Eventing, or Horse Trials as it is also known, is the ultimate equestrian test. Its foundations started in the Cavalry schools of Europe at the turn of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Initially it was only open to male officers, but soon developed into an Olympic sport where men and women compete on equal terms. The format has evolved over the years, but the sport tests the skills of Dressage (effectively basic training), Cross Country, over a course of solid obstacles and hazards such as ditches and lakes, and Jumping, over knock down, colored poles. The top competitions are three day long events and include such well known sporting spectaculars as Badminton and Burghley, where crowds can reach up to 120,000. Many of the venues, especially in Great Britain, are in beautiful stately parks.
The Little Book of Eventing reveals the history, introduces the reader to some of the great stars - both human and equine - over the years, the charismatic trainers and some of the best known venues. It also shows what goes on behind the scenes and offers tips on how to take part at novice level or become involved on the organization side.
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