While William Fox-Pitt was winning the 4-star at Pau, France’s young stars of the future were taking part in the CCE Poneys Shetland — perhaps aspiring to become like the 4-star runner-up, the home side’s Maxime Livio.
The annual event takes place on Sunday morning at Pau and replicates a normal 3-day event, with riders taking part in dressage, showjumping and cross-country. They compete in teams of 4 and there are 2 classes.
In the Poney A1 riders of less than 10 years old pilot Shetlands, while in the A3, jockeys of less than 12 years old compete on ponies up to 130cm (just under 13 hands).
The theme of this year’s competition was “Les Animaux” — hence the decoration of some of the cross-country fences. The emphasis in the cross-country is on getting round, so if necessary riders are allowed to pass through the flags beside the jump, instead of jumping.