Stadium Jumping's 2009 Tampa Equestrian Festival Features Big Money and World Class Show Jumping
RELEASE: February 5, 2009
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By Lauren Fisher
Stadium Jumping, Inc.'s Tampa Equestrian Festival will feature three weeks of world-class equestrian competition at the Bob Thomas Equestrian Center in Tampa, FL, March 18-April 4. As the conclusion of the 2009 winter show season, the festival is set to host some of the top horses and riders from all over the country for big-money classes and prizes.
The competition is divided into three weeks, with the Suncoast Internationale, March 18-22, the Tampa Classic CSI***-W March 25-29, and the Tournament of Champions CSI, as the concluding week of competition, March 31-April 4.
Highlight classes include the $35,000 Tampa Bay Welcome Stake on Thursday, March 26, and the $75,000 FEI World Cup Qualifier Grand Prix of Tampa on Sunday, March 29. The third and final week of competition will feature the $35,000 Grand Prix of Florida on Wednesday, April 1. That class will be the final qualifying event for the grand finale, the 37th Annual $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational CSI***, on Saturday, April 4.
Kent Farrington is currently leading the East Coast World Cup Jumper Standings and plans to compete his horse Up Chiqui in Tampa this year as preparation for the World Cup competition, held in Las Vegas in April.
"I think that it will be good to ride him in some of the classes in Tampa, because we do not have the opportunity to compete in too many indoor venues," Farrington said. "We have been riding in huge outdoor rings all winter, so riding in the smaller covered ring in Tampa will be good practice for Las Vegas. The jumps come up much faster in the smaller rings, so you have to be really sharp."
Farrington wants Up Chiqui to be at his highest level of fitness for the demanding World Cup competition and hopes that competing in Tampa will be a good change of pace. "His fitness is going to be the most important thing," Farrington explained. "The World Cup is like a marathon. There a lot of classes and a lot of big jumps and difficult courses. The horses have to be very mentally and physically fit."
For more information on the Tampa Equestrian Festival, please visit www.stadiumjumping.com