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Saturday, 29 April 2017

Badminton Horse Trials 2017

An eventing blog wouldn't be quite the same without some mention of the first four star of the year - Badminton.

Badminton is my favourite four star - I like that it is early(ish) in the season, I like the setup of it with the Badminton house in the background, and the vibrant red & white of the grandstand. But most of all, I love the cross country course!!

In recent years, Giuseppe Della Chiesa took over as course designer, and gave it a full refresh with a very definite continental flavour. However, 2017 sees a new designer - Eric Winter. Announced last May, I was even more excited to see the course previews in the lead up to the event!

Eric rode around Badminton in 1991, and from 2011-14 has been Technical Delegate at the horse trials. He has also worked with Blemheim Palace International horse trials, as well as at junior and senior European championships.

So what's in store for 2017's cross country day. Take a look Eric Winter's in this fly over video.

Cross country course changes in 2017:

  • Course will run clockwise (the opposite of last year)
  • The traditional Keeper's Brush has become Keeper's Question, changing from a brush to an "inviting" table (eeeek!!!)
  • Savills Staircase returns with a super-acute angle down into the 'D' element, before heading off to fence 6 - the Countryside Birch
  • Lake complex is early at 8, with a HUGE drop in, an encouraging jump out, but needing a strong attack to element 'C'
  • There is no Vicarage V - I know, we can't quite believe it either! Although terrifying to look at, it's a staple Badminton jump... it will be back next year, so we're told
  • A serious shifting of earth has created the Grand Slam Trakehner at 14
  • Devoucoux Oxer at fence 18 is described as "as big as the rules allow" - so it's a meaty fence!!
  • A check on tiredness & concentration at 19, with a technical set of rails through the Corral
  • The final fence has had a complete redesign, with competition winner Victoria Hanson's design achieving 4,000 votes - and I'm both horse & rider will be pleased to soar over it at the end of their round!

Keeper's Question - fence 3
Savills Staircase - fence 5

Grand Slam Trakehner - fence 14
Devoucoux Oxer - fence 18

Mitsubishi Final Mount - fence 30

Where to watch Badminton Horse Trials 2017

If you're not able to go to watch the event live and at Badminton estate, you can tune into live streams thanks to Badminton Livestream, BBC & Horse & Country TV.

2017 will be the first year that you'll be able to watch right from as early as the horse inspection on Wednesday 3rd May. 

Badminton-Horse.co.uk has published a full schedule:
  • Wednesday 3rd May – First Horse Inspection
    Badminton Livestream: 4:30pm – 5:45pm
    Followed by Mitsubishi Motors Cup presentations at 6.00pm
  • Thursday 4th & Friday 5th May – Dressage Phase
    Badminton Livestream: 9am until 5pm
    Showing every test, plus lunchtime dressage demo
  • Saturday 6th May – Cross Country Test
    All cross country rounds live from 11:30 until 5pm
    UK only: BBC Red Button and BBC Sport website
    Netherlands, Sweden & Australia: H&C Play
    Rest of world: Badminton Livestream
  • Sunday 7th May – Showjumping Phase
    Outside UK: entire day including final horse inspection & prize giving; Badminton Livestream
    UK: final horse inspection, majority of jumping* and prize giving; Badminton Livestream
    UK: BBC2 and BBC Sport website 2pm – 4pm
    Cross country highlights followed by the *live finale of the jumping 3:30 – 4pm

2017 Drawn Order

Embracing technology, Badminton Horse Trials drew their 2017 order via Facebook Live, which you watch below, or alternative, check out the official website to see the full drawn order riders, horses & their nationalities.

Lauren Kieffer, riding Landmark's Monte Carlo, will start the dressage and be the cross country pathfinders, with eventing royalty, Mark Todd and Leonidas II, following second.

One of my favourites, Tina Cook, is drawn in at 12, riding either Calvino II or Billy The Red. Yorkshire girl, Nicola Wilson & Annie Clover are in at 21, & Lissa Green makes her Badminton debut at 32, on Malin Head Clover. James Sommerville also makes his debut on Talent in 2017.

Previous winner Michael Jung, riding La Biosthetique Sam FBW, rides at 38. Team GB & 2016 Olympic combination Gemma Tattersall with Artic Soul are drawn at 79. Andrew Nicholson & Nereo are last to go.

Join in the conversation

If you're watching Badminton at any point, or maybe you're not able to and want to quickly catch up on all the news and updates, just search #MMBHT or use it in all your social media posts! & of course, don't forget to follow @bhorsetrials on Twitter, or on Facebook.

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