Weston Park Horse Trials (1): what riders need to know [H&H VIP]

  • Get the lowdown on this fixture from Eventing magazine's horse trials guide — including what riders say about the event, plus vital statistics

    Date: Saturday 11 – Sunday 12 April 2015

    Organiser: Janet Plant and Vicky Plant
    Contact: 01785 284187; www.westonht.co.uk
    Location: Shropshire

    Entries open: 6 March
    Ballot date: 20 March at 12 noon
    Entries close: 1 April

    Link to Weston Park (1) entries: www.britisheventing.com/westonpark1

    How to get there

    Grid reference SJ806099. Weston Park is situated at Weston-under-Lizard on the A5, seven miles west of junction 12 off the M6 or three miles off the M54 at junction three.

    What the organisers say

    The dressage will be relocated to just above the lorry park on old turf, with a quiet warm-up away from the main event.

    The showjumping is on old turf in the central park.

    Janet Plant designs the cross-country tracks, which run over 1,000 acres of rolling wooded parkland. A new track for the novices is planned in the centre of the park without any road crossings. Each class runs over a different course; all are testing but fair. All tracks will incorporate many of the feature fences and there will be new obstacles and changes for each level. The portable and permanent fences are solid, imposing and well constructed.

    The going is usually good whatever the weather. The equi-vator will be used if necessary.

    The novice track suits a bold horse and a thinking rider; the intermediate is up to the level, while the advanced is testing but fair. Usually many Badminton-bound horses make an appearance in the advanced sections, but the alternatives allow all levels to enjoy the challenge.

    What the riders say

    Dressage & showjumping — “The dressage is situated miles away [see organisers’ comments] but in a quiet location and on relatively flat arenas.” “Loads of warm-up space but horses can get excited on the long ride to and from arena field.” “The showjumping warm-up is a bit tight.” “The ring is on a slope and courses are always big and technical.” “The showjumping is always influential here, but there are usually not that many fillers — it’s quite poley.”

    Cross-country — “Beautiful going and brilliant courses, although strong enough at all levels. The Plants do an excellent job at a super venue.” “Galloping tracks in old parkland. Good testing advanced track that sets you up for spring three- or four-star.” “Some great galloping fences with testing combinations.” “The novice tracks are educational with a sunken road, coffin and water.”

    Percentage of cross-country clears 2014

    A: 73%
    OIU21: 78%
    OI: 86%
    I: 85%
    PT: 76%
    ONU18: 83%
    N: 73%

    Download part one of the horse trials guide for just £1.49: Eventing horse trials guide part one

    Buy Eventing magazine’s March issue for our full horse trials guide detailing every event from March to June 2015 or purchase a digital copy of the guide here. The second half of the guide will be in our April issue (on sale 20 March) and online to buy digitally after publication