Badminton Horse Trials is to have a new course-designer for next year.
 
Giuseppe della Chiesa, technical delegate at Badminton from 2008 to 2010 is to take over from Hugh Thomas, who has designed the course since 1989.

“It will be evolution, not revolution,” said the Italian course-designer. He has been contracted for three years, starting in 2014.

The announcement follows grumblings from top names including Mark Todd, Lucinda Green and Tina Cook that the Badminton course needed a “fresh look”.

At the time Hugh, who is also event director, told H&H he had no plans to appoint a new designer. But today (Monday 8 July) it was announced he had stepped down from his role as course designer.

“I am hugely looking forward to supporting Giuseppe in this new chapter of Badminton,” he said. “2013 was one of the most successful ever. We have never had such a high class field and the event will be difficult to match next year.”

Guiseppe, who was the technical delegate for the Bejing Olympics in 2008, has also designed the championship track at Pratoni, Italy where he was show director for the World Equestrian Games in 1998 and course designer for the European Championships in 2007.

“While I was surprised that Hugh was standing down as course-designer, I am honoured to be asked and looking forward to working with course-builders the Willis Brothers and all the team at Badminton,” he said.

The 2014 event will run Thursday 8 – Sunday 11 May.

For a full story see this week’s issue of H&H — out Thursday 11 July.