’d like to donate, contact Hickstead

Meanwhile, the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup leg in Wellington saw all-female teams from Great Britain and the USA battle it out for the honours, with the two teams tying after two rounds of exciting jumping. But in the end the home side just bettered the Brits after a jump-off, with Beezie Madden shaving three seconds off Alexandra Thornton’s time to take the win.

The British leg of the series, will be held at Hickstead on Friday July 24.

Hickstead has exciting season ahead

HICKSTEAD has an exciting season ahead, as this year marks 60 years since Douglas Bunn first opened the All England Jumping Course.

It will also be the 60th running of the Al Shira’aa Derby, which was first held in 1961. There are plenty of things in store for this special anniversary year and newsletters will contain more details.

Hickstead has an update on its Arena Polo fixtures and is taking a look at which riders are in action at the Al Shira’aa International Horse Show, There is also a prize giveaway from Equisupplies for everyone to enter.

It may be only January but Hickstead is already counting down the weeks until the start of its international show season.

Shane Breen en route to winning the Hickstead Derby
Photo: www.spidge.co.uk

Tickets for the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting (June 24-28 ) and the Longines Royal International Horse Show (July 21-26 ) are on sale now, with discounts applying on all advance ticket sales.

If you’d like to make your visit truly special, consider booking one of Hickstead’s luxurious hospitality options, including the Al Shira’aa Suite, the Members’ Restaurant or a private box. Bookings for hospitality open on February 3.

For more details contact https://www.hickstead.co.uk/hospitality-events