Eventers competing at this year’s Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials (3-7 May) will be facing a new challenge in the shape of a saddle to be jumped before riding through the finish flags.
The new fence is the winner of a competition run by the four-star event.
More than 13,000 people had their say on 10 shortlisted entries in a public vote that came to an end yesterday (28 February).
The winning design with 28.9% of the votes was The Mitsubishi Final Mount designed by Victoria Hanson, receiving 3,815 votes.
Ms Hanson’s saddle-based design (pictured) was one of the front-runners among the public votes throughout the competition and came back to the top the leader-board on the last day of the voting.
25-year-old Ms Hanson is based in Surrey and enjoys eventing.
The Mitsubishi Final Mount design will now be transformed into a fence by Olympic course builders, the Willis Bros, and will become the final fence in this year’s cross-country course.
The entry was one of 10 shortlisted submissions selected by the competition’s judges, event director Hugh Thomas, media director Julian Seaman, and Badminton’s new cross-country course designer, Eric Winter.
Mr Winter, who is currently putting together final plans for a new look cross-country course for this year’s Badminton, commented on the winning design.
“There has been an overwhelming response to this competition, it’s been great watching the points accumulate for the 10 designs that we shortlisted from a high calibre list,” he said.
“The fence will be an iconic end to the course and add something extra special to the finish in the main arena.
“The challenge now will be finding a piece of timber big enough to carve the saddle out of!”
Ms Hanson will be invited to attend the unveiling of the fence in April at Badminton’s invitation-only event preview day, in addition to receiving tickets to this year’s event.
Mitsubishi Motors in the UK, which is now in its 26th year of sponsorship of Badminton, has also agreed to invite Ms Hanson and a friend to its Lakeside hospitality area for the cross-country day of the competition.
“We were very impressed with the standard of entries submitted to the competition,” Mitsubishi Motors UK managing director Lance Bradley said.
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“The variations of designs in the shortlisted final 10 were simply incredible and it’s great to see such an artistic flare from so many equestrian enthusiasts.
“We look forward to welcoming Victoria [and a friend] to our hospitality area for lunch so they can enjoy the best possible view of their cross-country fence being jumped at the world’s premier three-day event.”
In second place was Milly Bradley’s design, Badminton House, with 3,549 votes, followed by The Mitsubishi Rosette from Emily Minghay in third place, which received 1,727 votes.
The two runners-up will be given tickets to Badminton.
The shortlist finished in the following order:
1st Mitsubishi Final Mount
2nd Badminton House
3rd The Mitsubishi Rosette
4th Mitsubishi Winners’ Garden
5th Lucky Last Hurdle
6th Mitsubishi Made It!
7th Mitsubishi Grand Finale
8th Make a Racquet Badminton Shuttlecock Brush
9th Home Sweet Home
10th Mitsubishi Garden Towers