Associated dressage championships come together to form two festivals

Riders will enjoy a “top-class experience” at three 2019 British Dressage (BD) championships, for which the venues have just been announced.

The Nettex Associated Championships are to come together to be hosted across two festivals at Bury Farm Equestrian Village, Buckinghamshire and Vale View EC, Leicestershire, while Sheepgate EC, Lincolnshire, is to hold the bronze and the summer music championships.

BD sports operations manager Lou Jones said: “I’m delighted to announce the allocation of three great championship opportunities to three venues which will without doubt deliver a top-class experience for all competitors.”

The associated championships is a “unique series” of 10 title opportunities for horses “of all shapes and sizes”.

The championships for draught, GB PRE, Lusitano, British native ponies, traditional gypsy cobs, and Arabs will take place at Bury Farm from 31 October to 3 November.

The championships for CHAPS, Retraining of Racehorses, thoroughbreds, and veteran horse and rider combinations will take place at Vale View from 7 to 10 November.

“The Nettex Associated Championships will come together to form two celebrations of all breeds. The 10-strong championship series has grown steadily in number of entries and gone from strength to strength with the valued support of title sponsor Nettex and we’re delighted that proven championship venues Bury Farm and Vale View EC are on board as hosts,” said Ms Jones.

To qualify for the associated championships, horses and riders must have a minimum of BD club membership. Riders have until 31 August to qualify.

*UPDATE: 25 February 2019*

Further changes to this year’s associated championships are:

  • Introduction of medium level classes at draught and Arab Championships
  • Winning combinations at the veteran championships are no longer required to move up a level the following year. This is in recognition of the stress this would place on ageing horses.
  • Winning combinations at medium level and above (where applicable) in the British native pony, GB PRE, Lusitano, traditional gypsy cobs and Retraining of Racehorses championships are no longer required to move up a level for the following year’s event.

Bronze and Summer Music championships

The bronze and the summer music championships are returning after a “successful” debut year in 2018, taking place at Sheepgate EC, on dates yet to be confirmed.

Qualification for the bronze championships started in December and runs until 16 June. Combinations can qualify at preliminary, novice, elementary, medium and advanced medium. To qualify, combinations must be eligible for the bronze section at their chosen level and should check the members’ handbook to ensure eligibility.

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Qualification for the summer music championships is open for the same time period. Combinations can qualify in bronze, silver, and gold sections at prelim, novice, elementary, medium, advanced medium and PSG. A combination’s five best scores achieved during the qualification period will be displayed on national league tables, with the top 10 from each section (30 per level) qualifying for the championships.

A spokesman for BD said: “The team at Sheepgate are no strangers to the big occasion, as hosts to the annual BD youth under-25s championships, Sheepgate Premier League as well as an Area Festival. The bronze and the music championships promise to be well worth the journey.”

Ms Jones added: “Sarah Payne’s team at Sheepgate EC are renowned for hosting major events and we’re confident that the bronze and music championships will flourish under their care. Both myself and the sports operations team would like to thank all venues involved in the tender process and offer our congratulations to the three successful show centres, we’re very much looking forward to the year ahead.”

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