Saddles are being polished and the new cross country course is taking shape, while horses and riders are running through their final preparations as world-class equestrian action returns to Chatsworth for the first time since 2019.
After a Covid-enforced hiatus of two years, the Chatsworth International Horse Trials in May will once again offer a thrilling spectacle as hundreds of competitors take on the three day event, including the specially designed cross country course winding its way through The Art of Burning Man in the parkland.
With entries flooding in from around the world, the anticipation is building for the elegant dressage, the fascinating show jumping and the gripping cross country, where amateur horse riders compete alongside world class competitors.
Among the star names to look out for are the FEI World No. 1 Event Rider and Tokyo team gold medallist Oliver Townend riding five horses, and home interest with the much decorated Olympian Ian Stark OBE on Chatsworth Diamond, a horse owned by the Duchess of Devonshire and bred at Chatsworth. The Duchess has owned event horses for many years, including the 1999 Badminton winner Jaybee and the 1999 Chatsworth winner Stanwick Ghost, both also ridden by Ian Stark, so hopes will be high for a good showing from the pair.
Patricia Clifton, Chatsworth International Horse Trials, said: “We’re delighted to be staging these wonderful three days of action once again. The event never disappoints, offering something for the enthusiast and the first time visitor looking for a great day out. If you’ve never been before, I would recommend the Ice Pond as a vantage point giving a spectacular view of the whole site, and you can always see the action on the big screen located in the food court. Families will have plenty to do in our children’s area and don’t miss the family fun dog show if you want to get involved!”
For something fast and furious, the British scurry and trials driving sees miniature ponies take on large cobs as their drivers tackle an obstacle course against the clock. The competitions are family friendly and the rules are easy to follow.
As well as plenty of compelling competitive action, there is entertainment for the whole family including a have-a-go dog agility, a family fun dog show, birds of prey demos and a dog and duck show.
Canine lifesavers, the UK Rescue Bears, will be putting on displays showing the skills of these Newfoundland dogs, as well as offering the chance to have hug and photo with the gentle giants, while Nobby the Norfolk Horn, stands centre stage for The Sheep Show as his woolly friends are introduced to their podiums, all to their own theme tunes.
Face painting, circus skills and pottery painting are also on offer, while the shopping village, with more than 100 high quality stands and a fine food walk, is perfect for those looking to treat themselves.
Early bird tickets are available up until 8 May 2022. Gate tickets for Friday Adult £15, Child £10; Saturday/Sunday Adult £30 per day, Child £10 per day. All tickets include free parking and child prices are for ages 5–15 inclusive.
The event organisers are delighted to announce Walker & Morland as new sponsor for 2022. Walker & Morland is a wellness brand that uses natural ingredients, including pure isolate CBD, to offer relief and recovery from sports and an active lifestyle.
For more information, www.chatsworth.org/horse-trials