The New Forest Beer Run, organised by Members of the British Heavy Horse Driving Trials Club and supported by Flack Manor Brewery, continued through torrential rain today finishing at the Royal Oak in Fritham.
The trials included a relay run through the New Forest using road and track, where teams comprising singles and pairs of horses, carried a barrel of beer – in this case, a Flack firkin – from pub to pub. The event mirrors the European equivalent held in France, La Route du Poisson, in which teams commemorate the historic route taken from the French coast to transport fresh fish by horse to Paris in the quickest possible time.
The New Forest Beer Run began at the Bolderwood car park near Lyndhurst, with the final singles stage ending at Janesmoor Pond. Teams relocate to the Fighting Cocks pub at Godshill for the afternoon, with the first pair running to High Corner, the single taking a circuitous route to the car park near the Appleslade car park near the Red Shoot Inn, and the final pair ending at the Royal Oak, Fritham. Vet Sarah Coombes was in attendance to keep an eye on the horses’ condition.
The second day is based at the farm, and includes the ‘specials’ – dressage, a sledge pull, a timber competition and obstacle contest.
Flack Manor were delighted to support the event with liquid refreshments; the event is one of several the club holds each year, enabling keen heavy horse people to enjoy a different type of pursuit with their favourite equines. The club has fielded teams for La Route du Poisson for several years, competing against teams from all over Europe, on one occasion coming third overall, with several individual wins in the special stages. For more information, visit the British Heavy Horse Driving Trials