Dressage at Devon, One of Most Popular Shows in USA, Canceled Due to Covid-19

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Saturday night Grand Prix Freestyle at Dressage at Devon in 2003. File photo. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

May 20, 2020

Dressage at Devon, one of the most popular competitions in the United States since its founding 45 years ago, has been canceled for this year because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Lori Kaminski, president/CEO announced Wednesday.

Dressage at Devon in the heart of Main Line Philadelphia planned to host a World Cup qualifier, CDI3* as well as the full range of international levels and perhaps the largest breed show in the world Sept. 22-27.

The event typically draws thousands of paying spectators, mostly from surrounding suburbs, but has been overshadowed in recent years by the growth of the winter-long Global Dressage Festival of seven CDIs in Wellington, Florida.

Canadian riders and horses heading to Florida for the winter circuit have been a significant presence at Devon.

Lori said of the decision by the board of directors as difficult “but the uncertainty of the time has made it necessary to ensure the safety of our competitors, vendors, sponsors, spectators and our wonderful volunteers.

“Operating an international competition at a venue such as Devon is a large undertaking. Our team has worked diligently to review the equestrian governing bodies’ requirements to hold a competition, as well as federal, state and local regulations. It became clear that holding the competition this September, while ensuring everyone’s safety, is not realistic.

“Additionally, the uncertainty of the environment has had a significant impact on our suppliers, vendors, competitors, volunteers and sponsors, making it difficult for them to plan and commit their resources and their support which is crucial to the success our show.”

Since competitions were essentially suspended by both the U.S. and international equestrian federations in mid-March 11 of 15 CDIs scheduled for the United States–including the World Cup Final in Las Vegas in mid-April and the North American Youth Championships in Traverse City, Michigan Aug. 4-9–have been canceled so far.

World Cup events in 2020 remain on the calendar for Saugerties, New York Sept. 16-21, Tryon, North Carolina in October and at Temecula and Thermal, California in November.