3 things the horse world is talking about right now: Friday 17 September 2021

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  • 1. What Love Island star Chris Hughes is doing at Blenheim horse trials

    The most discussed topic at Blenheim Horse Trials yesterday – aside from the changing leaderboard and course, naturally – appears to have been “did you see Chris Hughes is here?” So that’s one tick for new organisers The Jockey Club, who have Chris presenting a Blenheim show on their own social media and on Horse & Country TV. His celebrity status will be doing no harm to viewing figures, and here’s hoping his presence is helping introduce a new audience to the brilliance of eventing. He’s coming across well, and gets kudos for being able to ride, too, having taken part in a charity race pre-pandemic. Nice work, Jockey Club.

    2. The National Dressage Champs not being live streamed

    By contrast to a celebrity-hosted show and live stream from Blenheim, dressage fans are upset that the National Dressage Championships is not being live streamed. There used to be an argument that if you didn’t live stream your event you sold more tickets. And certainly the answer to the question “how can I watch the National Dressage Championships” is “buy a ticket and go to the event…” The obvious counter argument is that the greatest sporting events in the world are televised live and often freely available, and that doesn’t stop people wanting to go to them – plus sponsors would be pleased to have the additional exposure. But filming isn’t cheap, and would the expected viewing figures make it viable?

    How to watch the National Dressage Championships

    3. Yasmin Ingham’s “surprise” result on stunning Paris 2024 prospect

    Back to Blenheim Horse Trials, Yasmin Ingham took the lead in the CCI4*-L riding her Paris 2024 prospect Banzai Du Loir. “It’s still an experience for him with the crowds and atmosphere, so for him to go in there and produce that sort of test, I’m just delighted. I’m really shocked and surprised, to be honest,” said Yasmin, who scored 25.2. Yasmin admitted there is pressure in riding such a promising mount, who was bought by her loyal owners, Sue Davies and Janette Chinn, specifically as a potential horse for the 2024 Olympics. However, so far, so good.

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