As the best weekend all year starts up again today, I figured it was a good time to provide some context to all those interested in what has become, in a lot of ways, a pilgrimage for eventers. This will be my second year attending the XC day with the hubs, but I encourage everyone to watch and learn from these athletes who are truly masters of our sport! (all media is from last year)
To Watch Online:
Online coverage is FREE this year through USEF. You can view it through this link, and get a free fan membership by using the code LRK3DE. If you have never watched a horse trial before, try to tune in on Saturday from 10AM – 4PM to watch the XC. Link to View.
The full schedule of everything happening at the Kentucky Horse Park can be found here. Below are the competition highlights:
Thursday, April 26
- 9 a.m. Dressage Test Ride (presented by Hylofit) — Rolex Stadium
- 9:30 a.m.–Noon Dressage Tests — Rolex Stadium
- 1:30–3:40 p.m. Dressage Tests Continue — Rolex Stadium
Friday, April 27
- 9:30 a.m.–Noon Dressage Tests Resume — Rolex Stadium
- 1:30–4:30 p.m. Dressage Tests Continue — Rolex Stadium
Saturday, April 28
- 10 a.m.–4p.m. Cross-Country Test (Horses start every 4 minutes.)
Sunday, April 29
- 1 p.m. Jumping Test Begins — Rolex Stadium
- 3 p.m. Presentation of the Awards — Rolex Stadium
If there is anyone in particular you want to see, I would recommend checking out the ride times here.
The Returning Champ – Michael Jung returns this year with fisherRocana FST to defend their title. With the removal of the Dressage coefficient, there is a lot of talk of him falling out of the top spot this year. Should make for a nail biting competition when SJ comes around on Sunday!
The Newbie – This year only welcomes one new competitor to the Kentucky Bluegrass and that is Sara Gumbiner and Polaris. Her first ride time is Dressage at 1:32PM on Thursday. Make sure to cheer extra hard for her! More information about her journey can be found on Eventing Nation’s piece: Sara Gumbiner Never Gave Up on the Kentucky Dream with Polaris
The Youngster – At 10, Johnny Royle, ridden by Joe Meyer, will be the youngest horse in the field. He’s a young horse, but he has 2 CIC3* under his belt this year (after running his last 2017 CIC 3* in November). This horse has since been withdrawn.
The Oldie But Goodie – Simply Priceless ridden by Eliza Wallace is back this year. The 17 year old thoroughbred might be the oldest horse in the pack, but let’s not forget that Phillip Dutton and Mr. Medicott were the highest scoring team last year, when Mr. Medicott was 18. Also, no one can watch Elisa’s various helmet cam videos aboard Johnny without seeing how much this horse still loves XC. Check out the latest here.
The Proven Warrior – The pair with the most four-star completions is actually NOT Michael Jung and fischerRocana FST… It’s Lynn Symansky and Donner with 8 starts and 8 finishes. Did we mention that he is also an off the track Thoroughbred? Cheer for them EXTRA hard!
The Favorite – No one! With the Dressage coefficent gone, it seems people are more willing to think of other LRK3DE winners this year… Although, I have seen Phillip Dutton’s name thrown around quite a lot aboard Z. He also gets the benefit of a super quiet Dressage test time at just 9:54AM on Thursday.
If you will be visiting in person, make sure to check out the vendors map before going. I made the mistake of not doing this last year, and I found myself just OVERWHELMED with the choices.