A team of top agility dogs has made Burghley Horse Trials’ huge four-star cross-country track look easy in a fun video ahead of the event (31 August – 3 September).
Labradors Pumba, Nala and Keepa, border collies Laddie and Wispa, German shepherd Tilda and Jack Russell cross William showed the horses how to tackle Mark Phillips’ course.
“The agility, speed and determination of the dogs was astounding and they all seemed to enjoy themselves hugely,” said horse trials director Elizabeth Inman.
“Little William the Jack Russell cross was a huge favourite, his plucky determination to keep up with the ‘big boys’ knew no bounds… even if a few sneaky detours were required.”
She added the course, which takes in 6,500m and 31 obstacles over undulating terrain, was “quite a feat for the dogs as well”.
The dogs made short work of some of the CCI4*’s biggest fences, including the Maltings and the Cottesmore Leap, and even plunged into Burghley’s famous lake.
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Ellena Swift, from Swift Dog Training in Banbury, said she is “so proud” of all the dogs.
“When we were invited to come and try out the Land Rover Burghley cross-country course I didn’t know what to expect, but the dogs were phenomenal,” she said.
“I am so proud of them. In real life the collies work as sheep dogs, while my Labradors compete in field trial events, Narla the German shepherd is a therapy dog and William, who is owned by Debbie Lee, is a much loved pet.”
Don’t miss Horse & Hound’s exclusive course walk with Mary King in the current issue (24 August) and the 16-page Burghley pull-out in this week’s issue of the magazine — out Thursday, 31 August.