New designer for Badminton Horse Trials

FEI Eventing Committee chair, Giuseppe della Chiesa, led the Eventing Round Table held on the final day of the FEI Sports Forum.
Giuseppe della Chiesa. © Edouard Curchod/FEI

Giuseppe della Chiesa is taking over from Hugh Thomas as course designer for Britain’s famous Badminton Horse Trials.

The appointment of Giuseppe della Chiesa, Technical Delegate at the Mitsubishi Motors-sponsored event from 2008 to 2010 and assistant TD in 2011, was announced by The Duke of Beaufort and Thomas, who is also the event’s director.

Della Chiesa has designing several prestigious international courses, most well known being the Championship track at Pratoni, Italy where he was Show Director for the World Equestrian Games in 1998 and Course Designer for the European Championships in 2007.

He was also Technical Delegate for the Beijing Olympics 2008 and as a rider was Italian Champion in 1989 and Olympic reserve for Italy at the Barcelona Olympics 1992. He has designed both national and international courses in Italy and also at Windsor in Great Britain, Malmo in Sweden and in South Africa.

Della Chiesa’s course building philosophy is very much in tune with the way that Hugh Thomas worked in his 25 years as course designer in tandem with his role as Director. Della Chiesa says: “It will be evolution, not revolution.”

“While I was surprised that Hugh was standing down as Course Designer, I am honoured to be asked to design at such a prestigious event, and looking forward to working with course builders the Willis Brothers and all the team at Badminton.”

He has been initially contracted for a period of three years and will be designing the 2014 course. He knows the park well from his TD days and will be having an early recce with his new perspective this summer.

Hugh Thomas said he was looking forward to supporting Giuseppe Della Chiesa. “2013 was one of the most successful events ever, with a record crowd and another competition that was resolved at the very last fence on the final day. We have never had such a high class field and the event will be difficult to match next year!’

The 2014 event will return to the familiar Thursday to Sunday time-frame, culminating in the jumping phase on Sunday, May 11.

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