The Bowmore Blair Castle International Horse Trials and Country Fair (26-29 August) is expanding this year to host the National Pony Society (NPS) Scotland finals, which include a qualifier for the prestigious NPS mountain and moorland ridden championship at Olympia.
The NPS finals have traditionally been held at The Scottish Horse Show at the Border Union Showground, Kelso, on the second Saturday of August, but the date and location has proved problematic for some NPS members, according to NPS Scotland secretary, Alicia Hay.
“The date and venue of The Scottish Horse Show has been difficult for our northern exhibitors, especially as many of the northern qualifiers used to take place only days before the finals,” she says. “We hope that the slightly later date will give all qualified competitors time to prepare for the finals and encourage more qualifying rounds to be held in the north.”
The finals will host the championships of the following classes, from which the winners go forward to contest national titles at the Horse of the Year Show:
- NPS Scotland/Baileys Horse Feeds Open Ridden Mountain & Moorland Pony of the Year 2004
- NPS Scotland/Kilmannan Novice Ridden Mountain & Moorland Pony of the Year 2004
- the NPS Scotland/Scottish Countryside Alliance Mountain & Moorland WHP Pony of the Year 2004
Blair horse trials director, Sarah Philips says: “We are delighted to welcome the NPS Scotland finals to Blair. A top class pony show will add an extra dimension to the event, which has already become one of the most popular in Scotland.”
The Bowmore-sponsored international horse trials has been held in the magnificent grounds of Blair Castle since 1989 and has grown to include a diverse range of attractions and activities including a popular country fair.