Royal Windsor Horse Show will set new standards in 2017 as it welcomes CSI5* Show Jumping to the Private Grounds of Windsor Castle. The Show Jumping will be a highlight of the five-day event which takes place from 10 – 14 May and features top-class equestrian action in four equestrian disciplines and more than 120 showing classes. This year the Show incorporates some exciting new additions.
The newly upgraded CSI5* Show Jumping will be a highlight of the Windsor programme as elite international riders take to the Castle Arena to compete for a total prize fund of £520,000. At the pinnacle of the competition will be the inaugural Rolex Grand Prix on Sunday 14 May, with an unprecedented £258,000 in prize money.
Adding to the international standing of the event, the CDI4* Dressage competition has been upgraded from its previous CDI3* status when it last featured in 2015. The Grand Prix and Freestyle to Music will take centre stage during the evening performances on Thursday and Friday respectively and are set to see the top riders battle it out for the enhanced 4* prize.
One of the most important Driving events in the UK, the Land Rover CAIO4* International Driving Grand Prix, takes place from Thursday 11 to Sunday 14 May. Contenders will be competing not only for the Royal Windsor Horse Show title but to qualify for the FEI World Cup™ Final. 2017 sees the welcome return of the Horse Pairs to the Grand Prix, which were last a part of the competition in 2014, and this year will be competing at CAIO3* level.
On Friday 12 May competitors will take to Windsor Great Park for the CEI2* 120km and new CEI1* 80km Endurance rides. Alongside these international rides, Royal Windsor now offers National riders the opportunity to qualify for the EGB Cup, through the introduction of a 40km National Ride. Run in accordance with FEI rules, the event will give National competitors a flavour of International competition.
Royal Windsor Horse Show plays host to some of the most important Showing classes in the UK, such as the Land Rover Mountain and Moorland Supreme Championship and the RoR Tattersalls Thoroughbred Ridden Show Horse Championship, which last year was won by HM The Queen’s homebred, Barber’s Shop. Organisers are delighted the Ridden Purebred Arab class will return after a prolonged absence. Furthermore, this year will also see the introduction of the Supreme Ridden Show Champion, an opportunity for selected champions across the five days to compete to be the overall Showing Champion of Royal Windsor.
In an entirely new competition, the longstanding Oxford vs Cambridge rivalry will take to unfamiliar heights as the two universities will be battling it out in a Varsity Dressage and Show Jumping class taking place on Saturday 13, each team bidding to finish on top of their old adversaries.
Show Director, Simon Brooks-Ward said: “Royal Windsor Horse Show is set to be better than ever in 2017. Not only will we see some of the best international Show Jumpers at Windsor this year through the elevation of the Show Jumping to 5* level, which put us alongside the best international horse shows in the world, but there are also lots of exciting new additions to the schedule.”
Away from the competitive action, spectators will be treated to entertaining displays including The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, the Musical Ride of The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, the DAKS Pony Club Mounted Games, and The Shetland Pony Grand National.
Entry Tickets are available from just £17 and for those seeking a more exclusive experience, the Members Enclosure is also available. New for 2017 is the introduction of the Windsor Enclosure, offering an additional ticket tier, allowing pre-booked grand stand seating and access to a dedicated bistro, bar and lawn on the north-east end of the Castle Arena.
Tickets to Royal Windsor Horse Show can be purchased at www.rwhs.co.uk