Eventing gains a new venue as Longleat joins the list

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A NEW venue for unaffiliated eventing has been added to the programme for 2013. The sport will be returning to Longleat, at Lord Bath’s estate in Wiltshire.

A two and three-day event will be held there from August 30 - September 3 this year.

Affiliated eventing had ceased there after 25 years in 2011, when British Eventing abandoned the venue because of ‘changes in land management policy’.

The new company running the unaffiliated event says it is working with the estate’s approval to provide a much-needed event for grass-roots riders in the south.

In order to avoid any conflict, the event is taking place outside the safari park’s busiest time of the year - avoiding the peak time in mid June, when the British Eventing affiliated event used to take place.

There will be two classes at each level - 80cm and 90cm for the two-day event and 9cm and 1m for the three-day.

Course designer will be Eric Winter, and it will be built by one of the London 2012 course-building team.

The cross-country course is intended to be based more in the park with roads, tracks and steeplechase sections.

There has already been a demand for entries, but according to Longleat Horse Trials Ltd, headed by Chris Eden, it will cater for up to 500 entries, with people still able to enter as normal before the event.