A showjumping spectacular!

Janet Barnes is heading up the Showjumping section of the Show this year but is also a Showjump Judge and former BS Area Rep for Berkshire.  Janet gives us a little ‘behind the scenes’ look into how she organises the Showjumping timetable in the run up to the Show.

Planning for the Showjumping section of the Royal County of Berkshire Show starts in the late Autumn of the previous year, when we plan the type of classes to include in each showjumping arena. There are three arenas:

The Main Arena has three jumping slots over the Show weekend and the classes chosen must fit into a time bracket and keep viewers glued to their seats. Speciality Classes are ideal for this and are not the usual ‘bread and butter’ of showjumping life.

Ring 1 is a dedicated jumping arena starting with a warm-up class for those competing in the Main Arena. This is followed by classes from 1.10m up to 1.30m.

Ring 2 is for classes for the amateur and local riders, and is only available on Saturday afternoon.

The next important item is to book the jump judges, course designers and builders, collecting ring stewards and two people for ‘front of house’ duties in the showjumping secretarial tent. This is all usually booked around February time in order for people to add to their calendars as they can get very busy around the middle to end of Summer.

The Show’s Office deals with ordering the showjumps and rosettes, which have to be sorted for each class and the Competitors’ numbers filed in alphabetical order for handing out on the day.

Not everything runs smoothly and it’s inevitable that people’s plans and circumstances change resulting in them withdrawing from the competition, so finding a last minute replacement can be quite a challenge!

This year we see the first leg of the 2017 British Showjumping International Stairway Class, which is very exciting as viewers can watch some the UK’s top show-jumpers in action and some thrilling jump-offs too!

We have a number of regular competitors returning as well as many new faces who have come up through the grades, so there should be some impressive jumping over the courses set out.


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