Tuesday 15th October 2019
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Words: Carole Pendle
Photography: www.burghley-horse.co.uk
Featured in the May 2019 issue

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Despite there still being five months to go, Carole Pendle finds preparations are once again in full swing for the annual Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.

Behind the hugely successful equestrian event, which attracts in excess of 160,000 visitors each year, is a stalwart team of event managers, course builders, groundsmen and administrators who work year-round to ensure seamless delivery of the horse trials.

One of the first jobs to be undertaken in the annual planning cycle is to agree on the event’s nominated charity. There is a formal application process that takes place in the autumn of the preceding year, with a range of local and national charities vying to be selected as the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials official partner.

This year, the successful applicant is the Lincolnshire-based Jon Egging Trust (JET). The Trust was set up in memory of Red Arrows pilot Jon Egging, with the aim of supporting young people from difficult backgrounds, by building confidence, self-esteem and aspirations. 

Land Rover Burghley event director, Elizabeth Inman, commented: “We are very grateful for the time and effort that so many charities put into their applications this year and are thrilled to be supporting the Jon Egging Trust. Through their pioneering work, the Jon Egging Trust is making a real difference to young people’s lives and we are looking forward to working closely with the Trust throughout 2019.”

Despite being a non-equestrian charity, there are many synergies between JET and Land Rover Burghley.  The teamwork, communication and leadership skills required to put on the sixth largest sporting event in the UK link directly with the values that JET tries to cultivate in the young people it supports. The dedication, hard work and focus shown by the international event riders who compete at Burghley each year offer genuine inspiration and show that it is possible to achieve the most ambitious of dreams. It is hoped that in the run-up to the event young people involved in the JET programmes will have the opportunity to shadow key members of the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials staff.

This is also the time of year that sees the box office open (26th April), offering those looking for best value the opportunity to access early bird discounts, while course designer Captain Mark Phillips starts planning the all-important cross-country course. The spring and early summer also sees retailers wishing to be part of the 600-strong pop-up shopping village apply for trade stand space.

In 2019 returning activities will include the Autarky ‘Have a Go’ dog agility; the Musto Mare equine simulator, and the exciting Land Rover Off Road Experience which shows just how versatile and rugged the latest Land Rover vehicles are. The popular business brunch will take place on Friday 6th September this year, with keynote speaker James Amos, marketing director at British fine jewellers Boodles. 

New for 2019 will be the Shetland Grand National, which comes to the event for the first time and shows that speed, skill and daring can be found in equines and jockeys of all ages and sizes. Many more new initiatives will be announced over the coming months.

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials 2019, Stamford, 5-8th September.

Box Office opens at 9am on 25th April for Members and at 9am on 26th April for all other visitors: www.burghley-horse.co.uk

The Jon Egging Trust: www.joneggingtrust.org.uk

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