Thursday 9th March is the first day of this year’s Pondicherry Equestrian Challenge.
The Pondicherry Equestrian Challenge takes place at the Red Earth Riding School in Auroville from March 9th till March 12th. The show will feature high quality riders belonging to clubs from all across South India, participating in both show jumping and dressage. Powered by Equestrian Promotion Private Ltd, and sponsored by the Travel Scientists, the show hopes to reach a new level for equestrian events in India. The annual event will feature more than sixty horses, pitting local riders against the finest talent from elsewhere in the country. If you’re in the area, it’s sure to be a great show for the spectator!
Red Earth Riding School
The Red Earth Riding School of Auroville has been around since the beginning of the millennium, training young riders and working towards the goal of raising the quality of riding in India. Despite starting off with only two horses there are now almost thirty, including some of the finest specimens in the entire sub-continent, and expert trainers from around the world. The facilities are excellent: amid gorgeous flower gardens you can find multiple venues dedicated to dressage, jumping, and cross-country, all of the highest quality. Red Earth is a regular location for prestigious equestrian events in addition to the Pondicherry Equestrian Championship, some attracting thousands of spectators; these include the South Indian Equestrian Championship, the International Dressage Development League, and the Junior National Equestrian Championship.
The four days of the Pondicherry Equestrian Challenge will be packed with events, taking place in both the morning (6:30am till 9am) and afternoon (4pm to 6:30pm). Between events, spectators can enjoy the snack bar, Roma’s Kitchen, and Dhiya’s Kitchen for drinks and refreshments. Starting Thursday morning, there will be a mix of dressage, which showcases impressive precision and finesse, and show jumping events, with riders facing obstacles of up to 140cm. The challenge will culminate on Sunday with a series of Grand Prix show jumping, the highest possible level, presenting the greatest technical challenge with the tallest jumps.
Participants and Attendees
The Pondicherry Equestrian Challenge will attract competitors, judges, and spectators from far and wide! Competing teams will arrive from all over South India: entrants include the International Riding Academy of Tiruppur, the Ambur Equestrian Club, the Japalouppe Equestrian Centre, and several teams from Bengaluru, Chennai, and Pondicherry. The judge for dressage events will be the very experienced Natallia Rubashko, coming all the way from Belarus. Show jumping will be judged by international judge Lt. Gen Ravi Swamy. Finally, there are many notable VIPs attending the challenge. These include Kapil Modi, of the Modi Foundation, Jitendra Virwani of the Embassy Group, and Jacqueline Kapur of Ayesha Accessories. Also in attendance will be Dr Kartikeyan, President of the Equine Council of India, and Grand Prix riders Kaevaan Setalvad and Guillaume Marcotte, of India and France respectively.