Skill-at-Arms Tournament Description
Over the centuries little has changed in the skills required by a cavalryman.
Away from the battlefield every opportunity was taken to practice fighting skills and mounted tournaments became a huge source of entertainment for both participants and spectators. Not all events held at tournaments involved humiliating your opponent by knocking him from his mount by way of a joust; instead the agility of the rider was tested by way of obstacles placed to signify various aspects of combat.
England's Medieval Festival presents a mounted Skill-at-Arms Competition, broadly based on International Rules but with a distinctly medieval character all of its own. These rules have been created and agreed upon by a panel of experts and they set the standards by which all medieval Skills-at-Arms Tournaments worldwide should be judged. As the competition continues to grow, more foreign competitors are encouraged to take part to make it a truly international competition.
Tournaments will be held throughout the day as listed in the timetable. Prior to each tournament starting competitors will be present within the arena to talk with members of the public. Choose your rider and offer your full support throughout the day - will she/he become the Kings Champion?
All riders competing at:-
Cabbage Cutting - better known as 'The Turks Head'. Cabbages are to be cleanly cut - at the gallop.
Individual Pegging with Sword and Lance - pegs taken from the ground at the gallop with a sword and a lance.
Two Oranges - each orange (at head height) to be sliced in half with a sword. This requires co-ordination, suppleness and a good eye. Speed is essential.
Throwing Spears - to be thrown over-arm at the gallop. Hitting the target may be easy but hitting the centre for full marks is not.
Two levels of competence, i.e. juniors/novice SAA riders on the one hand and seniors/experienced SAA riders on the other will be competing simultaneously. Each group will however be marked separately.
Seniors/Experienced riders competing at:-
Quintain - a shield on a pivoting arm must be struck with a lance at speed and with aggression. If this is not done, the sack is very likely to swing round and strike the rider.
Skill-at-Arms Course - this comprises three elements, namely piercing balloons whilst jumping each of three jumps, running two dummies through with a sword and taking two rings suspended from gallows - with a lance
After the competition has ended, there will be a display of tent pegging by sections, i.e. 2, 3 or 4 people riding together