Feb 10, 2024

Starter Added to the 2024 USEA Intercollegiate & Interscholastic Eventing Championships

By Kaleigh Collett - USEA Staff | Press Release
USEA/Meagan DeLisle photo

Following the exciting announcement on the addition of Starter divisions to the 2024 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds, the United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA) and its organizing partners at Stable View are proud to announce the addition of the Starter level to the USEA Intercollegiate & Interscholastic Eventing Championships as well.

The first-ever combined championships for the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program and the USEA Interscholastic Eventing League (IEL) will take place at the Stable View Local Charities H.T. in Aiken, South Carolina, on May 4-5, 2024. Students in 5th through 12th grade and those that are enrolled in undergraduate college programs are encouraged to join or start an Affiliate team with the USEA to be eligible to compete in the event.

“In an effort to expand access to the sport, the USEA Board of Governors approved the introduction of the Starter level to recognized competition for 2024,” said USEA CEO Rob Burk. “The addition of Starter to the inaugural USEA Intercollegiate and Interscholastic Eventing Championships is another step towards achieving this goal. This will further help to expand access for all equestrians to our sport and do so in an exciting environment. The community of Interscholastic and Intercollegiate team competition is one of the best experiences a young rider can have and now even more athletes will be able to participate where they can form lifelong friendships within eventing.”

The focus of the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program and IEL is to foster a supportive community for school-aged students to continue to compete in the sport of eventing throughout their educational careers. The combined championships will help to create greater unity between these programs and allow kids to interact with fellow junior members from across the country that share similar goals and aspirations to them. Junior members with plans to join a collegiate program upon graduation from high school will also have the chance to engage in conversations with the riders, coaches and faculty that represent the colleges and universities in attendance.

“We are so excited to be the first venue to offer the Starter level for the USEA Intercollegiate and Interscholastic Eventing Championship,” said Molly Bull, Event Organizer for Stable View. “We have a busy and fun weekend planned for everyone who can come. Our new arena that we have been working on this winter will be in use by then, so riders and spectators can look forward to even more going on around our Pavilion.”

Riders interested in competing in the Starter level at the USEA Intercollegiate and Interscholastic Eventing Championships may be of any age, and horses must be at least 4 years of age or older. There are no qualifications necessary for horses and riders to enter the Starter level. In order to accumulate year-end award points on the USEA leaderboard, to earn qualifications for Area Championships, and to earn qualifications for the AEC, riders would need to be a member of the USEA, and horses must hold at least a Limited Status registration.

Competition Guidelines

Like other USEA recognized levels, dress and tack regulations will both fall into accordance with the USEF Rules for Eventing, Subchapters EV-9 Dress, EV-10 Saddlery, and USEF Annex 1.

For the 2024 season, the following dressage tests will be utilized for the Starter level:

Numbers and letters for cross-country will be designated by the Organizer and printed on the course map. The cross-country distance will range from 1200-1800 meters with a speed of 300-350 mpm. Speed faults will be assessed at 420 mpm or higher. There should be 12-16 efforts on a Starter level cross-country course with a fixed height of .70m (2’3”), a brush height of .85m (2’9”), a top spread of .70m (2’3”), a base spread with height of 1.00m (3’3”), and a base spread without height of 1.15m (3’9”). Drops should be no more than .90m (3’0”). If water or ditches are used, an option should be provided. Combinations are not allowed.

For show jumping, the maximum distance is 600 meters with a speed of 300 mpm. An appropriate course will feature 8-10 jumping efforts at a height of .70m (2’3”) with a spread of .75m (2’6”). Triple bars are not appropriate at the Starter level and combinations are not allowed.

For more information regarding the Starter level, please refer to the official USEA Starter Level Requirements & Regulations page here.

Stay Informed

For those already planning to compete at the championships, Stable View has created a WhatsApp group to communicate with members as the event approaches. Click here to join the group. The team at Stable View will post regular updates and share news related to the championships in this group chat, so members will be first to know about all the exciting updates as the event takes shape.

The 2024 USEA Intercollegiate and Interscholastic Eventing Championships will each host divisions at the Starter through Intermediate levels. There will be no qualifications necessary to enter, however, all schools and teams represented must be registered Affiliates of the USEA. Don’t forget to submit your Collegiate Team Applications or IEL Application Forms, along with your official roster, to Jennifer Hardwick, USEA Senior Director of Membership Services, at [email protected] by next Thursday, Feb. 15, 2024.

Any questions regarding the Intercollegiate Eventing Program or Interscholastic Eventing League and the upcoming 2024 championships can be directed to USEA Staff Liaison, Kaleigh Collett, at [email protected].

About the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program

The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program was established in 2014 to provide a framework within which eventing teams and individual competitors could flourish at universities and colleges across the country. The USEA offers a discount of $25 on annual USEA memberships for current students at universities and colleges registered as Affiliates with the USEA. Many events across the country offer Intercollegiate Team Challenges where collegiate eventers can compete individually or on teams with their fellow students. In Intercollegiate Team Challenges, each rider’s score is multiplied by a coefficient appropriate for their level to account for differences in level difficulty, and then the individual scores are added together to determine the team score. The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championship is a capstone event for the program, which is held annually in the spring. The 2024 USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championship will be held at Stable View in Aiken, South Carolina, on May 4-5. Click here to learn more about the Intercollegiate Eventing Program.

The USEA would like to thank Bates Saddles, Horse & Country, Kerrits, U.S. Equestrian, WeRideTogether, and World Equestrian Brands for sponsoring the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program.

About the USEA Interscholastic Eventing League (IEL)

In August 2020, the USEA Board of Governors approved the creation of the USEA Interscholastic Eventing League (IEL) as an official program of the USEA. The mission of IEL is to unite junior riders who are in the 5th—12th grade and provide a supportive community through which students can continue to pursue their riding interests. A group of junior members in the 5th—12th grade who share a common bond, such as the same barn, school, Pony Club, or other connection, can register with the USEA as an IEL Affiliate. The USEA Board of Governors recently approved an inaugural IEL Championship to kick-off in 2024 at Stable View in Aiken, South Carolina, which will be held in conjunction with the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships on May 4-5, 2024. Click here to learn more about the Interscholastic Eventing League.

The USEA would like to thank Kerrits and Horse & Country for sponsoring the USEA Interscholastic Eventing League.

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