Classic Eventing Nation

Houghton International Nations Cup Cross Country Course Preview

The final fence on course. Photo courtesy of CrossCountry App.

The first leg of the 2019 FEI Nations Cup Eventing Series is underway at the Saracen Horse Feeds Houghton International Horse Trials in Norfolk, England. Nine teams are contesting the Nations Cup: Germany, France, Great Britain, Sweden, Switzerland, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium and Italy.

Houghton has hosted a Nations Cup leg ever since the FEI launched the series in 2012. The U.S. sent a team to Houghton for the past three consecutive years, and finished on the podium in both 2017 and 2018, but did not send a team this year.

There are 117 starters in this year’s Nations Cup field, which spreads dressage across three days. Click here to view live scoring. Tilly Berendt is on the grounds to bring you full coverage starting today. In the meantime, take a tour of Alec Lochore’s Nations Cup cross country course courtesy of CrossCountry App.

Many thanks to Jane Clarke of Musketeer Event Management for recording the course preview. View in full screen mode to scroll through all the fences. You can also click here to view on CrossCountry App’s website. Download CrossCountry App to access more maps like these from events all around the world. Go Eventing.

Houghton Links: Website, Dressage Start TimesDressage Results, Show Jumping OrderTeam Results, EN’s Coverage

#EventerFailFriday: Video Edition

If a picture is worth 1,000 words, is a video worth 1,000 pictures? Mmmmm … something like that. Enjoy the latest batch of reader-submitted fails!

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Wait for it…. sound on. Yet another #eventerfailfriday

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Your dose of bloopers today….You're welcome 😜

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Way to own it, EN. Never change. Go Eventing.

Friday News & Notes from World Equestrian Brands

Happy and fashionable at VHT! Photo by Skyeler Voss

Good thing it’s National Road Trip Day, as I’m road tripping for a short time right down to the Virginia Horse Trials to meet all my friends. With one dog and one pony in tow, it will be a pretty relaxed weekend for me, and I’m really looking forward to it. Hopefully the pony behaves and steps up to the plate, and hopefully the doggo is a good boi as well. Fingers crossed for everyone to have a fabulous weekend and for nobody to get heatstroke in the 90* weather.

National Holiday: National Road Trip Day

U.S. Weekend Action:

Mystic Valley Hunt Club H.T. [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Virginia Horse Trials International & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Flora Lea Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

The Spring Event at Woodside [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

May-Daze at the Park H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Coconino Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Maryland Horse Trials FEH/YEH/NEH Qualifier [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

News From Around the Globe:

Thirty-eight-year-old Piggy French fought long and hard for her win at Badminton this year. After trying the level many many times, and suffering a double disappointment blow right before the London Olympics, Piggy almost had given up, and was deep in a pit of despair. However, during her vacation from riding due to pregnancy, she watched loads of other top riders in their barns, and drew a deep breath, and kept on. For a story of inspiration and determination, go no further. [How Piggy Fought Back]

Absolute Best of Blogs: Jim Wofford: Glorious Uncertainty

If you loved watching Ben Hobday beast around Badminton on the Wiz Kid, you’ll love all these cobs kicking butt. While they might not be as sporty looking as their Thoroughbred or Warmblood counterparts, a good draft cross can do anything with style. They’re known as steady-eddies, but they can jump a big fence, do fancy dressage, gallop, and look cute as hell while doing so. [22 Cobs That Break the Mold]

Aoife Clark is definitely superhuman. Now she can add super-mom to her resume, as she finished in third place in an Open Intermediate division at Tweseldown just TWO weeks after giving birth to her son, Patrick. I mean, really. C’mon Aoife. [Top Rider On Podium Two Weeks After Having Baby]

Your Fast-and-Dirty Thursday Recap From Houghton, Saumur and Baborówko

There’s plenty of FEI action to keep up with this week between Houghton International in Great Britain, Saumur in France and Baborówko in Poland. Let’s catch up with the latest from each event, plus all the links you need to stay in-the-know.

Jonna Britse (SWE) and Quattrino in the CCIO4*-L. Photo by Libby Law Photography courtesy of Houghton International.

Saracen Horse Feeds Houghton International & Nations Cup

EN’s Tilly Berendt will be sending daily dispatches from Houghton beginning on Friday, so do check back on the regular for that. In the meantime, here’s a quick report from day one dressage at the stately countryside manor that is Houghton Hall. Note to American eventing: need more castle-esque backdrops.

After the first of two CCI4*-L dressage days, German Nations Cup team rider Christoph Wahler with Carjatan S has the overnight lead on a score of 24.8, almost four penalties clear of the field. Swiss team member Robin Godel sits 2nd with Grandeur de Lully, followed by British individual rider Tom McEwen. Tom’s mount is No Excuse, whom Tom is keeping up and running for the expectant Ros Canter.

The Netherlands have only fielded a team of three, so they complete today on a single score of 33.7. Of the teams with two scores posted, Germany lead on 55.0, with Sweden on 59.0, Switzerland on 60.5, Belgium on 66.6, Great Britain on 67.5, France on 68.8, Spain on 77.9 and Italy bringing up the rear on 81.7. The Netherlands have only fielded a team of three, and they complete today on a single score of 33.7.

Holly Woodhead and Scuderia 1918 Future lead the three-star, ahead of Selina Milnes on Vivendi Time with Harry Meade and Gideon in hot pursuit. Piggy French leads the two-star dressage with Lancer Stud’s First Lancer; the pair is fresh off a win at Rockingham Horse Trials last weekend. Willa Newton on Cock A Doodle Doo and Zara Tindall with Gladstone are close behind in second and third places.

Dressage restarts at 9 a.m. local time tomorrow morning. All phases of the CCI4*-S will be live-streamed, via the Musketeer website. Live scoring is also available at

CCI4*-L Top 10 After Day 1 Dressage:

Baborówko Equestrian Festival

Baborówko, which is headlined by a CCIO4*-L qualifier for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, is underway in Poland. We previewed the event yesterday: to recap, three teams from the C group (Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia) will compete for Olympic qualification: Poland, Russia and Belarus. Each country competing for the qualification can enter a team of four horse and rider pairs into the class, with the results of the three best pairs to count for the final ranking.

The CCIO4*-L gets underway tomorrow, but equally interesting is the star-studded CCI4*-S division, which began today. It’s a stocked pond of top German eventers, with the Andreas(s) taking the early top two spots, plus Michael Jung who is 6th with Corazon and has his second ride on Highlighter tomorrow (as well as a start with fischerChipmunk FRH in the CCIO4*-L). Still to come also is Tim Price with  his accomplished five-star and 2014 WEG partner Wesko.

You can view the live stream here.

Baborówko Equestrian Festival: WebsiteEntriesSchedule, Live Scores

Baborówko CCI4*-S Top 10 After Day 1 Dressage:

Saumur Complet

Saumur’s headline division, the CCI4*-L, gets underway tomorrow — check out start times for that here. Of note, Logan Duffort is representing the U.S. in the CCI4*-L with Voltage de la Nouee.

The CCIO3*-L is also of great interest, as it is serving as an FEI Olympic Qualification Event for Africa and the Middle East, as well as Southeast Asia and Oceania. China, Hong Kong and Thailand have all fielded teams, and the two best placed nations will take an Olympic slot. After day one, Japan leads on an 88.3, China is second on 89.2, Thailand is 4th on 108.2 and Hong Kong is 4th on 114.8.

View the live stream of the event here. Live stream schedule (in local time): dressage – Friday 12:45-2:10 p.m., cross country – Saturday 1-3:30 p.m., show jumping – Sunday 2:30-3:40 p.m.).

Saumur: Website, Entries, Results

Saumur CCIO3*-L Top 10 After Day 1 Dressage:

Go Eventing.

USEF Updates SafeSport Policy to ‘Further Protect Minor Athletes’

Image courtesy of USEF

USEF announced an update this week to the SafeSport policy, which now includes new USEF Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention (MAAP) policies and will go into effect on June 1. USEF CEO Bill Moroney and USEF President Murray Kessler released a letter to members this week explaining the policy update.

“The new MAAP policies are part of a congressional requirement mandating USEF, as well as other amateur sports organizations and governing bodies, to implement policies and procedures that limit one-on-one interactions between minor athletes and adults who are not their parent/legal guardian.

“We understand that these policies, which affect one-on-one meetings/training, social media, electronic communications (such as text messages and e-mail), travel, and more, will change the way adults and minors in our sport currently interact.

“We have provided examples to explain the policies, and we encourage you to read them closely. These policies are designed to protect minors and adults, and other sports governing bodies across the country are enacting similar measures.”

Click here to read the updated SafeSport policy. More than 55,000 USEF members have now taken SafeSport training, which was updated last month to only one module, as opposed to three separate modules when the training launched at the beginning of the year.

“It is vital to the sustainability of equestrian sport to deliver SafeSport information and resources directly to our members. We will continue to support you in adhering to these policies by providing regular updates. We appreciate your efforts to ensure equestrian sport is a safe environment for all.”

Click here to read the full letter, which includes updates on other key initiatives currently currently underway at USEF, from drugs/medications and licensed officials to education partners and special task forces.

Thursday Video from Ecovet: Laura Collett’s Chatsworth ERM Masterclass

Laura Collett took her very first Event Rider Masters victory earlier this spring at Chatsworth aboard her talented up-and-comer London 52. She led the class from pillar to post, sealing the deal with an incredible performance on Ian Stark’s cross country course. Now, she’s walking us through her ride with insights from SAP Equestrian Analytics.

The active ingredients in Ecovet fly spray are naturally derived fatty acids — not toxic chemicals. Watch how Ecovet makes the flies get lost:

Entry List Goes Live for This Sunday’s $50,000 Devon Arena Eventing

Last year’s winners, Chris Talley and Sandro’s Star, are returning to defend the title. Photo by Taylor Renner/Phelps Sports.

A total of 35 combinations will take on Capt. Mark Phillips’ course in the $50,000 Devon Arena Eventing this Sunday, May 26, at the Devon Horse Show & Country Fair in Devon, Pennsylvania. The 1,000-meter course combining both show jumps and cross country fences will run under the lights in the iconic Dixon Oval and Wheeler Ring.

Last year’s winners, Chris Talley and Sandro’s Star, are returning to the defend the title, along with an exciting lineup of Olympians and five-star riders. Here’s the full entry list:

  • Jules Ennis Batters and Cooley O
  • Tracey Bienemann and Geoni
  • Kristen Bond and I’m Sew Ready
  • Jennie Brannigan and I Bella
  • Hannah Sue Burnett and Lukeswell
  • Cary Chavis and Game On
  • Amanda Beale Clement and Carlson 119
  • Amanda Beale Clement and Get Ready
  • Buck Davidson and Carvelo
  • Buck Davidson and Gaya
  • Justine Dutton and MGH Heartbeat
  • Natasha Erschen and Gran Torino
  • Lisa Marie Fergusson and Honor Me
  • Clayton Fredericks and Luksor
  • Emily Hamel and Corvett
  • Lizzy Jahnke and Snow Leopard
  • Ema Klugman and Bendigo
  • Ema Klugman and Joker’s Win
  • Boyd Martin and Barry
  • Boyd Martin and Contestor
  • Caroline Martin and Cristano Z
  • Caroline Martin and Quantum Solace
  • Missy Miller and Quinn
  • Hilary Moses and Zanadoo & Irish Turn
  • Taryn Nolte and Cleverly
  • Colleen Rutledge and Shiraz and
  • Colleen Rutledge and Confidence Game
  • Allie Sacksen and Sparrow’s Nio
  • Alexandra Scannell and Faolan
  • Juli Sebring and Welbourne
  • Erin Sylvester and Campground
  • Chris Talley and Faramund
  • Chris Talley and Sandro’s Star
  • Ryan Wood and Chusinmyconfession
  • Ryan Wood and Powell

The course will run across 1,000 meters with 25 total fences: 15 cross country fences and 10 show jumps. All show jumps will be set at a maximum height of 1.20 meters, with a maximum height of 1.15 meters for cross country fences.

A rail down will incur 5 faults, with 10 faults for a first refusal and elimination for a second refusal. One time fault will be given for every four seconds over the time allowed.

The top 12 pairs after the first round, or all fault-free rounds, will be eligible for the jump-off in the Dixon Oval. The fastest time in the jump-off will take home the win and $12,500 in prize money.

The full prize money breakdown is as follows: 1st – $12,500, 2nd – $10,000, 3rd – $7,500, 4th – $5,000, 5th – $3,500, 6th – $2,750, 7th – $2,000, 8th – $1,500, 9th – $1,500, 10th – $1,250, 11th – $1,250, 12th – $1,250.

Click here to buy tickets. The course will be built at 5:30 p.m., followed by the course walk and arena familiarization at 6:15 p.m., with the start of the class at 7 p.m. If you can’t be there to watch in person, USEF Network will stream all the action live at this link.

Will you be celebrating Memorial Day Weekend at the Devon Horse Show & Country Fair? Let us know in the comments below.

[$50,000 Devon Arena Eventing]

#DogsOfEN: You Know It’s a Barn Dog When …

“Barn dog” could be its own breed, really. They might not all look the same, but they have this horse life thing down pat — and you better believe that they’re loving every moment of it.

Here’s the latest batch of your pup pics.

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Best groom known to man #dogsofen

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And, one barn cat because we’re equal opportunity like that!

Go Eventing.

Thursday News & Notes from Taylor Harris Insurance Services (THIS)

A summer outfit for chubby boys. Photo by JJ Sillman.

I’m getting excited for the Virginia Horse Trials this weekend, my most local event, and the horse center where I grew up learning to love eventing. I did my very first unrecognized three-phase events there, and have pictures of me and my best friend Natasha tearing around the cross country on our ponies when we were about 10. I had two ponies, one named Hershey who I bought for five dollars because nobody could catch her, and the other one Natasha rode, who’s name was Moonstar. Moonstar came from the wild herd of spanish ponies in North Carolina, and my parents got me for her as a yearling. When I was seven. It was a real education, but she was a B.A. pony!

National Holiday: National Lucky Penny Day

U.S. Weekend Action:

Mystic Valley Hunt Club H.T. [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Virginia Horse Trials International & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Flora Lea Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

*CANCELLED* Willow Draw Charity Show [Website]

The Spring Event at Woodside [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

May-Daze at the Park H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Coconino Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Maryland Horse Trials FEH/YEH/NEH Qualifier [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

News From Around the Globe:

Still confused by SafeSport? If you were one of the many who were befuddled by the SafeSport training protocols, you’ll be happy to know that anybody who takes them after April 15th will now have a modified single format training session. In addition to that, beginning on the 1st of June, we now have new policies called the USEF Minor Athlete Abuse Policies to look over in the updated regulations. [Addition of MAAP to SafesSport]

The OTTB: an excellent sporthorse! Thoroughbreds off the track are intelligent, athletic and know how to do a job, and they can be incredible partners for the right sport and the right rider. However, they’re not for everyone. If you’re endeavoring to buy your first OTTB, pair up with somebody who is familiar with retraining them in the right way, and also read this article on considerations moving forward. [Buying an Ex-Racehorse: What You Need To Know]

No hoof, no horse, so they say. They’re right really, and a good-hooved horse can make your life ten million times easier than one with not so great feet. With factors like genetics, farrier care, environment, and diet, there are ways to increase your chances of keeping your horse’s hooves happy and healthy for their entire life. Not surprisingly, the first advice from experts is to buy or breed a horse with good feet to start with, but when you can’t have that, there are definitely steps to take to help the other ones too. [How To Keep Healthy Hooves]

Best of Blogs: 6 Things Not To Say To Your Instructor

Hot on Horse Nation: Freakness At The Preakness: Running of the Urinals


We live for Budweiser ads, the British live for Lloyds ads:


Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: Top Training Tip from Harry Meade

Upper-level riders use a variety of techniques to maintain their horses — more than we can list, but one that’s not often mentioned is weight tracking. Harry Meade keeps tabs on the weight of all his horses, and his top horses are weighed each day. In this video, he walks us through why this is an underutilized tool in eventing.


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For more information on this new product, visit