British Open crown up for grabs

  • The British riders who have the opportunity to claim the British Open Champion title from its current holder, Robert Whitaker, at the British Open Show Jumping Championships have been named.

    The highest-ranked 12 British riders, as at 31 December 2003, are eligible to compete at the British Open, which has firmly made its mark on the British international indoor show jumping circuit.

    Invitations have issued to: Robert Smith, Michael Whitaker, Andrew Davies, John Whitaker, Nick Skelton, Robert Whitaker, William Funnell, Tim Stockdale, Richard Davenport, Paul Barker, John Renwick and Keith Shore.

    These riders will be joined at the four-day Easter extravaganza, which takes place at Hallam Arena, Sheffield, from 15-18 April, by 15 top foreign riders and the two additional British “wild card” riders.

    This elite field will be competing for the prestigious title of British Open Champion, as well as a £25,000 first prize, with the total prize fund topping £160,000. As well as the championship, the four-day show will include an international program featuring the accumulator, the international knock-out and the ever-popular puissance.

    Britain’s brightest young hopes will be competing in the British young riders show jumping classic, while the home international challenge, in which four teams of four riders representing England, Scotland Ireland and Wales will jump against each other, will add another dimension to the event.

    Entertainment will feature highly alongside the international jumping with displays by Jean Francois Pignon, the Metropolitan Police and Mary Ray with her canine “Heelwork to Music”.

    Ticket prices start at £12.50 for adults, with half-price discounts for children under 16 and OAPs. For more information and online booking visit: www.britishopenshowjumping.com or call the box office (tel: 0114 256 5656).

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