The Equestrian Sport Productions management team has announced a strategic plan to unveil a technologically advanced footing surface ahead of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival season in the main International Ring at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington.
Once a solution is implemented and proven for the International Ring, the management team will address additional arenas at the facility.
The preparation and planning for the new surface technology will begin in May, and several top international riders, trainers, veterinarians and world experts in varying footing technologies have been asked to participate in consulting roles. The management team is currently researching and testing different viable options, including an underwater ebb-and-flow system, as well as alternate methods of installation, maintenance and material.
PBIEC is one of the most highly visited equestrian venues, hosting more than 36 weeks of competition during the year and highlighting the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival annually.
The arenas at the facility see more daily rounds of competition than any other venue globally, which has motivated the ESP management team to stay at the forefront of footing and surface technology to maintain and improve the quality of competition, alongside the safety and well-being of both horses and riders.
“As an organization, we are committed to ensuring that our venue and our competitions are staying ahead of the technology curve when it comes to advancements and different treatment options available in the footing surface industry,” said Mark Bellissimo, CEO of Equestrian Sport Productions. “It is imperative that we provide the best possible competition environment for our competitors and athletes, and have decided that we must set a global standard for an innovative and successful approach to footing and surface technology for a circuit of WEF’s size.”
The introduction of the world-class footing construct is expected to ensure that the quality and rideability of the footing in the International Ring continues to meet and uphold the high standards of competitors and the management staff. “We have been exploring different options and opinions and are confident that the 2019 season will showcase the most forward-thinking and progressive approach to international footing standards for our competitors,” Bellissimo said.
Further details regarding the strategy and implementation of footing technology will be announced as decisions and processes are confirmed. To learn more about the facility, visit www.pbiec.com.