The 2015 Longines FEI senior European Eventing Championships is edging ever closer, to be held in the impressive grounds of Blair Castle in  next month (10-13 September).
 
Quite frankly, we can’t wait. With some of the best event riders in the world performing on British soil, the competition promises to bring world class action to our doorstep (particularly if you live in Scotland!). 
 
To get you up to speed on the competition, ones to watch and how you can keep up to date on all of the action, here’s a quick run down on what you need to know.
 

Competition 

The European Championships is a CCI3* competition — much like Bramham and Blenheim Horse Trials. 
 
Around 80 riders from 16 different countries will do their dressage tests on either the Thursday or Friday of the event. This will be followed by the cross-country test on Saturday and the final showjumping phase on Sunday. 
 
The Championships at Blair Castle will benefit from the added excitement of being the final opportunity for European nations to qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Great Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and Ireland are already qualified from Europe). Three team spots remain for the Olympic Games. 
 

Contenders to look out for:

Germany will be a force to be reckoned with at these Championships. They have a very strong squad to send to Blair including current World champion Sandra Auffarth, current Olympic champion, Michael Jung and Pau four-star winner and Badminton 2015 runner-up, Ingrid Klimke. 
 
Obviously Great Britain will have strength in depth at Blair. As these championships are being held on home turf, Britain has the luxury of sending 12 riders, instead of the usual six. The usual big names such as William Fox-Pit, Nicola Wilson, Oliver Townend and Pippa Funnell are all included on the squad, but other new names such as 20-year-old Holly Woodhead could be ones to watch. 
 
Ireland and France will also be worth keeping an eye on, particularly as France are yet to qualify for the Olympic Games. 
 

How to watch the action

If you are lucky enough to be able to get up to Blair, here’s what you need to know about tickets. A few membership packages are still available for the Thursday and Friday of the event. Camping packages are also still available (£145 for two over the weekend or £180 for two for the duration of the event). Daily admission tickets are also available, ranging from £12 to £22 depending on which days you are planning to attend. For more information on tickets visit the Blair website here
 
If you aren’t able to make it to the Championships, you can watch all of the action live online via the FEI TV subscription service here
 
Keep an eye out for further TV updates as a highlights programme will be shown on the BBC on the final day of competition. 
 
Good luck, Team GBR!