Rain didn’t stop play at the Royal Highland Show last week (21-24 June), with more than 160,000 people making it through the muddy gates to enjoy Scotland’s largest largest equestrian event and country fair.
Torrential downpours on the first two days of the show turned the showground into a quagmire, with particular problems in the car park. But the Scots are made of sterner stuff and it was business as usual.
“The horrendous weather on Thursday and Friday presented us with some real challenges, particularly car parking,” said show manager David Dunsmuir. “However, thanks to the co-operation of our neighbours RBS and Edinburgh Airport and a tireless effort by staff, officials, police and other agencies, we were able to keep the show going.
“Those who attended, both as exhibitors and visitors, also deserve praise for coping with the conditions.”
Alongside the farming, fashion and food were top equestrian classes, with some 3000 horses and ponies in attendance. There was everything from heavy horses to show hacks, and world-class show jumping to pony club games.
Taking the top spot in the grand prix, and going home £6,000 the richer, was Greg Taylor riding Jackie Kemp’s Wonder Van De Roshoeve. He saw off some stiff competition, including Ellen Whitaker who had eight faults with both Arena UK Lando and Xamena.
Ellen came second in the Grade A & B championships, jumping a double clear with Xamena that couldn't quite beat Vicky Young and Nethertowns Valentine’s fast time.
As well as top riders there were new names in attendance, with James Smith winning the RHS Star of the Future Championship, riding Mary T.
In showing the 10-year-old Welsh B stallion Boreton White Prince from Llanarth Stud won the Cuddy Supreme In Hand Championship Qualifier. Reserve was three-year-old Hunter Pony Brindlebrook Under Suspicion, owned by Rhona Timson.
Winner of the Show Hunter Pony Championship was Kathleen Allen riding Millpond Look So Cheeky, while J Thomson was named Working Hunter Pony champion with Park Lane V. Kathleen and Millpond Look So Cheeky were also crowned the Coloured Horses and Ponies champion.
Winning the Working Hunter and qualifying for Horse of the Year show was Miss L Moore, riding Arrowthorn.
As always, the Retraining of Racehorse showing class was popular with spectators, who watched Robyn Gray and Whatcanyasay take first prize.
Highlights of the Royal Highland Show can be seen on H&C TV next month, premiering on Wednesday 11 July.
The show will include with Pony and Seniors British Showjumping, cooking, farriery, fashion, falconry, sheep shearing and other country pursuits. Check our listings for more information.