Full Grand Prix Teams As Well As Mixed Big & Small Tour Pairs, More Prize Money for Global Nations Cup

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The 2015 Nations Cup medals podium with United States gold, Canada 1 silver and Canada 2 bronze. © 2015 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
The 2015 Nations Cup medals podium with United States gold, Canada 1 silver and Canada 2 bronze. © 2015 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

WELLINGTON, Florida, Jan. 20, 2016–WELLINGTON, Florida, Jan. 20, 2016–Full Grand Prix teams in addition to squads including Small Tour combinations and separate Big and Small Tour individual titles along with more prize money are features of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival Nations Cup scheduled for the end of March.

More prize money is also being added for other Global events to boost the total for the seven-CDI series over 12 weeks to well above $700,000, making it by far the richest dressage circuit in the world.

Changes to the CDIO3* Nations Cup format as approved by the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) are more steps by the organizers of the Global events to work with countries in the Western Hemisphere to elevate the level of competition at the Pan American Games held once every four years. Up to 2011 the Pan Ams were all Prix St. Georges/Intermediate 1. Changes implemented in the format at Global after that led to a format of mixed Big and Small Tour combinations leading up to the continental championships in Toronto last summer.

Beginning with the Nations Cup scheduled for Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s Stadium complex Mar. 29-April 3, teams of up to four combinations can be all Grand Prix or a mix of both levels. Teams made up of only Small Tour combinations may be permitted if there are fewer than 40 combinations with at least one Grand Prix horse on a team. Three scores will count.

The Nations Cup that was launched by Global as the first non-championship team competition in the Western Hemisphere four years ago will be decided by both Grand Prix and Special and Prix St. Georges and Intermediate I.

As with recent Nations Cups that included Big Tour combinations, a bonus of 1.5 per cent will be added for Grand Prix horses. The bonus means that a team with at least three Grand Prix combinations can earn 4.5 per cent for both the Grand and the Special for a total of nine per cent.

The United States and Canada both have enough combinations to start at least two complete Grand Prix teams and other countries could also start full Big Tour teams for the first time.

Team medals will be awarded in the order of finish even if a nations fields two teams as did both Canada and the United States in previous years though only the declared team from each country will count for FEI Nations Cup standings.

As a result of feedback from the Pan Ams in Toronto, two set of medals for the individual competitions will be awarded–one for Intermediate Freestyle and one for Grand Prix Freestyle.

Prize money for the Nations Cup has been raised to a total of $40,000 from $35,000 in 2015.

Wellington kicks off the first official Nations Cup series after three years as a “test” event and then moves to Europe–CDIO3* at Odense, Denmark May 12-15; CDIO5* in Compiègne, France May 19-22; CDIO5* Rotterdam, Netherlands June 22-26; CDIO5* Falsterbo, Sweden July 7-10; CDIO5* Aachen, Germany July 13-17, and CDIO3* Hickstead, Great Britain July 28-31.

As well as the increase in prize money for the Nations Cup, additions to other events this winter has boosted the total to $703,800.

The amounts are: CDI-W Jan. 14-17 $55,100; CDI-W Jan. 27-31 $56,100; CDI-5*/3* Feb. 10-14 $231,600; CDI-W Feb. 24-28 $56,100; CDI-W Mar. 3-6 $62,300; CDI4*/3* Mar. 16-20 $152,800, and CDIO3*/CDI3* $72,800.

The Florida International Youth Dressage Championship has also received a prize money increase to #12,000 that is included in the total.