Meet Olympic Riders at the 20th Annual Willowdale Steeplechase
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Meet Olympic Riders at the 20th Annual Willowdale Steeplechase
April 2012

The Willowdale Steeplechase races offer spectators thrills and spills like other Xtreme sports. In every race, these x-equestrians gallop at up to 40 mph towards four to five feet hedges and solid timber fences on a 3.5 mile course, jockeying for position and the opportunity to take the lead and win.

Dixon Stroud, Chairman of The Willowdale Steeplechase, announced the appearance of special guests at the 2012 Willowdale Steeplechase races on Mother’s Day, May 13. “At this – our 20th anniversary - fans can meet and greet champions before they head to London,” Stroud said.

Willowdale will honor world-class equestrians including Bruce Davidson, five-time Olympian; Phillip Dutton, four-time Olympian; Michael Matz, three-time Olympic show jumping team member; Donnan Sharp Jones, Olympic Dressage team member; Jessica Ransehousen, three-time Olympian; Becca Hart, para-equestrian national champion and Jane Sleeper, Olympic team member.

The Willowdale Steeplechase will salute these and others as well as 2012 US team contenders as they parade on horseback before the first race. Later, they will join spectators and sign autographs from the US Equestrian Federation hospitality tent.

Race day fans also will enjoy the traditional antique car display, themed tailgate competition, Jack Russell Terrier Races, Stick Pony Races, free children’s activities, shopping boutiques and food vendors.

The Willowdale Steeplechase, a non-profit organization founded in 1993, has donated over $300,000 to local charities. Proceeds from the 2012 races will benefit: Quest Therapeutic Services, Inc., serving children with developmental, physical and psychological disabilities; The University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine New Bolton Center and The Stroud Water Research Center, steward of fresh water systems through education and research.

Willowdale is located just north of Kennett Square, PA at the intersection of Routes 926 and 82. The pristine 193-acre property offers a natural amphitheater with a challenging water jump.

Admission to the races is $25 per person in advance and $30 at the gate. Children under 12 are admitted free. Reserved patron parking is available from $175 to $450 per space. For tickets or more information, visit www.willowdale.org or call (610) 444-1582.