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We are still intending to go ahead with the British Showjumping Winter Classic, 17th-19th December.

Burghley Young Event Horse

Each year, the Burghley Young Event Horse qualifiers provide a showcase of young equine talent at Hartpury.

Celebrating young equine talent

Each year, the Burghley Young Event Horse qualifying competition marks the start of the eventing action at Hartpury. Open to four and five-year-olds, the Series aims to encourage breeders and trainers to produce and present the type of horse which will be considered the very best starting point from which to train a world-class eventer.

Experienced judges are recruited from across the country in pursuit of an athletic, loose moving horse with a promising attitude and jumping technique. Successful horses going on to contest the final at Burghley in the autumn. The winner has achieved the highest overall marks from the following four sections.

Each horse starts by performing a simple dressage test to show their paces and demonstrate obedience, suppleness and three correct, elastic and regular gaits. Unlike regular dressage competitions, marks are NOT awarded for individual movements. Instead, an overall mark is given out of 35. The idea is to find horses with three correct, scopey and regular gaits, whilst considering the attributes for potential longevity and performance as a world class event horse.

The jumping phase follows immediately after the dressage. Four-year-old horses jump a course of up to 90cm while five-year-olds jump a course of up to 1.05m. The judges are looking for a bold athletic horse that shows a good basic technique. 

This competition is all about potential so a horse won’t necessarily be penalised for knocking down one fence for example. A fall of horse or rider or three cumulative refusals will result in elimination. An overall mark is awarded out of 40.

Immediately after the jumping is the Potential to Lengthen Stride Phase. In the lengthening of strides in canter, the judges are looking for qualities in a horse's potential to gallop in the future, with further maturity and development in their training. 

Up to 5 marks can be awarded for this section.

Horses are assessed in hand during this phase. Judges are looking for horses with the attributes to withstand the demands of the sport in terms of soundness,
speed and stamina. Lack of quality and other defects which might indicate limited stamina or speed should be
penalised, even though the horse may be a nice dressage or show jumping prospect. This section is awarded out of 20.