What is Eventing?

It’s one of very few sports that genuinely allow people to compete equally, whatever their experience.

Men and women, amateurs and champions, young and experienced horses all compete fairly against each other, making it truly exciting for riders and spectators. Visitors can watch the dressage, show jumping and cross country phases which take place simultaneously throughout each day of competition.




Dressage Phase

Dressage is the first phase of the competition for the riders and takes place at the east end of the main show field. This phase is designed to test the training and discipline of the horse and rider and consists of a pre-set test which is judged subjectively by an experienced dressage judge. The leading rider will be the one with the lowest penalty score after this phase.

Cross Country Phase

Cross-country is for many, the most thrilling phase of eventing. Essentially it is all about trust between horse and rider. The rider needs to judge pace and speed in order to complete the challenging 22-25 fence course run over approximately 3000 metres. Competitors are given penalties for any refusals or falls during this phase and they are also required to complete the course within an ‘optimum time’. Failure to do so results in further penalty marks being given. The rider needs to be confident and quick thinking to complete this phase successfully, and also needs to have that ‘special partnership’ with their horse. (With thanks to A7EHF Photography for the attached image).

Show Jumping Phase

Held in the Womble Bond Dickinson Arena. Competitors are required to jump a clear round over a course of coloured poles and fillers within a set time limit. Faults are accumulated for knock-downs and refusals and will be added to the competitors dressage score. The Show jumping phase may seem simple but it demands accuracy, athleticism and, especially when under pressure, a calm head on the part of both rider and horse.