The 26th annual Kentucky Dressage Association spring show will offer up an impressive number of “firsts” as it gets under way May 24 at the incomparable Kentucky Horse Park near Lexington. The show will feature its first CDI3*, which along with other FEI classes offers total prize money of $12,300. Sponsored by Equestrian Lakes, an upscale residential development in Shelby County, Ky., the CDI3* has drawn a number of top riders, including Canadians David Marcus, recent winner of both the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special at the CDI3* Canada Classic, Jacqueline Brooks, and Tom Dvorak, as well as top national and local riders such Arlene Page, Pierre St Jacques, and Olivia Lagoy-Weltz. Many FEI classes, including the three-star, will take place in the Rolex Arena, site of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games competition in 2010. This marks the first time a KDA show has gotten use of the Rolex Arena, which has been praised by riders from around the world for its stunning setting and excellent footing.
KDA Spring Show CDI3* competitors:
KDA Spring Show CDI3* competitors:
Jacqueline Brooks and D Niro
Diane Edna Creech and Devon L
Shannon Dueck and Ayscha
Tom Dvorak and Viva’s Salieri
Jaimey Irwin and Lindor’s Finest
Olivia Lagoy-Weltz and Rifallino
Megan Lane and Caravella
David Marcus and Chrevi’s Capital
David Marcus and Don Kontes
Arlene Page and Wild One
Marina Parris-Woodhead and Pandorra
Joni Lynn Peters and Travolta
Marta Renilla and Presumido
Pierre St Jacques and Lucky Tiger
Christy Scotch and Kontessa
As part of the ramped-up show experience, KDA is hosting a “Party at the Park” Saturday, May 26, that will feature FEI and CDI3* freestyles in the Rolex Arena. The doors open at 5:30 and the always-popular freestyle action starts at 6:30. Admission is $10; children under 12 are admitted for free. KDA partnered with Central Kentucky Riding for Hope this year and a portion of the general admission fees will benefit the non-profit therapeutic riding center that is based at the Horse Park.
In another first, the KDA show has drawn a record number of entries, with more than 1,000 rides scheduled for the four days of competition. Riders from 17 states as well as Canada and Spain have flocked to the world-class show grounds that the Horse Park offers. Classes range from introductory level to international-level Grand Prix.
The caliber of the show is such that the national classes will offer $6,000 in total prize money. The top three high-scoring adult amateurs have up to $2,000 in prize money available while the top-scoring open riders at both shows have up to $1,000 in prize money available.
KDA president Michelle Morehead says the show’s popularity is no accident. “I believe KDA has experienced continued growth at our May shows for one main reason: Our show management keeps our customers first in all our decisions. Our customers include our volunteers, competitors, sponsors, and officials, and throughout the year when planning this show we always ask ourselves, ‘Will this benefit our customers?’
“As in any business dealings if you feel you were treated fairly and appropriately, you will return and spread the word to others, and our numbers show this philosophy is working. Two years ago we had over 800 rides and last year and this we are now over 1,000 rides,” Morehead said.
The show also has attracted its first Century Club rider from Kentucky, Dr. Joseph Cresci, who with his horse has a combined age of 100.
KDA’s momentum continues to accelerate. This fall the club will host its first regional championships, with the Kentucky Horse Park serving as the site for the Region 2 competition. The show will run Oct. 11-14 and be held in the Rolex Arena.
Visit kentuckydressageassociation.org to learn about the spring show and other club events.