RECTORY FARM in Duntisbourne Abbots has seen phenomenal success since the opening of its new arena in the spring.

The culmination of the summer evening dressage championships was held last Thursday with classes going on until dusk.

Competitors from around the region that had successfully qualified at competitions earlier in the series went head-to-head in a bid to become Rectory Farm Dressage Champions.

The competition was split into two classes – in the restricted class, kindly sponsored by Equiboodle, competitors rode either Intro B or Prelim 12. The open class was generously sponsored by the local Colne Saddlery and saw competitors choose from Prelim 18, Novice 34 or Elementary 49.

The final result was a spectacular victory for Roz Turner riding Toby, who won both classes with scores of 76% in the restricted and 73.33% in the open.

Roz’s win secured her an Albion leather bridle (provided by Colne Saddlery) a bridle (from Equiboodle) and free tuition at Rectory Farm Arena.

Second place in the restricted class went to Holly Chivers with All About Albert on a score of 74% and Sonia Martin on Raffles came next in third with 69.2%.

In the open class, second place position went to Diane Kilshaw riding Leo on 71.66% followed by Holly Beven with Penny Faw Storm in third on 69.58%.

Rectory Farm, run by prominent local family the Jewitts, has hosted many training events and competitions since its opening in May.

“We’ve had the Japanese, Australian and New Zealand Olympic teams hire the arena prior to the Olympics,” said Pleasance Jewitt.

“They came down with all their doctors and physiotherapists – it was like being on a film set!” The farm also regularly hosts Pony Club rallies and training events for local Riding Clubs.

The competition and livery yard, which is also a working farm, is situated just off the A417 dual carriageway between Cirencester and Cheltenham, and boasts a smart 80m x 50m all-weather arena which is available to hire for training and competitions.

Since opening, the Jewitts have carried on improving the facilities with a hard-standing lorry park and a picnic area.

They have also received the kind donation of the Nosebag, a mobile catering unit, from the VWH Hunt, which allows Pleasance to feed the hordes of hungry competitors.

The autumn dressage series starts Sunday, September 30. The arena is available for hire for £30 per hour for four horses and £5 per horse thereafter. For more details about the arena and the upcoming events go to the website www.rectoryfarm.com.

WHATLEY MANOR International Horse Trials takes place this weekend at HRH The Princess Royal’s Gatcombe Estate near Minchinhampton (September 14-16).

The event comprises International, Novice and Intermediate sections and has reached its usual full entry of more than 800 horse-and-rider combinations, including 2012 Olympic silver medal-winning team medallist William Fox-Pitt.

Riders from more than 12 nations will be represented, and heading the Australian entry is Paul Tapner, based in Highworth, who is determined to repeat his victory of last year in the CIC** competition.

Also entered is the great New Zealand trio of Andrew Nicholson, from Marlborough, Blyth Tait, from Cheltenham and Mark Todd.

Other international riders competing include Australian’s Bill Levett, from Moreton-in-Marsh, and Lucinda Fredericks from Little Cheverell.

Locally-based regulars include Julie Tew, Chris and Kitty King, Harry Meade and Frenchman Leonard Goerens, who is based in Crudwell.

Now in its 17th year, the event takes place on a course designed by HRH The Princess Royal and her event organiser Pattie Biden.

WILLIAM FOX-PITT was triumphant at last week's Fidelity Blenheim International Horse Trials.

After pulling up his horse Seacookie the previous week at Burghley Horse Trials, Fox-Pitt diverted his attentions to Blenheim where Seacookie helped him seal victory by winning his landmark 50th international three-day event.

Zara Phillips had a disappointing weekend after her successful Olympics. Lying 34th after the dressage, Phillips had two fences down show jumping, dropping her to 37th before the final phase of cross country in the CIC***.