All posts by Associate Editor

Dual-Classic Winner Silver Charm Celebrates 25th Birthday at Old Friends

Silver Charm at Old Friends (Photo: Laura Battles ©)

GEORGETOWN, KY – FEBRUARY 14, 2019 – Dual-classic winner and racing Hall of Famer Silver Charm will turn 25 on Friday February 22nd at Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement facility in Georgetown, KY.

The farm is inviting fans to help celebrate this milestone with a birthday-card contest and an open-house Birthday Bash.

Fans are invited to submit an original greeting card, created on paper or in a digital format, wishing Silver Charm a happy 25th. Deadline for card entries is Thursday Feb. 21.

The best design — judged by a panel of Old Friends staff — will receive a matted and autographed color photo of Silver Charm by Eclipse Award-winning photographer Barbara Livingston.

Card entries will be displayed and the winner announced at Silver Charm’s birthday party at Old Friends’ Georgetown farm, located at 1841 Paynes Depot Rd, on Friday February 22nd from 1 pm – 4 pm.

Guests will receive gift bags (while supplies last), fun giveaways, and enjoy a “soup-of-the-day” lunch, with piping hot selections from several local eateries, including:

Local Feed, the seasonal kitchen and craft bar located in Georgetown. Local Feed is known for its farm-to-table concept, great bourbon list, and craft cocktails.

Josie’s, a comfortable, inviting neighborhood cafe in Georgetown from the owners of the Merrick Inn. Josie’s offers “the best breakfast in town,” as well as an extensive lunch and dinner menu of tasty southern fare.

Galvin’s, the family owned sports bar and bistro in downtown Georgetown, offers a vast menu of favorites as well as 40 taps featuring Kentucky’s local brews.

Wallace Station, the homey pit stop in Versailles from renowned chef Ouita Michels. Wallace Station features an irresistible menu of homemade soups, sandwiches, salads, and bakery items.

Silver Charm won the 1997 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes and the 1998 Dubai World Cup. He was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 2007, and stood stud at Three Chimney’s farm before relocating to Japan.

Silver Charm was repatriated to the United States and pensioned at Old Friends in 2014.

The Silver Charm Birthday party is free and open to the public.

For more information, please call (502) 863-1775 or visit the website at

MEDIA CONTACT: Cynthia Grisolia, (347) 423-7322,; Michael Blowen (502) 863-1775,

US Equestrian Launches Pilot Phase of U.S. Dressage Coaches Support Network

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian (USEF) has announced the launch of a new U.S. Dressage Coaches Support Network that will gain momentum in 2019. Still in its infancy, the aim of this pilot program is to establish a group of like-minded dressage trainers to support U.S. dressage program events and initiatives. Select dressage trainers will work in concert with and support the current U.S. dressage coaching staff of Technical Advisor and Chef d’Equipe Debbie McDonald, Development Coach Charlotte Bredahl, Youth Coach George Williams, and Young Horse Coach Christine Traurig.

The immediate initiatives of the Coaches Support Network will seek to make U.S. dressage programs more accessible, working with the U.S. dressage coaching staff to seek out new and developing talent, provide support at competitions, offer additional training opportunities to athletes, and build comradery amongst the U.S. dressage community. Willy Arts (Hanford, Calif.), Allison Brock (Wellington, Fla.), Ashley Holzer (Wellington, Fla.), and Guenter Seidel (Cardiff, Calif.) have been identified as the first trainers to be selected to the network.

“We are very excited to be bringing on a network of trainers and coaches that already exist in our own U.S. dressage community,” said McDonald. “Bringing in dressage coaches with similar goals to our program can only help us to further reach out to and develop the pool of talent that we know exists among our athletes and horses.”

More information will follow in the coming months regarding the U.S. Dressage Coaches Support Network and other initiatives designed to continue to build depth in the dressage programs in the U.S.

For more information on the U.S. Dressage Coaches Support Network, please contact Hallye Griffin, Managing Director of Dressage at

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Ibrahim Barazi and Omnia Incipit Take $36,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 6

Ibrahim Barazi and Omnia Incipit. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 14, 2019 – The sixth week of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) features international jumpers at Equestrian Village and the hunters on center stage in the International Arena at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. On Thursday, February 14, Ibrahim Barazi (JOR) took the top spot in the $36,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 6.

In the $36,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 6, 61 entries went to post for a chance at prize money and the opportunity to compete in Friday night’s $134,000 CabanaCoast Grand Prix CSI 3*. There were 13 clear in the first round, and 10 of those chose to return for the jump-off.

Professionals Dominate Green and Young Horse Divisions on the Second Day of WCHR Hunter Week

Scott Stewart swept both High Performance divisions during the start of WCHR Hunter Week at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival. The Antares High Performance Working Hunters kicked off competition Thursday morning in the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Field where Stewart and Dr. Betsee Parker’s 11-year-old Warmblood gelding (Coriano), Cameo, won three out of four classes for the championship. Stewart then returned to the ring with Parker’s Private Life, an eight-year-old KWPN gelding by Verdi x Pinot Rosso). The pair wrapped up the High Performance Conformation Hunters with two firsts, a second, a third, and a fourth for the champion ribbon. Stewart continued his day by taking Champion in the Green Conformation Hunter with Scandal, a five-year-old Oldenburg gelding (Scandix x Ramira Gracia) owned by Gochman Sport Horses LLC. Reserve Champion went to Kelley Farmer and Me Too, a six-year-old mare owned by Larry Glefke.

For full results, please visit

Jacksonville Equestrian Center Hosts Special Olympics and Dressage Event

Jacksonville, FL (February 14, 2019) – The Jacksonville Equestrian Center has a busy weekend planned as it welcomes 3 events to the facility. The Area 5 Special Olympics and First Coast Classical Dressage Showposium return for their 3rd and 5th years, respectively, with this weekend being the Heartland Farms Obstacle Course Competition’s first event at the Equestrian Center.

The 2019 Special Olympics Florida Area 5 Equestrian Championships will bring over 20 athletes to compete on Saturday. The event, which will begin at 2:00 pm and conclude around 5:00 pm, is part of the Special Olympics program, which provides an opportunity for children and adults with disabilities to compete in a wide variety of sports including figure skating, swimming, Judo, and equestrian. Area 5 consists of 7 FL counties, with the largest participating counties being Duval and Clay. The athletes, who rise above their disabilities to display skill, determination, and passion for their sports, compete in English and Western Equitation, Working Trail, and Showmanship. The top 5-6 placing equestrians will be eligible to compete at the Special Olympics State Equestrian Championships in Weirsdale, Florida in March of this year. This event welcomes and encourages spectators to come watch the competition and cheer on their enthusiastic participants. The Special Olympics has a wide array of volunteer opportunities available. Please contact Kate Breese for additional information on how you can get involved: 352.255.8275,

The First Coast Classical Dressage Society hosts its first of 5 annual “Showposiums” at the JEC on Saturday and Sunday. This unique schooling show format has been recognized for its focus on education, engagement, and progression of horse and rider. Each Showposium weekend features lessons on Friday with the weekend’s Judge and test rides with verbal instruction and feedback on Saturday and Sunday.

Last, but certainly not least, is the Heartland Farms Obstacle Course Competition. This event, which was previously held at the Clay County Fairgrounds, is in its 10th year of competition. Nearly 100 horses will compete over a wide variety of challenging scenarios ranging from natural water obstacles to manmade situations like curtains, blow ups, and gates, which are potentially spooky or scary situations to horses. The horses are judged on a scale of 0-10 on how they maneuver the obstacles and a perfect score is awarded when they proceed without hesitation.

All three of these events welcome spectators free of charge and leashed dogs are permitted.

For up to date event information, follow the JEC on Instagram, Twitter & Facebook and visit

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

The Biggest Races That You Can Bet On – The Top Tracks in the World

Find out about the biggest horse races that you can bet on and the top tracks in the world. Bet on the Dubai World Cup, Kentucky Derby, Grand National, and more.

The Biggest Horse Races in the World to Bet On

Horse racing fans love to place bets and watch the horses battle it out to see who will be first to pass the post. There are races held every single day of the year so there are always bets to be placed to. In this post, we are going to talk about horse racing betting as well as providing some information on the biggest horse racing in the world.

Betting on Horse Racing Events

One of the biggest advantages that horse racing has over other sports betting events is the odds. They are set based on the way the public wagers and this can often lead to finding great odds on horses that are underestimated. When you find these, you find the key to winning big on horse racing. In other sports betting categories such as football, tennis, and rugby, the lines are made by the bookmakers who tend to make them as close as they can. If you’re an avid sports betting fan, then maybe you want to try something new? Horse racing is a great option and there are so many opportunities and betting markets to avail of.

The Biggest Horse Races in the World to Bet On

The biggest horse races in the world are major events that extend over a full weekend and for many punters, these are crucial dates in their gambling calendars. Dubai hosts one of the biggest horse racing events every year despite the fact that gambling of any other sport is banned in Islam.

If horse racing fascinates you, check out this beginner’s guide to horse race betting and then look for the below richest horse racing events in the world to place your bet.

The Preakness Stakes

This race began back in 1873 and is a 1.2 mile race with a prize of $1.5 million up for grabs. It takes place on the 3rd Saturday of May in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. It is the second leg of the US Triple Crown of Thoroughbred racing. The winning horse gets a thick blanket of yellow flowers hung around its neck and the race is commonly called The Run for The Black Eyed Susan. The race usually ends within two minutes and it takes place on a 1.2 mile dirt track. To qualify for this race, each horse must be at least three years old and a thoroughbred. This is the second most attended horse racing event in the USA.

Belmont Stakes

This race started back in 1867 and is the 3rd and final leg of the US Triple Crown. It is one of the oldest horse racing events in the USA. The track is 1.5 miles and the race is usually finished in under 2 minutes. It takes place on the 2nd Saturday of June every year with a prize of $1.5 million. The track is located in Belmont Park, New York. The race is a Grade 1 thoroughbred horse race and all horses must be 3 years old or more. This is termed as The Test of the Champions and often referred to as The Run for the Carnations because the winner is draped in a blanket of white carnations. It is the 3rd most well-attended race in North America.

The Grand National

This racing event started back in 1839 and the race is 4 miles long and generally takes 10 minutes to finish. The prize is $1.6 million, and it takes place on the first or second Saturday in April every year. The race track is located in Aintree, Liverpool and is perhaps the most challenging horse race. The race is set up as a steeplechase which means that the horses have to jump 30 different fences over 4 miles which involves 2 laps. It is the most valuable jump race in Europe and is well attended by members of the Royal Family and other international celebrities. The event is spread out over 3 days.

The Kentucky Derby

Started in 1875 this is one of the most popular sporting events in the world. It is held on the first Saturday of May with a prize of $2 million. It takes place in Louisville, Kentucky, USA. The Derby is the most prestigious leg of the US Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing. The racetrack is 1.25 miles and the race is finished in under 2 minutes. The winning horse is draped in a garland made up of hundreds of roses.

Paris Prix De L’Arc de Triomphe

This race began in 1920 and takes place on the first Sunday of October in Seine, Paris. It is one of the most prestigious events in the world of horse racing and is held at the Longchamp Racecourse. This is a flat race for thoroughbred horses on a track that measures 1.5 miles. The winning prize is $5.4 million making this the richest turf race in the world. The event is held over an entire weekend and features 7 Grade 1 races and 4 Grade 2 races. It also features the Arabian World Cup a one-off race open only to Arabian horses.

The Breeders’ Cup

Started in 1984, this race has a $28 million total prize fun with $1.6 million per race. It is held in various cities in the USA in late October/early November. It is a series of Grade 1 American Thoroughbred horse races spread over 2 days. A total of 13 races are held and each of the races awards winners with 4 different trophies.

Dubai World Cup

This Dubai World Cup race started in 1996 and is held in late March in Dubai. The prize is $10 million which makes it one of the most anticipated races. It’s difficult to know what to expect from the Dubai World Cup and whether the race or the revelry off the track will be the mainstay of the event.

Samuel Parot Scores Opening Day Victory at Week 6 of WEF

Samuel Parot and Atlantis. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 13, 2019 – The sixth week of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) kicked off on Wednesday, February 13, at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL. Riding to the top spot of the $36,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m was Samuel Parot (CHI) and his own Atlantis.

Due to inclement weather, jumper competition at Equestrian Village was moved from the grass derby field to the sand Global International Arena on Wednesday. There were 41 entries in the $36,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m, which was held in a modified power and speed format, where all riders continue on to the second speed phase of the course. This week’s course designer for FEI jumper classes is Ana Catalina Harris (MEX).

Parot went first in the class on Thriller P, and he was able to find the path to victory with his second mount in the class, Atlantis. They sped around the second phase of the course in just 19.84 seconds, the only combination to break the 20-second barrier.

For full results, please visit

Opportunity Knocks with FEI World Championships 2022 Bid Process

Lausanne (SUI), 13 February 2019 — While 2019 is set to be another busy year for international horse sport, potential bidders are already vying for the possibility of hosting FEI World Championships in 2022. The FEI has already received some exciting expressions of interest for 2022, with more submissions expected before the 28 February deadline.

“I am delighted to say that the level of interest and the quality of submissions to host FEI World Championships in 2022 has been very high so far, and we are confident that we will have an interesting pool of candidates to choose from when the allocations are made later this year,” FEI President Ingmar De Vos said.

The FEI initiated a bid process for individual FEI World Championships in all disciplines for 2022 at the FEI General Assembly in Manama (BRN) in November last year.

The FEI President stressed at the time that this does not necessarily mean the end of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ concept, and bids to host the full seven disciplines together for 2022 will be considered.

The FEI Board unanimously approved the opening of a bidding process for individual world championships in all disciplines for 2022, with preference being given to multi-discipline bids. The Board also agreed that ideally the FEI World Championships for Dressage and Para Dressage should be combined. The world championships for 2022 in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines will serve as qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Games.

“Equestrian sport has become increasingly globalised, but there are relatively few countries that have the capacity to host world championships in all disciplines simultaneously,” the FEI President said.

“The new bid process allows for the sustainable and cost-effective use of existing equestrian sports facilities and for the FEI to partner with National Federations that may have hesitated putting forward multi-discipline bids in the past. The door is now open for these Federations to consider submitting an expression of interest for an individual world championship in the discipline of their choice.”

In a key change to the bid process, the FEI will host an interactive workshop at the end of March in Lausanne for all National Federations/Organising Committees that submit an expression of interest in the 2022 World Championships.

“This interactive workshop is a key factor in ensuring that we adequately convey the structure, opportunities and minimum requirements of hosting the FEI World Championships 2022. By working more closely with the National Federations and Organising Committees from the very start of the process, we can ensure a unified vision and establish an achievable set of goals to work towards,” Ingmar De Vos said.

There are over 4,000 FEI events organised world-wide annually across the seven disciplines of Jumping, Dressage & Para-Dressage, Eventing, Endurance, Driving & Para-Driving, Vaulting, and Reining, with world championships in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines held every four years and every second year for non-Olympic disciplines.


  • 28 February 2019 – Deadline for receipt of non-binding expressions of interest to host one or multiple FEI World Championship(s) 2022. All information can be accessed here.
  • 26 March 2019 – Workshop to be held in Lausanne after which interested bidders will be invited to submit a formal bid, outlining their plans and visions for hosting FEI World Championships in 2022.
  • November 2019 – Allocation of FEI World Championships at the in-person Board meeting at the FEI General Assembly in Moscow (RUS). All bids will be fully evaluated over the Spring/Summer of 2019.

Questions concerning the bid process can be sent to

FEI contacts:

Grania Willis
Director Communications
+ 41 78 750 61 41

Vanessa Martin Randin
Senior Manager, Media Relations & Communications
+ 41 78 750 61 73

New Series Bursts into Action at Wellington, Florida

Niels Bruynseels and Gancia de Muze. (FEI/Lukasz Kowalski)

All roads lead to Barcelona where final team ticket to Tokyo will be up for grabs

Deeridge Farm in Wellington (USA) is already buzzing with anticipation ahead of the first major team clash of the year when the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ 2019 series gets underway at the charming Florida venue Sunday (17 February). And the host nation is putting down a marker right away, calling up three of the four riders who claimed the team Jumping title in that unforgettable finale at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 in Tryon (USA) last September.

Wellington stages the first of the three legs in the North America, Central America, and Caribbean League that will continue at Coapexpan (MEX) and Langley (CAN) in May. A total of six countries – Canada, Colombia, Ireland, Israel, Mexico, and USA – will line out this weekend, but only Canada, Mexico, and USA will be eligible for points in this regional leg towards qualification for the prestigious Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ 2019 Final in Barcelona (ESP) in October.

The star-studded US line-up includes team world champions McLain Ward, Laura Kraut, and Devin Ryan along with two-time Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ champion Beezie Madden and the legend that is Margie Engle.

So the rest will have to put in a super-human effort to keep them in check, with Canada fielding a side that includes Tiffany Foster and the on-form Mario Deslauriers, and Colombia naming Ilan Bluman and the experienced Teran Tafur in their selection.

At just 21 years of age, Cormac Hanley will be making his Senior Nations Cup debut on the strong Irish team, while Eugenia Garza Perez and Enrique Gonzalez will lend plenty of weight to the Mexican challenge. The most colourful side of all, however, is likely to be the Israeli team that includes the effervescent Danielle Goldstein who set the arena alight every time she appeared at the WEG in Tryon and who finished joint-third on that super-tough last day of competition, and 20th overall in the final individual rankings, with her brilliant mare, Lizziemary.

Wellington will be swiftly followed by the single Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ 2019 qualifier for the Middle East region in Abu Dhabi (UAE) on Saturday 23 February from which two teams will earn a place at the Final, while the seven-leg Europe Division 1 series will get underway at La Baule (FRA) on Friday 17 May.

Team Austria has been promoted to Division 1 after winning last year’s Division 2 Final staged in Budapest (HUN) and so joins France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, and the 2018 champions from Belgium in this tough 10-nation contest. The top seven teams will make the cut to the series decider in October, but there’s even more hanging in the balance with the last remaining Olympic qualifying spot also on offer. It’s bound to be a mightier battle than ever in Barcelona this year.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
+41 78 750 61 46

Brenin: The Story behind the Roster

Photo: Jeanne@Genie Images.

When Darcie Grote receives her copy of US Equestrian magazine’s annual Horse of the Year issue in mid-April, she’ll have an extra reason to celebrate her horse’s year-end championship. Brenin — or Nickie, as he’s known around the barn — lost an eye in January 2018 to a cancer so rare that he’s the only horse ever documented as having it. But that didn’t stop him from having a successful season, and Grote says the experience has only strengthened their partnership and her respect for his stoicism and big heart.

Read more here.

© 2019 US Equestrian Federation

Hunter Holloway and Dublin Dominate Turf Tour Grand Prix

Hunter Holloway and Dublin (Photo courtesy of Romeo Ghete)

Wellington, FL (February 11, 2019) – A challenging course laid out by Olympic and World Cup course designer Leopoldo Palacios asked a number of questions of Turf Tour competitors during this week’s Grand Prix. With 3 first round clears and only 2 double clear efforts in a field that included a variety of top international competitors, Hunter Holloway and Hays Investment Corp’s Dublin emerged victorious.

Holloway and Dublin were an early combination to tackle the course, finishing on a jump-off time of 38.151, which proved unbeatable. The only other double clear effort, Kim Farlinger and Kindle Hill Affiliates’ Maharees Rock, took a leisurely pace late in the day in the jump off to finish on 40.495. Third went to Chilean Olympian Samuel Perot aboard his own Bailarina, with 8 faults and a jump off time of 38.998. Palacios’ course included a number of bending lines, a triple bar, interesting roll backs, and options for distances and gallops to present each horse and rider with a challenge. Designed to act as a catalyst for the sport’s growth and development by providing such challenges to up and coming riders and horses, the Turf Tour’s avant-garde experience was on full display.

For full schedules and prizelists, visit

Media contact:
PR and Marketing
Holly Johnson
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
+1 954 205 7992