The third leg of the new Event Rider Masters (ERM) series takes place at the St James’s Place Barbury International Horse Trials this weekend (9-10 July). Here’s what you need to know about the competition and the contenders:

  1. Statistically the Barbury leg of the ERM series presents the most challenging cross-country test — on average 63% of combinations jump clear, compared to 67-79% at the other legs.
  2. Barbury is traditionally an event where it’s tough to make the time — 4% of pairs have beaten the clock over the event’s 11-year history. The very first person to do so was Sam Watson on Horseware Bushman in 2009 — Sam is the co-founder of EquiRatings, the data analytics company which supplies these statistics!
  3. The record dressage mark at Barbury is 30.8, set in 2008 by Lucinda Fredericks and Headley Britannia. Thirty-six days later, they led the dressage at the Hong Kong Olympics on 30.4.
  4. Only seven dressage marks of under 35 have been recorded at the event, including three by Avebury, who won the event four times.
  5. The record finishing score at Barbury belongs to Avebury, who led from start to finish in 2015 on a mark of 33.9. He beat his own previous record of 35.2, set in 2013. Andrew Nicholson holds five of the best eight finishing scores on record at Barbury.
  6. Winning finishing scores at Barbury have been dropping steadily since the event’s inception in 2005, with the 2015 victory mark 25 marks lower than that recorded by the first winners, William Fox-Pitt and Ballincoola.
  7. Three riders who have been selected to represent Britain at the Rio Olympics are competing in the class: William Fox-Pitt, Izzy Taylor and Gemma Tattersall.

WATCH LIVE HERE: H&H is partnering with ERM to bring you all the live streaming action from Barbury. Tune in for the dressage (8am Saturday, 9 July), showjumping (8.30am Sunday, 10 July) and cross-country (3.30pm Sunday 10 July).

Full report from Barbury in H&H next week, out Thursday, 14 July.