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VRC rallying behind former racehorses in this weekend’s Melbourne International 3 Day Event

7 June 2024 Written by VRC

The Victoria Racing Club (VRC) is proud to continue its support for retired racehorses this weekend at Victoria’s premier eventing competition, the Melbourne International 3 Day Event.

Held annually on the June long weekend, the country’s elite equestrian athletes are meeting at the National Equestrian Centre in Werribee to compete in the Melbourne International 3 Day Event. This competition is a critical juncture for Australian equestrians vying for a spot on the Australian Olympic Equestrian team, which has a strong performance record in eventing.

The VRC will present a prize to the Best Performed Thoroughbred in the Off The Track CCN1*L and the Pryde’s EasiFeed CCI4*L.

The Off The Track CCN1*L is a new addition this year, with entry restricted only to former racehorses. 23 riders will be competing in what is sure to be a fantastic addition to the calendar for riders and their off the track thoroughbreds.

The Pryde’s EasiFeed CCI4*L is the top class at the competition. ‘L’ stands for ‘long format’, meaning that CCI4*L competitors will complete a cross course that is more than 5,270m long and includes more than 35 jumping obstacles, in addition to the first phase of dressage and the final phase of show jumping.

A headline act to this year’s Melbourne International 3 Day Event will be the special CCN4*S which event organisers have added to the schedule for Paris bound athletes. The addition of the class will allow a group of long listed Olympic combinations a final run prior to the selection date at the end of June. This special CCN4*S will showcase four of the country’s top athletes:

  • Shane Rose and Virgil (dressage and show jumping only)
  • Shenae Lowings and former racehorse Bold Venture
  • Olivia Barton and Hollyander HG
  • Andrew Cooper and Sharvalley Thunder

This class will mark the significant comeback of Shane Rose, a seasoned equestrian aiming for his fourth Olympic appearance. After sustaining serious injuries during a training accident on March 14th, which included multiple fractures and a heavy concussion, Shane’s return to the sport has been nothing short of inspirational. Supported by the Australian Institute of Sport, he has undergone intensive rehabilitation and is now back in the saddle with a remarkable return to competition.

Shenae Lowings and her former racehorse Bold Venture will be looking to cement their spot on the Australian team for Paris, with their win at the recent CCI4*L at the Adelaide Equestrian Festival capping a fantastic season. Shenae and ‘Bentley’ have already won two of the VRC’s Best Performed Thoroughbred prizes this season at Sydney International Three Day Event in November last year in addition to the win at Adelaide Equestrian Festival.

VRC Ambassador and Olympian Amanda Ross will be a special guest and will present the VRC prizes.

Lightfingers’ 1965 Melbourne Cup will also be on site and available for photographs with attendees and competitors in Racing Victoria’s Off The Track marquee in the Trade Village on Monday 12 June from 12pm to 2pm.

VRC Chairman Neil Wilson said the club was delighted to be supporting such an important event in the lead up to the Paris Olympics.

“The VRC has a long history of supporting retired racehorses in their second careers and we are delighted to continue our support of the Melbourne International 3 Day Event,” Mr Wilson said.

"Thoroughbreds are exceptional athletes both on and off the racecourse, and we are proud to see so many of them compete in elite equestrian competitions under the VRC banner.

“The addition of the CCN1*L class for thoroughbreds only at Melbourne International 3 Day Event is a wonderful statement on the popularity of former racehorses in equestrian sport, and we are thrilled to be part of it.

"We wish all the competitors the best of luck for a safe and successful event.”

Melbourne International 3 Day Event is one of four elite competitions that the VRC supports with a Best Performed Thoroughbred prize, which also includes Sydney International Three Day Event, Adelaide Equestrian Festival, Melbourne Royal Show.

More information can be found by visiting m3de.com.au or the VRC website.