Badminton entries change, a ‘perfect proposal’, and more things the horse world is talking about

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  • Badminton entries

    Organisers of the Mars Badminton Horse Trials will allow riders to partner three horses at the 2024 fixture (8-12 May), under certain conditions. In recent years riders have been limited to starting on two horses at the spring five-star, but this year third horses may be accepted, once everyone on the waiting list has been offered a chance to run, in order of FEI points. “Badminton 2023 was the first year that we did not have a waiting list. Therefore this year we are happy for athletes to enter three horses, to concur with other international events,” said a Badminton spokesman.

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    A ‘perfect proposal’

    A rider who thought she was going to her yard for a photoshoot was overwhelmed to find her “amazing” girlfriend had organised a surprise proposal. Clair Diggle had had a “shocking” day, but when she walked into the indoor school, she found her girlfriend Kirsty Chambers holding Clair’s cob Bruce who was wearing a rug with the words “Will you marry me?” The indoor arena had been transformed for the proposal, with flowers, balloons and LED lights spelling the words “marry me”. “I walked into the indoor and saw the LED light boxes and balloons, and thought ‘That’s cute’, then realised what they said. Then I saw Kirsty with Bruce, thought ‘What’s going on?’ – and then she went down on one knee,” said Clair. “It was amazing. And of course I said yes! The perfect equestrian proposal.”

    Discover more on the proposal

    A special arrival

    Kirsten Rausing’s Arc heroine Alpinista has brought further joy in her second career as a broodmare, delivering her first foal. The filly, by Dubawi, is a fifth generation home-bred and continues the long line of greys, sharing a coat colour with all females in her family back to 12th dam Lady Josephine. “I had been hoping for the mare to produce a filly, so I’m obviously thrilled and very grateful to Alpinista, who, as usual, can do no wrong,” said Ms Rausing.

    Find out more about this special filly

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