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Horse Shows In The Sun Announces Two Grand Prix Classes Weeks I Through V at HITS Catskills in Ellenville, New York

Saugerties, NY (May 10, 2002) Horse Shows In the Sun, Inc. (HITS), producer of six world class hunter/jumper horse show circuits nationwide, has announced that HITS Catskills, a six-event summer series of horse shows in Ellenville, New York, will offer a $75,000 Grand Prix every Sunday in 2002. In addition, HITS Catskills will offer a $25,000 Grand Prix each Thursday of Weeks I through V. This puts HITS Catskills total prize money at over $1,000,000. All eleven of the Grand Prix Classes offered at HITS Catskills are qualifying events for the King Shavings U.S. Grand Prix League. Riders compete in qualifying classes at more than 45 member horse shows nationwide, earning points that may result in an invitation to the King Shavings U.S. Grand Prix League Invitational Finals to be held September 25-29, 2002 at HITS Commonwealth Park in Culpeper, VA.

HITS Catskills is a great cross-section of the people involved in the sport, said Tom Struzzieri, owner and president of HITS. This series appeals to all different types of exhibitorsfrom the family who brings one child on a pony to Olympians on their Grand Prix horses. The majority of the East Coast's top show jumpers compete at these shows. It is appropriate for HITS to respond to this type of participation by offering high stakes prize money. We also are working to build a stronger spectator base. By establishing a show with top level prize money and riders, we expect to attract additional attention to the show and to the sport."

From May to September, each of the six shows will run for five consecutive days and offer 250 hunter, jumper and equitation classes every week. Up to eight rings are in action simultaneously. Kicking off the season is HITS Catskills I, May 22-26, featuring the $75,000 EMO GRAND PRIX. After a three-day intermission, HITS Catskills II goes into action from May 29-June 2, with the finale $75,000 NEVELE GRANDE GRAND PRIX closing out the show. Horses return to the show grounds seven weeks later for three back-to-back weeks of horse showsHITS Catskills III, July 17-21 featuring the $75,000 RIO VISTA GRAND PRIX, HITS Catskills IV, July 24-July 28, highlighted by the $75,000 AVIS GRAND PRIX, and HITS Catskills IV, July 31 - August 4, showcasing the $75,000 HUDSON VALLEY RESORT GRAND PRIX. Following a three-week break, competition again resumes with the final event in the summer series, HITS Catskills VI, August 28-September 1, which features the $75,000 HITS GRAND PRIX.

This is the seventh consecutive year that HITS has produced the Catskills series of horse shows at the 70-acre Kelly Farm in upstate New York. Each year, HITS has enhanced and improved the grounds, the competition and the special features. This year, visitors to the show on Sunday, July 21 will be treated to a Taste of the Hudson Valley. From Noon to 3:00 pm some of the very best restaurants and wineries in the area will serve a sampling of their gustatory delights while Hudson Valley artists specializing in equine art present some of their fabulous works. At 1:00 pm everyone is invited to watch the $75,000 Rio Vista Grand Prix.

On Sunday, July 28, visitors are invited to the judging of the Hudson Valley Regional Chili Cook-off that will take place at the HITS Catskills show grounds for the first time. From 11:00 am to 3:00 pm up to 30 restaurants will prepare their favorite chili recipes for a formal judging. When the judging is completed, the public will get a taste and can cast their vote for the contestants they would send to the World Championship Chili Cook-off in Reno, NV later this year. At 1:00 pm, visitors can enjoy the $75,000 Avis Grand Prix.

On Sunday, August 4, kids from all over the valley will be asking their parents to take them to Kids Day at the HITS Catskills Horse Show. This is a special day that gets better every year. From 11:00 am to 1:00 pm kids activities will feature face painting, clowns, games, prizes and free gifts. Following the $75,000 Hudson Valley Resort Grand Prix that gets underway at 1:00 pm, there will be an autograph signing session, during which some of the top Grand Prix riders in the country will be available.


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