'We major too much in football' - equestrian event director

Chris Burton
Olympic bronze medallist Chris Burton is competing at this weekend's Blair Castle International Horse Trials

The event director of this weekend's Blair Castle International Horse Trials has told BBC Scotland sports outwith football merit more exposure.

Olympians compete alongside amateur riders at the Perthshire estate, with a combined 40,000-strong crowd expected.

"I just feel we major a little bit too much in football and sometimes miss out on other world-class sports that are right here," said Alec Lochore.

"There are lots of sports that don't get 40,000 people."

Seven athletes from the Rio Games are involved in this weekend's trials across the dressage, showjumping and cross country events.

Team GB's William Fox-Pitt and Gemma Tattersall are joined by three riders from New Zealand and Australian team bronze medallists, Chris Burton and Shane Rose.

"We always attract a very high calibre of field," added Lochore, who acted as technical delegate in Rio for the International Federation for Equestrian Sports.

"Last year, we had the European Championships and had many of the world's leading riders - and this year's no exception.

"One has to respect the fact that football is a sport that generates a great deal of interest and has a great deal of passion, but we've got quite a lot of world-class sporting opportunities in this country.

"And you've got these world-class athletes galloping at 25, 30 miles an hour, jumping these huge jumps, separated by a small piece of string, and they're right here in rural highland Perthshire."

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