Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Royal Windsor Horse Show & Pageant (brought to you by Martin Collins Equine Surfaces)

Special thanks to PRO's Official Footing Sponsor Martin Collins Equine Surfaces for this special report from the Royal Windsor Horse Show!  Be sure to check out their Facebook Fan Page and Blog after reading this post.

Every year since 1943, for 1 week in May the Queen opens the private grounds at Windsor Castle for the Royal Windsor Horse Show  which features jumping, dressage and carriage driving, at international level with “grass roots” classes and showing, etc.   It is a fabulous event that attracts equestrian competitors and spectators in droves.    In the UK each year there are several "must see" sporting events:  Wimbledon, Badminton and The Royal Windsor Horse Show!

Alongside Land Rover, Alltech and Horse & Hound (among others), Martin Collins is proud to be a sponsor of  the Royal Windsor Horse Show and has been the "Official Footing Supplier" of this celebrated event since 2005!
Royal Windsor marks the kick-off to the equestrian showing season featuring 117 showing classes and 20 championships. Similar to the Devon Horse Show here in the US, several thousand horses compete at this event and it is quite prestigious.

An excerpt from the event website reports:
" The Royal Windsor Horse Show offers visitors a fantastic mix of Jumping, Showing and Carriage Driving competitions. These take place in four different arenas – The Castle Arena is the main arena and hosts the main jumping, displays and championship classes. The Frogmore Arena houses jumping as well as the AmTrust Equine RWHS British Riding Clubs Championships competitions, and some showing competitions. The Copper Horse Arena mainly houses showing competitions and the Driving Arena is host to the dressage and obstacle phase of the International Driving competitions."

This year was an exceptional year for the horse show, as it marked the celebration of her 60 year reign.  In the evening, they usually have a Military Tattoo, however for this Jubilee year, they held a pageant each night (Thurs – Sun), with the Queen in attendance on Sunday to celebrate her 60 year reign.

The theme was “around the world in 60 years”, with participants from Canada (Mounties), America (cowboys and Native Americans, both from California), Mexico, Cook Islands, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Oman, Africa (with performance from The Lion King stage show), India, Italy, Russia, Ireland, Scotland and England.  Each nation focused around the Queen’s love of horses.  Over 800 participants and nearly as many horses were in attendance!

Featured photographs show the 3 rings that Martin Collins maintains, including the warm up which is connected to the Castle Main and the Frogmore Arena.  This link details the programme of events by Ring.

UK celebrities entertained during the evening (2 each night), and singing sensations included The Tenors from Canada, Joss Stone and Susan Boyle!  Various Royals took the salute each night, with the Queen on Sunday.   The Sunday night performance was filmed and will be shown on ITV (commercial TV) on 3rd June to coincide with the main celebrations.

It was truly spectacular, and so wonderful to see traditional dress and activities in our own “back garden” so-to-speak.  For those seeking to read more history on this fantastic event.....please visit the official website of the British monarch or the official event website!

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