HOOGE MIERDE – In 2018 Paard&Koets (Horse&Carriage) will move to the large Equestrian Centre De Peelbergen in the South of Holland and will merge with the International Driving Event Horst aan de Maas. This merger will double the impact and size of the event. It will be easy to reach for driving fans from the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium. It will be much more attractive for visitors from abroad to undertake the journey because of the larger size of the event.
In 2014 Paard&Koets was, after a year’s absence, back on the calendar much to the delight of the driving fans. That year the event was taken over by Academy Bartels Event Management which ensured the survival of the 32-year-old event. After three years the location at the ‘Nationaal Hippisch Centrum’ (National Equestrian Center) became too small for Paard&Koets, so the time was right to take a further step. “De Peelbergen offers unlimited possibilities for the further growth of Paard&Koets”, explains organizer Gijs Bartels. The International Driving Event is held on the newly landscaped field in front of the three indoor halls which will accommodate Paard&Koets. The driving sports arena will be twice as large. A new arena will be added for driving related demonstrations and shows. There is enough space to accommodate 100 exhibitors of which approximately 75 will offer driving related products and 25 general equine products.
Again there is an exhibition space at De Peelbergen for studbooks, which was a much appreciated part of the event in the past. Bartels: “We want to be the overall event for drivers worldwide and this strategic move accelerates our ambition.”
To start the merger with Paard&Koets in 2018 the International Driving Event Horst aan de Maas will move to De Peelbergen in 2017. The CAI3* competition will be staged from 20 till 23 April 2017 and is an established name on the competition calendar for singles, pairs and four-in-hand teams. The four-in-hand drivers will compete for the National title and for World Cup points. “We annually organize a leading international event which perfectly matches the ambitions of Paard&Koets and which focuses on international visitors”, says Nico Rijbende, chairman of Driving Event Horst aan de Maas. “Together we have the ambition to organize top driving events and we are pleased that Paard&Koets will help us to realize this new driving event in the coming years!”
The first joint edition of Paard&Koets and the International Driving Event will take place on 20, 21 and 22 April 2018. Because Paard&Koets moves from the autumn to the spring, the organization decided to cancel the event in November 2017.