April 20, 2006 -- The 2006 edition of the Legacy Cup is fast approaching. This two-week innovative, high paying, exhibitor-friendly event, is hosted by the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows and showcased at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Ky., May 10-21.
It was the American Hunter-Jumper Foundation, Inc. (AHJF) that created the Legacy Cup. The first two years the show was held as a stand alone event. After listening to the exhibitors, management decided to pair the Legacy Cup with one of the nation's top AA rated hunter horse shows. This will be the third year that the Legacy Cup will be included as part of show manager Hugh Kincannon's Kentucky series.
Megan Davis who was a winner in the 2005 Legacy Cup on her pony Far From Home is a perfect example of many of the competitors who compete in the Legacy Cup. "The 2006 Legacy Cup will be my third year at this event. Each year it is full of excitement; it makes me feel like I am part of something special. The scores after each round give you an immediate idea of what the judges thought of your performance."
About the Legacy Cup
The Legacy Cup format is different than other show hunter events. The divisions include two professional and two non-pro divisions; one at 3' and one at 3'6" and the Legacy Cup Pony Hunter Division. In addition the format allows for multiple awards within each class and division. Within the professional division new or developing riders are given the opportunity to compete for Restricted Professional Awards. The Legacy Cup Trophy (donated by Joe Darby) is awarded to the Champion of the 3'6" Restricted Professional Division.
The professional division also includes the $10,000 Pre Green Incentive (sponsored by Janet Read - this award goes to the top eight pre green horses in the Pro 3' division). In addition, there is a $750 Leading Trainer Award (sponsored by EP Bishop Company - this award goes to the trainer whose students and horses accumulate the most money; it is awarded each week). Other awards include the Belcort Farm Perpetual Trophy (for the owner of the horse that produces the highest single round score) and the Walter J. Lee Perpetual Trophy (for the Pro rider who accumulates the most money throughout the 3' and 3'6" Pro competition).
In the non-pro divisions, overall ribbons and separate ribbons are awarded for both juniors and amateurs in all classes, and the Signature Trophy (donated by Susanne and Weatherly Stroh) recognizes the high money winning Non-Pro Junior 3'6" Hunter. There are Non-Pro Leading Rider awards (to riders who accumulate the most money in their respective division) and a Legacy Cup Non-Pro Team Award (to the barn whose students accumulate the most money in the Non-Pro and Pony divisions). Leading Rider Awards are given to the Overall Non-Pro, Overall Non-Pro 3'6", Overall Non-Pro 3', Junior 3'6", Junior 3', Amateur 3'6", Amateur 3', and Leading Pony Rider Award
Carol Cone competed in the 2005 non-pro division as an amateur on both Harmony Bay and Wall Street and took her turn in the winner's circle. Cone believes that "the Legacy Cup is a terrific competition for the hunters. The indoor event is extremely challenging, with its complex courses ridden before teams of judges. To win, you have to jump in excellent form, add a bit of brilliance coupled with consistency."
Each go-round offers a guaranteed purse of $1,500. Go-rounds rank the top 25 horses for a clean slate final. The 2006 Legacy Cup entry fee is $400 of which 50% goes directly to the division purse and 50% to the AHJF for the expenses associated with the event. The 2005 Legacy Cup proved to be very successful and on the heels of that success, the Legacy Cup Committee has committed to distribute an added purse of $13,000 at the 2006 event. This added money, combined with 50% of the division entry fee, means even more money to the exhibitor and the amount increases with each horse entered.
The Legacy Cup
While the competition is the nucleus of the event, the social aspects have become something that the exhibitors look forward to. For the second year in a row, the event will offer a Legacy Club, overlooking the arena on one side and the rolling hills of the Kentucky Horse Park on the other. The tented gathering place is a private members-only area for sponsors and table holders, which has been organized by Kim Tudor.
Some of the other specialty events include a pizza and ice cream party. The grand finale will be a thank you "Champagne Brunch" sponsored by Wrenwood Farms and Jenny Sutton which will take place on the final Sunday, May 21. The AHJF also includes a general exhibitor tent where anyone can pick up cold drinks, snacks and fruit.
About the AHJF
The AHJF came to life when some members of the show hunter discipline felt interest and importance was leaving their sport. Lack of individual or corporate sponsorship and low prize money contributed to the decrease in interest. The AHJF was created to reward the hunter riders, as well as to increase spectator education, in addition the organization offers an emergency relief fund, developed a 401K retirement plan, and encourages grass-roots organizations. The AHJF is a non-profit organization, which is tax exempt under the Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3).
For more information about the Legacy Cup visit www.legacycup.com.