The Princess Royal with Christian Landolt from Whatley Manor Hotel.
ROYAL thanks welcomed hotelier Christian Landolt as the new sponsor of the autumn Gatcombe Park International Horse Trials for the next three years.
The Princess Royal, chairman of the three-times-a-year trials held on her estate near Minchinhampton, told a celebration at Mr Landolt's Whatley Manor Hotel of her real delight at his support.
"The nice thing about Christian's support is that he obviously hasn't been too scared by his experiences at Gatcombe," the Princess joked with invited guests at the reception at the five-star hotel near Malmesbury.
"It is a pleasure because he has such a very good understanding of what horse trials entail. It is a rare trick to get someone who has seen it from every angle."
A successful three-day event competitor, Swiss-born multi-millionaire Mr Landolt is now a respected judge on the world horse trials' circuit.
"I have been lucky to live in the area for about 20 years, enjoyed competing at Gatcombe and I have been a judge there on many occasions," he said. "Being a local event, we have decided to step in."
Former Olympic showjumper Mr Landolt stayed at Whatley Manor when he was competing at the nearby Badminton Horse Trials. He liked it so much he bought it. Whatley Manor now has two Michelin stars and is regarded as one of the UK's top spa hotels.
The new Whatley Manor International Horse Trials will take place at Gatcombe Park on September 16, 17 and 18.
Land Rover remain sponsors of the Gatcombe spring event. Gatcombe hosts the larger Festival of British Eventing every August.