Big Opportunities for Area IV Adult Riders in 2019

Jessica Smith, Adult Rider Coordinator for USEA Area IV, asked us to help get the word out about exciting opportunities for Area IV Adult Riders in 2019. Happy to oblige! Have info to share from your area? Email us at [email protected]

Area IV Adult Riders represent at the 2018 American Eventing Championships. Photo via the Area IV Facebook page.

For those of us in Area IV who have dreamed of riding in the the American Eventing Championships, 2019 and 2020 hold a unique opportunity with the Championships coming to the Kentucky Horse Park. Between promises of all show jumping rounds being held in the main arena and cross country courses likely to run through the iconic Head of the Lake, the 2019 and 2020 AECs will truly be a championship of a lifetime.

It is lesser known to many competitors that there is a second competition that also runs at the AEC — the Adult Team Championship (ATC). The offspring of the once infamous Chronicle of the Horse Team Challenge, the ATC’s allows two teams of four riders at levels Beginner Novice through Preliminary from each area to compete for impressive cash and prizes. Only riders from the Adult Amateur and Rider divisions are eligible making the competition targeted at non- and lower-level professionals. Because it is a team competition, Area IV Adult Riders can send up to 32 riders to represent the area and can provide financial backing in the form of team gear and offsetting some expenses. One of the goals of the program is to provide an opportunity for non-Olympic level riders to have the experience of riding on a team and representing something larger than themselves with their riding.

My goal as the Adult Rider Coordinator for Area IV is to start working now to have eight riders from each level (BN-P) working together through most of the year to fundraise and create an amazing team experience to represent Area IV Adult Riders. I have many great ideas from other areas and past Team Championships on how to shape this team experience, but I need input from my membership to determine how YOU want to see this unfold. I would like to propose an open conference call for all interested Area IV Adult Rider members at 7 p.m. CST on Jan. 14, 2019, to gather ideas on how to select teams, fundraising ideas, and ways to promote team spirit for Area IV through 2019 and beyond. My goal is to get ideas and input from as many people as possible and then create a core committee to work on putting ideas into action in early 2019 and through to the ATCs at the AECs. I will post the conference call numbers on the Area IV Facebook page and on the Area IV website a few days before the conference call. If you cannot join the call or would like to communicate with me directly, please email me at [email protected]

Do you think you won’t be able to qualify for the AEC or is it still just too far away to be realistic? Plan to head to the Summer Otter Creek H.T. in Wheeler, WI, Aug. 9-11, 2019 for the AR/YR Team Challenge. Riders can request teammates or the Adult Rider Coordinator will create teams from the entry list before the competition (you can opt out of being on a team if you wish). Levels included are Beginner Novice, Novice, Training, and joint Prelim/Intermediate teams. This is a fantastic opportunity to have a team experience without having to leave the area or meet any extra qualifications. It will also be a great prep for the AEC! Young Riders are also welcome and encouraged to participate! Additionally, please contact me if you are interested in volunteering to help organize/run the AR/YR Team Challenge or have any great sponsorship ideas for prizes (hey I have to get in all the shameless plugs that I can here!).

Finally, are you unsure how to sign up for Adult Riders or want to check to see if you are a member? No worries! I can help! First of all, the Adult Rider Program is open to all USEA members over the age of 22. Both pros and amateurs and everyone in-between is welcome. You can join or check your status by going to and clicking on the log in button on the upper right hand corner. Once you log in, your “Membership Profile Dashboard” (second box down in the column on the left) will tell you if you are an Adult Rider Program Member or not.

If not, just click the hyperlink to “Join you Member Program” and you can pay the $25 per year membership fee online. Boom, that’s it! The program supports more than just Team competitions. There are year end awards, lowest score awards at every Area IV event, a virtual team competition that runs all year, social events and even an upcoming Adult Rider Camp July 15-16 also at Otter Creek Farm. Please let me know if you have other ideas for Adult Rider programming or feedback on existing programs. I am here to serve so let me know what you think!

Thanks for all of your input and I can’t wait to talk to a bunch of you in January! Happy Holidays!

While we’ve got them on the line, congratulations to all 2018 winners of Area IV Adult Rider Low Score Awards!