Thermal, California - HITS Inc. is pleased to announce a monumental milestone in the world of horse showing - the simultaneous occurrence of a Show Jumping FEI World Cup Qualifier and a Dressage FEI World Cup Qualifier during Week III of the 2010 HITS Desert Circuit, February 9-14, in Thermal, California.
The ability to host one FEI event is impressive in and of itself, but to host two FEI events in the same week for two separate disciplines is a feat that really puts HITS in a class of its own. There are very few horse shows capable of hosting such an event, and HITS is one of them. Strongly resembling the highly successful scheduling format utilized at the FEI World Cup Finals in Las Vegas, NV, Week III of Thermal will alternate dressage and show jumping every other day, hosting world-class riders as they take the stage in each of their respective divisions.
Thermal, California will be home to both the Desert Circuit III CSI-W horse show as well as the Dressage Getaway CDI*** from February 9-14. In addition to Dressage and Show Jumping, the Hunters will also have a spectacle of their own: the $10,000 Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby.
Renowned dressage show manger, Regina Antonioli, will manage the Dressage Getaway CDI*** part of the horse show, while HITS manages the hunter and jumper sections of the Desert Circuit III CSI-W. Organizing the horse show in such a fashion allows experts in both disciples the opportunity to cohabitate with one another for one week, at one horse show facility, to bring the best of both worlds to spectators and competitors alike.
Struzzieri believes the Dressage Getaway is a "nice addition to the Thermal circuit as this will be Thermal's first time introducing another discipline's event. "In the past we have had great success hosting different events at HITS Saugerties, including multiple NEDA Fall Festival/CDI-W Region 8 Championships as well as the Marshall & Sterling National Finals, and we expect the same success to evolve from the Dressage Getaway at Thermal." Struzzieri believes "coupling the FEI World Cup for jumpers that week with the CDI*** Dressage will make for an exciting week and a successful show."
Dressage fans can look forward to watching legendary international dressage riders including 2009 World Cup Champion Steffen Peters and Olympian Guenter Seidel as they are judged by dressage legends Hilda Gurney and Charlotte Bredahl. Show Jumping fans will also have their fill of world-class riders to watch as HITS will welcome international show jumping competitors such as Two-time OlympicGold Medalist McLain Ward and Canadian Olympic Silver Medalist Jill Henselwood.
On Thursday evening, February 11 the $30,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health (a FEI Table A) will be held in the Indoor ring. On Saturday, February 13High-Performance riders return to the indoor arena for the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix CSI-W, presented by Pfizer Animal Health. In all, HITS Thermal will host four FEI World Cup Qualifiers and 16 Qualifying Grand Prix classes for the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix this season.
Announcements on special classes, judges, course designers, prize money, and more will be made regularly throughout the HITS Desert Circuit. To get the latest news, please become a fan of HITS' Facebook page and sign up for HITS' Twitter updates.
In order to qualify for the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, a rider must compete in eight or more HITS Grand Prix classes. The top 40 riders, based on money won by horse/rider combination, will be eligible to ride for the Pfizer Million. For more detailed information on the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, please visit our website at HitsShows.com.
HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York, and Virginia. In 2010, HITS will take the industry to new heights when it hosts the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix in Saugerties on September 12.
For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, please visit www.hitsshows.com.
Photo Credit: Little ones with big dreams taking the stage in the same impressive HITS Thermal Indoor Arena that will be home to both Dressage and Show Jumping FEI World Cup Qualifiers February 9-14. Photo © 2010 Flying Horse Photography.