A major competitive long distance horse riding event is set to return to the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd in October.

Organisers of the ‘Lite’ Red Dragon Festival of Endurance have announced that the event will go ahead on October 3 and 4 with strict format changes to comply with Welsh coronavirus regulations.

Competitors travelling from across the UK are expected to descend on the Royal Welsh Showground for the unique atmosphere and challenging riding through the Cambrian mountains.

Organisers say they intend to make full use of the 150-acre Royal Welsh Showground site to keep groups of people apart.

John Hudson, ride organiser, said: “The decision to stage the ride this year has been something of a rollercoaster and we are enormously grateful to our sponsors, Will I’Anson and his daughter Hattie I’Anson for all their wonderful support and encouragement in getting the ride across the line this year but also enabling us to dare to think bigger, thanks to their generous funding.

“We also could not be doing this without them or the support of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society for their approval to use the showground as we emerge from the Covid-19 restrictions.”

Mr Hudson added: “We do not yet know what Covid-19 measures will be in place in Wales in October and still need to stress that the event can only go ahead if the virus continues to remain under control and also if all riders, crews, officials and volunteers adhere to the guidelines that will be issued to all as part of the joining instructions for the event”.

While Chair of Endurance GB Phil Nunnerley said that the event is a “huge morale boost to everyone in the sport and will be a great way of bringing the spirit of the endurance community back together.”

For the event to go ahead, classes have been revised to ensure that groups of people do not meet. The classes will run over two days instead of the usual three, with distances of 25km, 36km, 42km and 48km.

A cap on entries has been introduced which will be reviewed once more is known about the restrictions likely to be in place in October.