1. Assessing noseband tightness in competition
A recent study by Equestrian Canada suggests rider acceptance of the use of a gauge to measure noseband tightness more scientifically than “two fingers width” is growing. In the past riders have objected that horses in a high state of excitement at competition do not take well to having the gauge near their faces in competition. The International Society for Equitation Science (ISES) taper gauge is a tool that precisely measures the space between the noseband and the nasal plane, making it far more accurate given that adult finger sizes vary.
2. Burghley prize money
Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials is coming back with a bang in 2022, having increased prize money to boast a six-figure sum for the winner for the first time in the event’s history. The 2022 winner will take home £100,000 – a £5,000 rise on the £95,000 won by Pippa Funnell and MGH Grafton Street on the last running of the event in 2019. Riders will no doubt be pleased, though winning Burghley isn’t necessarily about the money, it can’t hurt, and bodes well for the event overall this year, which fans cannot wait to see the return of.
3. Ben Maher once looking for another job
It’s hard to imagine, given his decades of success culminating in becoming the new Olympic champion and having a world-beating string of horses that includes the superstar Explosion W, but Ben Maher once thought about giving up. For a while, about 14 years ago, things looked pretty bleak for the Hertfordshire rider as he reveals to H&H showjumping editor Jennifer Donald in this week’s third and final festive edition of The Horse & Hound Podcast, currently supported by Veredus and its UK distributor Zebra.
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