4 places to spot future eventing stars in 2015

Would you like to see eventing’s next equine stars competing this year?

Check out four horse trials where you will see fantastic young horses in 2015 — and see if you can pick medallists for the 2016 Olympics, 2017 European Championships and beyond…

1. Dassett Eventing eight- and nine-year-old advanced class at Horsezone Aston-le-Walls (3)

County: Northamptonshire
Date: 24-26 July
What is it? A special advanced section for eight- and nine-year-old horses at this popular Aston-le-Walls fixture. The class was conceived by sponsors Dassett Eventing to showcase young horses and as a suitable pre-run for Blenheim’s eight- and nine-year-old CIC3*.
More info: British Eventing or www.aston-le-walls.co.uk
2014 winner: Shearwater Insurance’s Shearwater Touchingwood, ridden by Oliver Townend
Famous alumni: none yet, as this class has only been running a couple of years

2. Eight- and nine-year-old CIC3* at Blenheim

County: Oxfordshire
Date: 17-20 September
What is it? Now in its seventh year, this class is effectively Britain’s championship for this age category and a fantastic pointer to horses who should be exciting four-star prospects in the next few years. Blenheim celebrates its 25th birthday in 2015 and is a beautiful event for spectators to enjoy
More info: www.blenheimhorse.co.uk
2014 winner: Trisha Rickards’ and Jacky Green’s Faerie Dianimo, ridden by Jonelle Price
Famous alumni: NZB Land Vision, ridden by Mark Todd (2010 winner, 2011 Badminton CCI4* winner); Oslo, ridden by William Fox-Pitt (2011 winner, 2011 Pau CCI4* winner); Quimbo, ridden by Andrew Nicholson (2012 winner, 2013 Kentucky CCI4* winner)

3.  KBIS British Eventing Young Horse Championships at Osberton

County: Nottinghamshire
Date: 1-4 October
What is it? Championships classes for four- and five-year-olds (which they qualify for through the year), plus a six-year-old CIC* and seven-year-old CIC2*. The championship ran at Tweseldown until moving to Osberton in 2010, which was also when the sections for older horses started running as international classes
More info: British Eventing or www.bede-events.co.uk/osberton
2014 winners: Susan Grindal’s Jolie Lark, ridden by Ginny Turnbull, and Ballycanu, owned and ridden by Sophie Jenman (four-year-old); Camilla Harries’ Emirati Nightsky, ridden by Emily Llewellyn (five-year-old); the Hon Teresa Stopford Sackville and Catherine Butler’s Reinstated, ridden by William Fox-Pitt (six-year-old); Jacqueline Owen, Diana Bown and Samantha Wilson’s Ceylor LAN, ridden by Kitty King (seven-year-old).
Famous alumni: Redesigned (pictured),  ridden by Pippa Funnell (2007 six-year-old winner, Bramham CCI3* winner and fifth World Equestrian Games 2010); Borough Pennyz, ridden by Vittoria Panizzon (2010 seven-year-old winner, 11th 2012 Olympics, seventh Badminton and eighth European Championships 2013)

4. Le Lion d’Angers young event horse World Championships

Country: France
Date: 15-18 October
What is it? If you fancy a French trip in the autumn, this is the place to go. The best young horses in the world — or at least in Europe — gather here each year to take the prestigious six- and seven-year-old titles and numerous future championship horses have passed through Le Lion
More info: www.mondialdulion.com
2014 winners: Tenareze (seven-year-old), ridden by Thomas Carlile, since sold for Harry Meade to ride; Star Connection (six-year-old), ridden by Michael Jung
Famous alumni: Sleep Late, ridden by Ingrid Klimke (1998 seven-year-old winner, 2005 European individual bronze medallist, second at Badminton and world team gold medallist 2006); Primmore’s Pride, ridden by Pippa Funnell (2000 seven-year-old winner, triple four-star winner, individual bronze and team silver medallist 2004 Olympics); Galan De Sauvagère, ridden by Nicolas Touzaint (2000 six-year-old and 2001 seven-year-old winner, double European champion); Hildago De L’Ile (2002 seven-year-old winner, 2007 Pau CCI4* winner, 2008 Badminton CCI4* winner); Mister Pooh, ridden by Niklas Lindback (2006 six-year-old winner, 2013 European team silver medallist); Oslo, ridden by William Fox-Pitt (2008 six-year-old winner, 2011 Pau CCI4* winner); Mrs Medicott, later renamed Reality 69, ridden by Sara Algotsson-Ostholt (2010 six-year-old winner, 2013 European team silver medallist); Rocana FST, ridden by Michael Jung (2011 six-year-old winner, world individual silver medallist 2014); Sirocco Du Gers, ridden by Thomas Carlile (2013 seven-year-old winner, Boekelo CCI3* winner 2014)

Read more about the British-ridden horses who finished on the podium at Le Lion in 2014 in the February issue of Eventing magazine, out Saturday, 24 January.

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