Kentucky Horse Park
State-of-the-Art Footing will be Installed at the Kentucky Horse Park
LEXINGTON, KY (July 11, 2008) When the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games take place at the Kentucky Horse Park in 2010, horses and riders will compete on a new state-of-the-art surface which is being installed by the German company which developed it.
The Outdoor Stadium which is currently under construction at the Kentucky Horse Park will be ready to receive its new surface in January or February of 2009.
Otto Sport– und Reitplatz GmbH is the developer and supplier of this 86,000-square-foot stadium surface, as well as two warm-up ring surfaces totaling 43,000-square feet. The surface for the adjacent Walnut Ring and its warm-up ring totaling nearly 90,000 square feet will be installed at the park this month.
John Nicholson, Executive Director of the Kentucky Horse Park and President of the World Games 2010 Foundation, Inc. stated, “Our goal has always been to aggrandize the park into the finest equestrian facility on earth, and this fabulous new surface in our stadium will move us another step closer by providing our horses and riders with the safest, surest footing available anywhere in the world.”
Otto Sport- und Reitplatz GmbH has already supplied the mats for facilities that have hosted the World Equestrian Games in Rome (1998) and Aachen (2006) and the Asian Games in Qatar (2006). Company founder, Werner Otto developed this riding surface which provides the best possible drainage, non-slip properties and the ability to absorb shock in order to optimize the safety of horse and rider. The surface is designed to ensure that water can drain off quickly so the riding arena can be used even after persistent precipitation. It has been tested at the highest levels of equestrian sport and proven itself for several years.
The family-owned company, located in Altdorf, near Nuremberg, Germany, has been constructing riding arenas for more than 20 years.
Otto Sport’s sales manager, Christian Bauer said, “We are very proud to cooperate with the Kentucky Horse Park. It is a great honor to make our contribution for realizing the United States’ most important sports event since the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.”
The surface will get its first test at the Kentucky Horse Park during the Kentucky Summer Horse Show (July 30-Aug 3) and in the Kentucky Summer Classic (August 6-10) when many of the best horses and riders from across the nation will compete on the new surface. Countless horse shows at the park, including the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, will benefit from this special footing from that point forward.
“In the end there is nothing more important in equestrian competition than the footing or ground on which the horses compete,” noted Kate Jackson, Competition Director for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. “In selecting Otto Sport to provide the surface for the field of play and warm-up arenas, we are confident that the Kentucky Horse Park will provide the world-class footing so necessary for the successful conduct of the 2010 Games.”
Park Hours and Rates: From March 15 through October 31, the park is open seven days a week. Admission then is $15 for adults, $8 for children 7-12. Children six and under are always admitted free of charge. Admission includes the International Museum of the Horse and the American Saddlebred Museum.
2008 is the 30th anniversary of the Kentucky Horse Park, a working horse farm/theme park and equine competition facility dedicated to man’s relationship with the horse. The park is an agency of the Kentucky Commerce Cabinet that hosted nearly 920,000 visitors and campers, as well as 15,000 competition horses in more than 100 special events and horse shows in 2007. The park is home to the National Horse Center which comprises more than 30 national and regional equine organizations. Located at Exit 120, Interstate 75, just north of Lexington, the Kentucky Horse Park is The place to get close to horses. Open daily March 15 to October 31, and Wednesday through Sunday, November 1 to March 14.