Chris Smith: Tours damage our circuit *H&H VIP*

  • With the days getting longer and spring around the corner, these winter development classics give riders a great chance to get new horses up and running.

    South View is one of the few centres with a natural surface, which perhaps puts riders off competing here, which is a great pity.

    In my opinion, the ground jumps very well. There were 19 clears out of 34 starters over a strong 1.30m track in the winter B&C, which shows how well horses perform on it. With a good range of classes, the schedule works well as riders can bring young and green horses.

    Despite the excellent prize money, entries were low and the organisers must be disappointed with the lack of support. At these shows, all prize money in the schedule must be paid out and while that’s good news for riders, you must have sympathy for South View organisers, who paid seven prizes for 13 starters in a 1.40m class (£1,500).

    The lack of entries could be due to several factors, including the usual clash with the sunshine tours in Europe. These spring tours account for the temporary relocation of lots of riders and over 2,000 horses to foreign shores — a huge loss for our own circuit. Maybe it would be good to move the dates of major winter shows so they don’t clash.

    Why not move shows around, too, so they are not in the same place at the same time every year?

    All my horses went well, so I had a good weekend and enjoyed the usual South View bonus — great food.

    Ref Horse & Hound; 23 February 2017