Star names victorious at horse trials

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A large crowd saw some of the country’s top stars competing at Burgham Horse Trials.

Oliver Townend won the Advanced class on his Badminton partner Armada, closely followed in second place by Nicola Wilson on her Olympic horse Opposition Buzz.

Spectators were treated to winning displays from New Zealand Olympic rider Caroline Powell, who, along with Townend, brought a string of horses to compete in the wide range of classes available over the two days.

A few local riders were also successful at the event as Emma Carmichael from Longhorsley was 0.6 penalties behind Powell to net second place in the Intermediate and Ponteland rider Amy Young took second in a Novice section.

The Open Novice Under 18 class saw Ponteland-based Victoria Devlin take second place, closely followed by Susie White, from Hexham, in third. The weather was a determining factor throughout the two days, with persistent fog on the Sunday causing the cancellation of the BE90 cross country.

The organisers and British Eventing officials did everything in their power to allow as much of the competition to take place as it was safe enough to run. Fortunately, the fog lifted sufficiently to let the BE100 and Novice sections complete their classes – this was good news for Phillipa Nixon from Hexham who was victorious in BE100 Open.

The land owners, the Hogg family, worked hard to tow vehicles in and out of the venue.

Event organiser Martyn Johnson said: “We are extremely grateful to the ever-supportive Hogg family. The venue is ideal for an event of this level and despite the ground damage during the two days, they are delighted to welcome us back in July.

“Course builder Paul Ellis and his team worked non-stop to provide the highest standards possible in these difficult conditions and, as ever, the huge band of volunteers who gave up their time to enable the running of such an event need a massive thank-you.”