Badminton 2019 was once again another incredible event for the HTSG, especially as our fundraising events raised over £3000, more than doubling the total from 2018. These funds will go directly to supporting the British team heading to the Tokyo Olympics. A big thank you to all those members and guests who came to the marquee and brought raffle tickets and bid in our auction.
As you’ll know the British riders had a successful event with Piggy French winning her first 5* and making it the 100th British 5* winner ever. In total 6 of the top 10 placed riders were British which is fantastic news for our teams going forward towards the Europeans this year and Olympics next year.
Our marquee was the usual epicentre of activity at Badminton with riders, trainers, world class teams and of course our members coming in to have refreshments all week and of course our infamous pre-cross country breakfast. We organised two events this year, our now traditional cross country preview evening on the Friday and an evening of comedy with Rory Bremner following the cross country.
Our cross country preview evening panel
The cross country preview proved to be very popular again this year with the marquee full with members and guests. On the panel were HTSG Ambassador Laura Collett, former Badminton winner Pippa Funnell, Team GBR Performance Manager Dickie Waygood and Badminton course designer Eric Winter. In addition to this we had Diarm Byrne of EquiRatings picking out the ones to watch and where he thought the event could be won and lost. As usual, committee member Spencer Sturmey did a great job of compering the evening.
Following the cross country on Saturday evening, members and guests joined us for a very entertaining evening of comedy with Rory Bremner, who also acted as auctioneer for our fund-raising auction. Rory is a big equestrian fan with his daughter competing regularly and he brought us some very topical and hilarious impressions, including President Trump and Oliver Townend.
Rory Bremner and his impressions...
Throughout the event we ran a series of cross country course walks with Yogi Breisner, Ginny Elliot, Spencer Sturmey and Irish rider Joseph Murphy, all of which were very popular and well supported.
About the Sunday course walk HTSG Chair, Ginny Elliot said:
Both HTSG Ambassadors, Alex Bragg and Laura Collett were competing at Badminton but neither had the best of times unfortunately. Alex was disappointed with Zagreb’s dressage score of 31.7 and on Saturday morning he made the decision to withdraw and reroute to another event and now heads to Chatsworth in the Event Rider Masters this weekend.
Alex Bragg and Zagreb
Laura and Mr Bass started Badminton as one of the favourites and didn’t disappoint in the first phase with a dressage score of 27.6 to be in eighth place before cross country. On the cross country Laura and Mr Bass had a brilliant round, jumping clear with 17.2 time faults. Everyone in the HTSG marquee was thrilled to have witnessed this success. Sadly, as members arrived for the trot up on Sunday morning, they learned that Mr Bass had been withdrawn.
Laura said: “I can’t quite believe I’m having to write this. Mr Bass was totally awesome jumping clear round the toughest track he’s ever seen but sadly he has sustained an injury. My special boy will be given all the love and care in the world to nurse him better. He’s my horse of a lifetime and my best friend. We will be back fighting.”
Laura Collett and Mr Bass
All at the HTSG wish a speedy recovery to Mr Bass. Laura will be joining Alex in the Event Rider Masters this weekend on hot favourite London 52 so we wish them both the best of luck. Members who can’t be there can tune in to eventridermasters.tv to watch the livestream.
The next big event is Burghley and members are now able claim their members passes. You should have all received an email from The Ticket Factory detailing how to claim yours online. Any problems let us know.
If you came to see us at Badminton and would like to give us some feedback, positive or not please do contact us via social media (links below) or via our contact details.
Don't forget to keep an eye on the website and social media channels for all the latest eventing updates and news.
All photos taken by HTSG Committee Member, Michael Rogers © MDR Photo
Below you can read our latest members newsletter. All the information on our Badminton Marquee and Events are available on the website.
Following on from the successes of our 2018 Training Scholars, Alex Bragg and Laura Collett, we are delighted to announce they will continue their involvement with HTSG as Ambassadors for 2019.
Please listen to the recent Eventing Podcast HTSG special edition which reviewed the 2018 results for Alex and Laura, and highlighted the impressive statistics achieved by both riders, thanks in part to the training scholarships from HTSG.
We wish our HTSG Ambassadors every success for the 2019 season, and we look forward to working with them to provide our members with unique opportunities to get to know Alex and Laura better.
This weeks Eventing Podcast episode is a special interview with the 2018 Horse Trials Support Group Scholars Laura Collett & Alex Bragg.
Talking stats, stable superstars & plans for 2019 it’s a great insight into two of the most talked about riders on the British circuit.
HTSG member, Richard Jewson was appointed Knight Commander of Royal Victorian Order in the New Years Honours List. Sir Richard is a successful businessman and has been involved in the sport of eventing for many years.
He has been the chairman of the Burghley Horse Trials organising committee since 2011 and has been an owner of some very successful horses including 1993 Blenheim Horse Trials winner Bits And Pieces, ridden by Pippa Funnell and more recently 2018 Belton CIC3* winner Billy Cuckoo, ridden by Tom Jackson.
Membership subscriptions are now due for 2019. We are pleased to confirm that we have kept the subscription prices at the same rate as 2018 despite costs for running the marquee at Badminton increasing for 2019.
Subscription prices are £240 for an individual and £290 for a joint membership. You can find full payment details and both new / renewal forms on our membership page.
Recently we held an exclusive yard visit for HTSG members at Laura Collett - here's a few clips from the day which was hosted by Laura and her mentor Yogi Breisner.
Photos © Fiona Scott-Maxwell. Video © Michael Rogers
HTSG scholar Laura Collett has kindly offered to host a yard visit for HTSG members and guests on Saturday 27 October 2018.
Laura is based near Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
The visit will start at 10:00 and last approximately two hours. Tea, coffee, cake and biscuits will be provided. The morning will include a session with Yogi Breisner who is Laura's long-time mentor and trainer.
Please email Margie on firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a place. Members are free of charge, guests £10. Numbers will be limited.
On Sunday morning during the Blenheim Horse Trials the HTSG hosted a master class given by our scholar Alex Bragg. Spencer Sturmey joined Alex and as a duo proved to be excellent hosts for the session, with both adding interesting and fun insight on training event horses.
Alex was riding one of his younger, more inexperienced horses which has moved up the eventing levels quickly from BE100 in 2017 to winning an Intermediate at Gatcombe just last week.
Alex demonstrated a short exercise which he uses to help develop athleticism in his horses. Firstly they are required to stretch over an oxer before then shortening their stride, bending through their rib cage, and lifting up through their shoulder to get itself more engaged as it jumps three small fences built in a fan shape.
One of the overall aims of this exercise is to help build core strength in the horse. It also allows the horse to think for itself and work out where to put its legs when it comes to the three fences which are close together.
During the master class Alex had to tweak the exercise because the horse was tense and shying away from the marquees and speakers (it was her first time in a large event arena). To stop the horse cutting in to early Alex placed a pole as a guide rail and used his wife Simmone as a block to help the horse meet the fences in the middle.
Alex uses this exercise with with both younger and experienced horses, being flexible on the height and distance depending on the horse, with the aim of quality over quantity when it comes to grid work like this.
For members and visitors who attended the master class, we hope you enjoyed it and for those who were not able to attend you can watch this video to get an idea of how the session went.
Alex and our second scholar, Laura Collett both had a very successful event at Blenheim and your can read about it here on the website.
HTSG - News