VAHT Introduces New Course Design


The Virginia Horse Trials is one of my favorite events of the year. Brian and Penny Ross always do an excellent job of organizing this amazing event. The courses are always great, and the Virginia Horse Center is a beautiful facility. Their spring horse trial is coming up quickly on May 23-26. The opening date was April 9, but you have until May 7 to get your entries in! They are hosting Beginner Novice through Intermediate on the national level and a CIC** and CCI* at the FEI level.

Brian and Penny wanted to send out an update on things:

“Penny and I have made the executive decision to move the show jumping outdoors for May. The arena up on the hill is larger and has natural seating around it. We recognize that there are some eventers who don’t come to us because of the intimidating factor that the indoor coliseum has on them and their horses. The warm up will be in the adjacent enclosed arena. We are also very excited that Marc Donovan has agreed to design the courses for us.

“All four dressage arenas will therefore be in the lower arenas, including quite possibly one of them in the coliseum. If we do use the coliseum for dressage, there will be several times allotted for familiarization.

“More news is that after 10 years of design, David O’Connor has stepped aside because of other commitments, and we have hired John Williams for the FEI levels. He and one of our builders, Tyson Rementer, have spent the last week moving earth and laying out the courses. There are some major differences, and we are very excited about the new courses. About the only thing that stays the same from last year are the start box and the first two fences. From that point on, John has let his skills as a designer take over. He has spent an entire week on site tweaking here and there to give the horses and riders a truly educational and fun ride around the Virginia Horse Center.

“Lastly, November 2013 will be our 25th anniversary of organizing here, and we are making plans for a very special event!”

I, for one, am very excited about VAHT this year, and I hope everyone will get their entries in! It always proves to be a great weekend.


Leave a Reply