Earth Angels David Frye and Jeff Spielman Prepare State of the Art Footing
With the huge success of the Ocala Horse Trials held in November under their belts, the organizers of the Florida Horse Park in Ocala tackled the next priority on their agenda, the footing. While the eventers took the grass arenas in stride, Event Organizer Shelley Lambert knows full well, in order to attract the numerous dressage competitors excited about a new quality show facility in Ocala, they will have to assure the many competitors calling daily that not only would the grass arenas be redone, but in their place would be three world class CushionTrack® waxed footing, used world wide in Europe and the Middle East.
David Frye of Field Specialties, and Jeff Spielman of Advance Pastures have teamed of to become the “earth angels” of the Florida Horse Park, working 13 hour days throughout the holiday season to have the footing in a projected 9 days before the first Ocala Dressage Show, January 14-15. Lambert has also offered to allow anyone wanting to compete to come in on Thursday and Friday January 12 and 13, to school for free. In addition she has pledged that in the case of a natural disaster (highly unlikely now the hurricane season is really over) that “if for any reason the footing is not done by the show, I will personally refund all entry fees!”
With the drainage system and foundation already in place, Frye and Spielman have made great headway, and have treated this project as their personal mission to provide the Florida Horse Park with the quality footing needed to build the only world class multi-disciplined facility in the state. Together they will be expanding their specialty business installing similar arenas for equestrian facilities, utilizing CushionTrack® supplied by Equestrian Surfaces USA LLC, which is based at the Florida Horse park in Ocala. Frye’s company Field Specialties utilizes laser guidance for grading and drainage installation. His sand silting equipment is the latest design and will operate in any weather and under any conditions. The arenas can handle over 100 horses before it needs to be dragged, and once installed, will be ready for competition with no need for it to “settle” as other new footing products.
“David and Jeff are my ‘Arena Angels’” said Shelley Lambert, who like all the other members of an active and dedicated board of “Team Ocala” has put their heart and souls into developing the Florida Horse Park. It is an exciting time for horse sports in Florida with the birth of the multi-disciplined facility very similar to the early stages of the Kentucky Horse Park, now home to the 2010 World Equestrian Games. Sponsorship and funding programs are securely in place, and the Horse Park is attracting the local Ocala community, the State government, and major corporate interest meeting the challenges before them.
While the premier event of the facility was a combined effort with a Horse Trials and Driving competition, Lambert has big plans for Dressage with an eye on offering a CDI competition, and plans for qualifying and selection trials in the future. “We want to offer the Dressage community a first class place to come and compete, train and have clinics.” adds Lambert. The beauty of the region of Ocala, with rolling pastures, horse communities, and open land has been a draw for hurricane weary south Floridians, who are relocating in droves. The Florida Horse Park has over 500 acres which connects to the Greenways, a 110 mile trail riding corridor, offering horse people a unique opportunity to return to nature with all the amenities of civilization, shopping and restaurants nearby.
DressageDaily and PhelpsPhotos.com will be “On the Scene” at the Ocala Dressage Shows this winter, offering a Markel High Point Series presented by Mary Phelps a Markel Equine Insurance Specialist, and co-hosting with the Horse Park a welcome party Friday afternoon, January 13.
Horsesdaily ‘On the Scene’ at The Florida Horse Park
Contact Shelley Lambert email@example.com for Ocala Dressage – Closing Date December 30