The organisers of Burgham International Horse Trials have agreed with British Eventing and the riders concerned that the small group of riders who competed at the event at Haras du Pin, France, last weekend who were due to compete at Burgham (19-23 August) this week will not do so.

Event Director Martyn Johnson said: “This has been an extremely difficult situation and we apologise to those riders affected. Although the riders could apply for an exemption under the DCMS guidelines, we are all in agreement with the proposed way forward. We were all very uncomfortable with the idea of any potential risk, however small, to our amazing volunteers and helpers and the local community – and of course other riders, owners and officials.

“Burgham is the first international event of the British 2020 eventing season. We do not wish to jeopardise the rest of the equestrian competition season or to bring ill-feeling towards the equine community from other parts of society.”

British Eventing chief executive Jude Matthews said: “We thank all riders who applied for elite athlete exemption who have done everything necessary to ensure that they have kept themselves and others safe. While the exemption covers them to compete at Burgham, all involved agreed that it would be prudent for those returning from Haras du Pin not to compete at Burgham this week. It has been a difficult period for all concerned, but safeguarding both our members and the future of the sport remains absolutely key.”

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