Well that's it for another year. Weston Park's autumn event was bathed in sunshine, with the mature trees of the fabulous estate still in full leaf. It was an October event to remember.

Especially memorable was the Blue Chip Central & North West 80T Challenge Final, which drew competitors from all over the region, filling two full sections. As a consequence, and through the generosity of the sponsors Blue Chip Feed, we had not one, but two winners.

The competition was incredibly stiff, with numerous riders jumping double clears around courses that had been specifically designed by the organisers of Weston Park to be inviting and encourage combinations up the levels of eventing from this grassroots competition next season. Vicky and Janet Plant, who run the Weston Park Horse Trials said "We really want riders to come here, enjoy their day and go away feeling like they have the confidence to try another class and progress up the levels, so we have designed the courses as such. Class numbers have been brilliant this year and we hope that we can carry on next season and get even more entries to this popular series."

Out of all those entries there were two winners and Georgia Butler rode Albern Moon Buzz to victory on her dressage score of 25.5 in Section F after qualifying for the event at Somerford Park Horse Trials in May this year, and Chloe Fairley partnered Skelton Beth to head her section, finishing on 21.7.

Following the event Georgia wrote the following to Janet Plant:

A huge thank you for running an amazing day of competition which ended up being the best day I have had in a very long time!

I spoke to a lady from your office, whose name I can't remember as I was a bit over excited at the time, about my thoughts about the day. What I omitted to say was thank you so much to you and Blue Chip for running the Central North West BE80T Challenge. 2016 has been my first full season eventing since I was a teenager (approximately 25 years ago!) and the challenge was absolutely tailor made for people like me. I've been training with Fionnuala Stott, who was 3rd, since January, and the Blue Chip Challenge has given us a real focus for our training and competing - it was our goal this season to qualify for it. Fionnuala got her qualification before I did, at Llanymynech, so it then really focussed my mind on getting clean rounds at our next event at Somerford. I don't think I would have worked as hard if it hadn't been for the lure of qualification! And it's given me the confidence now to set my goal for next season as obtaining a qualification for the BE90 Mitsubishi Motors Cup. So the Blue Chip Challenge has been a perfect way to start (what I hope is) a new eventing career.

I look forward to coming back to Weston next year, hopefully in the BE90RF!

Such encouraging feedback just goes to prove that the Blue Chip Central & North West Challenge is providing both focus and encouragement to riders to seek to progress further in this great sport.

So, with Weston Park settling back into its peaceful autumn, it's also time for us to wish you all the best for the Christmas and New Year activities and we look forward to seeing you in the springtime!


2017 Dates: Weston Park - 8-9 April   Brand Hall 2-4 June   Weston Park (2) - 7-8 October


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