Spruce Meadows opens its doors to the world for its final FEI event of 2023, the ‘Masters’ CSIO5* Tournament, September 6–10, 2023.

Spectacular sport is guaranteed from the opening day with the Cardel Homes and TELUS Cup starting the tournament on the International Ring.

On Thursday, the ATCO Cup and CANA Cup take place. Both are qualifying opportunities for the weekend events.

Three competitions on Friday, September 8 (Paramount Resources CSI2* Grand Prix, Tourmaline Oil Cup, and ATCO Electric Six Bar) keep the action rolling into the WestJet Evening of the Horse prior to weekend events.

The top 30 horse/rider combinations for competitions early in the week will test their skill in the Suncor Winning Round to start Saturday’s competitions. The BMO Nations’ Cup will follow where fans can cheer on Team Canada, who are looking to best the rest of the nations.

Sunday of the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ marks the final day of the tournament and hosts two exciting competitions. The Enbridge Cup will get things started in the morning as anticipation builds to the CPKC ‘International’, presented by Rolex—part of the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping. The top 40 qualified riders will tackle the $3,000,000 two-round Grand Prix hoping to add their name to the history books and become the new Live Contender in the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping.

While some of the world’s best riders and horses compete throughout the week for top honors and the world’s largest purse, outside the competition rings, there’s plenty of entertainment and activities for guests of all ages.

Noteworthy highlights this year include the enthralling Blacksmith World Championships, presented by Halo. This captivating farrier competition showcases their adeptness in horse forge with welding, shoeing, and forging. Guests can also look forward to Jonathan Field Horsemanship Demonstrations, Grand Prix Dressage demonstrations by rider Pia Fortmuller (CAN) in the Riding Hall daily, complete with a spotlight performance on the International Ring during Friday’s WestJet Evening of the Horse, and Diamond Willow Vaulting with their harmonious demonstrations of “gymnastics on horseback” throughout the week.

Farrier Excellence: Halo Presents The Blacksmith World Championships

In conjunction with the esteemed Spruce Meadows ‘Masters,’ a noteworthy addition emerges, Halo presents: The Blacksmith World Championships at Spruce Meadows. This competition marks the rekindling of a captivating farrier contest in Calgary.

A farrier working.

Charlie Heathcott is one of the resident farriers at Spruce Meadows. (Spruce Meadows/Mike Sturk)

With limited participation of 65 individuals, The Blacksmith World Championships at Spruce Meadows extends a warm welcome beyond Canadian and American farriers, inviting international competitors to test their skills.

The diverse expertise will be exhibited in various categories, including (but not limited to) horse forge welding, shoeing, and forging—all tested for speed and skill. Throughout daily events, contestants will be assessed, culminating in the finale of the top 5 blacksmiths on Sunday. A prize pool of $136,000 is available, awarding the winner with a substantial $75,000 prize.

The championships stand as a testament to Spruce Meadows’ commitment to the celebration of equestrian artistry and the cultivation of a global community of devoted farriers.

Charlie Heathcott, a farrier at Spruce Meadows, recounts “People choose to shoe horses either to sustain their wellbeing or enhance their performance, always striving to ensure the best care for these magnificent animals.”

Jonathan Field Horsemanship- Live Foundational Presentations

Celebrating “The Horse”, Spruce Meadows is proud to welcome highly acclaimed horseman, Jonathan Field, to the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’. Jonathan is a world-class horseman who has helped countless people and horses achieve excellent results.

He will be doing two demonstrations daily Wednesday through Saturday of the ‘Masters’ in the Riding Hall with a final demonstration on Sunday in the International Ring. Field will be covering interesting topics such as: Essential Skills for Weanlings and Yearlings, The Power of Playing with Purpose, and a Fresh Start or Restart–Essentials Under a Saddle. Watch the progress of young horses as they learn the building blocks of a great foundation.

Celebrating the Horse

Anticipate a dynamic range of features in this year’s event, including a remarkable dressage performance on Friday, September 9, part of the WestJet Evening of the Horse. Pia Fortmuller, a distinguished Canadian CDI dressage champion, will take centre stage with her performance on the illuminated International Ring following the ATCO Six Bar. Throughout the ‘Masters’ week, Fortmuller’s presence will be felt in the Riding Hall Arena, offering additional demonstrations.

Enhancing the spectacle, Diamond Willow Vaulting will present their harmonious amalgamation of gymnastics and dance performances on horseback throughout the week. Daily appearances of Diamond Willow Vaulting in the in the Riding Hall Arena will grace the entirety of the ‘Masters’ event.

Full Week Itinerary

Outside of those mentioned, there is a full itinerary of additional demonstrations all week at the ‘Masters’. The Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians) Musical Ride; Show Jumping 101; Saddle Demos with DK Saddlery; Corgi Races; Brown Bear Woman Indigenous Education and more! Also included with daily admission for the kids (or kids at heart) is the Petting Zoo and Pony Rides.

Check the daily schedules HERE to see what’s happening and when each day of the ‘Masters’.