Preview the $50,000 Grand-Prix Eventing Festival Cross Country Course

The final fence, the Aiken Horse Park keyhole. Photo by Shelby Allen.

The 2023 $50,000 Grand-Prix Eventing Festival at Bruce’s Field, presented by Taylor Harris Insurance Services is very much: same jumps, new vibe. With an entirely brand new area to run through, the Capt. Mark Phillips-designed track takes a new shape this year, while still utilizing the gorgeous Eric Bull-built cross country fences, each of which give a nod to the local area.

Take a peek at the CrossCountryApp fence-by-fence preview below (or click here to view in your browser).

The optimum time for the course is 4 minutes, 16 seconds. Historically, time isn’t easy to grab here — not surprising considering the go-kart track nature here. Riders will double back on several jumps, jumping in and out of five different arenas. The addition of a new arena to use this year reduces the amount of galloping on turf, which means the turns also come up that much quicker. Riders will need to be thinking on their feet if they want to have a shot at the time, saving time where they can but also making sure to give their horses enough time to reach each question.

Photo by Shelby Allen.

Photo by Shelby Allen.

Several related distance questions are placed around the course, including an exciting-looking bounce at 11 and 12 (there is an option, and the elements are numbered separately), as well as a severe angle and one stride between the two Bruce’s Field brushes. Riders also have the option to jump fence 6, the only fence located out on the turf, in either direction as they turn around and head back toward the arenas.

Fence 6, the Savannah River Site, can be jumped in either direction as it’s used as a change of direction point. Photo by Shelby Allen.

A total of 23 combinations will move forward to tomorrow’s cross country following Friday’s show jumping that saw seven pairs opted to withdraw and three pairs given Compulsory Retirements for having five or more rails down.

This fence will have tennis balls filling the base! Eyes up, everyone! Photo by Shelby Allen.

Cross country begins at 12:30 p.m. EST, and will be run in reverse order of standing to lead to an exciting event finish. You can view the order of go here. As always, H&C+ will carry the live stream — you can subscribe or purchase a one-time pass to watch this event here. Abby Powell will also be running live updates during cross country right here on EN.

GPE at Bruce’s Field: GPE WebsiteEntry ListRide TimesLive ScoresTeam Scores, XC Map, XC Order of GoFacility MapH&C+ LivestreamRide for Charity Public VoteEN’s Coverage

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