ORGANISERS of the first internationally-ranked

XXX Yona Lloyd, riding Ballahowe Paramount, had a successful campaign at the Concours International Combine-sanctioned Ballarat Horse Trials on Saturday and Sunday. XXXX

XXX Yona Lloyd, riding Ballahowe Paramount, had a successful campaign at the Concours International Combine-sanctioned Ballarat Horse Trials on Saturday and Sunday. XXXX

ORGANISERS of the first internationally-ranked Ballarat Horse Trials championship have called the event a rousing success.

Victoria Park's Ballarat Equestrian Precinct hosted the two-day Concours International Combine-sanctioned title on Saturday and Sunday.

Ballarat Horse Trials secretary Viv Stephens said the number of participants and onlookers had exceeded the early predictions (about 1500), and the equestrian course had received favourable reviews from the contestants.

The rise in its status means that the Ballarat Horse Trials now carries points on Australian and international levels.

Several high-profile athletes contested the series, including Beijing silver medallist and London Olympics team member Megan Jones as well as Sydney Olympian Amanda Ross.

Neither managed to place in their respective events, with Woodend veterinarian Rohan Luxmoore taking the honours in the three-star category.

Yona Lloyd placed fourth in the two-star category and second in the one-star events to be the best of the region's riders.

Stephens said Ballarat would continue to host the event over the next few years.

"Our main problem was that the car park was overflowing but the event itself ran really smoothly," Stephens said.

"The facility held up amazingly well it's developed beyond our expectations over the last 10-12 years."

"I think it is the next step for our facility is to improve the car park, but it (the event's international status) will be permanent if we all choose to keep doing it, but we need to be brave enough as a committee to keep going."

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