Super keen event riders will have been out and about at the weekend attending British Eventing’s (BE) first one-day events of the 2016 season. But whether you’re one of them, or are waiting a little while before you make your seasonal debut, you won’t want to miss our quiz. It’s designed to test your knowledge of what lines between combination fences will help you towards a clear round and which will see you pick up an annoying 20 penalties.

In this first example the course builder has provided you with a two-part combination fence (marked A and B in the illustrations below) with both parts designed to be jumped on the angle in a straight line as the most direct route. However, there are other options available to you as a rider that will leave you penalty-free, so put your thinking caps on and see which routes you think would earn you a clear round.


So how did you get on? If you’re confused about what is and is not allowed, below are the extracts from the BE 2016 rule book to refresh your memory.

    6.3.9.7 Circle

    6.3.9.7.1 At separately numbered obstacles, a competitor may circle between or around them without penalty provided that he has not presented his horse at the second or subsequent obstacles.

    6.3.9.7.2 At an obstacle composed of several elements (A, B, C, etc), a horse will be penalised if it passes around the back of the subsequent element or circles between subsequent elements.

It’s also worth noting this rule in case things don’t go according to plan…

    6.3.9.7.3 After being penalised for a refusal, run-out or circle, a competitor, in order to make another attempt, is permitted to circle one or more times without penalty, until he presents his horse at the obstacle.

So now you’ve got that clear, you’ll be able to confidently compete knowing which routes are and are not allowed when faced with a straight-forward combination fence of this nature.

The illustrations used in the quiz can be found in Annex 4 of the BE rules and members’ handbook 2016 and have been reproduced with BE’s permission.