And we’re off

Wednesday 7th - 11th May 2025

And we’re off

All the horses that were presented at today’s first horse inspection have been passed by the Ground Jury, Sandy Phillips (President), Jane Hamlin from the USA and Christian Steiner from Austria, to go through to the dressage phase which starts tomorrow.

As ever, the horse inspection was something of a fashion show, with Alice Casburn a stand-out for the ladies in her wide-legged leopard-print trousers and short- leeved brown suede jacket, while Harry Meade was resplendent in bright pink trousers winning the Hi Ho Silver best dressed male award. Rosie Bradley-Hole won the ladies award. However, it was French rider Gaspard Maksud (pictured) whose ensemble was particularly memorable – a smart blue suit, pale green shirt and blue and green tie all topped off with a green ‘frog’ beret.

Only one horse was sent to the holding box, Huberthus HC – the ride of Australia’s Bill Levett – but was passed on re-presentation. Sadly, Tom McEwen’s ride CHF Cooliser was withdrawn before the inspection; particularly disappointing given that both Tom and his horse share a birthday on Friday.

Unusually, there are five 18-year-old horses in the competition: Diamond Sundance (India Wishart GBR), Palm Crescent (Megan O’Donoghue USA), Andreas (Helen Martin GBR), Spana de Nazca (Georgia Bartlett GBR) and Copper Beach (Cosby Green USA).

There are also 16 first-time riders, whose progress we will track through the event.

Tomorrow is all about dressage. Barnie Brotherton is this year’s ‘guinea pig’ (a rider who performs the dressage test in front of the three judges so they get their eye in). He will kick off the action at 8.40am, with Tom Jackson the first competitor riding Farndon into the arena at 9am.

Former rider Nicola Wilson will be joining commentators John Kyle and Nicole Brown on Badminton TV, which will bring all the action to those watching at home.