US Equestrian (USEF) is pleased to announce that an anonymous donor generously stepped up with a $25,000 commitment to the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab, ensuring this mission-critical safety initiative hit the $450,000 goal set to complete the STAR Helmet rating project for equestrian sport.
“Tom O’ Mara, US Equestrian President-Elect, called to let me know the good news! He actually was contacted by a donor following our announcement of reaching the $425,000 milestone in early December thanks to the collaborative efforts of USEF, USEA, USHJA, and Jacqueline Mars,” said Dr. Barry Miller, Director of Outreach and Business Development for the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab. “The donor was impressed with the goals of the initiative and wanted to ensure all equestrians could benefit from a more sophisticated rating system for equestrian helmets. We are off and running and are guaranteed the funds to complete the project on the 18-24 month timeline.”
Since 2011, Virginia Tech researchers have been providing unbiased helmet ratings that allow consumers to make informed decisions when purchasing helmets. The helmet ratings are the culmination of over 10 years of research on head impacts in sports and identify which helmets best reduce concussion risk. So far, the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab has developed STAR helmet ratings for sports including football, youth football, soccer, flag football, cycling, and hockey (www.vt.edu/helmet). An important study published by the Journal of Neurosurgery in 2016 brought to light how the number of equestrian-related traumatic brain injury compares to other sports-related traumatic brain injury (TBI), reinforcing the importance of equestrian helmet safety.
Work has already begun on the rating system, but the fund will remain open for donations. Any additional money raised will go towards accelerating the development timeline. A tax-deductible donation can be made directly to the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab, with 100 percent of all funds going directly to this research. This work is done as part of Virginia Tech’s service mission and is 100 percent independent of any funding or influence from helmet manufacturers.
What do you get when you combine an aviation engineer, a successful amateur rider, and a galloping event horse? The answer, it seems, is the man who has made a massive contribution to the work of the FEI Eventing Risk Management Committee, and his name is David Vos.
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.
The USEA would like to feature your IEL team! The USEA Interscholastic Eventing League (IEL) is in its first year and currently has 82 registered teams from every USEA area and 46 events hosting an interscholastic team challenge.
The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is thrilled to welcome back longtime sponsor, FITS Riding, Ltd. for 2021. They are returning as a Bronze Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds, a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Adult Team Championships, a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Classic Series, and a Contributing Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships. As a sponsor of these USEA programs, FITS Riding will generously provide gift certificates as prizes for the Intercollegiate championship competitors, AEC and ATC competitors, and Classic Series winners.