Vol. 7, Issue 11, March 27-April 9, 2009
The Capistrano Dispatch
Shea Center, San Juan Hills High and local restaurants set to take part
Strength, precision and perfect timing are what top world class jumping horse and rider combinations will need to win as they compete this weekend in San Juan Capistrano during the $50,000 Orange County Register CSI-W Grand Prix at 7 p.m. on March 28.
Equestrian riders from around the U.S. and the world are drawn to this special event, which represents the last chance to earn World Cup points and is the final West Coast Qualifier for the 2009 Rolex FEI World Cup Finals in Las Vegas.
But the road to the World Cup Finals through San Juan Capistrano won’t be easy. “The toughness of the Grand Prix course is set to World Cup standards and conditions will be similar to what riders will face in the World Cup Finals in Las Vegas this April,” Blenheim EquiSports President Robert Ridland said.
The $50,000 Orange County Register CSI-W Grand Prix will be held in the Blenheim Farms covered arena, adjacent to the Rancho Mission Viejo Riding Park.
Concessions will be provided by Bad to the Bone BBQ and food service begins at 5:30 p.m. Opening ceremonies will include the California Mounted Officers Association and a special presentation by the Shea Therapeutic Riding Center. General admission and parking are free at the Grand Prix and at all Blenheim EquiSports horse show events.
Preceding the $50,000 Orange County Register CSI-W Grand Prix is the $25,000 EquiFit Jumper Classic on March 26 at 7 p.m., which Grand Prix riders often use as a warm-up for the World Cup Qualifying Grand Prix. The Grand Prix and Open Jumper competitions kick off the 2009 Blenheim EquiSports horse show season, which runs from March to September features hunter, jumper, equitation and special classes. The Blenheim spring series includes three weeks of equestrian competitions beginning with Blenheim Spring Tournament (March 25-29), Blenheim Spring Classic II (April 1-5) and concluding with the Blenheim Spring Classic III (April 7-11).
Week two will showcase a new “Hunt Teams” event to be followed by the $35,000 Spring Classic II Grand Prix on April 4 at 4:30 p.m. The Blenheim Spring Classic II Grand Prix will take place on the meticulously manicured Blenheim International field and opening ceremonies will be presented by the San Juan Hills High School choral group, directed by Tiffany Tarleton. The day is planned as a family event, and spectators are urged to bring a picnic basket. Blenheim EquiSports will host a free “Kids Day” on April 4 from 12 p.m.–5 p.m. with bounce houses, pony rides, mini-golf, food and vendor booths. Spectators are urged to bring a picnic basket and a blanket for an afternoon of fun, food and high-flying equestrian action.
Week three will include the $10,000 ASG Software Solutions USHJA International Hunter Challenge Derby Classic in honor of Arthur Hawkins as well as the $35,000 Blenheim Spring Classic III Grand Prix both on April 10, which will give riders the opportunity for a final indoor “prep” for the 2009 World Cup Final.
Just prior to the $35,000 Blenheim Spring Classic III Grand Prix, Blenheim EquiSports will hold World Cup Invitational Exhibition, which is open to all riders who have qualified to compete at either the 2009 World Cup Finals or the 2009 Las Vegas Grand Prix to ride in the indoor arena Friday night. Riders will be allowed to jump all or part of the indoor course set at a “soft height” (1.40m – 1.45m) just prior to the start of the actual class. This will be a non-judged exhibition performance that will be limited to horse/rider combinations having earned more than 25 World Cup points in the U.S. West Coast League during the 2008/2009 season.
See www.showpark.com for class start times, next day’s orders, results and spectator information.