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Vaulting Demonstrations to Highlight Activities at Bayer/USET Festival of Champions, Presented by State Line Tack

Gladstone, NJ—June 5, 2003— The United States Equestrian Team (USET) will once again feature vaulting demonstrations at the 2003 Bayer/USET Festival of Champions, presented by State Line Tack, June 19 – 22 at the USET Headquarters and Olympic Training Center in Gladstone, NJ.

Youth members of the American Vaulting Association (AVA)’s Friendship Vaulting Team will conduct daily demonstrations of vaulting, the newest USET discipline that features gymnastics performed on a cantering horse.

The AVA Friendship Team is a specially selected group of high-level vaulters from vaulting clubs and teams across the country. Formed in 1995 to represent the sport of vaulting at sporting events of all kinds all over the country, they come together to perform, often on unfamiliar horses. In 2002, the AVA Friendship Team delighted the crowd at the Festival with their “vault-on” running mounts, handstands, and pyramid formations.

Since late 2001, when the USET added vaulting to its stable of international competition, vaulting has gained increasing recognition and popularity. U.S. vaulters continue to achieve success in international competition. In 2002, the USET sent its first vaulting team to the World Equestrian Games in Jerez, Spain and Devon Maitozo of Acton, CA, came away with the individual Bronze Medal in the men’s division.

Spectators who come to this year’s Festival will be able to see first hand why vaulting is a fun, exciting equestrian discipline to watch.

Along with exciting vaulting demonstrations, the 2003 Bayer/USET Festival of Champions, presented by State Line Tack, will also feature world-class competition in dressage, endurance riding, reining, and show jumping.

The Dressage Division at the Festival will include the USET Intermediaire Championship which will serve as the selection trials to choose the horses and riders who will represent the United States in dressage at the 2003 Pan American Games in the Dominican Republic in August. Also featured are the USET Grand Prix Championship, qualifiers for the North American Young Riders’ Championships, and the National Disability Sports Alliance (NDSA) Championship for Riders with Disabilities, which will serve as the final selection trial for the team that will represent the U.S. at the World Championships for Riders with Disabilities to be held in Belgium in September.

Additionally, the Festival will again host the USET Endurance 75-Mile Championship, a Fédération Equestre Internationale (International Equestrian Federation – FEI)-sanctioned CEI** ride. The ride will take place in and around the USET grounds.

The Bayer Reining Division will return to the Festival for the fifth consecutive year. Teams of reiners from several countries will compete in the $10,000 USET CRIO Gladstone Reining Nations’ Cup, presented by Cosequin®. Riders from all over the nation will vie for the prestigious $75,000 USET Reining Championship, presented by Bayer.

The reining ring will also feature the $25,000 Futures Reining Championship, presented by Intervet; the $10,000 Invitational Freestyle, presented by Cosequin®; and the USET Young Rider Reining Medal Finals, which holds qualifying classes at reining competitions throughout the country over the course of the year-long qualifying period. These competitions award points to the top placing riders. At the end of the year, the top point-earning Young Riders are invited to compete in Gladstone at the finals.

The Show Jumping Division will be highlighted by the $50,000 Rolex/USET Show Jumping Championship, a member event of the American Grandprix Association (AGA), and the USET Junior and Amateur-Owner Talent Derbies, both presented by BET on Jazz and both part of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series.

Besides top-level equestrian competition, spectators at the 2003 Festival will be able to enjoy a day of family fun and entertainment. A wide range of gourmet dining options as well as a country fair will complement the equestrian activities taking place in three rings. The fair will feature equine demonstrations, falconry and blacksmith demonstrations, the Jersey Fresh Horse Expo, as well as vendors offering top-quality jewelry, souvenirs, and products for the home as well as the stable.

General admission will be $10 for adults and $5 for children under the age of twelve. Children under the age of six will again be admitted free of charge. There will be free admission for all spectators on Thursday, June 19.

The United States Equestrian Team is a non-profit organization that selects, trains, equips and finances equestrians of the highest possible standard to represent our country in major international competition, including the Olympic Games and the World Championships. To accomplish this, the USET seeks out and nurtures the development of talented athletes - riders, drivers and horses - and provides the support and guidance they need to help them attain their fullest potential. For more information on the USET, please call (908) 234-1251, or visit USET ONLINE at


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