|In the four years since its inception, the Palm Beach Masters Series® has become synonymous with high performance show jumping as the home of the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Wellington.|
In 2019, the Series adds its first five-star to its lineup, hosting the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of the United States, the only qualifier in the country for the prestigious Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ Final. Eight nations will be represented, as the world’s best riders will congregate at the Jacobs family’s Deeridge Farms.
Lou Jacobs, who founded the Series alongside siblings Charlie Jacobs and Katie Jacobs Robinson, grew up at Deeridge. His parents, Jerry and Peggy Jacobs, bought their first Florida properties in 1979. Now, he and his family—with four generations of Jacobses involved in the industry—are determined to give back to the sport and the city that have given them so much. This year, they made the Palm Beach Masters Series® a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
“It all stems from my father’s love of horses that goes back to his childhood,” Lou said. “My dad purchased this property and built the barn first. This was really sort of a center point for our family life, and we’ve spent a lot of great years down here showing and competing together.”
All proceeds from the 2019 Palm Beach Masters Series® will go to the United States Equestrian Team Foundation, which supports the United States’ high performance equestrian athletes with training, coaching, travel and educational needs.
“So many of the great horse shows in this country are not-for-profit 501c(3) organizations, whether it’s the Hampton Classic Horse Show, Lake Placid Horse Shows, Devon Horse Show, National Horse Show, or Washington International Horse Show,” Lou said. “We thought, ‘What better partner for our non-profit than the United States Equestrian Team Foundation?’”
As a boutique event, Palm Beach Masters offers a unique experience for its competitors, from Deeridge’s picturesque 300-acres to its one-of-a-kind VIP experience, horse-friendly facility, and intimacy. Ultimately, the Jacobs family wants the venue to feel like home to high performance show jumpers.
“Really, our ultimate goal in the future is that this would be the home for the U.S. Equestrian Team,” Lou explained. “The great milestone this year is being awarded the Nations Cup, because we want the USET and the athletes to view this as their home grounds.”
As the Series continues to grow, changes may seem constant, but the core heart of the Series remains the same: It’s all about family and sport.
“I’ve been a rider, I’ve been a ringside parent, I’ve been a horse owner, and this is a very different perspective, being a horse show organizer,” Lou said. “It’s been a great process. I’ve enjoyed it enormously, and part of the enjoyment stems from doing it as a family. It’s brought us together. I don’t ride anymore, but it hasn’t diminished my love and passion for the sport, and to be able to do it together with my extended family has been a real joy.”
“It’s a very competitive process to be named the one home of the United States’ Nations Cup,” he added. “It means a great deal to me that the athletes, the USEF, and the equestrian community at large have that trust and faith in us. We’re going to work hard not to let anybody down.”
The 2019 Palm Beach Masters Series® lineup includes the Palm Beach Masters Winter Classic CSI4*-W, featuring the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Wellington (Jan. 31—Feb. 3); the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of the United States (Feb. 14-17); and the fourth-annual Deeridge Derby (Feb. 28-March 3); with more to come next year. All proceeds from the entire series will directly benefit the USET Foundation, whose athletes claimed three of the top four placings in the 2018 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final in Paris, France. Beezie Madden claimed her second title, while Devin Ryan was the runner-up and defending Champion McLain Ward finished fourth.
“There seems to be some synergy,” Lou said, “where we could put on these high performance events, and any proceeds we might have from the events would go back to our high performance athletes when they go to represent the United States abroad.”
For more information on the 2019 CP Palm Beach Masters Series® Presented by Suncast, visit palmbeachmasters.com. Hospitality packages, including VIP tables, are also still available and can be purchased here or calling Harlan at (203) 470-5005.