The 2021 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds (AEC) is less than one month away! The AEC will take place August 31 – September 5 at the iconic Kentucky Horse Park and will also include the Adult Team Championships (ATC) at the Beginner Novice, Novice, Training, and Preliminary levels. Teaming up with Adequan, the USEA will also host the $60,000 Adequan USEA Advanced Final, which will conclude September 3 under the lights that Friday evening.
In partnership with all the generous AEC sponsors, the USEA is offering over 100,000 in prize money and hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes across all AEC divisions. The USEA will be providing prize folders through sixth place in all AEC divisions. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the USEA and organizing team of Equestrian Events, Inc. and Mary Fike are making an effort to have minimal contact during the awards ceremonies. Therefore, physical product/prize bags will not be handed out this year but instead folders with various gift certificates and gift cards for certain products and services that have been sealed and stored in advance. Many of the gift certificates may be redeemed on-site at the sponsor vendor booths in the AEC vendor village. Competitors are encouraged to sort through their prize folders before going home so they don’t miss out on the opportunity for redemption before the event concludes, as there are some very significant prize offerings from AEC sponsors.
Presenting Sponsor Nutrena Feeds is back this year, supporting the event financially as well as sending prize winners home with multiple bags of feed for their horses. Nutrena also remains as “The Official Feed of the USEA.” Adequan, “The Official Joint Therapy Treatment of the USEA” remains as the Title Sponsor of the Advanced Final, and they are offering prize money for 25 places, guaranteeing at least your entry fee back from ninth to 25th place. The Champion of the $60,000 Adequan USEA Advanced Final will walk home with a whopping $30,000 check, and the Reserve Champion will take $10,000 home.
Bates Saddles are strongly supporting the AEC with a whopping $17,000 in prizes covering the winners through sixth place in every division, including certificates for saddle pads, polo wraps, grooming bags, competition bags, stall bags, and a couple of saddles. “We’ve gone way over how much we originally committed to give by including saddles for the winners of the top two AEC classes, but we’ll call it a much-needed COVID delight,” said Erin Kenworthy of Bates. Bates Saddles return as the Title Sponsor of the Preliminary divisions, as well as “The Official Saddle of the USEA.”
Vetoquinol forged a partnership with the AEC in 2019, and they will return this year as a Platinum Sponsor, gifting $40,000 in product to prize winners. They will be providing one tub of the Equistro Flexadin supplement to the top 10 in each AEC division, as well as the top teams in the Adult Team Championships. Competitors must redeem their certificates at the Vetoquinol booth in the AEC vendor village.
SmartPak Equine, “The Official Supplement Feeding System of the USEA,” will return as a Gold Sponsor at the AEC. SmartPak will be providing a $50 gift certificate to all AEC Champions and Reserve Champions and $25 gift certificates for all third-place winners. They will also be generously providing gift certificates for the top three teams in the USEA Adult Team Championships. Standlee Hay, “The Official Forage of the USEA” and Parker Equine Insurance, “The Official Equine Insurance of the USEA” will also be supporting the AEC as Gold Sponsors, generously helping fund the prize purses. Standlee Hay will also be giving away certificates for product for some prize winners.
Silver Sponsors Mountain Horse, Auburn Laboratories, Park Equine, The Jockey Club all return this year, and additionally, Saratoga Horseworks, the new “Official Horse Clothing of the USEA.” Saratoga Horseworks will be providing custom embroidered AEC show coolers to all AEC Division Champions. “The Official Outerwear of the USEA,” Mountain Horse is gifting $500 certificates to every AEC division Champion, and Auburn Laboratories are providing certificates for 12 oz. bottles of APF for first, second and third place in every AEC division. The Jockey Club will provide Thoroughbred Incentive Program (T.I.P.) awards to the T.I.P. Champion and Reserve in each AEC class, including show coolers, ribbons, and additional prize money.
This year’s Bronze Level Sponsors are The Chronicle of the Horse, Athletux, Devoucoux, FITS Riding, Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation, LandSafe, Parks Tax & Consulting, Retired Racehorse Project, 70 Degrees, Dubarry of Ireland, Equilume, D.G. Stackhouse and Ellis, and Black Petticoat. The Chronicle of the Horse is awarding Champions with one-year print magazine subscriptions, as well as subscriptions and show coolers for the Adult Team Championship winning team members. FITS Riding is also supporting both the AEC and ATC, with $100 gift certificates for winners in each. Devoucoux and CWD are giving prize certificates, and Black Petticoat will be gifting certificates to the top three in each AEC division. LandSafe is awarding spots in their educational LandSafe clinics, and 70 Degrees will be providing gift cards through sixth place, and additionally a redemption ticket for a new pair of gloves through third place. Equilume is a new sponsor this year, gifting Cashel Light Masks to the Champions of the Advanced, Preliminary Amateur, Preliminary Jr/YR, and Training Amateur divisions. D.G. Stackhouse and Ellis Saddles are gifting custom belts to division winners and one custom saddle to the Preliminary Jr/YR division. Parks Tax and Consulting will be awarding special certificates for Parks Tax Services in the Intermediate division through third place. Dubarry of Ireland is also supporting the Intermediate division with a new pair of Dubarry boots for the Champion and Reserve Champion.
Contributing Level Sponsors FarmVet and CrossCountry App will be providing gift certificates to AEC prize winners. Santa Cruz Animal Health is providing hand sanitizer on grounds for all competitors, volunteers, and officials. Additionally, they’re gifting certificates to some AEC prize winners. L.V. Harkness will be providing trophies for the special award winners at the AEC, such as pony awards and the Advanced Final trophy. Haygain will be giving a very special award of a Haygain steamer system for the Champion of the Training Amateur division. GLC Direct will be awarding Actistatin joint supplements and Hoof & Bone supplements to AEC winners. John Deere and Big Ass Fans are also supporting the AEC as Contributing Sponsors.
Lastly, the following Prize Level Sponsors will also be providing gift certificates at the AEC: Astrid’s Oil, FLAIR Nasal Strips, I Love My Horse Eventing Boutique, EQuine AMerica Magazine, Mare Modern Goods, Flexible Fit Equestrian, Great British Equinery, Tack of the Town, Hound & Hare, Vet Blue, Romitelli Riding Boots, Dressage TestPro and Bluegrass Animal Products / EquiOtic. American Saddlebred Horse Association will also be in attendance, handing out ribbons to the highest placing American Saddlebred and Half American Saddlebred horses at the AEC. Strides For Equality Equestrians will also be on-site promoting allyship and giving prize winners in the AEC and ATC small prizes and SEE stickers.
Entries are currently open for the AEC and will close Tuesday, August 17, so be sure to get your entries in as soon as possible, as there will be a capacity of around 1,000 horses. The current AEC entry status may be found here, and the tentative AEC schedule may be found here. The omnibus listing for the AEC, ATC, and Advanced Final with further information may be found here.
Are you qualified to compete at the 2021 AEC? Check the list of qualified riders here. Check the list of qualified horses here. For questions about your qualifications, email [email protected].
The organizing team of EEI and Mary Fike have secured room blocks, and there are also camping options. Please visit the AEC accommodations page for more details.
If you would like to purchase additional tickets to the Wednesday night Welcome Party, the Friday night Competitors’ Party, or the VIP hospitality tent, click here. For more information on the parties and entertainment, read our announcements here.
The USEA looks forward to seeing everyone in Kentucky! Stay tuned to the USEA website for more event updates and details.
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. In fact, the 2019 AEC garnered over 1,000 entries and took place with 925 starters, now standing as 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 USEA would like to thank presenting sponsor Nutrena Feeds, Advanced Final Title sponsor, Adequan, Platinum level sponsor Bates Saddles and Vetoquinol, Gold level sponsors Parker Equine Insurance, SmartPak, Standlee Hay, Silver level sponsors Auburn Laboratories, Mountain Horse, Park Equine, The Jockey Club, and Saratoga Horseworks. The USEA would like to thank all other sponsors supporting the 2021 AEC as well.
Being spontaneous has paid off for Kevin Keane and Sportsfield Candy. “I bought him on a Wednesday and showed him on a Thursday,” Keane recalls about his first event with his Irish Sport Horse gelding, then 9 years old, at Plantation Field Horse Trials (Unionville, Pennsylvania) in September 2016. “I owned him for part of a day, and the next morning I showed up at a CCI and jogged him up for a two-star, and we went clean and clean and clean.”
THANK YOU to everyone who has already entered the USEF/USEA Recognized CDCTA Spring Horse Trials scheduled for Sunday, April 9 in Berryville, VA. We will continue to take late entries through Friday, March 24 using USEA’s Xentry system. If you still want to come compete, please enter! The late fee has been waived through Friday, March 24.
The U.S. Equestrian Federation announces the appointment of long-term US Equestrian employee Hallye Griffin as Director of FEI Sport. Griffin will assume the duties of former Director of FEI/High-Performance Sport, Graeme Thom, who has chosen to step away from his role to attend to personal matters.
The United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA) is thrilled to announce that Sidelines Magazine will not only be returning as a “Media Partner of U.S. Eventing,” but they will also be supporting the Association as a “Contributing Level Sponsor of the USEA Emerging Athletes U21 Program” and a “Prize Level Sponsor of the USEA American Eventing Championships.” Sidelines Magazine will give the USEA additional promotion and exposure through their printed and digital media products, while also providing prizes for participants at the AEC and EA21 clinics.