SAUGERTIES, NY (March 27, 2012) – This year, HITS Saugerties will be in a qualifying frenzy as riders spanning the spectrum of levels will make HITS Championship Weekend the last stop on their summer show schedule. Highlighting the schedule at HITS-on-the-Hudson this spring and summer will be the 14 qualifiers for the famed Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, seven for the second-annual Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final and seven for the inaugural $250,000 HITS 3’ Hunter Prix Final. All three big-ticket classes will meet in Saugerties, New York September 7-9, 2012.
The HITS Saugerties Show Series will get underway May 23 with three consecutive weeks of hunter/jumper competition. Action returns to HITS-on-the-Hudson July 18 to kick-off three weeks of summer showing, including the New York Horse & Pony Show. The last two weeks of competition begin August 29 and will cap the season with HITS Championship Weekend.
In addition to the many Grand Prix and Hunter qualifiers for HITS Championship Weekend, Equitation riders will earn their moment in the spotlight with weekly Marshal & Sterling Junior Medal qualifiers. This year, the Marshall & Sterling Junior Medal Final will become part of the coveted weekend and join the National Professional Horsemen’s Association’s (PHA) Medal to compete indoors at HITS-on-the-Hudson. For the first time ever, HITS will erect a tent on the Saugerties show grounds for these classes, similar to the one used in Thermal, California for the World Cup qualifiers.
Highlighting the Summer Series will be the premiere of the all-new HITS Children’s Hunter Pony Final August 4-5 (During HITS VI). This new Pony Hunter Final was birthed from the aim of HITS President and CEO Tom Struzzieri to provide a finals atmosphere to young riders and their ponies nationwide.
“We felt it was important to create an opportunity for Children’s Pony riders here in Saugerties, which has become one of the most important and pivotal circuits of the show season,” said Struzzieri. “Our goal was to create something simple, inexpensive and centrally located to a large audience of riders. We hope that this Final helps to shape these young riders into the competitors that we will one day cheer on in the Grand Prix stadium.”
A panel of three judges will evaluate the young riders and their ponies over two days in a model phase, an under saddle phase and an over fences phase for small, medium and large ponies. Throughout the final, class sizes will be monitored and feedback will be given to each individual competitor.
Other special classes include the $10,000 Marshall & Sterling Child/Adult Jumper Classic during Weeks I and IV, weekly $10,000 Junior/A-O Jumper High Classics as well as weekly $10,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcomes, which will kick-off each week on Wednesdays. Weekly $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix and $1,500 HITS 3’ Hunter Prix will attract the best of the best among hunter riders looking to secure their spot in the Diamond Mills Hunter Prix Final. Each week will feature with two Grand Prix, one on Friday and one on Sunday. Both will be qualifiers for the Pfizer Million and boast prize money ranging from $25,000 to $100,000.
HITS-on-the-Hudson will again welcome riders from all levels and from all corners of the world to the heart of the Hudson Valley for world-class show jumping opportunities at one of the most beautiful show grounds in the country. Property updates continue in Saugerties as HITS has added a new ring which will be known as the ‘Outside Course’. This multi-elevation riding area will offer a unique opportunity to showcase some of the special hunter classes and take some of the time pressure off of the more conventional rings, helping to create shorter show days and diversity in the schedule.
Olympian Margie Engle and Ashland Farms' Lord Spezi on course in a $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York. This year HITS Saugerties will offer 14 Grand Prix qualifiers for the 2012 Pfizer Million Grand Prix.
2012 HITS-on-the-Hudson Show Dates
HITS-on-the-Hudson I: May 23-27
HITS-on-the-Hudson II: May 30 - June 3
HITS-on-the-Hudson III: June 6-10
HITS-on-the-Hudson IV: July 18-22
HITS-on-the-Hudson V: July 25-29
NY Horse & Pony Show (VI): August 1-5
HITS-on-the-Hudson VII: August 29 - September 2
HITS-on-the-Hudson VIII: September 5-9, featuring HITS Championship Weekend
Prize List | Schedule | Class Listing
The 2012 HITS Saugerties Prize List has been mailed and the on-line version can be found on the Saugerties page of the HITS Website. To request a prize list, please visit HitsShows.com or click here.