Organizing the Classic Three-Day Event: Planning, Scheduling, and Managing

Brian & Penny Ross, Cindy DePorter and Dr. David Marlin shared with their audience of long-format enthusiasts all of the aspects of a classic-format event. Sharon Gallagher, USEA Senior Director of Competitions, introduced the participation requirements and qualifications for both Training Three-Day and Preliminary Three-Day Events. The group also discussed proposed rule changes to both of these programs, which include possibly mandating educational aspects of the events, changing speeds and heights, and creating unique dressage tests for these long-format events.

Dr. Marlin explained about the veterinary inspections and why they're vital to these competitions. "Also, be sure to make sure your horse is fit before leaving home," added Dr. Marlin.

Brian Ross, longtime co-organizer of the Virginia Horse Trials and CCI1* with his wife Penny, shared some of the technical considerations and lay-outs for potential organizers to keep in mind, especially for the steeplechase phase. The steeplechase (or "Phase B") should not be "too hilly" warned Brian. "We do a figure-eight pattern at our event," said Brian. Dr. Marlin agreed this was a smart lay-out for this phase, as it didn't put excessive stress on one side of the horse's body, which might happen with a circular track.

The group also discussed assistance areas, the "C Halt", and the 10-minute box or "D Box", and the difference between them all.

Cindy DePorter explained about making proper timing adjustments and the importance of having experienced volunteer coordinators, and of course, a large group of volunteers.