Monday, May 6, 2013

2013 Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event

Looking at the Kentucky Horse Park’s schedule of events, there’s always something going on at the park; shows, demonstrations, and competitions of all shapes and kinds, not the least of which is the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event – easily one of my favorite events of the year!

Once again, Purina Animal Nutrition was proud to be a sponsor of the annual event. To kick of the festivities, we were treated to a course walk by Olympian and Purina Ambassador Kyle Carter on Thursday afternoon. Kyle took us on a tour of the cross country course with great insights into the strategy and approaches for each obstacle. While some obstacles have a few options to take depending on the rider’s objective, all of them are a challenge in and of themselves. Just walking the course is a huge effort so you can imagine what that translates to on horseback.

I’m not an eventer myself, but I’ve developed an immense amount of respect for what it takes to get a horse to compete at this level.  To go from calm focus on dressage day to watching them gallop through the lanes on cross country day is certainly a sight to behold only to see them come back on Sunday and jump through the stadium course with what looks like ease. Of course there’s nothing easy about a four star level event and it takes a monumental team effort to get there.

We like to consider ourselves a part of many teams for both professionals and amateur horse owners all across the country. A few of the new items in our tool box to help horse owners find their way to success were on display at the Purina Animal Nutrition Hydration Station in the sponsor village.

Our new line of supplements offers an innovative way to address several challenges including joint health, hydration and daily salt intake. We had a great four days talking with customers and showing these products in action; for those of you who couldn’t attend, you can find more information on our new line at  or stop by the Purina booth at your next horse related event.

Saturday was a crowd favorite as usual with fans braving the on and off rain to stake out spots for tailgating and spectating. Every horse / rider pair entered was impressive and the show of athleticism never disappointed. If you’re ever looking for something horse-related to do in April, I can’t recommend Rolex enough!

Sunday’s stadium jumping brings the event to a close; the Rolex leaderboard always has some close competition to keep an eye out for in the final round. This year Andrew Nicholson (NZL) came well prepared and well-armed; he was 2nd with one horse after the first day of dressage then lead through cross country and ended first and third on his two mounts for an impressive finish to the international competition.

Once we wrapped in Lexington, I headed north to OH for a film shoot with NRHA Hall of Fame rider and Purina Ambassador Shawn Flarida.

We spent some time talking with Shawn and interviewing him for a few upcoming videos and got the full tour of a first class reining facility. Shawn is on his way to the $5 million dollar mark so keep your eye out for some exciting news from his camp in the near future.

We’ll be gearing up for our next run of events this summer, hope to see you there and I hope everyone is warming up and getting to enjoy some time outside with their horses – until next time!

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