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American Royal and UPHA to Bring New National Championship Competition to Kansas City

Posted May 30, 2002
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The American Royal and the United Professional Horsemen’s Association (UPHA) have created the UPHA/American Royal National Championship Horse Show.

The show will be held Nov.19-23, 2002 at the American Royal in Kansas City. The two organizations will sign a contract that will keep this newly created prestigious national championship competition at the American Royal through 2004.

Horse enthusiasts from UPHA chapters throughout the United States will come to Kansas City to participate in this competition, which will take place during the final week of events at the American Royal.

American Saddlebred horses will compete in several divisions including three-gaited, five-gaited, pleasure and fine harness. Hackney Pony and Roadster divisions will also compete for this prestigious championship.

“The formation of this new national championship signals a strengthening relationship between the American Royal and UPHA,” said UPHA President Jimmy Robertson. “This new UPHA/American Royal National Championship is our commitment to providing our members the opportunity to compete in a top-notch facility and with an organization that truly understands what it takes to facilitate a national championship horse show.”

The UPHA serves as a watchdog for the horse show industry and defines standards which are necessary for professional horsemen and horsewomen.

“The three year contract between UPHA and the American Royal is a strong indication that the UPHA has trust in the American Royal’s ability to carry out a world class competition,” said George Guastello, American Royal President and CEO. “We’re proud that we’ve been able to demonstrate our commitment of ‘nothing but the best’ at the American Royal.”

The Kansas City economy stands to benefit from the addition of this new national competition as well. In addition to the horsemen, the championship will attract exhibitors and vendors for the five-day competition.

“In 2001, the horse shows alone had an economic impact of more than $22 million in our community, said Sarah Rowland, American Royal show chairperson. “We’re excited that our UPHA relationship means an even greater impact on the local economy bringing more dollars to our community with more competitors, horses and exhibitors.”

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