IT might be an unusual location for riding horses but for English event rider Harry Meade that will not hold him back during Eventing in the Park.
The World Equestrian Games team silver medallist is returning to Taylor Reserve in Victoria Park for the second time to take part in this Saturday’s event.
There will be 95 entrants taking part in the competition, which is expected to be watched by a crowd of about 2500 people.
“Last year was a fleeting visit. I was here for only five days, during which I looked at a few horses, competed and then went straight back to the UK,” he said.
“It was really fun even though it was a different occasion compared to the competitions in the UK, which are usually in rural areas.
“It’s nice to compete in the city and bring the sport to a new audience; there was a fun atmosphere and everyone was dressed very smart.
“I’d compare it to Royal Ascot.
“I made some good friends, so I’m looking forward to competing in the event again because I remember the roars and cheers from the crowd. I love being on a big stage.”
Meade said he was used to competing on the big stage as he took part in events around Europe.
“As a rider, you have to think five to 10 years (ahead) because it takes a lot of time to find the right horse,” he said.
For Meade, event riding runs in the blood, with his late father Richard winning three gold medals.
“We had a close connection with Australia because we had a number of Australian riders come through our place when I was young,” he said.
“Riding horses is one of those things that grab you from day one.”
Victoria Park Mayor Trevor Vaughan said the event was a unique day out for families.
“Not only does the event add to our wonderful sporting and cultural activities in the Town, it also brings new people into the area to visit our shops, bars, cafes and restaurants,” he said.
There is a 50 per cent discount for Town of Victoria Park residents and ratepayers to the Family Zone and Trade Village and 10 per cent discount for all other ticketing options at the event.
To access the special offer, visit http://www.eventinginthepark.com.au/, click on the tickets tab and enter the code word TOVP which will unlock the discount pricing.