Aug 14, 2021

Events A-Z: Old Tavern Horse Trials

USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo

The Old Tavern Horse Trials is an exciting new addition to the event season hosted at the Great Meadow Field Events Center in The Plains, Va. This year, the event takes place September 25-26, and will be run by Five Rings Eventing, the same organizer who puts on the Great Meadow International!

The Great Meadow Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization founded by philanthropist, Arthur “Nick” Arundel, was established in the 1980s with a mission to “preserve open space in service to the community and to advance equestrian sport.” Great Meadow has hosted numerous three-day events throughout the years attracting top riders to their elite events.

After a brief break, the purchase of additional property by the Great Meadow Foundation in 2014 allowed for eventing to return to the venue, in addition to several other equestrian disciplines including steeplechasing, polo, and show jumping. Also in 2014, Olympian David O’Connor created an Advanced-level Prep Trial to tune up the US Eventing Team for the 2014 World Equestrian Games which led to the start of the Great Meadow International. In 2016, Great Meadow acquired more land to double the size of their property, installed a world-class equestrian arena, and hosted the first FEI Eventing Nations Cup™ ever held in North America.

USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

Five Rings Eventing is a high-performance event organizer and management company founded by Darrin Mollett and David O’Connor. They have big plans for incorporating the Old Tavern Horse Trials into their event schedule. Organizer Darrin Mollett shared, “We are so excited about Old Tavern Horse Trials at Great Meadow. We are thrilled to be able to offer levels up to Intermediate to our competitors. Great Meadow is a top-notch facility that is very historic and special to the equestrian community.”

The Old Tavern Horse Trials cross-country course has been installed on the Fleming Farm parcel owned by the Great Meadow Foundation. It has been created by course designer David O’Connor and course builder and designer Jon Wells. Competitors will also have access to a state-of-the-art oval show jumping arena and warm-up arena containing Atwood footing.

USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

Old Tavern Horse Trials will run Beginner Novice, Novice, Training, Preliminary, and Intermediate divisions.

Additionally, Old Tavern Horse Trials is one of six options to choose to compete in the Waredaca Classic Road to the Three-Day Challenge. To be eligible for the Challenge, competitors complete a minimum of three of six possible events in addition to the Waredaca Classic Three-Day on October 21-24, 2021. Points are awarded based on placing in the events with points for the Three-day awarded at double value. For more information visit Waredaca Challenge.

The USEA profiles the history behind each USEA recognized event in the USEA Events A­-Z series.

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