We have 29 days to go until the start of spring, and for eventers spending the winter in colder parts of the country where you’ve forgotten what grass looks like, that might as well be an eternity. You’ve done more circles around the indoor than you can count, planned your 2018 eventing season with alternative scenarios A to Z, and you’re desperate to go cross country again.
How do eventers combat the winter doldrums? By planning trips to the biggest events in the country, of course! If you’re searching for a summer road trip, look no further than North America’s only eventing Nations Cup leg, the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International, presented by Adequan, in The Plains, Virginia. Ticket sales officially opened last week!
The Nations Cup CICO3* at Great Meadow will be held July 6-8, 2018. Located in the heart of Virginia horse country and only 50 miles from Washington, D.C., attending Great Meadow International is the perfect opportunity for a weekend getaway. Going to the event is a fabulous excuse to explore the rich horse history of Middleburg and beyond, not to mention grab a beer with friends at favorite local watering hole The Red Fox.
Not only can you watch the top event riders from all around the world compete at Great Meadow International — Great Britain has sent a team for the past two years — but U.S. Eventing Performance Director Erik Duvander has also named Great Meadow a U.S. team prep event ahead of the 2018 World Equestrian Games at Tryon. More than 15,000 spectators are expected to be in attendance, and you definitely don’t want to miss out.
This year Great Meadow has a new sponsor in Brook Ledge Horse Transportation. The Meadow Market is receiving a complete overhaul for the 2018 event, with a new layout featuring a stage for demonstrations and mini educational lectures. There will be live music throughout the weekend in the beer and wine garden overlooking the main arena. You can also win prizes and special discounts through the Meadow Market Scavenger Hunt — stay tuned for more details!
Great Meadow is renowned for tailgating during the famed Virginia Gold Cup, and has now added tailgating overlooking the arena for both days of competition at the Nations Cup. Both the ringside tailgate spaces and reserved ringside boxes will give a prime viewing spot for the Bareback Puissance on Friday evening, which is free and open to the public following the first horse inspection.
Dressage kicks off on Saturday morning in the main arena with world class footing from Attwood Equestrian Services, followed by show jumping in the evening. The competition concludes on Sunday with cross country and the prize giving. Live music will be on stage throughout all three days of competition, with plenty of shopping, food and drink, and activities for the whole family.
With the Great Meadow International box office opening last week, now is your chance to purchase discount tickets at early bird pricing, which will be available through March 31. General admission is $25 for a one-day car pass or $40 for a weekend car pass, and parking is free. Click on the following links to purchase tickets: General Admission, Ringside Boxes, Tailgating, VIP Tent.
Click here to view the full event schedule. Be sure to follow the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International, presented by Adequan, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Visit the event website to lean more. Will you be attending Great Meadow this year? Let us know in the comments below.