Voting is now open in the competition to design the last fence of this year’s Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials cross-country course.

In a first for the four-star, members of the public were invited to submit designs for the final fence, with the winner invited to the event (3-7 May).

From more than 100 entries, judges event director Hugh Thomas, media director Julian Seaman and cross-country course-designer Eric Winter have selected 10 finalists, and the public have now been invited to vote for their favourite on the Badminton website.

“It was very difficult to get down to just 10 finalists, which were attractive, original, safe and affordable – the designs were all put before the judges anonymously and happily there was a huge measure of agreement on the top 10,” Mr Thomas said.

Mr Seaman, who is also a design tutor, added: “We should also mention that much as the quality of the drawings was impressive, the overall idea is more important than the illustration so bear that in mind when placing your vote!”

The winning entry will be transformed into a jump by Olympic course-builders the Willis Bros and unveiled at Badminton’s invitation-only preview day in April, to which the winner will be invited.


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The two runners-up after the public vote will also be invited to the event.

Explaining the reasoning behind the competition, Mr Winter, who is designing the Badminton course for the first time this year, said: “I was delighted to be asked to design the course for Badminton, an event I have admired all my life, so it seemed apt to share the opportunity I have been given with others who both love the event as well as the idea of designing a cross-country fence for it.”