The hugely popular Petplan Equine Area Festival series hosted by British Dressage (BD) is moving into a new era. The series which is the number one dressage competition in the BD calendar now offers riders all year-round competition with two Petplan Equine Area Festival Championships – a summer and winter Championship and a brand new Petplan Equine Music Area Festival series run alongside some of the summer fixtures.
The new format came about following comments highlighted in the BD member survey carried out earlier this year. BD has taken on board the suggestions made in the survey and the new format Petplan Equine Area Festivals was developed.
The main changes include:
- The Petplan Equine Area Festivals will take place all year round with a Winter and Summer Championship.
- Qualification for the Summer 2020 Petplan Equine Area Festivals will start on 1st December 2019 and end on 30th June 2020.
- Qualification will be on a points system based on points awarded for scores achieved.
- There will be 17 or 18 Summer Area Festivals from July to August.
- Horse and rider partnerships will qualify directly from a Petplan Equine Area Festival to the Petplan Equine Area Festival Summer Championships which takes place in mid- September 2020.
- The Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals have been removed.
- Dressage to Music classes from Prelim to Intermediate I will take place at a selection of the Summer Area Festival venues.
- There will be 10 Petplan Equine Winter Area Festivals spread across the country with qualification taking place from 1st July to 31st December 2020.
- The Petplan Equine Area Festival Winter Championship will take place at Hartpury College in April 2021.
The Area Festival series was originally launched in 2000 and is aimed at grassroots riders. It has grown from 15 Area Festivals with 555 tests completed in its’ first year to over 6,300 dressage tests ridden in the 2018/19 series. This new format will provide more opportunities for horse and rider partnerships to qualify including the brand new Petplan Equine Dressage to Music series which will have its Championship at the Summer Petplan Equine Area Festival Championship.
Kate Hopkins, Marketing Consultant for Petplan Equine is looking forward to the new season of Area Festival competitions. “The encouraging and supportive ethos of the Area Festivals will still be an integral part of the new two season format, so for us the opportunity for more people to compete all year round is a really positive development. We are always so impressed with the dedication and hard work people commit to take part and I’m sure that this new format will continue to inspire our very special competitors.”
British Dressage, Chief Executive, Jason Brautigam adds; “We’ve listened to feedback from our members and taken their comments and suggestions on board. The Petplan Equine Area Festivals remain our most popular championship, so it was important to find out exactly what competitors think – as they obviously know the series inside out. The new Area Festival format will mirror the Regional offering with the same qualification mechanism and qualifying seasons – this will simplify things greatly. Providing two Championship options for Bronze and Silver riders in summer and winter will provide more opportunities to compete and qualify throughout the year. Plus, the new dressage to music element in the summer series opens up more options for riders to consider. Petplan Equine has been a brilliant partner for the Area Festivals and we’re sure this will prove to be a very positive step in the next phase of evolution for our longest-standing championship series.”
The Summer dates and venues are:
- Easton & Otley College, (Music Venue), 6 – 12 July
- Alnwick Ford Equestrian, (Music Venue), 10 – 12 July
- Moreton Equestrian Centre, (Music Venue), 10 – 12 July
- Speedgate Farm, (Music Venue), 16 – 19 July
- Kingsword Equestrian Centre, (Non Music Venue), 16 – 19 July
- Bicton Arena, (Non Music Venue), 17 – 19 July
- Myerscough College, (Non Music Venue), 23 – 26 July
- Brook Farm Equestrian Centre, (Non Music Venue), 24 – 26 July
- The Cabin Equestrian Centre, (Music Venue), 31 July – 2 August
- Mount Ballan, (Non Music Venue), 31 July – 2 August
- Port Royal EEC, (Music Venue), 1 – 2 August
- Onley Grounds Equestrian Complex, (Non Music Venue), 7 – 9 Augiust
- Sheepgate Equestrian, (Music Venue), 13 – 16 August
- Kings Equestrian, (Music Venue), 13 – 16 August
- Addington Equestrian Centre, (Music Venue), 20 – 23 August
- Field House Equestrian Centre, (Music Venue), 20 – 23 August
- Sparsholt College (Non Music Venue), 28 – 30 August
- 10 of the Summer series Area Festivals will also host Freestyle to Music classes , as part of the new Music Area Festival Championship name for Prelim to Intermediate I.
- The Summer Petplan Equine Area Festival Championship will be held in mid September. Date and venue are being finalised.
- There will be 10 Winter Petplan Equine Area Festivals, spread across the country hosting Prelim to Inter I classes. Venues and dates to be confirmed.
- The Winter Petplan Equine Area Festival Championship will take place at Hartpury College in April 2021 as part of the British Dressage Winter Championships.
How to qualify for the new structure
- Horse and rider will now qualify for the Area Festivals on a points system depending on the percentage they achieve at a BD affiliated event. Points are awarded as follows:
Percentage Scored 60.00 – 61.99% = 1 Points
Percentage Scored 62.00 – 63.99% = 2 Points
Percentage Scored 64.00 – 65.99% = 3 Points
Percentage Scored 66.00 – 67.99% = 4 Points
Percentage Scored 68.00 – 69.99% = 5 Points
Percentage Scored 70.00 – 71.99% = 6 Points
Percentage Scored 72.00 – 73.99% = 7 Points
Percentage Scored 74.00 – 75.99% = 8 Points
Percentage Scored 76.00 – 77.99% = 9 Points
Percentage Scored 78.00 – 79.99% = 10 Points
Percentage Scored 80.00% and above = 11 Points
- Combinations will have to achieve the following points to qualify for an Area Festival.
Prelim Level: Bronze 7 Points / Silver 9 Points
Novice Level: Bronze 7 Points / Silver 9 Points
Elementary Level: Bronze 7 Points / Silver 9 Points
Medium Level: Bronze 4 Points / Silver 6 Points
Advanced Medium Level: Bronze 4 Points / Silver 6 Points
PSG Level: Bronze 2 Points / Silver 4 Points
Intermediate I Level: Bronze 2 Points / Silver 4 Points
- Combinations can ride in as many Area Festivals they qualify for unless they achieve qualification for the Championships.
- From the Area Festivals, combinations will need to finish in the top two of their class to qualify for the Area Festival Championships. Any unfilled places will be awarded by the wild card system.
- Qualification for the Music Area Festival classes classes will be two scores of 63% or above for Prelim to Advanced Medium and two scores of 60% or above at PSG and Intermediate I . To reach the Championship, combinations will need to place within the top two and wildcards will be awarded as necessary.
Six Steps to get involved….