Increased prize money and changes to the cross country course at Nunney International Horse Trials, which take place on June 16 – 18, have resulted in a bumper number of competitors this year with a wait list for the first ever time.
The action takes place over three days at Southfield House near Frome with the Tarmac-sponsored international CIC2* taking place on Sunday. Entries in this class include previous winners David Doel who will ride Shannondale Quest, a winner this season of Bicton Arena’s CIC2* and Coral Keen who will ride Highmead Proposition.
“It’s an event I really enjoy,” remarked Coral who won in 2013 on Zoe. “I missed last year as I was riding at Luhmuhlen in Germany but I am really looking forward to this year’s competition which has always been so beautifully organised an everyone is so friendly.”
Helen West has taken over this year as cross country designer, and a number of changes have been implemented including changing the direction of the courses. “I am really happy with the feel to all tracks, which have a good balance of questions at each level and better flow with the change in direction. I am looking forward to seeing how they ride,” she said.
The event has attracted some notable entries including William Fox-Pitt who will compete on Jock Paget’s former ride Clifton Signature in the open intermediate. Also in this section is fellow Olympic team rider Gemma Tattersall who rides Pamero 4 and the 2016 Chatsworth CIC3* winner Mr Chunky returns to action after a year on the side lines with Irish team rider Padraig McCarthy in the saddle.
The event has attracted a wealth of other international stars including Australia’s Christopher Burton, New Zealand’s Tim Price, and Great Britain’s Tom McEwen, Izzy Taylor and Richard Waygood who is also the performance manager for the senior British Eventing team.
Organiser Bridget Parker said: “We’ve had a super number of entries and we’ve had to ballot for the first time, and also have a wait list. I think the increase in prize money to the upper limit and the changes to the cross country course have helped. The course now comes up out of the water to a steeplechase fence. The extra field has made a huge difference too as its really opened up the course. It’s now a lovely galloping track.
“We are also thrilled to have the support of Mendip YMCA, on behalf of our landowner and committee member Mrs Angel Yeoman.”
Hundreds of visitors are expected to flock to the venue to enjoy watching the action, as well browse the many tradestands and sample food from an eclectic array of catering stands.
Entry to the event is free on Friday and £12 per car on Saturday and Sunday.
The cross country for the CIC2* and intermediate classes is scheduled for Sunday starting at 10am, but there is action over the fixed fences on Friday, Saturday and Sunday with showjumping in the main arena in front of the house over all three days too.
Visit www.nunneyhorsetrials.co.uk for more details.