By Phelps Media Group
These events feature a unique educational format and award excellent prizes from sponsors. On Saturday, the cross-country course will be open for schooling, and the Starter Horse Trials will take place the next day. This year will offer the opportunity to work with clinician Mark Combs during the cross-country schooling on Saturday.
Horse trials levels range from Green (2’3″) to Preliminary (3’7″). Competitors may choose to compete in all three phases or do a combined test with dressage and their choice of show jumping or cross country. There is also an option for beginner riders to do an Intro dressage test and jump an 18″ stadium course. Riders may also enter to ride standalone USEA, USDF or FEI Eventing dressage tests.
Presenting sponsor Blue Ridge Equine Clinic is giving embroidered quilted saddle pads to the winners of each horse trials division and providing a hospitality tent with beverages and snacks. McCauley’s Equine Formula, Easy Pellett Products, Merial and Buchanan Livestock, LLC have also donated prizes for the April 2, 2017 Starter Trials. Ribbons will be awarded through sixth place.
“Blue Ridge Equine Clinic is proud of its long history of collaboration with the Virginia Horse Center and the Virginia Horse Trials. We are always excited to participate in the horse trials each year,” said Dr. Donovan Dagner, BREC President. “This year we are looking forward to an increasing role in the expansion of the Virginia Starter Trials and their new ties to the War Horse Event Series at the Carolina Horse Park. The War Horse Event Series is a great community event in support of noble and worthy causes.”
All three 2017 VHT Starter Trials will be considered qualifiers for the $20,000 War Horse Event Series Championship taking place at the Carolina Horse Park November 11-12, 2017. To be eligible for the Championship, a horse and rider must either A) place 1st or 2nd once or complete all three schooling shows at the Virginia Horse Trials or B) place 1st through 6th once or complete all five schooling shows at the Carolina Horse Park.