Of Upcoming 34th Annual Winter Equestrian Festival
FL - January 23, 2004 - The 34th annual Winter Equestrian Festival
will keep the excitement level turned up from January 28 through
April 3, 2004, with eight weeks in Wellington and two weeks in Tampa,
Florida, highlighted by world-class competition and special events
throughout the 10-week circuit.
PRIX SUNDAYS - The anticipation builds in the $1.42 million Grand
Prix series as each week, for 10 consecutive weeks, the purse increases,
starting with a $35,000 event and culminating with a $200,000 capper.
From January 28 through March 14, Sunday Grand Prix events are held
in the Internationale Arena at the Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club
show grounds in Wellington, starting at 1pm. In Tampa, the Sunday
Grand Prix events continue with a $75,000 class at the Bob Thomas
Equestrian Center on March 28, topped off by the season finale -
the $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational in the Raymond James
Stadium on April 3. The world's top show jumpers compete including
Margie Engle, Lauren Hough, Laura Kraut, Chris Kappler, McLain Ward,
Molly Ashe, Todd Minikus and Norman Dello Joio.
PRIX THURSDAYS - Every Thursday in Wellington, from January 28 through
March 14, show jumpers head for the Internationale Arena to participate
in the WEF Challenge Cup Series, which offers a $25,000 purse each
week. In Tampa, the stakes peak with the $30,000 Ariat International
WEF Challenge Cup Series Final on Wednesday, March 31.
5-8, WELLINGTON DRESSAGE - The first of two United States Equestrian
Team Federation Qualifying Competitions for the Olympic Games Selection
Trials will showcase stars of the dressage world, entered and ready
for the rigorous route to Athens, Greece, including Robert Dover,
Shelly Francis, Ruth Hogan-Poulsen, Arlene Page, James Armstrong,
and Monica Sinks. Featured classes are the Grand Prix, Grand Prix
Special, and Grand Prix Freestyle.
7, $25,000 WINDSOME WEF DRESSAGE/JUMPER SPECTACULAR - Dressage and
jumper riders pair up and switch disciplines - the jumpers ride
a Third Level dressage test and the dressage riders go for broke
over a Gambler's Choice course in the Internationale Arena. They
rack up points to determine the winning team. It's a fun event and
always draws a crowd.
14 - MARCH 1, CITY SLICKERS - The City Slickers riding program services
Connecticut children aged 11 to 17 who have economic, cultural,
academic, social and emotional needs. Seven City Slickers selected
out of 100 children by the group's founder and director Ruth Fried
will compete at the Winter Equestrian Festival. For the fifth consecutive
year, Stadium Jumping will supply the group with complimentary stalls,
bedding, feed, and all class entry fees.
15, DENIM & DIAMONDS - Starting at 6:30 pm at the South Florida
Fairgrounds to benefit the United States Equestrian Team and its
efforts at the upcoming 2004 Athens Olympic Games, this gala features
dinner, dancing, auctions, and live entertainment with headliner
Chaka Kahn. For tickets and tables, contact Phelps Wilkes at (561)
21, AHJF HUNTER CLASSIC SPECTACULAR OF PALM BEACH - It's hunter
week at WEF, February 18-22, highlighted by 'The Classic' on Saturday,
February 21. Up to 26 qualified riders will compete at night under
the lights in the Internationale Arena. Contact Michele Perla (508)
8, EQUUS MEDAL - The $25,000 Equus Medal returns to WEF for the
second year, and is uniquely featured on a Monday evening, under
the lights in the Internationale Arena. Open to all competitors
from any nation who have represented their country in a Nations'
Cup, it's an exciting and fun class for riders and spectators alike.
Expect to see topnotch Grand Prix riders focusing on their equitation
as they go up against their peers from around the world. Contact
Phelps Media Group, Inc. (561) 753-3389.
12, NATIONS CUP AND DRESSAGE QUADRILLE - The $50,000 Samsung Nations'
Cup, presented by CN, will be held under the lights in the Internationale
Arena with eight nations confirmed to compete - The United States,
Canada, Australia, Colombia, England, Ireland, France and Mexico.
Adding to the night's electric atmosphere will be a special six-horse
Grand Prix dressage exhibition between Rounds 1 and 2, entitled
The Third Annual Rock & Roll Musical Quadrille presented by
Play For T.I.M.E. to benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
13 - WEF EQUITATION CHAMPIONSHIP FOR THE R.W. 'RONNIE' MUTCH TROPHY
- Open to the winners of the top equitation classes at WEF, these
riders will jump a course of fences, judged by a panel of two hunter
and two jumper judges, with a fifth judge observing the schooling
area. A select few will be chosen to jump a second round. A third
round may be required, which could include further tests, oral questioning
and an exchange of horses. Unique to the class, the students are
on their own from course walk to schooling warm-up through the competition,
and may not receive help from their trainers. Awards also go to
the Best Equitation Horse and Best Turned Out Horse.
18-21, ZADA ENTERPRISES, LLC WEF DRESSAGE CLASSIC CDI - When the
hunters and jumpers depart for Tampa, the Palm Beach Polo Equestrian
Club show grounds are devoted to dressage. This is the second United
States Equestrian Team Federation Qualifying Competition for the
Olympic Games Selection Trials at the WEF and promises to be a major
highlight of the Florida dressage circuit.
RIBBON WEDNESDAYS - Every Wednesday in Wellington, from January
28 through March 10, Palm Beach County school students participate
in a field trip to the WEF as part of the activities in the Blue
Ribbon Student Program established by the Equestrian Activities
Department of the Business Development Board. More than 400 children
visited the horse show last year. The educational forum gives the
students insight into the opportunities available to them in the
equestrian industry. Contact Linda Wirtz (561) 373-2070.
SIGHTINGS, DAILY - The population at the WEF show grounds soars
to 6,000 each week. Among the crowds can be spotted celebrities
from TV, movies, music, and the top echelons of business and society.
Parents like Bruce Springsteen, Glenn Close, John Cleese, Dan Marino,
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Lou Dobbs are ringside whenever
their children compete. Others don boots and britches and saddle
up for the hunter and jumper rings, including Her Royal Highness
Zara Phillips, Georgina Bloomberg, Mark Badgely and Kelly Klein.
And some come with friends to enjoy the sport such as Johnny Cochran
and Roxanne Stein. Plus, fans know the professional riders who have
become celebrities in their own right - Norman Dello Joio, Joe Fargis,
Lauren Hough, Margie Engle, Robert Dover, Sue Blinks, Jane Savoie,
and Carol Lavell are all Olympians and 'regulars' at the Winter
WINTER EQUESTRIAN FESTIVAL TICKET INFORMATION
Show days for the 2004 Winter Equestrian Festival are Wednesday
through Sunday. Gates open at 8:00 am. Ticket Prices: Wednesdays
are free to everyone; Children 12 and under are admitted free every
day; Young Adults 13 to 18 and Seniors are $5 on Thursday through
Sunday; Adults are $5 on Thursday and Friday, $10 on Saturday, and
$15 on Sunday. The Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club is located on
Pierson Road off South Shore Boulevard. For additional information,
visit www.stadiumjumping.com or call 561-793-5867.
January 28 - February 1 Nutrena/Western Hay Wellington Classic CSI***
February 4 - 8 Bayer/USET Gold Coast Jumper Classic CSI***
February 5 - 8 Wellington Dressage (Qualifier for Olympic Selection
February 11 - 15 Kilkenny/ICH Internationale CSI***
February 18 - 22 Florida Classic/WCHR Spectacular CSI-W/Y CSI-Ch
February 19 - 22 Zada Enterprises, LLC Florida Dressage Classic
February 25 - 29 PDP Capital Wellington Masters CSI***
March 3 - 7 CN Wellington Open CSI-W
March 10 - 14 CSIO United States Cosequin Finale CSIO***
March 18 - 21 Zada Enterprises WEF Dressage Classic CDI***/Y
(Qualifier for Olympic Selection Trials)
March 24 - 28 Tampa Bay Classic CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian Center)
March 30 - April 3 Tournament of Champions CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian
April 3 Budweiser American Invitational (Raymond James Stadium)
DOLLAR GRAND PRIX SERIES
February 1 $35,000 Farr XTN Grand Prix of Palm Beach, presented
by Western Hay, CSI**
February 8 $50,000 Bayer/USET Wellington Cup, CSI***
February 15 $50,000 Kilkenny/ICH Internationale Cup, CSI***
February 22 $60,000 Idle Dice Classic, presented by Palm Beach Post,
February 29 $75,000 PDP Capital Masters Cup, CSI***
March 7 $75,000 CN Wellington Open presented by Estates of Wellington
March 12 $50,000 Samsung Nations' Cup, presented by CN, CSIO****
March 14 $100,000 Cosequin U.S. Open Jumper Championship, CSIO****
March 28 $75,000 Grand Prix of Tampa, presented by Kilkenny/ICH,
April 3 $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational, presented by The