If you guessed eighty-one you are correct!
Still, event volunteers have been asked many questions about the ribbons and how they are allocated so here’s a little bit of an explanation:
Event rules for the international divisions require that ribbons be awarded on a four-to-one ratio. For example, if the division will have forty competitors, a minimum of ten ribbons must be awarded. Sounds simple enough until you realize that, to ensure timely delivery, ribbons have to be ordered before organizers even know how many total competitors there will be in a division. Last minute orders with rush delivery can get expensive fast so we rely on our historical number of competitors and order the same number of ribbons for each international divisions. The CIC1* division routinely attracts sixty to sixty-five competitors so lately we have ordered 16 ribbons for each of the international divisions. (We’d rather give too many ribbons than to few!)
The rules are not as mathematically specific for the four national divisions which tend to have thirty or fewer registered competitors per division. In these divisions, Red Hills routinely awards 8 ribbon places.
If you are a stickler for details you also want to know about the one extra ribbon that is unaccounted for in the above explanation. The highest level of competition offered at Red Hills is the CIC 3* division and lowest score in the division receives both a first place ribbon and a ribbon sash like the one in the photo above.
Photo by Shems Hamilton Photography.