Great event on the way to Witchingham

Hayley GibbsGreat Witchingham's Spring Horse Trials begins at Blackwater Farm today and runs through until Saturday. Leading international riders and horses are competing in classes running throughout the three days, include an Advanced Intermediate, Open Intermediate and Intermediate.Hayley Gibbs

Great Witchingham's Spring Horse Trials begins at Blackwater Farm today and runs through until Saturday.

Leading international riders and horses are competing in classes running throughout the three days, include an Advanced Intermediate, Open Intermediate and Intermediate.

BE100 will begin today and continue tomorrow alongside CIC* and Novice with Junior Regional Novice, Novice, BE100 and BE90 on Saturday.

Dressage starts at 8.30am each day with show jumping commencing at 10am and cross country at 10.30am - with the last horse going cross country at 5pm.


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New cross country fences for this season include an imposing water complex for the CIC*, which utilises the pretty Blackwater river, and which should be an exciting vantage point for spectators.

Piggy French and Pippa Funnell will be among the top quality riders in a popular event which for the first time has been given the elite CIC* international status.

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Funnell's rides will include her European silver medal winner Some Day Soon.

Blackwater Farm is set in the beautiful Wensum Valley countryside 11 miles from Norwich on the A1067 Norwich-Fakenham road by the Reepham turning at the Norfolk Wildlife Park.

There will be trade stands and refreshments available on site. Admission is �10 per car full (if 2+ occupants) or �5 for 1 person.

Former EDP Norfolk Sports Award Winner and International Para Driver Lindsey Tyas is supporting a new innovation in horse and rider/driver safety launched by local entrepreneur Andy Keats and his business partner Adrian Soskin.

Ride-Alert's range of innovative personal identification products, for both horse and rider/driver, provide a direct link to the Incident Response Centre 24-hours a day.

By wearing a Ride-Alert ID wrist band, riders and their friends and family can feel safe in the knowledge that in the event of an accident a highly trained incident response team will relay vital medical and allergy information to the relevant authorities, contact next of kin, the stables, and even the vet.

Keats, who has more than 14 years of experience in the field of personal and pet identification with his company Alert ID, developed the idea with business partner Soskin, a well known figure in the horse world.

This unique service has now been extended to bring Ride-Alert ID products to the equine market and is already gaining recognition as the next 'must have' for all riders /drivers and horse owners.

"Ride-Alert is so simple that it just makes real sense," said Tyas, who was paralysed down her right side at the age of four as the result of a road accident and was advised by her consultant before leaving hospital that she must never ride again.

Her passion for horses and determination was unquenchable, however. She continued to compete and, in 2006, was selected as a member for the British Team at the FEI Para Equestrian World Carriage Driving Championships, helping to secure team silver.

Working hard to promote para-equestrian sport, both in Britain and internationally, safety is always at the forefront of her campaigning and Ride-Alert is a product that will be invaluable to anyone involved with horses.

She will be working alongside top riders Tim Stockdale, Mary King, Maria Eilberg and Lynn Russell as part of the Ride-Alert Ambassador team.

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