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16-24 November 2002
November News Update

Inaugural EQUITANA Brisbane a resounding success!

EQUITANA Brisbane, the largest and most exciting equine festival ever held in Brisbane has come to an end. The inaugural event has been an overwhelming success, with almost 50,000 people from around the country and overseas, attending the event.

"Again EQUITANA has bought people from all over the country, but especially from the Northern regions of Australia, uniting all areas of the equine industry. From competitors, to exhibitors and attendees, the feedback has been extraordinary and we are very excited about making the event more diverse in 2004."

"The extraordinary support from Queensland Events, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre and most importantly the horse-loving public of Queensland, have all contributed to the launch and now ongoing development of this major biennial equine festival for Queensland." says event organiser Daryl Herbert.

Premier Peter Beattie has congratulated the team at Definitive Events describing EQUITANA as a fine example of how events can be used to promote Queensland's key industries.

"Queensland's equine industry is a multi-billion dollar industry; it's our fourth largest employer, a major contributor to our agricultural economy and a major earner of export income. EQUITANA is considered one of the most prestigious events of its kind in the world and the opportunities to bolster our equine industry through continued growth of the event in Queensland are enormous."

In February, the Queensland Government, through Queensland Events, won the right to hold EQUITANA in Brisbane. "Queensland only had nine months to deliver a world-class event but we've shown once again that we are up there with the best when it comes to staging major events," Mr Beattie said.

EQUITANA Brisbane kicked off at the RNA Showgrounds with two days of Campdrafting and pony club competition before moving to the Brisbane
Convention and Exhibition Centre for four days of exhilarating competition, expo, entertainment, competition and education.

BCEC was transformed into a world of horses, with 130 on site stables, three demonstration arenas, warm up arena, competition arena and the Mane Arena.

People attending EQUITANA witnessed the excitement and exhilaration of the world's first-ever indoor cross country event, the beauty and spectacle of the MANE EVENT, gathered tips from some of the best Australian and international equestrian athletes and trainers, and shopped till they dropped at the stalls of over 150 exhibitors.

Highlights of EQUITANA Brisbane included:

* Over 3,000 people watched and cheered the excitement of the world's first indoor Cross Country event featuring triple gold medallist MATT RYAN

* HEATH RYAN competed in both the Dressage and Eventing competitions

* Triple Gold Medallist ANDREW HOY and his wife BETTINA conducted Master Classes as part of the education program

* American stunt rider TAD GRIFFITH astounded MANE EVENT audiences with his amazing skill and speed, performing trick and Roman Riding

* World No. 1 Dressage Champion ULLA SALZGEBER's first ever Australian dressage clinic was attended by over 1500 people

* In his only Australian clinic for 2002 internationally acclaimed horseman MONTY ROBERTS shared his knowledge of non-violent approach to horse training and astounded his audience with his skills

* Renowned natural horsemanship trainer PAT PARELLI helped the Bush Church Drought Relief Fund raise thousands of dollars through donations from people attending EQUITANA

EQUITANA will be held in Melbourne in November 2003 and returns to Brisbane with a larger and even more exciting program in November 2004.

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