Wellington, FL – October 13, 2006 – The 2006 American Grand Prix Association (AGA) National Championship will be held this year at the Stadium Jumping Christmas Festival, scheduled for December 15 – 17, 2006, at the Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club in Wellington, Florida.
In addition, to celebrate the holidays, and the return of this year-end classic to its original dates, the prize money has been increased from $75,000 to $100,000 for this year’s extravaganza.
“It didn’t make a lot of sense to have two championships at one horse show,” said Stadium Jumping President, Gene Mische, referring to the National Horse Show being held at the same location the last week in November. “We’re excited that the Rolex/USEF National Show Jumping Championship has become the showcase of the National Horse Show,” he said. “But, we also felt that the AGA Championship needed a stage of its own. The AGA Championship, over the years, has been one of America’s most hotly contested events, and now it becomes a stand alone event at the Christmas Festival.”
The scoring for this year’s event has also changed according to Mische. “We’re changing from the two round format, which most of the riders disliked, to the more popular Time First Jump-Off scoring,” he explained. The AGA Championship will be conducted under USEF Rules, Time First Jump-Off, Table II 2(a) (USEF International) Obstacles 1.60m - speed 382 yds/min.
Internationally renowned Course Designer Pierre Jolicouer of Culpepper, Virginia, has been invited to design the challenges for this year’s event.
The red hot Jaime Guerra of Mexico won last year’s AGA Championship, which was his third victory in as many days. “I’m thrilled,” said a beaming Guerra following the class. “My horse really hasn’t jumped a course this big before and I couldn’t be happier.”
Guerra, one of the 2006 invitees, will defend his title against some of the finest equestrians in the nation. The AGA Championship is limited to invited riders only. In addition to the invitation issued to the Defending Champion (Guerra), one invitation is issued to the 2006 AGA Rookie of the Year, and one each to the top four riders in both the East and West Divisions of the AGA standings. Twenty, or the balance of the remaining invitations, go to riders who have not otherwise qualified based on their placings from the Final Overall 2006 AGA Rider of the Year Standings as of November 18, 2006.
“I’m very excited about this move,” Mische added. “We’re confident of a great audience, with so many of our residents having some extra time off during the holiday season. We’re really hoping that the AGA Championship will become the newest holiday tradition in Wellington.”
2006 AGA CHAMPIONSHIP
Global Entry Fee: $750 (includes 2 classes and 1 stall)
CLASS 100 - $10,000 1.40 SPEED CLASSIC (Friday December 15)
Time First Round, Table II Sec 1 USEF Level 8 - speed 382 yds/min
Declarations to show must be made by Thursday at 5:00pm.
Starting Order: USEF JP112
Trophy & $3,000, $2,000, $1,000, $700, $600, $500, $475, $400, $380, $315, $315, $315
CLASS 101 - $100,000 AGA Championship (Sunday December 17)
2006 AGA Grand Prix Series of Show Jumping Final
USET Certification No. APPLIED
This competition is limited to thirty (30) riders. Each rider may only ride one horse. Horses to be eligible for the AGA Championship must have shown and completed the course in an AGA recognized class during the 2006 season.
To be eligible for all awards riders must have competed and completed the 2006 course.
Invitations to compete will be issued as follows:
1. ONE (1) invitation issued to the winning rider of the 2005 AGA Jumper Championship.
2. ONE (1) invitation issued to the 2006 AGA Rookie of the Year.
3. FOUR (4) riders in places one through four on the AGA Eastern Division standings as of
October 21, 2006.
4. FOUR (4) riders in places one through four on the AGA Western Division standings as of
November 18, 2006.
5. TWENTY (20) or all remaining invitations will be issued to riders who have not otherwise qualified based on their placings from the Final Overall 2006 AGA Rider of the Year standings as of November 18, 2006.
In the event any of the above invitees choose not to compete, additional invitations will be issued to riders in order to fill any vacancies based on the Final Overall 2006 AGA Rider of the Year standings as of November 18, 2006 up to a total of thirty riders. (Standings: http://www.stadiumjumping.com/aga
The AGA Championship is conducted under USEF Rules Time First Jump-Off, Table II 2(a) (USEF International) Obstacles 1.60m - speed 382 yds/min.
Starting Order will be the reverse order of the rider’s finish in the 2006 AGA Rider of the Year standings with the exception of the winner of the 2005 AGA Championship who will go last. In the event of a tie in the Rider of the Year Standings the starting position for the tied riders will be drawn. In the event of a jump-off the order will remain the same as in the first round.
Declarations: Declaration to show must be made to the Show Secretary no later than 5:00pm, Friday.
USEF Medication & Schooling rules apply. Stabling: All horses must be on grounds 24 hours prior to the start of the class.
Formal attire is required according to USEF Rules.
Trophy, Cooler & $30,000
$22,000, $13,000, $8,000, $6,000, $5,000, $4,000, $3,000, $3,000, $2,000, $2,000, $2,000
Special Award Presentations
AGA Rider of the Year Presentation
AGA Horse of the Year Presentation
AGA Rookie of the Year Presentation
PHOTO CREDIT: 2005 AGA National Championship winner Jaime Guerra and RWM Power Point. Photo by Kenneth Kruas/PhelpsSports.com.
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<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/aga-american-grand-prix-christmas-festival-10-06.html">American Grand Prix Association (AGA) National Championship Moves to Christmas Festival</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com