For the first time this year the Liverpool International Horse Show finishes on New Year’s Eve and the organisers are determined to see out 2017 and welcome 2018 in style. Read on to find out what they have in store for spectators at the Echo Arena on the biggest party night of the year.
What happens at Liverpool Horse Show on New Year’s Eve?
The equestrian entertainment
Entertainment for the evening session starts at 7.30pm with the biggest class of the week, the Hope Valley Saddlery Liverpool International Grand Prix, which will see top riders such as John Whitaker, Robert Whitaker and Billy Twomey tackling the 1.60m course.
There is just one other showjumping class on the schedule, the Knockout, where pairs of riders race against each other round a mirror image set of show jumps. This year this class has undertaken a twist as it will see boys versus girls in a ‘battle of the sexes’ competition.
Another nail-biting competition which is bound to have the crowds on the edge of their seats is the final of the Shetland Pony Grand National, which will also take place during the evening.
As if the equestrian competitions aren’t enough, the evening will also feature displays from the Arenacross Freestyle MX Crew, a group of freestyle motocross riders who perform stunts while flying 40ft through the air, Luminoso, six horses and riders from Russia who will wow the crowds with their pyrotechnics and acrobatic skills, and Laserman, who will be showcasing his 3D laser light show.
The music and dancing
Music comes from 14-year-old musical theatre singer and equestrian enthusiast Beau Dermott, who rose to fame on Britain’s Got Talent, and Rick Parfitt Jnr, the son of Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt. Rick Parfitt Jr and the RPJ band claim to be the best party rock event band in the world and will be playing a special set as they count the crowds down to midnight.
Book a table at No.10 South Dock restaurant, which is upstairs in the arena, if you are after a sit-down meal otherwise you can purchase sandwiches, snacks and light bites from the many outlets inside the venue. There are also a selection of bistros, bars, cafes and restaurants in the Albert Dock which is just outside the arena.
Champagne will be flowing in the bar next to the warm-up arena, and throughout the venue.
On the stroke of midnight
Rick Parfitt Jnr and the RPJ band will be responsible for entertaining the crowds as we say goodbye to 2017. As the new year rolls in a spectacular indoor firework display is set to dazzle the audience.
If you can’t make it to the Liverpool International Horse Show this year there are plenty of ways to keep
The after party
Festivities for spectators are set to end at 12.15am. An after party will take place at the Pullman, which is the riders’ hotel, but access to this is exclusively for wristband holders only.
Don’t miss the full report from Liverpool International Horse Show in the 11 January issue of Horse & Hound magazine