Having started his tenure as cross-country course designer some 30 years ago, Captain Mark Phillips has built an enduring partnership with Land Rover Burghley. His expertise and creativity continue to deliver epic competitions year after year; thrilling the crowds and challenging the World’s best riders to their limits. Phillips is recognized as a true equestrian; a former Olympian and winner at 4* (now 5*) level, he is also a much respected and sought after coach and instructor.
Captain Mark Phillips comments: “Whilst I am still enjoying every moment of work with Burghley’s fabulous team, I’m not getting any younger and want to retire while I still feel at the cutting edge and on top of my game.”
Phillips remembers his early years at Burghley and Bill Henson (then Event Director) telling him to “make Burghley, Burghley” something which has continued ever since. He adds: “I am grateful to the event directors Bill and latterly Elizabeth Inman for all their support, which has helped me, to help them, make Burghley the event it is today.”
Elizabeth Inman, Event Director at Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials says: “Mark knows how we wonder every year at his ability to keep ‘pulling it out of the bag’ and next year (2020) will be particularly poignant as his swan song. Undoubtedly our cross-country track – acknowledged as probably the most technically challenging test of all the 5* events, both from a competitor’s and designer’s perspective, has benefited hugely from the superlative all-round experience and skill that Mark Phillips has brought to the event.
“So yes, difficult shoes to fill, but softened by the good news that we are appointing Derek di Grazia into the role of course designer in 2021.”
Derek di Grazia is recognized for safe, sensible, yet tough courses and has been one of the top cross-country course designers in the USA for over 15 years. He is the appointed course designer for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. Di Grazia continues to compete at 4* level, is also a recognized coach and trainer and is known for his quiet, modest demeanor, demonstrating many of the very qualities that have worked so well during Mark’s tenure.
Derek di Grazia says: “It is a great honor to be appointed course designer for this very special competition and I’m truly excited to have a chance to design the cross-country phase within Burghley Park’s very unique landscape. It is a fantastic project to have in my sights following on from the 2020 Olympic Games.”
Elizabeth Inman concludes: “We look forward with enthusiasm and confidence to this next chapter in the history of the Event and to Derek continuing to “make Burghley, Burghley”.
The turning leaves of the vineyards and the crisp, clear blue skies made for an excellent backdrop for the first day of The Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) and USEA Future Event Horse (FEH) West Coast Championships at Twin Rivers Ranch in Paso Robles, California.
The Maryland Horse Trials at Loch Moy Farm in Adamstown, Maryland hosted the Area II Championships at their event on October 9-11, 2020. To qualify for the Area II Championships, riders needed to secure first through fifth place at one event from October 4, 2019 to September 22, 2020. There were nine different championship divisions from Beginner Novice to Intermediate, including Modified.
The world’s top riders and their mounts are all at the Domaine de Sers in Pau, Southwest France until this Sunday to battle it out in the five-star, the highest level of eventing competition in equestrian sport. The first phase of the competition, dressage, ended with the victory of British rider Laura Collett on her mount London 52 (Landos x Vernante), her own, Keith Scott, and Karen Bartlett's 11-year-old Holstiner gelding.
This year the USEA will host an Annual Meeting & Convention unlike any other. The 2020 USEA Annual Meeting will be held virtually and participants can attend the meeting from the comfort of their own home. The 2020 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention was originally set to take place in Albuquerque, New Mexico but, due to COVID-19, the in-person meeting was postponed and replaced by a unique virtual experience.