Young equestrian eventers flying flag for Yorkshire as British Youth Championships come to Bishop Burton

Hundreds of the best young riders from across the country, including several from the Yorkshire region representing the North, will be competing near Hull next week.

The land-based further education college, Bishop Burton near Brandesburton, will open its doors to hundreds of talented young riders and spectators next week, as it hosts the British Eventing International Youth Championships.

The riders, all of which are under 18, have been selected as the best in their region to compete in a range of dressing, show-jumping and cross country classes which are set to take place from Thursday August 4 to Sunday August 7.

Catherine Sykes is the equine event co-ordinator at Bishop Burton College, and said this year would be different in that it would be held without Covid restrictions.

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    A rider takes on a water jump at a previous event at Bishop Burton.

    She said: “We’re delighted to be hosting the International Youth Championships for the second year, especially as this year we can welcome spectators without Covid-19 restrictions.

    “Our course designer, Joe Weller, has done a spectacular job at transforming our parkland ready for the event. The cross country competition on Saturday August 6 is sure to be a highlight.

    “We’re especially excited that one of our own students, Lucy Proctor-Copeland, has been chosen to represent the north.”

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    The ceremony will feature professional student rider Katharine Pickering, who has featured in productions such as Victoria and Wonder Woman 1984, as well as performing at events such as the Horse of the Year Show and Great Yorkshire Show.

    Ms Pickering’s performance will include liberty, where the horse has no tack, classical dressage with Grand Prix rider Edward Creamer, dare devil trick riding and even some fire.

    She said: “I am so excited to be back at Bishop Burton. I’ve experienced so many firsts here and been involved with the displays and demonstrations; it just feels like coming back to where it all started for me.

    “It’s great to be performing inside Bishop Burton College’s incredible indoor arena, which makes a huge difference to us and our horses. The facilities are top class, and this allows us to perform at our best.”

    Bishop Burton College, which offers college and university level courses in a wide range of subjects, will also be tapping into its facilities to offer competitors and their families a range of unique experiences while they are at the Championships.

    Other events away from the classes include a demonstration of Bishop Burton’s equine water treadmill, an equine science experience in the specialist laboratories and a tour of the animal unit, featuring the college’s new porcupine and mongoose.

    Admission to the championships is free and spectators will be able to treat themselves with a number of trade stands. Sponsors of the event include Baileys Horse Feeds, NFU Mutual, Visit East Yorkshire, Bedmax Shavings and Lindum.

    So far this year, the college and representatives have attended three regional country shows with four days at the Great Yorkshire Show, two days at Driffield Show and two days at Lincolnshire Show.