March 6, 2015
By Julie Montanaro
It's like a triathlon on horseback and the first leg of the Red Hills Horse Trials is in the books.
More than 20,000 people are expected to watch the competition this weekend and Mike promises it'll be sunnier and warmer just in time.
Buck Davidson is considered the top ranked rider in the country. He's the 2014 USEA rider of the year.
We caught up with him as he left the dressage ring.
"It keeps getting bigger and better and more exciting," Davidson said.
Davidson is one of more than 200 riders here to compete in the first Adequan USEA Gold Cup series event of the year.
Natalie Brantley and her children got a front row seat, even if this unpredictable March weather meant they had to wear hats and gloves for it.
"I love watching just the beauty of it all and how they go out there and do their best," Molly-Cathering Brantley said.
Some of the biggest names in equestrian competition are here, but there are some home town stars in the saddle too including an 18 year old from Tallahassee and a 13 year old from Bainbridge.
"I have a lot of home team cheering me on this weekend," said Parker Miller of Bainbridge, Georgia. "It's an honor."
"Once you are out there in the ring, you are focused," Briggs Surrat of Tallahassee said. "They all phase out when you are just doing your thing."
The dressage competition is in the books. The cross country competition will begin bright and early Saturday morning.
Most riders will tell you it's that gallop through the oaks and pines that makes Red Hills so special.
"This is way more fun. You get to run and jump. It's just you and your horse and tackling some tough stuff. Your adrenaline gets pumping and that's why we do it," competitor Elisa Wallace said.
Tomorrow is the cross country competition and Sunday is stadium jumping. Both start at 8 a.m.
Tickets are 15 dollars a day. Kids under 12 are free.
For more information:
By: Symone Davis
March 5th, 2015
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Tallahassee is gearing up for the 18th annual Red Hills International Horse Trials also better known as the horse triathlon.
"It's really impressive watching those big strong animals galloping at speed,” said cross-country course designer Hugh Lochore.
It's where 240 horses and their riders will compete in three different categories: dressage, cross country, and stadium jumping.
Those planning to attend can expect some exciting new features.
"The big new inclusions are a big fancy new main arena on top of the hill. And for the very first time people who can't attend the event won't have to miss out on any of the action,” said Lochore.
"We're going to be live streaming the show jumping portion on Sunday and they will be filming the cross country on Saturday,” said co-organizer Marvin Mayer.
Aside from the competition, dozens of vendors will be set up throughout the area.
Event organizers say the success of the horse trials goes beyond just the horses; it's truly a community effort.
"Between the city, the county, the Water Management District, the Economic Development Council, Visit Tallahassee, everyone is involved in bringing to Tallahassee such a prominent, international event to our town," said Mayer.
The first event begins tomorrow morning at 8 am.
Tickets for the horse trials are $15 for one day or you can get a three-day pass for $30.
For more information or to watch a live stream of the events go their website at rhht.org.