The Kentucky State Fair Board today voted to extend the World’s Championship Horse Show, held during the Kentucky State Fair, by an extra day. The additional day will begin in 2015.
Held in Freedom Hall, the prestigious Saddlebred show will now begin on the first Saturday of the Fair for an eight-day run, rather than the first Sunday. The finals will continue to be held on the last Saturday night.
Fred Sarver, who represents the America Saddlebred Horse Association on the Kentucky State Fair Board praised the action of the fair board.
“My sincere appreciation to the KSFB board of directors in granting an additional date for the WCHS. This will insure the growth and potential to make a great event even better,” Sarver said.
In past years, Freedom Hall played host to a Saturday evening concert. However, with flagging ticket sales over the past few years and increased demand for additional horse show classes, today’s vote was overwhelmingly in favor of providing another evening for Saddlebreds.
Kentucky State Fair Board President and CEO Rip Rippetoe added that there will be a concentrated marketing effort to bring fairgoers to the World’s Championship Horse Show.
“We want to attract more fans and novices alike to experience this show that is already renowned around the world with horse enthusiasts,” Rippetoe said.
The 2015 dates of the World’s Championship Horse Show are August 22-29.
"We are excited to hear this news," said ASHA President Bob Funkhouser. "The Advisory Committee has been working with the Kentucky State Fair World's Championship Horse Show on expanding the show in order to allow room for growth as well as ease the burden on what we thought was an overcrowded schedule for the horses, officials, trainers, caretakers and exhibitors. The ASHA remains committed to working with the World's Championship Horse Show in expressing our members' needs as well as our vision for the future."
“The American Saddlebred Horse Association is delighted that the Kentucky State Fair Board has voted to extend the World’s Championship Horse Show by one extra day,” stated Bill Whitley, ASHA Executive Director. "We are most appreciative of everyone’s efforts in this endeavor. This action by the Fair Board gives additional time to showcase the Horse America Made! Our association is excited to share the American horse worldwide, that both Generals Grant and Lee, used exclusively in their travels. With this extra day, our Association hopes to reach out to Governor Beshear’s newly appointed Board members, the President of the 4H Clubs of America and the President of the FFA to explore their agricultural endeavors to be included in the horse arena. We trust Scarlett Mattson, horse show manager, and Rip Rippetoe, CEO, will continue to make improvements beneficial to competitors and fairgoers alike and this will be just the beginning."