Elkton, Maryland, December 21, 2017 - In July 2017, the U.S. Equestrian Federation (USEF) approved a recommendation to award an eventing CCI4* (4*) competition in 2019 to Fair Hill International (FHI.) FHI's bid for the prestigious 4* resulted from a multi-year, state-wide public and private sector collaboration.
The USEF's recommendation for Fair Hill International was expected to be considered for approval by Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) at its General Assembly meeting in November 2017.
However, in November, the FEI unveiled for ratification a completely redesigned classification system for international events that included a new CCI5* level. This new system was approved in concept, but the FEI is still working out the specific requirements for each level. As such, Fair Hill International and its 4* (now 5*) coalition partners have decided to wait to proceed until these specifics are released.
"We understand the FEI's decision to reorganize the star system and the requirements for each level. However, until we know these new requirements, it makes no sense to move forward blindly. We don't want to build a state-of-the-art facility to the wrong specifications. We are committed to presenting an event at the pinnacle of the sport and will march ahead as soon as the FEI releases its new parameters," said Carla Geiersbach, Fair Hill International's Executive Director.
Sam Slater, President of the Fair Hill Foundation, the coalition's fundraising partner said, "We remain committed to bringing world class equestrian sporting opportunities to this corner of Maryland. Fair Hill has so much to offer the community, and proposed upgrades will really enhance the facility. As always, thank you to all of our donors, partners, and friends for their committed support."
Maryland is a premier destination for equestrian events and equine activities. FHI's on-going year-round programs elevate Maryland's rich equestrian tradition and leverage its current industry strength.
Fair Hill International looks forward to celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2018. The CCI3* and CCI2* event will be run October 18-21, 2018.
Fair Hill International is a non-profit organization dedicated to equestrian education and managing equestrian events at the 5,656-acre Fair Hill Natural Resource Management Area in northeast Maryland. Currently, FHI runs seven recognized and unrecognized eventing competitions annually, from Introductory level to Olympic-qualifying CCI3* level.
Bellamy, an Oldenburg/Thoroughbred gelding of unknown breeding, came to Tamra Smith’s farm in Southern California with his mane half-way down his neck and filled with burrs. Bellamy had been sitting in a field for a little over a year after unseating several riders in a row and Smith, known for being good with tricky horses, agreed to take him on.
Pan Am Games team gold medalist Tamra Smith and Mai Baum and five-star pairs Andrea Baxter and Indy 500 and Frankie Thieriot Stutes and Chatwin headline a strong Advanced field when Twin Rivers begins an exciting season of eventing competition this weekend.
The USEA Future Event Horse (FEH) and Young Event Horse (YEH) programs have around 30 qualifying competitions each, and youngsters around the country are about to begin their seasons aimed at Championships.