New York Central Park Horse Show to Return With Bigger Dressage Component

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Central Park Horse in 2014.
Central Park Horse in 2014.

NEW YORK, July 17, 2015–The Rolex Central Park Horse Show will return to New York City with expanded dressage performances at the end of September after the inaugural event in 2014 won plaudits as a spectacular to raise the profile of horse sports around the world.

Mark Bellissimo, who heads the organization that stages the event, announced the launch of United States Open for dressage, jumping and other disciplines with a U.S. Open $75,000 Grand Prix Freestyle under lights on Saturday night and presented by the Axel Johnson Group as a headline event during the show Sept. 23-27. A U.S. Open Dressage Grand Prix is scheduled for Friday afternoon.

Isabell Werth who starred in the 2014 dressage invitational has indicated she wants to return and America’s Steffen Peters who gave a demonstration with his Olympic, World Games and World Cup mount, Ravel, last year may bring the talented eight-year-old Rosamunde for the competition.

Donald Trump, a Republican presidential candidate who made controversial remarks about Mexican immigrants that has led to some high profile companies, including NBC Universal television network and events terminating business relationships, was not mentioned in the news release and neither was the arena named for him. He was praised for his support of the inaugural horse show and his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach hosts an annual jumper Grand Prix during the Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida.

The $210,000 U.S. Open CSI3* Grand Prix, taking place the evening of Friday, Sept. 25, will air on NBC Sports Network in prime time Sunday, Sept. 27.

The expanded schedule includes Arabian horse, Under 25 US Open Jumper Grand Prix, Hunter competitions including the inaugural Duchossois Cup, a Puissance and the two dressage competitions.

“The Rolex Central Park Horse Show made a spectacular debut and is poised for an even greater year as we introduce the US Open for Equestrian Sport. We will be welcoming more equestrian disciplines to the heart of New York City as a showcase for equestrian sport in the United States,” said Mark Bellissimo CEO of the International Equestrian Group that is organizing the event.

“Showcasing the many facets of the horse world in the heart of New York City is an exciting endeavor for us and the equine industry in general. We are also very proud to continue our relationship with NBC Sports and we will be broadcasting the event to horse enthusiasts across the nation and the world.”

The schedule:

Wednesday, Sept. 23–6 PM – U.S. Open Arabian Horse Show
Thursday, Sept. 24–6:30 PM -U.S. Open $25,000 U25 Grand Prix
8:00 PM–U.S. Open (Round 1) $34,000 FEI Speed Class presented by Canadian Pacific

Friday, Sept. 25–1:30 PM – U.S. Open Dressage Grand Prix
6:30 PM – $5,000 Junior/Amateur 1.20m Class presented by Price Waterhouse
8 PM – U.S. Open $210,000 (Final) FEI 3* Grand Prix presented by Rolex

Saturday, Sept. 26–10:00 AM – Matinee Performance
1:30 PM – U.S. Open Hunters – Duchossois Cup with Pony, Jr/Amateur, and Professional Classes.
6:30 PM – U.S. Open Puissance $50,000
8:00 PM – U.S. Open $75,000 Dressage Freestyle presented by Axel Johnson Group

Sunday, Sep 27
10:00 AM – Matinee Performance
1:30 PM – Special Equestrian Event (TBA) presented by Chronicle of the Horse