Virginia Horse Trials (VHT) has been approved to run at the Virginia Horse Center on July 21-24, 2020. This is the rescheduled date for the Memorial Day horse trials, which was forced to postpone as a result of COVID-19.
The plan is to run the same levels expected from the May event during the July edition, which includes Starter through Intermediate horse trials plus CCI*-L, CCI2*-S, CCI2*-L, and CCI3*-S. VHT in July will run on Tuesday through Friday, with national classes running as either a one-day or two-day competition.
“One of our main goals for rescheduling is to make sure competitors requiring qualifications will have the opportunity to obtain them. We have also opted to run midweek in order to reduce the impact on other weekend events,” said VHT Organizer Andy Bowles.
“We are trying to make the most of a frustrating situation for competitors and organizers around the country. Many events are attempting to reschedule, and competitors are very anxious to get back on course. I would like to thank the Virginia Horse Center for working us into their very busy schedule.”
VHT is working closely with the Virginia Horse Center to ensure compliance with all USEF, USEA, state, and local health and safety requirements. Bowles said, “We feel very confident, given the size of the Horse Center and our facilities, that we are in a good place to offer a safe competition.”
Some of the changes that will be implemented in order to ensure the safety and welfare of all participants include online entries and low density stabling. International horse inspections will be held in an open space, maintaining social distancing protocol. With much regret, the popular competitor party will not be offered, and there will be no award ceremonies. However, VHT is pleased to offer discount vouchers to future events to the top placing competitors in every division.
“Some things will be different, but what has not changed is our dedication to running a quality event. The high standards competitors have come to expect from VHT will be upheld,” Bowles said. “We hope to see many familiar faces at VHT in July and hope all our friends have been safe during this uncertain time. Hopefully our announcement today gives them something to look forward to.”
Please note, this change of date is for 2020 only. The November Virginia Horse Trials remains scheduled for October 29-November 1, 2020, and VHT’s standard Memorial Day date will resume in 2021.
Additional announcements and full details of the COVID-19 safety plan will be available on the VHT website prior to the event.
The FEI has published its Policy for Enhanced Competition Safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, aimed at assisting organizers and national federations with the safe resumption of international equestrian events in line with national and local restrictions.
The United States Eventing Association (USEA) has approved additional modifications to the qualification period for the 2020 USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds. The AEC is scheduled to take place August 25-30, 2020 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky, and the USEA is doing everything possible to ensure a safe and successful Championship, while also ensuring fair opportunities for all.
This article will be updated to include statements as they are released from upcoming USEA recognized events regarding actions they are taking due to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
This has been a difficult decision, but with the current pandemic situation at hand, we feel that this is the correct and ‘common sense’ direction to take. We are developing a plan to host a shorter, smaller, and more focused competition. We will be using state and local protocols to help guide us through this. Safety is paramount at Rebecca Farm, for both equine and human participants.