Visitors to Blenheim Horse Trials (6-9 September 2012) can look forward to new cross-country fences and a change of route on the course, plus a more spectator-friendly timetable and a bareback jumping competition.

“The course will look very different this year,” said event director Mandy Hervieu. “Eric Winter, our course designer, has come up with exciting ideas that will ask some different questions of the horses and riders.”

The water complex and the footbridge will be among those replaced with brand new fences. In addition, an entirely new section of the course will be introduced for the CCI3*.

There will also be more extra-curricular competitions including the new bareback showjumping class, sponsored by Saffery Champness.

Competitors will jump a 1.05m course bareback against the clock, with an optional joker fence at the end, standing at 1.15m.

“It has already attracted significant interest, especially from our young riders, who have threatened to show the older riders how it’s done,” said Ms Hervieu. “But with seniors such as Laura Collett (pictured top right) also showing interest, it is sure to be hotly contested.”

The class follows the success of the AmTrust Eventers High Jump, where riders can choose to jump the fence without a saddle in order to gain an extra life.

Both classes will run in the lunchtime break between the two feature eventing classes on the Sunday (9 September).

The official charity of this year’s event is The Horse Trust, and one of the ponies that it rescued from Spindles Farm in 2008 will feature as part of the charity’s display.

For more information and to book tickets visit www.blenheim-horse.co.uk