Lexington, Kentucky – April 24, 2019 – Olympic veterans Margie Engle, Kent Farrington, Lauren Hough and Peter Wylde of the U.S.; Samuel Parot of Chile, Kevin Babington of Ireland, Sharn Wordley of New Zealand and defending champion Santiago Lambre of Mexico head an impressive list of 30 top show jumping riders who have confirmed their entries for the $225,000 Kentucky Invitational Grand Prix CSI 3* presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute. The FEI-sanctioned event will be held on Saturday, April 27, in conjunction with the 2019 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by Mars Equestrian (LRK3DE) when it returns to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, April 25-28, 2019.
Land Rover Kentucky’s second annual CSI show jumping event will begin at 4:30 p.m. following the cross-country portion of the LRK3DE. Opening Ceremonies will take place at 4:00 PM. Showcasing some of the sport’s biggest names, the CSI is organized by Equestrian Events, Inc. (EEI), who brought in Derek Braun, founder of the highly-successful Split Rock Jumping Tour, to help manage the now two-year-old event. Guilherme Jorge (BRA), show jumping course designer at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, returns as course designer. Stadium seating tickets for the Grand Prix are only $5 each – with $1 going to Land Rover Kentucky’s 2019 Official Charity, Bluegrass Land Conservancy. Grand Prix tickets are available here.
There will also be a 1.45m $36,000 Welcome Speed Cup ranking class on Friday, April 26, at 6:00 p.m. in Rolex Stadium, after the day’s LRK3DE dressage competition. No stadium seat ticket is required for the Speed Cup.
Santiago Lambre (MEX)
Last year, 10,635 enthusiastic spectators packed into Rolex Stadium to see Santiago Lambre, an Olympic and FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) veteran, win the inaugural event. He will be back to defend his title while Ireland’s Conor Swail returns looking to improve on his third-place finish last year. Babington, who placed fourth individually in the 2004 Athens Olympics, Paul O’Shea and Shane Sweetnam, who competed for Ireland at the 2018 WEG, will no doubt be giving them a run for the money along with countrymen Daniel Coyle and Lorcan Gallagher.
Additional international competitors include Olympic and World Games veterans Parot and Wordley; Australia’s Rowan Willis and Hilary Scott; Canada’s Vanessa Mannix; and Eugenio Garza of Mexico.
Top U.S. riders include Farrington, an Olympic silver and WEG bronze medalist; Wylde, anOlympic gold medalist; Engle, an Olympic veteran, WEG silver medalist and Pan American Games gold, silver and bronze medalist; Hough, an Olympic and WEG veteran and Pan American Games gold and bronze medalist; Todd Minikus (USA), who has competed at nine World Cup Finals; Pan American Games double gold medalist Christine McCrea; Karl Cook and Schuyler Riley who have each competed at three World Cup Finals; Molly Ashe-Cawley, who has ridden in two World Cup Finals; and Callan Solem, the highest-placed U.S. rider at the 2016 World Cup Finals. Other top U.S. riders include Aaron Vale, Ali Wolff, Hayley Barnhill, Hilary McNerney, Jonathan McCrea, Noel Fauntleroy and Spencer Brittan.
“We have an outstanding list of entries for this year’s $225,000 Kentucky Invitational Grand Prix CSI 3*,” said Stewart Perry, president of Equestrian Events, Inc. (EEI), organizer of the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event and the Kentucky Invitational Grand Prix CSI 3* . “Last year’s inaugural event exceeded our expectations and we are expecting an even more exciting competition this year, so make sure you get your tickets now as the stadium was absolutely packed last year!”
Now in its 41st year, the LRK3DE is a thrilling competition featuring Olympic-level riders and horses from across the nation and around the world in what can best be described as an equestrian triathlon. Known as “The Best Weekend All Year,” LRK3DE is a multi-day, highly competitive event in which the world’s best horses and riders vie for their share of $400,000 in prize money, as well as a shot at the $350,000 Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing, which is awarded to any rider who wins the LRK3DE, Mitsubishi Motors Badminton, and Land Rover Burghley Five Star Events in succession. The event also serves as the Land Rover/USEF CCI-5*-L Eventing National Championship presented by Mars Equestrian.
Tickets to the 2019 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by Mars Equestrian are available here. All grounds admission tickets to the LRK3DE include general parking and admission to the Kentucky Horse Park and International Trade Fair, but do not include seats for the competition in Rolex Stadium on Thursday, Friday and Sunday. Reserved stadium seating is sold separately from grounds admission. For a unique world-class Kentucky experience, special Ringside Hospitality packages are also available.
Further information on the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by Mars Equestrian is available at www.KentuckyThreeDayEvent.com.
Source: Press release by Marty Baumann / Classic Communications for Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Eventing / Split Rock Jumping Tour / Kentucky Inviational
Photos: © Michelle Dunn