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It's Dressage Week at the Del Mar National Horse Show

Released: April 23, 2018

Photos are available here.

DEL MAR, Calif. (April 23, 2018) – Del Mar National’s Dressage week is among the most prestigious and exciting shows of its kind in the country, featuring many Olympic, international and national champions competing for top honors.

Dressage Week runs April 26-29 at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. The renowned “Evening of Musical Freestyles,” an event known as “ballet on horseback” is the highlight of the week, happening at 7 p.m. April 28.

The 73rd annual Del Mar National Horse Show kicked off its three-week run on April 17 with Western Week. The iconic horse show brings together many of the most accomplished, athletic and revered horse and rider teams to compete for coveted trophies. Nearly 1,500 horses from various countries are competing in the three-week show for more than $300,000 in cash and prizes.

Much of the Del Mar National Horse Show is free for spectators. The featured Saturday evening events including “Evening of Musical Freestyles,” require a paid admission, and tickets are available for both reserved seating and gourmet dinner VIP boxes online at delmarnational.com.

The Del Mar National Horse Show wraps up May 1-6 with Hunter/Jumper Week.

All About Dressage Week

What is Dressage? It is the most disciplined of equestrian sports. Its appeal lies in a combination of athletic strength and elegant grace, and the highly-developed and mostly unseen communication between horse and rider. The word dressage is derived from the French “dresser” meaning “to train.” It has come to denote a competitive sport and a system of training. As a competition discipline it is a presentation of strength and elegance between the rider and horse.

Revered Competition: Dressage Week is both a national and international competition, offering official qualifying events for many USEF finals, including the National Grand Prix and Intermediaire, Young Adult, Young and Developing Horse Championships and the National Junior/Young Rider Championships. Designated a 2019 World Cup Qualifying event, the Del Mar National is one of the most highly-regarded dressage competitions in the country and attracts the world’s finest horses and riders including Steffen Peters, Guenter Siedel and Jan Ebeling. Many riders rank the Del Mar National at the top of their list of favorite venues to compete at, which is what brings them back year after year.

North County Haute Dogue Contest and Yappy Hour, April 26: The contest and party, from 5-7 p.m., is open to the public and will include entertainment by local favorite Bob Peace and fun contests including: Pet Fashion, Canine Grand Prix Hornblower Jump, Best Pet Trick and Mini-Me Pooch and People Look-Alike contest. There will also be a Dapper and Diva Haute Dogue on the Catwalk fashion show.

“The Evening of Musical Freestyles” presented by Mossey Automotive at 7 p.m. April 28, is Dressage Week’s highlight event. With a format similar to figure skating or gymnastic floor exercises, musical freestyles are intricately planned competitions set to music. Specific movements must be demonstrated, but sequence and the inclusion of elements with added degrees of difficulty is left up to the riders and coaches. Music is chosen to highlight the personality of the individual athletes. It is a World Cup qualifying event, showcasing a presentation of strength and elegance between the rider and horse. This is sure to be a special evening as we join Steffen Peters celebrating the retirement of one of his famous equine partners, Legolas 92, the Olympic and Pan American medal winner owned by Akiko Yamazaki and Four Winds Farm.

Preceding “The Evening of Musical Freestyles,” visitors can explore a fun interactive exhibit from 5-7 p.m. called USEF Meet the Breeds Expo presented by MD Barnmaster. Whether you grew up in the equestrian arena or have simply dreamed about owning or riding a horse, the Meet the Breeds Expo offers a fun chance to sit in different types of saddles, get an up-close and personal view of different breeds of horses and even take selfies with your favorite four-legged show-stoppers.

WHEN: April 26-29 is Dressage Week; the Del Mar National continues through May 6
WHERE: Del Mar Fairgrounds - Del Mar Arena, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar
FEATURED EVENT: “Evening of Musical Freestyles” at 7 p.m. April 28
COST: Most events throughout the week are free for spectators except for featured Saturday evening events including “Evening of Musical Freestyles.” Tickets are now available for both reserved seating and gourmet dinner VIP boxes online at delmarnational.com.
NEXT UP: Hunter/Jumper Week, May 1-6 featuring the $25,000 Surfside Grand Prix presented by Competitive Equestrian at 1:45 p.m. May 4 and the $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar at 6:45 p.m. May 5, presented by Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty Equestrian Division.

FOR MORE INFO: 858-792-4288; delmarnational.com

About the Del Mar National Horse Show

The three-week Del Mar National, happening April 17-May 6, showcases equestrian events that includes the distinct disciplines of Western, Dressage and Hunter/Jumper in world-class competitions. Now in its 73rd year, the Del Mar National has earned international recognition as one of the most prestigious and historic events of its kind in the nation. Nearly 1,500 horse and rider teams compete to win $300,000 in cash and prizes. This is one of the few remaining horse shows offering multiple traveling perpetual trophies and individual class trophies and ribbons, which attracts internationally-acclaimed horses and riders year after year. The Del Mar National Horse Show is produced by the 22nd District Agricultural Association, a State of California agency which owns and operates the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Find more information at delmarnational.com.

For more information, please contact:
Annie Pierce
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