Jul 02, 2018

The Countdown Is On: Two Months Until the AEC! Cash and Prizes Announced

By Kate Lokey - USEA Staff
USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) American Eventing Championships (AEC) are now two months away! The AEC is making history this year as it celebrates its 15th year while moving to the Colorado Horse Park in Parker, Colorado in 2018.

The 2018 AEC will be run across Labor Day weekend from Thursday, August 30 to Sunday, September 2. Competitors may enter the competition via Xentry and the USEA has waived the traditional Xentry fee for AEC riders. Entries open July 17 and the closing date for entries is August 14. More information may be found in the AEC Omnibus listing.

Both horse and rider must be qualified for the AEC in order to compete and must still be eligible for the level of competition at which they qualified. Competitors may check to see if they’re qualified on the qualified riders list and the qualified horse list. The qualifying period for the 2018 AEC is May 29, 2017 – August 20, 2018 and qualification criteria may be found here.


USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

Thanks to the many devoted AEC sponsors, the USEA has thus far accrued over $100,000 in prize money to be awarded across all 19 divisions at the AEC. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of dollars in products will be distributed to first through sixth place finishers including; saddles, bridles, helmets, body protectors, boots, blankets, halters, horse feed, supplements, magazines, therapeutic products, saddle pads, custom artwork, stall plaques, gift certificates, and much more – all provided by the generous sponsors!

For the fifth consecutive year, the Adult Team Championships (ATC) will return to the AEC, providing cash and prizes for adult amateurs in a large and exciting environment. Each of the 10 Areas may have up to eight teams of four riders from their Area at the USEA ATC competing at the level at which they are qualified. There will be no separate ATC division this year, as ATC riders must meet AEC qualifications and ATC teams will then be comprised of riders in the Amateur and/or the Rider divisions of the Beginner Novice through Preliminary levels. All teams should be coordinated through the Area Adult Rider Coordinator(s) and mixed teams are also allowed and encouraged.

The Adequan USEA Gold Cup Championship will take place once again at the AEC, boasting at least a $40,000 purse for the Advanced division. Riders will have to qualify at one of the eleven designated Gold Cup qualifying competitions in order to be eligible for the Championship prize. The Advanced division is also designated as the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship, in which the highest placed U.S. citizen will receive the prestigious Jack Le Goff Trophy.


USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

Other awards distributed at the AEC include the Captain Mark Phillips Pony Rider Awards, Presidents’ Trophy in Honor of Jo Whitehouse, Broadstone Trophy, Broadus Trophy, Gobi Trophy, Edward Harris Memorial Trophy, Sally O’Connor Trophy, Erin’s Shamrock Trophy, Overlook Farm Eventing Trophy, Western DeBroke Trophy, Fork Stables Trophy, Lloyd Trophy, Eastern DeBroke Trophy, Rebecca Farm Trophy, Col. Paul M. Wimert Trophy, A. Martin Simensen Trophy, Maui Jim Young Rider Trophy, The Adult Pony Rider Award in Honor of Avery Dudasch, and the Adequan USEA Gold Cup Trophy.

This year’s AEC will also make history by including non-championship ‘festival’ divisions for Beginner Novice through Preliminary for the first time (excluding Modified divisions for both festival classes and AEC). The non-championship festival classes will serve as normal horse trial divisions and do not require that riders have obtained championship qualifications, but will run in conjunction with the AEC at the Colorado Horse Park. The festival classes are being offered to help increase the recognized eventing opportunities in Area IX and encourage those coming from a long distance to bring their students or their full string of horses, whether they’re young or old or qualified for the AEC divisions or not. The USEA is also working on putting together prizes for the Champions and Reserve Champions of the festival classes.

Don’t miss this year’s AEC amongst the remarkable Rocky Mountains! Learn more in the AEC is 100 Days Away preview and the 90 Days to AEC article.

The USEA would like to thank all of the generous AEC Sponsors!

About USEA American Eventing Championships

The USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) 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. This year, the USEA American Eventing Championships will be held August 30-September 2, 2018 at the Colorado Horse Park in Parker, Colorado. Click here to learn more about the USEA American Eventing Championships.

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