State Hickstead and Hunter Trials Committee
A Hickstead, by definition, is actually a showjumping competition, which originates from a Derby style competition at Hickstead, England. This incorporates “natural” obstacles, such as brush, ditches, banks, stonewalls, water and a number of rustic showjumping fences.
Australian Pony Clubs and other organisations have developed a competition within a slightly different context. It has become a means of running a competition involving cross-country fences and show jumping fences, when a venue does to have sufficient space for a full cross-country course and/or where personnel are in short supply.
A Hickstead competition may be as a mini horse trial, competitors complete a dressage test (optional event inclusion), then complete the combination showjumping/cross-country course.
‘Hunter Trials’ originated as a test for hunting horses and riders consisting of a timed course, or section of a course, of obstacles similar to those found under actual hunting conditions.
The aim of Pony Club Hunter Trials is to maintain the spirit of the original competition whilst utilising existing eventing cross country courses, and providing members with the opportunity to participate in another form of competitive cross country riding to further develop their horsemanship skills.