World Equestrian Games concept parked for 2022; several venues to be used

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FEI President Ingmar de Vos, at centre, at today's FEI board meeting in Moscow. © FEI
FEI President Ingmar de Vos, at centre, at today’s FEI board meeting in Moscow. © FEI

The concept of a World Equestrian Games has been set aside for 2022, with several venues to host disciplines that for 30 years have been held in one location.

When the FEI opened the bidding process late last year for individual world championships for 2022, it said its preference would be given to multi-discipline bids.

FEI President Ingmar De Vos stressed at the time that it did not necessarily mean the end of the FEI World Equestrian Games concept.

“The new bid process allows for the sustainable and cost-effective use of existing equestrian sports facilities and for the FEI to partner with National Federations that may have hesitated in putting forward multi-discipline bids in the past.

“The door is now open for these federations to consider submitting an expression of interest for an individual world championship in the discipline of their choice,” De Vos said.

The FEI Board today announced the host cities for the FEI World Championships in 2022, confirming that several venues would be used.

The FEI has struggled in the last decade or more to find venues capable of hosting all equestrian disciplines at once, with the cost and logistical challenges proving formidable for some potential hosts.

Today, ahead of the annual General Assembly of the FEI in Moscow this week, it was confirmed that Jumping, Dressage, Para Dressage and Vaulting will be staged in Herning, Denmark, in August 2022.

The Danish city, which runs a qualifier for the FEI Dressage World Cup each year, previously hosted a multi-discipline equestrian event in 2013 when it staged the FEI European Championships for Jumping, Dressage and Para-Dressage.

Pratoni del Vivaro in Italy, which was the venue for Eventing at the Rome 1960 Olympic Games, will host the world championships for Eventing and Driving in September 2022.

The venue, located 35 kilometres south of Rome, is no stranger to hosting high-level equestrian events and FEI championships. It was the site for the cross-country competition at the FEI World Equestrian Games in 1998 and hosted the FEI World Driving Championships for Singles in 2006 and 2010.

“When we opened the process for the FEI World Championships 2022 to single and multi-discipline bids, our intention was to have events that were more manageable and sustainable at proven venues,” FEI Secretary General Sabrina Ibáñez said.

“By allocating these multi-discipline Championships to Herning and Pratoni del Vivaro we’re working with hosts that already have the necessary experience and required infrastructure in place to organise world-class equestrian championships.

“We received some truly excellent bids,” she said, “and unfortunately we don’t have enough FEI world championships to allocate to everyone, but we very much hope that these excellent organisers will bid again in the future to host championships at their venues.”

The world championships 2022 in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines of Jumping, Eventing, Dressage and Para Dressage, will serve as qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the FEI said.

The FEI Board agreed unanimously that any decision on the FEI World Championships in Endurance and Reining should be postponed pending the outcome of discussions and voting in relation to both discussions, with a major revamp of Endurance rules to be voted on by the General Assembly.

The FEI Board also allocated FEI World Cup Finals for 2022 to 2024, with Leipzig in Germany once again hosting four FEI World Cup Finals under one roof from April 6-10, 2022.

The German city previously hosted the same four disciplines – Jumping, Dressage, Driving and Vaulting – in 2011.

The FEI World Cup Finals for Jumping and Dressage will return to Omaha, in the United States, in 2023 (April 12-16), and the FEI World Cup Finals 2024 for Jumping and Dressage were allocated to Riyadh, in Saudi Arabia for 2024. Dates for the finals in Riyadh will be confirmed.

Bordeaux, in France, will host the FEI Driving World Cup Finals in both 2023 (February 2-5) and 2024 (February 1-4).

The bidding process for the FEI Vaulting World Cup Finals in 2023 and 2024 will be reopened.

In addition, the board allocated qualifiers for the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup series, FEI Jumping Nations Cup Youth 2020 and FEI Eventing Nations Cup 2020, FEI Jumping Ponies Trophy 2020 qualifiers and finals and other championships.

There are more than 4000 FEI events organised world-wide annually across the seven disciplines of Jumping, Dressage and Para-Dressage, Eventing, Endurance, Driving and Para-Driving, Vaulting and Reining. There are world championships in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines held every four years and every second year for non-Olympic disciplines.

2 thoughts on “World Equestrian Games concept parked for 2022; several venues to be used

  • November 17, 2019 at 12:05 pm
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    Separating the various events as outlined above is sensible and practical. When one thinks of the complex logistics of staging eventing with the three disciplines of dressage, cross country and jumping, one wonders how a host can manage all the others at the same time. Yes, all the sports referred to above in the article involve a horse but they are very different sports. Vaulting, especially, has little in common with, for example, dressage or eventing. It has more in common with gymnastics and I do sometimes wonder if it should be part of the gymnastics sport. I am a general and, ‘older’ rider, and I think I could manage most of the disciplines at a low level but, even at a low level, my skills in gymnastics would preclude any attempt to vault on and off and over a horse! Andrew Nicholson is one rider who springs to mind (pun intended!) who could in fact make a decent attempt at this discipline! But there are few who could. I do wonder if vaulting is, in fact, an equestrian sport or a gymnastic one? Should it be part of the World Equestrian Games? Having said that I do admire the enormous skill of those involved in vaulting but it is the gymnastic skill I admire.
    Angela Mackie

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  • November 19, 2019 at 2:19 pm
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    Vaulting is indeed an equestrian sport! The horse must be trained to a very high level of dressage and the athletes must have a high level of equestrian skills including balance, rhythm with the horse, …. Most riders would benefit greatly from incorporating vaulting training into their own training- the improvement of balance, core strength, emergency dismounts, … The skills you see at WEG are the elite of the vaulting world- the average child and adult participating in vaulting are perfecting skills to become excellent equestrians in many disciplines. As an “older rider” you would do well to incorporate vaulting into your equestrian life- the “vault on” is not a necessary for mounting the horse. Also note that there is proof that vaulting was used as far back as the Greek armies to train equestrians!

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