Tracy Priest: Who’d be a show organiser? *H&H VIP*

  • Opinion

    I should like to congratulate Simon Bates and his team [at Keysoe CSI2*]  for putting on a show with a real international flavour. The staff at Keysoe are fantastic. No problem is too big and they really want to please.

    I’ve been coming to the CSIs here from the start and Simon keeps reinvesting in the facilities. Some venues have big ideas that never happen, whereas he didn’t try to start too big and every year has listened to suggestions and made improvements.

    All levels catered for

    With classes from producers and 1.10m riders to grands prix, the show was open to all levels. It’s so hard to get into many CSIs due to ranking list restrictions or affordability. How lovely it was here that people at the start of their international careers could jump their own horses, then watch and learn from some of the world’s best riders.

    It helped that the courses were built by a world-class designer in Kelvin Bywater. There were also functions for riders and supporters every evening and free Wi-Fi throughout the show. Little things like that mean a lot.

    The footing was excellent. I don’t know how many gallons of water they used in the incredibly hot weather during the show, but the constant watering, harrowing and rolling — and the fans in the indoor warm-up — were greatly appreciated.

    The only thing I might change is to run one less class each day. But how you’d decide what to drop, I don’t know. Who’d be a show organiser?

    Ref Horse & Hound; 12 July 2018