Horse Trials

A brief History of Eventing, the Triathlon of Classical European Riding –
Also known as Horse Trials or Three Day Eventing!

Eventing was first introduced at the Olympic Games in Stockholm, Sweden in 1912, under the name by which it was called in Germany the “Militaire”. It was the ultimate test for an Army horse. Army officers and if fact only Army Officers on active duty and mounted on military chargers were permitted to compete! At the Paris Olympics in 1924 The Three Day Event Format, now called the LONG format was established. It was opened to civilians, but non-commissioned officers were not allowed in Olympic competition until 1956 and WOMEN were not permitted to compete, until 1964!

As the competition took place over three days the English called it Three Day Eventing and the Americans adopted the term Combined Training.

Eventing is the ultimate challenge for horse and rider, testing their partnership and athletic ability in three diverse and demanding disciplines.

  • The grace and harmony of Dressage; traditionally takes place on the first day
  • The rigors and thrills if Cross Country Jumping takes place on the second day
  • And the power and pageantry of Show Jumping in an arena, over colored fences which fall when touched, takes place on the final day. The horse and rider with the fewest penalties wins!

At the international FEI level various veterinary inspections take place throughout the competition to ensure the horses’ well-being.
Eventing now has various levels of competition and the demands at the lower levels are far less strenuous. Competitions usually take place over one or two days.

At Quail Run Farm our aim is to encourage riders to become eventers and become well rounded in the above three disciplines. We are very proud to have offered this opportunity to so many children and adults. In 1987 when we ran our First Horse Trials I called a division “Even I Can Do It” with maximum height fences of less than two feet we also offered divisions at 2’6, 2’11’ and 3’3”!

From 1988- 2002 we ran National USCTA and later USEA recognized events. We now concentrate on Schooling Horse Trials and Combined Tests and Eventing Derby’s as well as Cross Country Schooling Days.

Many of our riders have proceeded to ride at the International and National levels of Eventing. We are now starting another generation, the children of former Junior and adult eventers!

Quail Run Farm is a Sponsor to Silver Stirrups Pony Club which is a member of our National United States Pony Club Association. Membership is open to both children and those under 23 years. Horse Masters is the PC equivalent for Adults.

See links to USPC, USEA, USDF and other organizations on our website.