USA’s largest equestrian center acquires 950-acre Florida facility

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The Ocala Jockey Club has been bought by the World Equestrian Center.
The Ocala Jockey Club has been bought by the World Equestrian Center.

The Ocala, Florida based World Equestrian Center has acquired the Ocala Jockey Club, a 950-acre facility that hosts an international CCI4* long-format three-day-event each November.

The Ocala Jockey Club was on the market for two years. It has seven barns, a training track, and a 5600-square-foot clubhouse. Its equestrian facilities cover about 400, with the remainder undeveloped parkland.

Owned by the Roberts family, the World Equestrian Center (WEC) in Ocala is the largest equestrian complex in the United States. WEC also has a facility in Wilmington, Ohio.

WEC plans to use the new facility for its eventing cross-country competition, and the new facility will be known as the World Equestrian Jockey Club.

Renovations are being planned to ready the facility for hosting weddings, equestrian and special events under the WEC brand.

Roby Roberts, the son of WEC owners Ralph “Larry” and Mary Roberts, said the Ocala Jockey Club brings “a combination of training, competition and elegant hospitality in the venue that is in line with our World Equestrian Center vision”.

“Through this acquisition, we aim to continue those traditions of great sport and grand entertaining, while investing in the future of equestrian sports in Ocala,” Roberts said.

One of the barns at the Ocala Jockey Club, which has been bought by the World Equestrian Center.
One of the barns at the Ocala Jockey Club, which has been bought by the World Equestrian Center.

The Ocala Jockey Club was developed in the early 1980s as a family-oriented Thoroughbred horse farm community located in Marion County. It was owned by Pavla and Erik Nygaard.

It has seven barns and a 5/8 mile training track, and is also a wedding and special event venue.

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