EPL 8th edition from June 24

 The Embassy International Riding School (EIRS) is all set to host the eighth edition of the Equestrian Premier League (EPL).

The six-month long competition will kick-off with its first weekend event on June 24 and 25 at the EIRS premises in Devanahalli.

“It will be a combination of dressage and jumping events two days a month through to November and scoring will be cumulative,” said Silva Storai, Director EIRS, at a press conference on Thursday.

“We will witness bigger participation this year and expect 75-80 horses from 15 different clubs, who will all vie for the jackpot of Rs 10 lakh,” she added.

Top riding schools from around the country will be a part of the event with riders from Bengaluru’s Equestrian Centre for Excellence (ECE), Setalvad Equestrian and hosts EIRS expected to make their mark.

Sanya Khan, Director ECE, said that riders from her club would participate with one eye on sealing their berth at the Asian Games (Indonesia) and Youth Olympic Games (Argentina), both to be held in 2018.

“Our focus at the EPL will be to further our case for the big international events coming up. Especially with a tournament that goes on for six months, our riders have a good chance to improve gradually.”

Both the dressage and the jumping events will be held in three categories -- Children (12-14 years of age), Junior (14-18) and the Open category that will be for individuals above 18 years.

Flying Sea Stallion, a club started by Commander Amit Maini, a retired Naval Officer, will be making their debut this year and have filed 19 entries in various categories.

“It isn’t just a maiden participation for our club but also for the horses and our young riders. We hope to get plenty of exposure from an event of this magnitude and I am also sure our talented riders will do well,” said Commander Maini.

The field will consist of some of India’s most experienced riders in Nitin Gupta (United Riders Barn), Rishabh Mehta (URB), Rushil Patel (ECE), and the Setalvad brothers Kaevaan and Zahan in addition to talented youngsters like Jibran Khan (ECE), Tanishka Khataokar (EIRS), Shambhavi Ajila (ECE) and Pranay Khare (URB).

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