Training-Level Three-Day Creates New Excitement at Galway Downs International Three-Day Event
RELEASE: September 4, 2008
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By John Strassburger and Heather Bailey
A new educational competition is giving West Coast riders another reason to eagerly anticipate this year's Galway Downs International Three-Day Event, which will be held October 30-November 2.
Organizer Robert Kellerhouse will offer a training-level three-day event for the first time, alongside the headlining CCI** and the supporting CCI*. These three levels represent the ascending scale in the progressive education of event horses and their riders.
The 10th renewal of this competition will be held as always at the Southern California Equestrian Center on Los Corralitos Road in Temecula.
Since 2004, international three-day events have shifted from the classic format to the short format, eliminating the two roads and tracks phases and the steeplechase phase on the second day, requiring horses to complete only the cross-country phase. But U.S. competitors have missed the educational effects of those deleted phases, so since 2006 organizers across the country have begun offering the training-level three-day event (also called the "half-star") to help prepare horses and less experienced riders for the sport's higher levels. Galway Downs is one of eight competitions offering the half-star in 2008.
"I can't believe the response I'm getting," said Kellerhouse. "I've never had so many people call me or talk to me about a competition I've offered before."
Kellerhouse said he'd expected 20 starters in the training-level three-day event, but now he won't be surprised to have twice as many, or more—and from as far away as Western Canada.
The training-level three-day event will be as much educational as it is competitive, with officials, veterinarians and veteran riders and trainers conducting seminars on Thursday and offering assistance to riders throughout the weekend. The seminar subjects will include lessons in presenting your horse for the veterinary inspection, jumping the steeplechase fences at speed, and properly cooling your horse before and after cross-country.
Similarly, Galway Downs will once again offer riders a choice between the classic format and the short format for the CCI*. The classic format CCI* will also offer the United States Equestrian Federation National Junior and Young Rider CCI* Team Championship-West. "I've always been a huge proponent of the classic format, because I think it's an especially important tool to help people learn to be good horsemen in today's eventing environment," said Kellerhouse.
But on Saturday afternoon, the more experienced horses and riders contesting the CCI** will grab everyone's attention as they gallop around the three-mile cross-country course. Course designer Ian Stark, the British Olympic medalist, has some new challenges planned in his second year of designing the cross-country course for the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event.
Approximately 30 horses—from across the western United States, Canada, Mexico and other countries—are expected to start in the CCI**, while another 70 should start in the CCI*.
General admission for the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event is $8 in advance, $10 at the gate. Patron tickets—which include seating in the ringside tent, lunch and a full selection of beverages—are also available for $55 per day in advance. For advance reservations or more information on the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event, go to www.galwaydowns.com
, or call (951) 303-0405. To learn more about eventing, visit the United States Eventing Association's website at www.useventing.com