2006 USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship/U.S. League Final
to be held in Wellington, FL

WELLINGTON, FL –
December 5, 2005 –

Eugene R. Mische, president of Stadium Jumping, Inc., is pleased to announce that the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) has awarded Stadium Jumping, Inc. the management and production of the 2006 USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final CDI-W, the Official Selection for the 2006 FEI World Cup Dressage Final.  The event will be held at the Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club in Wellington, Florida, on March 17 and 18, 2006, in conjunction with the Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic CDI3* CDIY, which runs from March 16-19 at the 34h annual Winter Equestrian Festival. 

“I am very excited and really thrilled that Stadium Jumping was awarded the 2006 USEF Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final,” said Mary Silcox, head of the dressage division at Stadium Jumping, Inc.  “It is a very prestigious competition and Wellington will step up to the plate to make it a fabulous event.  The dressage community in Florida is very strong and supportive, and I anticipate that we’ll fill the spectator seating to the maximum. It will be the highlight of the season.”

The USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final consists of two competitions, which will be featured as evening classes held under the lights in the De Nemethy Arena. The Grand Prix will be contested on Friday night, March 17, and the Grand Prix Musical Freestyle will be featured on Saturday night, March 18.  Qualifying events held nationally determine the 12 horse-and-rider combinations invited to compete.  From the top finishers, two riders who are qualified and eligible to compete will be selected to represent the United States in the FEI World Cup Dressage Final, scheduled to be held in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, April 20-23, 2006. 

Officiating at the USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final and the Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic will be an international panel of top-level judges.  The Ground Jury will be comprised of Alex Steiner ‘O’ USA, president; Stephen Clarke ‘O’ GB, foreign judge; Elizabeth McMullen ‘O’ CAN; Angelika Froemming ‘I’ GER; Gisela Holstein ‘I’ IRE; Hilda Gurney ‘I’ USA; Michael Poulin ‘I’ USA; and Gary Rockwell ‘C’ USA.  USEF judges will be Susanne Handler ‘R’ and William Woods ‘R’.  The USEF Liaison will be Marilyn Adams.  The USEF Representative in attendance will be Jennifer Keeler and the FEI (International Federation) Representative will be Eva Salomon, the World Cup Dressage Technical Manager.

The 2006 USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final is the fifth annual staging of this prominent competition.  The 2002, 2004, and 2005 events were held at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in conjunction with the CDI-W Burbank and Mid Winter Dressage Fair in Burbank, California. The 2003 event was held at the Tropical Park Equestrian Center in conjunction with the Miami Dade Winter Dressage CDI 3* in Miami, Florida. Debbie McDonald of Hailey, Idaho, and Brentina owned by Peggy and Parry Thomas, won the championship title in 2002, 2004, and 2005.  Guenter Seidel of Del Mar, California, aboard Nikolaus 7 owned by Dick and Jane Brown, won the title in 2003 (McDonald, who had the Wild Card slot to the World Cup Dressage Final that year, did not compete). 

Debbie McDonald

Debbie McDonald and Brentina
Photo: Ken Braddick-HorseSport USA

Complementing the four days of intense dressage competition at the Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic will be a spectacular series of daytime and evening social events planned by Stadium Jumping, Inc. and Phelps Media Group, Inc. International. Evening events to celebrate the USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final will be held during the competition on Friday and Saturday nights in the Jockey Club overlooking the De Nemethy Arena. In addition to the competition, half-time entertainment during the evening events will also be featured. The Saturday night gala is entitled “Dancing Under The Stars” and will be a benefit for the United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation. Following the Saturday gala and competition, guests will be invited to a themed after-party, which will feature music and dancing.

“It will be very festive all week,” noted Silcox. “Following the success of the 2005 Dressage World Cup Final in Las Vegas, dressage has really enjoyed the spotlight, and we will continue to build on that excitement by providing opportunities to celebrate and have fun, as well as to help support the team. I am very happy that the dressage community will have this opportunity to band together.”

The dressage aficionados will also enjoy having the Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club devoted exclusively to their sport for the week, Silcox added. The Winter Equestrian Festival show jumping competition wraps up in Wellington with the CN Wellington Finale CSIO US 5* (March 8-12), held the week before the USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final and Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic.

 “The dressage community will have their own special week at the Winter Equestrian Festival,” said Silcox. “We will present the highest caliber competition in a beautiful venue for an audience that is highly appreciative of the sport of dressage.”

The Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic includes USEF High Performance qualifying competition for: the 2006 World Equestrian Games Selection Trials/ USEF National Grand Prix Championship; the 2006 USEF National Intermediaire I Championship; and a Region 3 non-designated qualifier for the North American Young Riders Championships (NAYRC).

For more information on the USEF National Grand Prix Freestyle Championship / U.S. League Final and the Zada Enterprises, LLC WEF Dressage Classic CDI3* CDIY, visit: http://www.stadiumjumping.com/, or call 561-793-JUMP.

 

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