THE SUNSHINE TOUR offers unaffiliated and amateur competitors the chance to qualify to compete at UK’s most famous showground – The All-England Jumping Course at Hickstead. The prestigious 4-day championship show features dressage, show jumping, showing and eventers challenge championship classes.

2024 Showing Championships are held on Friday 13th, Saturday 14th & Sunday 15th September, featuring a vast range of classes for amateur & novice showing enthusiasts: Lead rein & first ridden, in-hand & ridden, breeds, youngstock, veterans, working hunters and working hunter ponies, turnout, have-a-go, equitation and fun classes.

Championship classes are awarded superb rosettes, sashes, championship rugs and sponsored goodies and in most championship classes, the winner and reserve also qualify to go forward to a Supreme Championship!

To Qualify: Achieve 1st – 4th place in a qualifier class at a registered centre or club, within the qualification period 1st Jan-31st July, and record your results within one month of competition. Training classes, member-only classes and shows, affiliated classes, second rounds and championship classes are not eligible to use as qualifiers. Please see Qualifier Classes for more information.

Please keep a Showing Qualifier Form with you – if your show doesn’t publish results for showing classes, you can ask the Show Secretary to sign off your placing to verify your qualification. Use the signed form when you record your results to upload for proof of results. N.B. only to be used for showing.

Further information: How to Qualify

Need help and advice about showing?
We’re very pleased to be partnered by The Showing Register who offer clinics around the country throughout the year and advice for Sunshine Tour competitors. There’s lots of FREE SHOWING ADVICE available from The Showing Register

Here’s all the essential information about Sunshine Tour …..

2024 Sunshine Tour Championships

SHOWING RESTRICTIONS

Sunshine Tour Championships are for AMATEUR competitors, professionals are excluded from competing in the Sunshine Tour. Our definition of a ‘professional’ is someone who earns some or all of their income from:

  1. Training, schooling, breaking or competing horses/ponies.
    • People who work with horses for care, e.g. grooms, vet nurses and only participate in exercising of horses, e.g. hacking & lunging for exercise but not schooling, training, competing or breaking client’s horses can qualify.
  2. Buying and/or selling horses for profit.
  3. Teaching and/or training riders.
    • Instructors who only teach in a riding school with riding school horses/ponies and do not teach people on their own horses can qualify.
  4. Judging affiliated classes in the same discipline as your competition (paid or unpaid).

All horses and ponies competing in Sunshine Tour Showing Championships must not be produced/trained or in livery with a professional showing producer/trainer (including DIY livery) during the current year.

2024 SHOWING QUALIFICATION

Each Qualification Number allows you to enter one championship class: You CAN compete in BOTH Small & Grand Tour Showing if you fit the relevant restrictions.

TOURS are just groups of classes, divided by competence and measurable points/winnings restrictions – please respect the spirit of each level as well as the letter of the law. More information about TOURS.

 If you are outside the restrictions for the level that you qualified in, you can voluntarily move up to compete in a higher level. You CAN compete in BOTH Small & Grand Tour Showing if you fit the relevant restrictions.

RESTRICTIONS

SMALL TOUR SHOWING
Horses & Ponies: During the period 1st January 2022 to the date of this year’s championship: horses/ponies can be registered with a showing or breed society but must not have won any affiliated class.

  • Horses, Ponies and Competitors: During the period 1st January 2022 to the date of this year’s championship: horses, ponies and competitors can have taken part in preliminary qualifying rounds of classes that do not require pre-membership of the society but must not have taken part in second rounds or championships.
  • Horses, Ponies and Competitors: During the period 1st January 2020 to the date of this year’s championship: horses, ponies and competitors cannot have competed in affiliated showing classes at Royal International Horse Show, London International or HOYS, (including Search for a Star, BSPS London International and The Showing Register championship classes).
  • Competitors: Cannot be involved with schooling, training, breaking, producing or breeding show horses/ponies. And cannot be currently listed on any showing panel and /or judge affiliated or unaffiliated showing classes; this restriction applies to paid or unpaid activities.

GRAND TOUR SHOWING

  •  Horses, Ponies and Competitors: During the period 1st January 2022 to the date of this year’s championship: horses/ponies canhave taken part in second rounds, finals or championships of affiliated classes but must not have won a second round, final or championship class.
  • Horses, Ponies and Competitors: During the period 1st January 2020 to the date of this year’s championship: horses, ponies and competitors cannot have competed in affiliated showing classes at Royal International Horse Show, London International, Olympia or HOYS (from 1st January 2022 for Search for a Star, BSPS London International and The Showing Register championship classes).
  • Competitors: Cannot be involved with schooling, training, breaking, producing or breeding show horses/ponies. And cannot be currently listed on any showing panel and /or judge affiliated or unaffiliated showing classes; this restriction applies to paid or unpaid activities.
Sunshine Tour Showing Championships   
Small Tour classes  Grand Tour classes 
  • Fun Showing – In-Hand & Ridden
  • Fun Showing – Lead Rein Equitation
  • Fun Showing – Best Turnout
  • Starters Showing – Ridden, Lead Rein & First Ridden
  • Junior Handler
  • Novice & Newcomer In-Hand Horse
  • Novice & Newcomer In-Hand Pony
  • Novice & Newcomer Ridden Show Horse
  • Novice & Newcomer Ridden Show Pony
  • Best Rider
  • Pony Club Pony
  • Riding Club Horse
  • Family Horse
  • Family Pony
  • Novice & Newcomer Working Hunter
  • Novice & Newcomer Working Hunter Pony

 

  • Top Turnout
  • Lead Rein
  • First Ridden
  • Cob – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Riding Horse – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Coloured – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Show Hunter – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Thoroughbred – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Foreign Breeds – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Natives – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Part-Bred – Ridden & In-Hand
  • Show Pony & Show Hunter Pony
  • Youngstock
  • Veteran Horse & Pony
  • Working Hunter
  • Working Hunter Pony
  • Working Show Horse

Printable 2024 Restrictions

Showing at the Sunshine Tour is guided by various rule books, according to the relevance to the class.

For general advice please contact The Showing Register at www.theshowingregister.co.uk

Rule book links to be updated when 2024 rule books are issued.

  • TSR Handbook
  • BSPS Rule Book
  • BSHA Rule Book
  • VHS Rule Book

Sunshine Tour Showing Championships

Fun & Starters classes
All novelty & fun showing classes like Handsomest Gelding, Prettiest Mare, Judge’s Choice, Best Horse/Pony qualify for the Fun Showing championships. Qualifier classes can be ridden & in-hand, horses & ponies, lead rein or assisted.
Classes for beginners or starters, classes restricted to walk & trot, introduction or have-a-go classes all qualify for the Fun and/or Starters Showing Championships.

Small Tour classes 
Any novice or restricted showing class qualifies for the Novice & Newcomer series of championships. Qualifier classes can be in-hand horse, in-hand pony, ridden horse, ridden pony or mixed height.
Novice & restricted working hunter and working hunter pony qualify for Novice & Newcomer Working Hunter & Newcomer Working Hunter Pony Championships.
Junior or child handler classes qualify for Junior Handler.
All types of rider and equitation classes qualify for Best Rider.
Any class for Pony Club Pony or Riding Club Horse or classes for versatile horse/pony qualify for Pony Club Pony & Riding Club Horse
Family horse or pony, best all-rounder or handy pony can qualify for Family Horse & Pony.
Rescued or Rehabilitated Horse or Pony – can be in-hand or ridden.

Grand Tour classes
All condition & turnout classes qualify for Top Turnout – ridden, in-hand or lead rein.
Lead Rein & First Ridden classes qualify for the championships for ages 3 years to 12 years.
Cob – Ridden & In-Hand.
Riding Horse – Ridden & In-Hand.
Coloured – Ridden & In-Hand.
Show Hunter – Ridden & In-Hand.
Thoroughbred – Ridden & In-Hand.
Natives – Ridden & In-Hand.
Foreign Breed – Ridden & In-Hand.
Part-Bred – Ridden & In-Hand.
Show Pony & Show Hunter Pony.
Youngstock.
Veteran Horse & Pony.
Working Hunter.
Working Hunter Pony.
Working Show Horse.

Qualifier Classes 2024

Your Journey to Hickstead Starts Here …………

Step 1: REGISTER your horse/pony. Restrictions apply for eligibility to compete, check the competitor restrictions.

Step 2: QUALIFY by taking part in a qualifier class at a registered centre or club and achieving 1st- 3rd in Dressage or Show Jumping, 1st – 4th in Showing or Eventers Challenge. Qualifying competitions are held between 1st January and 31st July 2024 (1st Nov 2023 – 31st July 2024 for Eventers Challenge).

  • Qualifier classes HERE
  • Registered Centres & Clubs HERE

Step 3: RECORD your result within ONE MONTH of competition (by 31st Jan for Early Eventers competitions and by 3rd Aug for July competitions) and submit evidence of your result (further guidance here).

  • Record Results for Early Eventers Challenge competitions held 1st November to 31st January HERE
  • Record Results for Competitions held 1st January to 31st July HERE

Step 4: ENTER – available early August; T&Cs apply.

KEY INFORMATION ABOUT QUALIFICATION

  • Qualification is free – after recording your result, The Sunshine Tour will verify your placing and issue a unique qualification number.
  • Each successfully recorded result allows you to enter in one championship class (same horse/competitor combination, discipline and level). Each horse/competitor combination can qualify up to 6 times in show jumping and dressage, up to 3 times in eventers challenge, and without limits in showing (limitations to the range of classes may apply).
  • Paid for entry is necessary to take part in the championship show, entries open in early August (date to be confirmed).
  • Qualification does not guarantee availability of entry in championship classes, entries are taken in order of receipt and some classes can fill very quickly.
  • Class Criteria – rules used to judge qualifying classes (e.g. format/rules of class, restrictions on age of rider, height/colour/breed of horse, etc.) might not exactly match the championship class.

RULES & ELIGIBILITY

  • Qualification can only be gained in a qualifier class at a registered centre or club, within the qualification period 1st Jan-31July for dressage, show jumping & showing, 1st Nov-31st July for eventers challenge qualification, (eventers challenge 1st Nov to 31st Dec can be at any show, thereafter only at registered centre/club). If you cannot find a registered centre or club near you, you can apply for an Open Qualifier.
  • Results, with evidence of results must be recorded within one month of competition (by 3rd August for July competitions).
  • Restrictions on amateur status, previous experience and competitive success apply for both horse/pony and rider/handler. Competitors must comply with competitor restrictions at the time of qualification and at the time of championships.
  • Qualification is awarded to horse / competitor combination, no substitutes are permitted.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Any questions: Email info@sunshinetour.co.uk

We’re very proud to have grown from a little show to a huge championship and be able to offer you a sponsorship package, we offer individual and business sponsorship packages. From just £70 you can have your name in the schedule and enjoy a VIP Pass for 2 people including refreshments in the Dick Saunders pavilion. If you have a business that you’d like to promote, we can help with advertising in the schedules, banners on the showground and Facebook & website links. We have lots of packages available, please see Sponsorship Packages for the options available or ask for a bespoke package to suit your needs.

You may already know all about the Sunshine Tour and the popularity of taking part in a fabulous championship at the famous showground at Hickstead? If you’d like to know more, here’s a bit About the Sunshine Tour.

If you would like to become part of the Sunshine Tour, please get in touch with Rebecca on 07904 898696, email office@sunshinetour.co.uk or message us via Facebook.