View this post on Instagram
Eventing has officially returned to the UK, though it hasn’t been the most straightforward of opening weekends. Aston-le-Walls, which is ordinarily the event that manages to run even when the rest of the country is 20,000 leagues under the sea, had to turn its BE season opener into a combined test after extreme storms drowned the site, so Poplar Park held the only three-phase affiliated competition of the weekend.
But what a competition that was! Riders and horses from BE80 to Intermediate were out in their droves, and the OI classes read like a who’s who of elite partnerships. Both of those classes went to Olympic gold medallist Oliver Townend aboard his great greys Ballaghmor Class and new ride Swallow Springs, formerly piloted by Andrew Nicholson. Reigning World Champs Ros Canter and Allstar B impressed with a 17.5 dressage, and we were delighted to see the return of Gemma Tattersall‘s Arctic Soul, who looked on super form with a 22.1 dressage and a cross-country run that Gemma laughingly admits nearly pulled her arms out. We feel as enthusiastic about being back as you do, Spike.
National Holiday: It’s National Be Heard Day. Take a stand for something you believe in to mark the occasion.
US Weekend Action:
UK Weekend Action:
Poplar Park: [Results]
Aston-le-Walls (1): [Results]
Your Monday Reading List:
A top eventing groom has come forward to anonymously share her experiences – which include plenty of 70+ hour weeks for barely any pay. It’s an achingly familiar scenario for many grooms and working students, but as this groom points out, it’s the cause of all the staff shortages plaguing the sport. Unsurprisingly, this groom has now left eventing to work in an industry in which she can afford to eat.
Happy birthday (yesterday!) to India’s Fouaad Mirza! The German-based eventer dazzled us all in Tokyo with the former Bettina Hoy ride Seigneur Medicott – and he’s only just entering his thirties now. A child prodigy, tbqh.
Meet Justine Dutton, former four-star eventer, Grand Prix show jumper, pony-dealing impresario, and all around badass babe. She’s the focus of the new WEC Ocala Spotlight after winning the $75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix with Everse W. We love to see it.
Want to help the University of Kentucky conduct game changing research into horse transport? Fill out their survey by April 1 to help them find out how horses across America get from point A to point B.
The FutureTrack Follow:
View this post on Instagram
I’d consider this incredible, emotive shot by Chelsea Spear the photo of the weekend from Bruce’s Field, and this talented tog — who has worked under industry hotshot Erin Gilmore, so you know she’s good! — has lots more where that came from. Give her a follow to add some more eventing (and hunter-jumper!) imagery to your feed.
Get the inside look at a day in the life of a talented junior eventer in the UK – and Ellie Fredericks is the daughter of Lucinda and Clayton Fredericks, no less!