Established in 1990, the Blenheim Palace Horse Trials is one of the most prestigious events in the equestrian calendar. Sadly, this year’s event, which was due to take place between 17th – 20th September at the historic landmark, has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
On 27th April, the organising team of the event announced: “Having considered all options, following the government’s latest comments over potential future social distancing restrictions, it is with huge regret that [we] write to advise you that the Organisers – British Eventing and Blenheim Estate, in conjunction with our title sponsor SsangYong Motors UK – have taken the difficult decision not to run the SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials in 2020.
“Clearly Coronavirus has impacted on everyone’s lives and, whilst we are massively disappointed not to be able to put on the showcase event that we have been planning and preparing, the longer term health and safety of the public, competitors, exhibitors, volunteers, officials and staff; sustainability of the sport and those who support us is paramount.”
Adding that they hope to welcome visitors and competitors back to Blenheim Estate next year, their official statement continued: “We would like to thank all of our competitors, sponsors, exhibitors, officials and volunteers, and all who support us in any way, for [your] understanding and ongoing commitment to the event and sport, and we hope to see you all back at Blenheim in 2021.”
Reflecting on the news, Equestrian Surfaces Head of Sales, Alex Goldsack, said: “It’s very sad. We were involved with the event last year as exhibitors, and sponsors for the road crossings. I was also involved personally, as my daughter rode in the four-star. It’s a stunning event and I know everyone in the eventing world is very sad to hear this news, especially considering it has come so soon before the event was due to take place. I suppose it’s yet another example of the impact of the COVID-19 virus. I hope that we’ll win our battle against it, and that the world will be able to bounce back again soon.”
Image source: Blenheim Palace Horse Trials Official Site