Jun 07, 2011

Fox River Valley Pony Club Horse Trials: 2011 Footing Report

By Fox River Valley Pony Club - Press Release

The challenge of providing the best possible galloping tracks for all levels is a continuous, comprehensive and long term project for the FRVPCHT organizers. Amid a great deal of doubt and misinformation surrounding the historically hard tracks, the FRVPCHT Advisory board is committed to achieving their stated goal: To provide horses and riders with the best cross country experience possible. To that end, a step by step program has evolved over the past three years.

There are three primary elements to the program:

1. To increase the number of available tracks through the clearing of non-native brush to provide the ability to change tracks from year to year, allowing over-used tracks to rest and recover for period of a year or more.

2. To manage the turf on the tracks through an annually implemented program of aeration, fertilization, over seeding, and aerovation. This program also includes a judicious mowing program to keep the grass a little longer than was traditional in this Forest Preserve.

3. To aggressively aerovate the clay-based turf tracks in the weeks and days ahead of the event.
It is important to recognize that there are two distinct types of soil which make up the cross-country tracks at the FRVPCHT. What could be referred to as the “front half” of the course – between the traditional start area south and west towards the water – is a clay-based soil. This is the part of the course that turns to rock within a day or two of being rained on, and is as slick as grease when it does rain. The soil in the stadium jumping field, and the grass dressage areas, are also included in this category. The “back half” of the course, from the water complex north and east past the step banks, is a very sandy soil. This part of the course drains well, but the turf has a more fragile root system that does not tolerate heavy aerovation. Too much aggravation of the root system in this area will destroy the turf altogether.

It has been a process to learn exactly how to manage the turf to the level of the very high expectations of both competitors and management, but the results of all the hard work are finally being realized. New tracks have been cut and seeded. Older tracks have been overseeded. All of the tracks were aerovated last year just days ahead of the event and then overseeded immediately afterwards. This year, the first aerovation began on June 1st, with a subsequent treatment scheduled for the week ahead of the event. Every effort is and has been made to make the tracks safe for every horse who gallops across them.

Oct 03, 2022 Convention

Announcing the Keynote Speaker for the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention: Dr. Sue Dyson

Have you ever wondered why your horse isn’t performing at their best? Get ready to learn about the many facets that can contribute to lameness and poor performance in sport horses from equine orthopedics expert, Dr. Sue Dyson! The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce that Dr. Dyson will be the keynote speaker at the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention in Savannah, GA this December 7-11.

Oct 02, 2022 Profile

Change of Rein: Rosie Smith's Journey from Reining to the #2022AEC

Rosie Smith’s rose gold accented helmet matched her perfectly tidy bun of red hair as she took the third spot in the USEA Training Rider Championship at the 2022 USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nurena Feeds. Every little detail came together while aboard her trusted partner of nine years: the 20-year-old Connemara Irish Draught named Seamus (by Corrcullen, RID). But Smith’s first jump, back when she was only 15 years old, wasn’t with an English saddle.

Oct 01, 2022 Volunteers

The VIP Volunteer: Lisa Pragg

Lisa Pragg is a busy woman, but between her normal day job and competing her own 19-year-old Thoroughbred Impeccable she still prioritizes time to volunteer - both at horse trials and as a volunteer firefighter. Pragg understands the importance that volunteers play in the eventing community and makes sure to give whatever time she can back as a fair gesture.

Sep 30, 2022 Convention

Registration is Now Open for the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention in Savannah, Georgia!

Attention USEA members! Registration for the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention is now open! The convention will be held in person on December 7-11, 2022 at the Hyatt Regency Savannah Hotel in Savannah, Georgia.

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