Fair Hill International, Inc. Welcomes Ian Stark

Fair Hill International, Inc. is excited to welcome Ian Stark as the cross country course designer for the highly anticipated CCI5*-L in October 2020.  

Tim Gardner, Fair Hill International board member; Ian Stark; and Jay Griswold, Fair Hill Foundation board member.

Ian Stark is a British Olympic event rider with accolades of accomplishments. In addition to his four Olympic silver medals, he also won one team gold, one team silver, and one individual silver at the World Championships, one individual gold, one individual silver, and one individual bronze (as well as six team golds) at the European Championships, team gold and individual bronze at the 1986 alternative World Championships, and claimed the top prize at Badminton three times. 

Ian began his career as a course designer back in 2005. Since then, he has been designing cross-country courses in the UK, Ireland, and the USA up to the four-star level [Note: 2019 FEI classification system]. Chatsworth, Bramham, Blair Castle, and Tattersalls are amongst some of his biggest European tracks while Rebecca Farm, Galway Downs, and former Richland Park are his major events stateside. Our local Area II riders are familiar with his courses from The Maryland Horse Trials where he is the cross-country course designer for their summer back-to-back recognized events. Ian’s trademark stamps on his courses are galloping fences and forward distances with brilliant use of the terrain.  

Ian’s longtime dream has been to design a 5-star track of which there are currently only six in the world. “I am thrilled and excited to be involved in America’s new 5-star event at Fair Hill and can’t wait to get started planning the Cross Country course. Every designers dream?!” quipped Ian on adding a 5-star event to his resume.  We are excited to embark on this 5-star journey together. “Fair Hill International is delighted to welcome Ian Stark to the team,” said Trish Gilbert, President of Fair Hill International, Inc. “His global reputation and experience will be invaluable to the five-star competition. We all look forward to working with him as we bring this event to fruition.”

Next year, Ian will take over the reins from Derek Di Grazia who has been designing the FEI tracks at Fair Hill for the last 20 years. Derek has been a crucial part in FHI becoming the world-class competition it is today, and we cannot thank him enough for his contribution over the years. 

Fair Hill International has been hosting national and FEI competitions for over 30-years, including the prestigious fall 3 and 4-star national championships. Next year’s five-star event will be produced by Fair Hill International along with support from the Five Star Hosting Committee and the Fair Hill Foundation.

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