GRAND PRIX FREESTYLE - HIGH TEA Horse First 2019 NSW Dressage Championships

25 Aug - AELEC - Australian Equine & Livestock Events Centre

Tamworth Dressage Club is delighted to once again be hosting the NSW Dressage Championships at the international standard Australian Equine Livestock and Events Centre in Tamworth.

The Horse First 2019 NSW Dressage Championships will be held over five days from Wednesday 21st to Sunday 25th August. Over 250 horses and 200 riders entered the Championships in 2018 making this event the largest Dressage Championship event of its type to be held in NSW.

Following on from previous successful Championships, an all-inclusive programme will be offered and in addition to the Open Division separate competitions for Amateur Owner Riders, Ponies and Para-Dressage will be featured.

Over 200 competitors plus owners and helpers from around NSW and Interstate are expected to take part in a wide programme of competitions from Preliminary level through to Grand Prix. Competitions will be held outdoors in the recently installed international standard Ebb & Flow arenas as well as in AELEC’s Indoor Arena.

These Championships will attract spectator interest from equestrian enthusiasts and the general public. Admission is free to spectators on all days.

The highlight of the Championships will be the Grand Prix Freestyle on Sunday morning from 10am to 1pm where the fifteen highest ranked horse and rider combinations will dance their set of prescribed dressage movements to the music of their choice. Spectators are invited to come and enjoy this event whilst enjoying a delicious High Tea.


What is dressage?

The classical art of dressage is not new. What we see today as a highly technical and exacting discipline, had its origins in the cavalries of ancient Greece and Rome. Dressage is a French word which roughly translates as “training”. The classical method of training the horse dressage goes back many centuries. The very spectacular jumps and gymnastics of the “haute ecole” (high school) which entertain thousands of visitors to the Spanish riding school, had far more practical applications, horses were trained to leap and kick out to free themselves from the melee of surrounding foot soldiers. These horses responded to the lights of weight and leg signals from the rider, leaving both hands free to wield weapons. Hence the more highly trained the horse, the better the chance of survival for its rider.

Competitive dressage takes the form of a series of tests of ever-increasing difficulty. Each test is a rigorous routine of set gymnastic movements which are performed with absolute exactness in front of judges. Not only must the test be performed with accuracy, but also none of the inherent power and beauty of the horse’s movement be lost; rather, it should be enhanced. The sequence of movements are designed to demonstrate the horse’s suppleness, obedience and strength.


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