Elkton, Md. – Fair Hill International in partnership with the Fair Hill Foundation today announced Ian Stark has been hired to design its new cross-country course in preparation of hosting a five-star competition in 2020. As Fair Hill’s cross-country course designer, Stark will direct the layout of the new track and utilize the terrain to make it both unique and challenging. He visited the site earlier this week for an initial survey to begin the course construction.
Responsibilities Stark will manage for the new course include designing the plan for galloping lanes, creating the fences to jump, and ensuring the footing throughout the course meets the highest standards of the sport. Under Stark’s leadership Fair Hill’s new cross-country course will contest eventing athletes at the highest level. The hiring comes as Fair Hill begins a series of upgrades to the facility making it suitable for hosting five-star events.
Stark said, “I am thrilled and excited to be involved in America’s new five-star event at Fair Hill and can’t wait to get started planning the cross-country course. This is every designer’s dream.”
Stark is an Olympic eventing medalist and world-renowned course designer who has been inducted into the Halls of Fame of the British Horse Society, Sporting Scotland, Scottish Borders, and the Event Riders’ Association. Fair Hill International and Fair Hill Foundation selected him because of his experience and reputation for designing some of the most respected and demanding cross-country courses throughout the world.
“Fair Hill International is delighted to welcome Ian Stark to the team,” said Trish Gilbert, President of Fair Hill International, Inc. “His global reputation and experience will be invaluable to the five-star competition. We all look forward to working with him as we bring this event to fruition.”
Fair Hill International has a 30-year history of producing prestigious three-star competitions. Next year’s five-star event will be produced by Fair Hill International along with support from Fair Hill Foundation and Five-Star Host Organizing Committee.
Five-star events are the pinnacle of the sport of eventing. They feature the most advanced dressage test and longer, more complex cross-country courses. There are only six five-star events in the world and currently just one in the United States which takes place annually in Kentucky.
Following the popularity of Rules Open Forum held virtually during the 2020 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention in December, the USEA Competitions, Calendar, and Rules Committee decided to host another Rules Webinar to share information about the extraordinary rule changes going into effect on April 1, 2021 and the rule change proposals being put forward to the USEF by March 1, 2021 for approval for the 2022 competition season.
Are you following along with the action from home this weekend? Or maybe you're competing at an event and need information fast. Either way, we’ve got you covered! Check out the USEA’s Weekend Quick Links for links to information including the prize list, ride times, live scores, and more for all the events running this weekend.
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The USEA Event Companion App was launched in late 2016 for iOS and Android devices to provide USEA members with easy, at-your-fingertips access to the USEA calendar of events, dressage tests, rules, news, and more. The app, now in its fifth year, has rolled out a new feature for users - push notifications are here!