Preparations gathering pace at Bramham ahead of Trials

THERE are just four weeks to go until this year's Bramham International Horse Trials get underway (June 3-6) and the organisers are busy putting the final plans in place.

Bramham, now in its 37th year, is one of the country's major equestrian fixtures and Event Director Nichols Pritchard said: "We're extremely excited about the prospect of this year's event.

"Plans are falling into place, sponsors are joining and renewing, the park is looking beautiful thanks to the spring sunshine and we once again have an amazing army of volunteers committed to making the event a success."

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Three eventing competitions will take place over the four days – the CCI three-star, the Bishop Burton College Under-25 CCI three-star and the new addition, the CIC three-star.

William Fox-Pitt, Mary King and Yorkshire's European gold medallist Nicola Wilson are regular visitors for the home side, while last year's winner Andrew Nicholson, Joe Meyer and Neil Spratt lead the international charge.

Ian Stark takes over as the cross country course designer this year and has promised a course full of innovation and challenge which uses many of the park's interesting features.

As well as a packed eventing schedule there is also a full programme of hunter show classes and the Trot2 Young Stock and Event Horse Breeding sections, plus qualifiers for the Burghley Dubarry Young Event Horse Championships. Some of the country's top showjumpers will also be in action and on the Sunday they team up with the event riders for the Mix and Match competition, always full of thrills and spills and fierce competition.

Ticket details

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A members' package includes access to the marquee with restaurant, bistro and bar and an arena-side view. For a special occasion, private chalets are available in the hospitality area. Sunday is already sold out but other days are available.

Ticket prices remain the same as last year starting at 10 for daily admission or a four-day pass for 40.

Tickets for the members' enclosure are always popular and early booking is advised. Also, those who book early will get free parking. And if you want to stay for the whole event, there's a camping area where you can pitch a tent.

For more information and the online box office, go to

Whitakers prepare for Windsor competition

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THE Royal Windsor Horse Show begins on Wednesday when over 3,000 horses and ponies will be competing in showjumping, driving and showing classes.

Leading British showjumpers, including John and William Whitaker, will be there along with John's eldest daughter, Louise, who will be riding for the first time in her career at Windsor.

Entries are high for the showing section where 32 new classes have been added this year.

Last year the Queen had reason to celebrate with a win for Balmoral Moorland in the Highland Championship.

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Top British drivers will be entering to compete against 12 nations in the Land Rover International Driving Grand Prix for horse and pony four-in-hands as well as horse pairs.

The Royal Windsor Horse Show runs from May 12 until May 16.

THE Bilsdale Hunt point-to-point takes place today at Easingwold with the first race running at 2pm.

In the third race, the Dodson and Horrell Point-to-Point Owners and Riders Association Club Members race for novice riders, Charlotte Cundall has the choice of two horses in her attempt to win the Yorkshire Novice Lady Riders title and either could go well. The fourth race, the Mixed Open, has the biggest field and some good entries including Fox Point and Knoxhill Archie who won here last time.

Several of the Mixed Open horses also hold an entry in the Confined race and this could go the way of Brown's Beck who goes well on this course.

The postcode for satellite navigation is YO61 3PS.

CW 8/5/10

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