Badminton Horse Trials

Ben Hobday defying gravity atBadminton with Mulry's Error

Badminton Horse Trials 2021 – Now in its 72nd Year!

2019 marked the 70th anniversary of Badminton Horse Trials. Founded in 1949 by the 10th Duke of Beaufort, Badminton has since grown to become one of the world’s greatest equestrian events.


Badminton – The Most Glamorous Sporting Event of the Season

Touted by Tatler magazine as ‘the most glamorous sporting event of the season’, around 200,000 spectators attended in 2019. In 2021, the 72nd anniversary the event, you will have another opportunity to see the world’s best equestrians and horses performing at their peak and enjoy the tradition and spectacle that Badminton provides like no other 5* event.  To quote Netia Walker of ‘Quite frankly, the most thrilling sport’.

Jonelle Price in day 2 of the dressage riding Classic Moet, 2018 was a winning year for this formidable duo from New Zealand

When and Why did Badminton Horse Trials Begin?

In the summer of 1948, the first ever UK three day event was held in London as part of the Olympic Games. Badminton Horse Trials began the following year in 1949.

This was partly a response to the popularity of the Olympic event but chiefly to provide British riders the opportunity to train for international events.


Badminton Three Day Event – An International Competition

In Badminton’s first year, 22 horses from Britain and Ireland entered. The winning horse was Golden Willow ridden by John Sheddon. Then in 1953, Badminton was opened up to include riders from Europe.

Today, entrants travel from all over the globe to the Badminton Estate in Gloucestershire to compete in this prestigious 5* three day event.

Glengarnock gets a birds eye view over the KBIS Bridge

The Highest Level of Equestrian Sporting Competition

Badminton is a CCI***** event. Concours Complet International Five Star is a rating for the highest level of equestrian competition.

Badminton is one of only 6 competitions in the world to have the CCI***** rating. Others include Burghley Horse Trials, Kentucky Three-Day Event in USA, Australian International Three Day Event, Luhmühlen Horse Trials in Germany and Pau in France.

All horses and riders are at the absolute pinnacle of equestrian sporting prowess.

The Trot Up at Badminton Horse Trials

What is Eventing?

Eventing is a competition for a single horse and rider to pit their skills against others across three equestrian disciplines. These disciplines are generally held over three days (Three Day Eventing) and include dressage, cross country and show jumping.

The three trials are set to test different strengths and abilities. The winning horse and rider must of course show excellence across all three.

The dressage test is a demonstration of accuracy, discipline and obedience.  The cross country section is run over 4 miles and requires incredible stamina and athleticism. The final day of the show jumping round is designed to test accuracy at speed and agility.

Toledo de Kerser making a splash in Hildon Pond at Badminton Horse Trials

Trade Stands Galore at Badminton Shopping Village

Badminton wouldn’t be Badminton without a stroll down Worcester Way or Deer Park Drive. So many wonderful trade stands that line the central shopping village area, you can literally fill your boots and shop till you drop.

The annual best trade stand event adds excitement to day one when prizes are given for the best looking shops. You can buy everything here from bridles and jackets to sumptuous chocolate brownies and gin infused jams.

A view of the famous Shopping Village at Badminton Horse Trials