Upper Marlboro, MD – When the 26th annual Capital Challenge Horse Show kicks off on September 27, the Prince George’s Equestrian Center in Upper Marlboro, MD, becomes the place to be for the nation’s top hunter and equitation horses and riders.
Here are 10 reasons not to miss this year’s show, to be held September 27 through October 6.
1. There’s an entire weekend dedicated to the country’s best equitation riders.
As host to prestigious finals such as the Taylor Harris Insurance Services (THIS) National Children’s Medal Finals and the Ariat National Adult Medal Final, the Capital Challenge Horse Show offers more major equitation finals than any other horse show on the “indoors” circuit.
From September 27 through 29, the action centers around BIGEQ.COM Equitation Weekend, featuring classes that riders of all ages have set as year-end goals, including the THIS National Children’s Medal Finals, the EMO Insurance Agency/United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) 3'3" Jumping Seat Medal Final – East, the Palm Beach International Academy North American Junior Equitation Championship, and the North American Adult Amateur Equitation Championships.
2. There are so many gorgeous, talented hunters all in one place.
Each year, the Capital Challenge Horse Show hosts the World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) Finals. That means many of the nation’s nicest hunters from across the divisions are all together in one place!
The WCHR Challenges to watch for the best hunters in the country include:
When the top six riders in the WCHR professional standings enter the ring on Friday, October 4, they will jump the opening, handy hunter round of the $10,000 WCHR Professional Final on their own horse. Then, the top four riders will return for the final round, in which they each take turns jumping four donated horses that they have never ridden before! It’s a showcase of the top hunter riders’ talent and a competition not to be missed.
4) It’s a chance to get a glimpse at the future stars of the hunter ring.
Do you know what the famous hunters Bacardi, Declaration, Dream Date, Gray Slipper, Largesse, Sambalino, and Q all have in common? They all started their careers with top finishes in the Future Hunters, now the Green Hunters, at the Capital Challenge Horse Show.
The $25,000 3' and 3'3" Green Hunter North American Championships at Capital Challenge continually bring out the brightest, up-and-coming future hunter stars for what was the first championship of its kind. You can watch them perform on Wednesday, October 2.
5) There are great jumpers, too.
While the hunter and equitation classes are often top of mind when thinking of Capital Challenge, the horse show is also host to Children’s, Adult, Junior, and Amateur-Owner Jumper competition including:
Capital Challenge is generally considered the first leg of the year-end indoors circuit, but it’s the only indoor final where you can simultaneously enjoy some fresh air and show in beautiful outdoor rings, as well as a spacious indoor. From the professionals to juniors and amateurs, the majority of divisions have the chance to first show outside before concluding their divisions in the prestigious indoor setting.
7) There is lots of shopping!
The shopping at Capital Challenge offers a wide selection of tack and equipment, custom clothing and hand bags, belts, paintings, antique jewelry, show attire, Capital Challenge souvenirs, and much more! View a full list of vendors here.
8) Spectators can now watch from an all-new VIP viewing deck.
An all-new VIP club will be introduced at this year’s show, with each VIP table seating four guests and including refreshments and snacks available throughout the day and into the evening. Catering is also available upon request. (Call or email Jennifer Glass at (239) 851-8751 or firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.)
9) There are great places to stay in the area, available to Capital Challenge Horse Show attendees at reduced rates!
Thanks to Capital Challenge’s eight official partner hotels, exhibitors, trainers, friends, family, and staff have more lodging options than ever, all available at special, discounted rates! Explore the options here, and make your reservations today.
Be sure to mention “Capital Challenge Horse Show” when booking to receive the preferred rates, or book online using the links provided. All reservations made through the hotels are fully refundable up to 48 hours prior to arrival.
10) There is a good chance that your friends will already be there.
With more than 1,300 entries competing throughout the 10 days of the Capital Challenge Horse Show, it’s the place to be from September 27 through October 6!
Capital Challenge News
There are a few ways to find the latest news from the Capital Challenge Horse Show.