Raeford, North Carolina- The Carolina Horse Park is pleased to announce the exceptional success of the inaugural War Horse Event Series presented by Adequan and Southern Pines Equine Associates (WHES). Throughout the five event series a total of 1,310 competitors from 10 states were hosted with an average of 215 contesting each competition. The 2015 series came to a conclusion November 7-8, with 145 horse and rider combinations qualifying for the championships and 12 champions being crowned.
Established in 2015, the War Horse Event Series was developed to provide horses and riders an exceptional opportunity to learn the sport of eventing in a formal yet unrecognized setting. Held at the Carolina Horse Park this unique series is designed to introduce the sport to young horses and less experienced riders through pre-competition schooling opportunities, exceptional show jumping and cross country course design and the formality of a premier, recognized competition.
"The War Horse offered a series of 5 events, progressing in difficulty and technicality, over proper 'big time' courses and with the same impressive atmosphere that you get at major recognized events,” said competitor Audrey Wiggins. “Whether you’re a professional, amateur or junior rider you can come to the War Horse at CHP and ride with confidence knowing that the staff at CHP and the organizing committee are 100% dedicated to providing the best footing, course design and show experience to ALL competitors.  My horse and I were able to build upon each event gaining in confidence and skill - truly priceless!"
The WHES benefits from unprecedented corporate sponsorship from two very generous organizations: Adequan and Southern Pines Equine Associates. Cash sponsorships are rare in most recognized events throughout the country and as such, the WHES support from Adequan and SPEA is most unique and greatly appreciated as we all work toward growing the sport of eventing.
“Everyone at Adequan has been extremely impressed with the War Horse Event Series and we are very excited to be associated with such a beneficial and educational event. The WHES has such value in introducing young riders and horses into to the sport,” said Caroline Hogan Adequan Senior Territory Manager. “The Carolina Horse Park has done a phenomenal job making the events very special for amateurs and giving them a venue with a specific focus on their development. Additionally, the prize money and awards program brings another unique facet to this series.
Dr. Tom Daniels of Southern Pines Equine Associates had similar praise for the WHES and is particularly proud of the funds the series helped to raise for the Special Forces Charitable Trust.
"Our 2015 co-sponsorship of the War Horse Event Series is exciting for our team on so many levels. With the new event comes the opportunity to also share goodwill and charity in the community. First and foremost, we are hoping to bring awareness of the challenges our veterans and their families face by partnering with the Special Forces Charitable Trust," said Daniels. “And we are very pleased to announce that Aberdeen Feeds Second Chance Award already has pledges up to $6,000 for next year!”
The key drivers of this series are education, safety and an outstanding competitive experience for all involved. Each competition is run over two days with the first day held exclusively for pre-competition schooling in the dressage rings and on the actual show jumping and cross country courses, with the idea of ensuring rider and horse preparedness for the following day’s formal competition. Horse Trial divisions are run at the Green as Grass through Training levels, additionally dressage only and combined tests are also offered for those not interested in one or all jumping phases.
"The purpose of this format is to encourage the idea of preparing the horse for the show. We want every horse and rider to have a positive experience, and we feel this arrangement will provide all competitors with the opportunity to achieve the best results possible,” said Marc Donovan, the Event Director and Architect.
In addition, competitors enjoy the benefits of robust corporate sponsorship and formal prize giving. In 2015, $5000 in prize money was awarded and competitors received a further $5600 worth of gifts and awards.