US Dressage Festival of Champions Set for Gladstone, New Jersey Sept. 8-11

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LEXINGTON, Kentucky, May 18–The U.S. Equestrian Federation Dressage Festival of Champions which will also serve as the selection trials for the American team for the Pan American Games will be held in Gladstone, New Jersey, Sept. 8-11.

Qualified horse and rider combinations will compete for national dressage championships at Grand Prix, Intermediaire I, Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup,’ Young Rider and Junior levels at the U.S. Equestrian Team Foundation headquarters outside New York City. For the first time, a National Pony Dressage Championship will also be staged.

The Intermediaire I championship will serve as the selection trial for the Pan Am Games, held once every four years at small tour. They are scheduled for Guadalajara, Mexico Oct. 16-29. The U.S. has won the last three straight team titles, 2007, 2003 and 1999 which have been qualifiers for the Olympics the following year. The U.S. team is already qualified for London in 2012 through its fourth place finish at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky in 2010.

This is the last time small tour will be used to qualify for the Olympics, but arrangements for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games are still being worked out.