Park Construction Brings Changes to Rolex Event

As a result of construction projects at the Kentucky Horse Park, Equestrian Events Inc. has announced some major changes for the 2009 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Scheduled for April 23-26, the event typically draws more than 100,000 spectators and is seen by millions more on worldwide telecasts, including a one-hour special on NBC in the United States.

Equestrian Events continues to move forward and adapt to the changes at the Horse Park that will be fully completed by the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. Rolex Kentucky 2009 will be the first time some of these changes come into play. Some of the changes for 2009 include:

The Stadium The arena where the Dressage and Jumping Tests for Rolex Kentucky were previously held is being totally rebuilt to create a new stadium. This new facility, will be a whole new experience for spectators, as well as horses and riders.

Formerly located on the south side of the arena with the park's picturesque lake behind it, each piece of the Lake Grandstand was numbered and coded as it was dismantled. It is being stored for reassembly at a later date at one of the park's other outdoor arenas. The Lake Grandstand has 2,325 bench seats, 1,883 of them covered, and 24 spaces for disabled seating.

New Permanent Grandstand A new permanent grandstand structure, with 7,289 chair seats, 4,630 of which will be covered, plus 102 spaces for disabled seating, is being constructed on the north side of the stadium where the Patron Club and Equestrian Club tents and their temporary grandstand seating were located. The park grandstand also houses restrooms and concession areas underneath the second tier of seating. There will be three entrances to the grandstand. The entry level goes directly to the uppermost row of the first tier of seating and disabled seating is on that level. Stairs at the entry level go up to the first row of the second tier of seating.

Uncovered grandstands will provide a total of 15,000 seats in the new stadium. These stands will be located on the south side of the arena by the park's lake and on the west side of the arena.

New Arena Surface A new arena surface will greet horses and riders at Rolex Kentucky 2009, but the surface isn't new to the Horse Park, or to the horses and riders that competed in the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany. The German company OTTO Sport-und Reitplatz GMBH is installing its riding surface on the stadium arena and the attached warm-up area. This will have its inaugural use at the 2009 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. The same surface was installed in 2008 in the park's Walnut Ring, where it was used for Jumper classes at various A and AA-rated hunter/jumper shows at the park.

"We are proud of our longstanding commitment to providing outstanding entertainment as well as world-class equestrian competition," said Event Director, Jane Atkinson. "The Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event has always been produced by Equestrian Events, Inc. with a strong commitment to giving spectators an exciting and comfortable experience and we believe that these changes will go a long way in accomplishing that goal.

For more information on the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, please visit the Rolex Kentucky Web site at

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