5 Reasons to Make a Trip to Archer on Your Way to AECs

Photo by Lauren Beaton.

We’re less than a month away from the 2018 American Eventing Championships. If you’re making the big trip to Colorado for the championships, or even if you’re local, you’ll want to consider taking advantage of all that Wyoming’s Event at Archer has to offer. The Event at Archer, which runs from August 24th – 26th, is just two hours north of the Colorado Horse Park which holds the AECs the following weekend, August 29th – September 2nd.

Game for a big showcation? Here are 5 reasons to hit up the Event at Archer before heading to AECs:

1. Wide Open Spaces, World Class Course

The Archer Equestrian Complex is settled on 60 acres of wide-open land leased from Laramie County. The cross country course designed by James Atkinson of Revisionist Equestrian is just one year old and offers modern questions for Starter through Preliminary including ditches, banks, and water suitable for all levels. The course takes advantage of Wyoming’s rolling hills and wide-open spaces — similar terrain to what competitors will see at AECs in Colorado — and well-maintained footing.

Want to take a peek at the course? Here’s Kimberly Wendel on Happily Twisted, winners of the Preliminary division at the spring Event at Archer this June:

2. Something for Everyone

While the horse trials may only offer Starter through Preliminary, there is still a benefit to bringing horses to Archer who will be contesting Intermediate and Advanced at the AECs. Running concurrently with the horse trials, the Event at Archer Committee is pleased to be offering combined tests for these levels and for Training and Preliminary. All levels will ride the same dressage tests that will be ridden at the AECs, so it’s a great opportunity to get in the sandbox and jump a full course one more time before the big day!

3. Come for the Show, Stay for the Schooling

Not only are the event and the combined tests a great way to get some last-minute prep in before the championships the following weekend, but the Archer cross country course will also be open for schooling after the event and for the week leading up to the AECs. The complex’s grounds offer plenty of permanent barn stalls and covered pipe stalls plus very affordable on-site dry camping spots and RV hookups, so it’s easy to stick around and enjoy the facility.

4. Prizes, prizes, prizes!

The Event at Archer Committee is delighted to be working with some very generous sponsors who are making it possible to treat each and every competitor at the event with a little swag and some great prizes for the divisions. Ribbons will be pinned through tenth place and there will also be TIP awards, adult amateur awards, and young rider awards.

5. Support a Grassroots Event

The August event marks Archer’s one-year anniversary! Even though it’s a young event, it’s already made its mark on the Area IX calendar thanks to a group of passionate folks who wanted to bring a new sanctioned event and cross country facilities to the Southeastern Wyoming/ Northern Colorado area. The initiative to create the Event at Archer was spearheaded by Preliminary level eventer and professional realtor Allison Murphy who was awarded the 2017 Worth the Trust Scholarship Adult Amateur Scholarship to further her interests in event organization and course design, which have in turn helped to fuel Archer’s creation. She’s backed by a dedicated and knowledgeable committee which includes James Atkinson, Melinda Hofmeister, Tory Poulton, and Jon Murphy — together this group of people is proof that hard work and passion can grow our sport.

Closing date is Tuesday, August 7th so don’t delay any longer in getting those entries in! Check out the Omnibus listing for the Event at Archer here.