I have really enjoyed this year’s show, but there are a couple of things that need looking at. I think it’s fair to say that I’ve been to a few FEI shows in my time and I can’t remember another one that allowed riders three horses in a class. In fact, most other shows let you ride two horses maximum per class and some others restrict you to one.
Although more entries this year obviously helped the show from a financial point of view, it did make the days very long. And we were still restricted to riding one horse in the grand prix, so the rule was a bit odd and difficult to understand.
I know it shouldn’t be all about the prize money, but there were some top-level classes that at most national shows would probably have had a first prize of £1,000. The winners here had to work really hard and they took home around £400. Showjumping in Britain does need a boost sponsorship-wise.
Keysoe’s CSI did have a lovely atmosphere and the arena is as good as any I’ve seen. More shows like this at home would really help our sport and might even stop so many people from competing abroad all the time. But if we do have more big shows, the calendar does need looking at. Going to lots of shows is fine if you have a large string, but it’s too hard on horses belonging to ambitious people with only one or two top rides.
Ref Horse & Hound; 13 July 2017