Wellington, FL - The 2018 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) is set to once again host one of the most highly-anticipated and competitive dressage circuits in the world, beginning January 4 and continuing March 31, 2018, at Equestrian Village at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC).
This winter circuit will provide indispensable opportunities for a diverse group of riders seeking qualifying scores for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG). The season will feature four qualifying events for the discipline of Dressage and two for Para-Dressage.
"We are incredibly excited for this upcoming dressage season," said Thomas Baur, Director of Sport for the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival. "This year we will see riders from all over the world coming to Wellington to prepare for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018. We are presenting a new structure of classes at the Grand Prix level, as well as Small Tour levels, and are welcoming top judges that will also be featured at the WEG."
The season will feature new Large and Small Tour class updates, implemented to allow riders to compete multiple horses in different classes and help the continuation of class growth throughout the season. "We have made the Large Tour into two separate Grand Prix divisions," commented Monica Fitzgerald, Show Manager at AGDF. "One division will qualify you for the Grand Prix Freestyle and the other will qualify you for the Grand Prix Special. By dividing them into separate classes, we then have the ability to run more Grand Prix rides, which we think a lot of our competitors will be very happy with."
Baur added, "We are looking forward to the benefits that the new scheduling format will provide. These adjustments will benefit riders, giving them the opportunity to ride two horses, but in separate classes. Fewer starters in each class will also allow more placing opportunities for competitors, and will make the time table run at a smoother pace."
Competition at AGDF will begin today, Thursday, January 4, and continue through Sunday, January 7, with the first CPEDI 3* of the season. International competition then continues with the first of seven FEI CDIs hosted during the twelve-week season from January 11-14. The Lloyd Landkamer Memorial CDI-W will begin international CDI competition and serves as a season-opening tribute to longtime AGDF manager Lloyd Landkamer, who passed in 2015.
The second CPEDI 3* competition will follow during AGDF 2 (Jan. 18-21), offering Para-Equestrian athletes another opportunity to earn valuable qualifications for the remainder of the year. AGDF 3 will host another CDI-W from January 25-28.
Competition continues on Thursday, February 8, with the season's only CDI 5* during AGDF 5, featuring many of the world's top competitors in the circuit's largest international week. The week will also host CDI 3*/1* competition alongside the prestigious CDI 5*.
A historic staple of the season commences with the start of the Palm Beach Derby CDI-W, one of the longest-running dressage competitions in South Florida. More recently, a traditional Dressage Derby competition was added to the week's competition schedule and features four Large Tour riders competing against each other on unfamiliar Small Tour-trained horses in a knockout-style competition, while judges commentary is announced following each ride.
The final week of the AGDF season welcomes the FEI CDIO 3* (March 28 - 31), the only non-championships CDIO 3* in the western hemisphere. The week features top riders competing for their country's colors in hopes of earning team points towards the overall FEI Nations' Cup Series.
The 2018 AGDF season features four CDI-W's, a CDI 4* and CDI 5*, as well as a CDIO 3* and two CPEDI 3* competitions. Local spectators are welcomed and encouraged to come out and enjoy world-renowned competition, as the show is always open to the public and free general admission. The weekly "Friday Night Stars" evenings take place every Friday during international CDI events and showcase the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle class, where combinations ride to choreographed musical routines. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. and the class begins at 8:00 p.m.
2018 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival Season Schedule
AGDF 0 - January 4-7, 2018: CPEDI 3*
AGDF 1 - January 10-14, 2018: Lloyd Landkamer Memorial CDI-W/3*/1* & National Show
AGDF 2 - January 18-21, 2018: CPEDI 3*
AGDF 3 - January 25-28, 2018: CDI-W/3*/1* & National Show
AGDF 5 - February 7-11, 2018: CDI 5*/3*/1* & National Show
AGDF 6 - February 16-17, 2018: National Show
AGDF 7 - February 22-25, 2018: CDI-W/3*/1* & National Show
AGDF 8 - March 1-4, 2018: CDI-W/3*/1* & National Show
AGDF 9 - March 9-11, 2018: National Show
AGDF 10 - March 15-18, 2018: CDI 4*/3*/1*
AGDF 11 - March 24-25, 2018: National Show
AGDF 12 - March 28-31, 2018: CDIO 3*/3*/1*
For more information on the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.