Top Show Jumping Stars Set to Compete in Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix
11 Olympians Highlight Show Jumping Entries at the
2023 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™
Lexington, Kentucky – April 19, 2023 – Eleven Olympic veterans from four countries highlight the most impressive lineup of riders ever for the $226,000 Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute hosted at the 2023 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™ (LRK3DE).
Organized by Equestrian Events Inc. (EEI), the LRK3DE returns to the Kentucky Horse Park, April 27-30, featuring one of only seven annual Five Star three-day events in the world. Known as “The Best Weekend All Year,” the event annually attracts more than 80,000 spectators who also enjoy extensive shopping, a variety of hospitality experiences and a wide array of demonstrations. In addition to its traditional CCI5*-L, the event also features the Cosequin® Lexington CCI4*-S and $226,000 Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute.
Introduced at the 2018 LRK3DE, the Kentucky CSI3* Invitational has annually taken place to the cheers of a packed stadium of fans. In addition to the Invitational Grand Prix, which features some 40 international riders on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. after the event’s cross-country phase, there will be a $38,700 purse for the 1.45m Welcome Speed Cup Ranking Class on Friday at 7:00 p.m. after the completion of the dressage competition. There will also be an autograph session with the CSI3* riders in the USHJA Tent on The Hill (#307) on Saturday at 12:30 p.m.
Some of the sport’s biggest stars will challenge the technical tracks designed by course designer Guilherme Jorge (BRA), course designer for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, including 2021 U.S. Olympic eventing rider Doug Payne, who won last year’s Land Rover/USEF CCI5*-L Eventing National Championship as the highest-placed American rider at Kentucky (3rd).
Joining Payne in the star-studded U.S. contingent are show jumping Olympians Lauren Hough and Margie Engle, who competed together at the 2000 Sydney Games; 1996 Olympic team Silver medalist Peter Leone; 2008 Olympic team Gold medalist Will Simpson, who finished 10th in the Kentucky CSI3* Invitational last year; and World #4 ranked rider McLain Ward, a five-time Olympic rider with two Gold and two Silver medals who will compete in the Invitational Grand Prix for the first time!
Five-time U.S. Olympian and the World’s #4 ranked rider McLain Ward is entered for the first time
Representing Brazil in the lineup are Santiago Lambre, who competed in the 2000 Olympic Games and finished fourth in the 2022 Kentucky CSI3* Invitational, and six-time Olympian Rodrigo Pessoa, one of the most decorated riders in show jumping history with accolades including individual Gold medals in the Olympic Games and World Championships as well as winning the FEI World Cup Finals three consecutive years.
Other world-class entries include Olympians Scott Keach (AUS), Daniel Bluman (ISR), and Alberto Michan (ISR). Bluman and Michan placed third and 11th in the 2022 Kentucky CSI3* Invitational, respectively, and will be vying for top honors against the defending champion and World #5 ranked rider, Conor Swail of Ireland. Also returning to the field are Swail’s countrymen Shane Sweetnam and Simon McCarthy, who finished sixth and 12th (respectively) last year.
Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™
The Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event is a thrilling multi-day competition featuring Olympic-level riders and horses in what can best be described as an equestrian triathlon. Horse and rider pairs compete in three phases of the competition – Dressage, Cross-Country and Show Jumping – for $375,000 in prize money to those competing at the CCI5*-L level. LRK3DE is the largest and longest-running Five Star event in the Americas and as the United States’ premier event, it also serves as the Land Rover/USEF CCI5*-L Eventing National Championship presented by MARS Equestrian for the U.S. athletes. It also includes the Dubarry Nations Team Challenge. Rolex is the Official Timepiece and Event Partner.
Cosequin® Lexington CCI4*-S
Introduced in 2021, the Cosequin® Lexington 4*-S runs concurrently with the CCI5*-L competition, featuring the three phases of eventing – dressage, cross country and show jumping. The Cosequin® Lexington 4* offers $25,000 prize money. Tickets for viewing the Cosequin® Lexington 4*-S are included when purchasing the LRK3DE tickets.
Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute
The $226,000 Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute will take place on Saturday afternoon, April 29, after the cross-country portion of the LRK3DE. As part of the competition, there will also be a $38,700 Welcome Speed Cup Ranking Class on Friday in the Rolex Stadium, after the day’s LRK3DE dressage competition. No stadium seat ticket is required for Friday’s Ranking Class. For more Grand Prix information, visit https://kentuckythreedayevent.com/grand-prix/.
Further information about the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™, the Cosequin® Lexington 4*-S, and the Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute is available at www.kentuckythreedayevent.com.
About Equestrian Events, Inc.
Equestrian Events, Inc. (EEI) is a non-profit charitable Kentucky corporation that was established initially to produce the 1978 World Three-Day Event Championships at the Kentucky Horse Park. Following the success of those championships, EEI established an annual event that evolved into the world-renowned Kentucky Three-Day Event, which draws more than 80,000 spectators to the Kentucky Horse Park each year. EEI added the Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix in 2018, the Lexington CCI4*-S in 2021, and also produces other events. EEI supports several local and equine charities and has donated more than $725,000 to various charities since 2011. For more information, please visit www.eq-events.com.