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Top International Equestrians Compete in Competition with a Twist
The Plains, VA, USA
DerbyCross™, an innovative new equestrian sport, combines the speed and accuracy of show jumping with the bravery and endurance of cross country jumping. This year's DerbyCross™ event will be held Saturday, July 28, 2007 at Great Meadow, home of the famous Virginia Gold Cup, in The Plains, Virginia at 3:00 p.m. DerbyCross will showcase many of the world's best equestrian talent, in an action packed, high energy, spectator-friendly format.

DerbyCross™ was conceived and developed by advanced level eventing competitors, Rebecca Howard and Sinead Halpin, and Dana Voorhees, an avid amateur competitor and owner of Van Productions, a marketing and media company. "Here's how it works...," says Howard, Equestrian Director for The Fork Stables, in Norwood, NC. "The course is a strategically designed combination of cross country 'questions' such as ditches, logs and water, and show jumps. It will ask the horses to be brave over cross country fences and then careful over the show jumps, against the clock." Five teams will vie for the top prize. Riders will incur four penalty points per dropped rail, four per stop at a fence and four per fall. The team with the fastest time and the lowest number of penalty points wins.

U.S. Olympian and U.S. Equestrian Federation president, David O'Connor, who won the gold medal in eventing at the Sydney games, a loyal supporter of DerbyCross, will once again be the course designer for the July event.

And, there's a twist. Each team must include one polo player. Competing over course of lower height, it will still be a tall order for riders who are used to galloping full speed in pursuit of a - more -

white ball, not a cross country fence. "I'm out to defend the 2006 cup!" says Dominic State, the polo player on last year's winning Team Stonehall, which will be back in full again this year (Clark Montgomery, Captain; Donna Smith, New Zealand World Cup team member, and advanced three-star rider, Lauren Keiffer). Says State, "It's not an easy sport. We're taking this pretty seriously."

This year's team Captains make up a very impressive roster of the top equestrian athletes in the world: Jan Byyny (USA), Pan Am and World Cup team member; Darren Chiacchia (USA), 2004 Olympic team member and Pan Am Gold Medalist; Leslie Law (UK), 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist; Clark Montgomery (USA), advanced four-star competitor and member of the '06 DerbyCross winning team and NAYRC Gold Medalist; and Sharon White (USA), also a four-star competitor and DerbyCross veteran, one of only two riders who posted a clear round in the '06 event (Donna Smith from Team Stonehall was the other).

The polo players are at the top of their game as well. In addition to Dominic State, this year's players include John Gobin (6 goals), Manager of Great Meadow Polo, Charlie Muldoon (5 goals), Gonzalo Fuchi (5 goals), and Jonas Larguia (4 goals).

There will be a select number of tail gate spots available for $200 to $350 (with tent), a VIP tent, title, presenting, gold, silver and fence sponsorship opportunities. General admission/car pass (up to 6 per car; $15) and VIP tickets ($60) will also be sold in advance and at the gate. The DerbyCross competition will begin at 3:00pm, followed by an evening of Polo at Great Meadow, starting at 7:00pm. For more information and ticket sales visit: to

This family oriented event is held at Great Meadow, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of open space for community use. By purchasing a ticket, the ticket holder releases the event, Great Meadow and any associated landowners from any and all liability resulting from injury or otherwise while at event. Dress suitable to the occasion is required. Intoxication, use of illegal substances, glass containers or beer bottles, soliciting, dogs, or disorderly conduct infringing upon the rights of others are specifically prohibited.

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