Aug 30, 2021

Fast Facts: 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships

By Leslie Mintz - USEA Staff

After a two-year wait, the 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds has finally arrived! Nearly 1,000 horses and riders will get to experience the thrill of pulling into the Kentucky Horse Park this week to compete in a competition unlike any other. From the determined Junior Beginner Novice rider who has been dreaming of this week to the consummate professional looking for their chunk of the $100,000 in prize money – the AEC is special for all.

The Field

  • With almost 1,200 entries and nearly 1,000 pairs set to compete, the 2021 AEC is on track to be the largest event in North American history.
  • At the end of the week, there will be 23 champions crowned and added to the AEC history books.
  • Junior Beginner Novice is the largest division with 66 entries while the Bates USEA Preliminary Rider division is the smallest with 23 entries.
Entries broken down by level.
  • In 2019 a Modified/Training division was held, but this will be the first year the Vetoquinol USEA Open Modified Championship will be offered. Competitors will be looking to win the Ashley Stout Remembrance Trophy.
  • 44 pairs are entered in the $60,000 Adequan USEA Advanced Final – the second-largest ever field. Learn more about the Advanced Final Field in the roster here.
  • Horses range in age from 4 to 25 and riders range in age from 12 to 73!
  • 862 riders are competing on 996 horses
  • Leslie Law is the busiest rider with five horses entered
  • There are 331 riders under the age of 21
  • 671 amateur riders are entered
  • 40 states are being represented
  • The Adult Team Championships (ATC) has 58 teams entered across Beginner Novice, Novice, Training, and Preliminary. Some standout team names include Run Like the Winded, Springer Dingers, 3 Docs, 4 Shots, The Princess and the Frogs, Area 8’s Cocktail Party, and Racing at Draft Pace.
  • Learn more about some special competitors in the Road to the AEC Series!

The Special Events

  • $100,000 is on the line for prize money and hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes. Learn more about the prizes here.
  • ATC awards ceremonies will be held after the Bates USEA Preliminary Amateur, Training Rider, Novice Amateur, and Beginner Novice Rider divisions.
  • There's always time to party! Learn more about the parties and how to buy tickets here.
    • Wednesday, September 1 | Luau Welcome Reception | 6:30 p.m. at the KHP Big Barn
    • Thursday, September 2 | Adult Rider and Young Rider Party | 6:30 p.m. at The Cove
    • Thursday, September 2 | AEC Event Officials Party | 6:30 p.m.
    • Friday, September 3 | Battle of the Bands Themed Competitors Party | 6:30 p.m. at the VIP Hospitality tent
  • Event College is now in session! This year there are three main topics to the AEC Event College Presented by LandSafe: safety with Jonathan Holling, horsemanship with Max Corcoran, and rider fitness Tony Sandoval. There will be three seminars held every day at 9:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., and 5:00 p.m. All educational seminars will be located at the LandSafe tent in the AEC Trade Fair. Learn more here.
  • On Thursday, September 2 at 5:00 p.m. meet Doug Payne and Boyd Martin for an Olympic Q&A Session in the LandSafe tent in the AEC Trade Fair.
  • Cross-country course walks are being held by the USEA Instructors’ Certification Program (ICP) at all levels. Meet at the startbox at the designated day/time.
    • Allison Springer | Intermediate | Monday, August 30 | 3:00 p.m.
    • Dorothy Crowell | Preliminary | Monday, August 30 | 6:00 p.m.
    • Jennifer Rousseau | Modified | Tuesday, August 31 | 5:15 p.m.
    • Rebecca Brown | Training | Wednesday, September 1 | 5:00 p.m.
    • Cathy Wieschhoff | Advanced | Wednesday, September 1 | 5:00 p.m.
    • Bill Hoos | Novice | Thursday, September 2 | 4:00 p.m.
    • Laura Backus | Beginner Novice | Thursday, September 2 | 6:00 p.m.

The Facts

  • The AEC is co-organized by Mary Fike and Equestrian Events, Inc. (EEI)
  • The technical delegates are Richard Caldwell and Karen Winn. Sharyn Antico is the assistant technical delegate.
  • All dressage rings will have two judges. Mark Weissbecker is the president of the ground jury for Advanced and Intermediate and will be joined by Bea di Grazia. Valerie Crail is the president for Preliminary through Beginner Novice and will be joined by Peter Gray.
  • Derek di Grazia is the cross-country course designer
  • Bobby Murphy is the show jumping course designer
  • Read the AEC Program for everything you need to know:

The Schedule

Monday, August 30
3:00 p.m. - All Cross-Country Courses Open

Tuesday, August 31
8:00 a.m. - Dressage - Intermediate and Preliminary (Claiborne and Stonelea Arenas)
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Wednesday, September 1
7:30 a.m. Dressage - Advanced, Modified, and Training (Walnut, Claiborne, and Stonelea Arenas)
8:30 a.m. Cross-Country - Intermediate and Preliminary
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Thursday, September 2
7:42 a.m. - Cross-Country - Advanced, Modified, and Training
8:00 a.m. - Dressage - Novice (Walnut, Claiborne, and Stonelea Arenas)
9:00 a.m. - Show Jumping - Intermediate and Preliminary (Johnson/Rolex Stadium)
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Friday, September 3
7:30 a.m. - Show Jumping - Modified and Training (Johnson/Rolex Stadium)
8:00 a.m. - Dressage - Beginner Novice (Walnut, Claiborne, and Stonelea Arenas)
8:00 a.m. - Cross-Country - Novice
6:30 p.m. - Competitors’ Party (VIP Tent) during the $60,000 Adequan USEA Advanced Final
7:15 p.m. - Show Jumping – Advanced (Johnson/Rolex Stadium)
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Saturday, September 4
7:30 a.m. - Show Jumping – Novice (Johnson/Rolex Stadium)
8:00 a.m. - Cross-Country - Beginner Novice
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Sunday, September 5
7:30 a.m. - Show Jumping - Beginner Novice (Johnson/Rolex Stadium)
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.- Vendor Village Open

Helpful Links


Follow the USEA event coverage on social media!
#AEC2021 | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter


About the USEA American Eventing Championships

The USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds is the pinnacle of the sport for the national levels. Held annually, the best junior, adult amateur, and professional competitors gather to vie for national championship titles at every level from Beginner Novice to Advanced. This ultimate test of horse and rider draws hundreds of horses and riders from around the country to compete for fabulous prizes, a piece of the substantial prize money, and the chance to be named the National Champion at their respective levels. With over 1,000 entries the 2021 AEC is set to be the largest eventing competition in North American history. The 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds will be held August 31 – September 5 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. Click here to learn more about the USEA American Eventing Championships.

The 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds would not be possible without our wonderful sponsors! The USEA would like to thank the following sponsors for their support: Presenting Sponsor: Nutrena Feeds; Advanced Final Title Sponsor: Adequan; Platinum Level Sponsor: Bates Saddles, Vetoquinol; Gold Level Sponsors: Parker Equine Insurance, ShowConnect, Smartpak, Standlee Hay; Silver Level Sponsors: Auburn Labs, Park Equine Hospital, Mountain Horse, The Jockey Club; Saratoga Horseworks; Bronze Level Sponsors: 70 Degrees, Athletux, Black Petticoat, The Chronicle of the Horse, Devoucoux, Dubarry of Ireland, Equilume, FITS Riding, Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation, LandSafe Equestrian, Parks Tax & Consulting, Retired Racehorse Project, D.G. Stackhouse & Ellis Contributing Level Sponsors: Big Ass Fans, CrossCountry App, FarmVet, GLC Direct, Haygain, John Deere, L.V. Harkness, Santa Cruz Animal Health; Prize Level Sponsors: American Saddlebred Horse Association, Astrid’s Oil, Bluegrass Animal Products, Dressage TestPro, EQuine AMerica Magazine, Flexible Fit Equestrian, Achieve Equine/FLAIR Equine Nasal Strips, Great British Equinery, Horse & Country, Hound & Hare, I Love My Horse, Mare Modern Goods, Romitelli Riding Boots, Strides for Equality Equestrians, Tack of the Town, VetBlue, The Equine Network, and Horse&Country

Jul 03, 2022 Intercollegiate

A Day in the Life with USEA Intercollegiate Member Hannah Warner

Hannah Warner wears many hats: student at the University of Kentucky, UK Eventing Team President, competitor, and head groom for Alexa Ehlers. Fitting in all of her roles and responsibilities into her day-to-day life can be a challenge, but it is a challenge that Warner finds rewarding. The college senior is working towards a business degree through UK's online business program, so Warner is able to get creative with her schedule to pursue all of her academic and eventing related goals.

Jul 02, 2022 Area Championships

Twelve Area III Champions Crowned at 2022 Area Championships

The Area III Championships kicked off the 2022 USEA Area Championship season June 24-26 at the Stable View Summer H.T. in Aiken, South Carolina. Offering 12 different championship divisions from Intermediate to Beginner Novice, the championships were highly contested as riders from all across Area III put in a gallant effort in hopes of being deemed division champion. The USEA caught up with many of the individual champions to look back on their performances in Aiken that helped them bring home the top prize.

Jul 01, 2022 Young Riders

USEA Announces Athletes for the 2022 Emerging Athlete 21 Program

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce the athletes selected for the 2022 USEA Emerging Athlete 21 (EA21) Program. USEA Young Rider program members aged 21 and under are eligible for the program, which aims to creates a pipeline for potential U.S. team riders by identifying and developing young talent, improving horsemanship and riding skills, and training and improving skills and consistency.

Jul 01, 2022 AEC

Countdown to AEC: 2 Months Away! Tentative Competition, Entertainment Schedules, & More!

The USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds are just two months away. The AEC moves to the mountains this year, taking place at Rebecca Farm in Kalispell, Montana across a long Labor Day weekend.

Official Corporate Sponsors of the USEA

Official Joint Therapy Treatment of the USEA

Official Feed of the USEA

Official Saddle of the USEA

Official Real Estate Partner of the USEA

Official Equine Insurance of the USEA

Official Forage of the USEA

Official Supplement Feeding System of the USEA

Official Outerwear of the USEA

Official Competition & Training Apparel of the USEA