The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) has opened the bidding process for the 2022 edition of its showpiece World Equestrian Games event.
The successful candidate will be announced at the FEI General Assembly in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo in November 2017.
FEI secretary general Sabrina Ibáñez also confirmed that the federation is reviewing the format of the Games to ensure that it remains attractive to audiences. “As with all events of this scale, we have been carefully analysing every aspect of our flagship event to make sure it continues to appeal to large audiences and attract media and television viewers,” she said.
“On the basis of this, we have been engaged in a lengthy consultation process with the greater equestrian community and global media representatives to make the FEI World Equestrian Games format more cost effective, more universal and ensure it continues to appeal to new fans.”
The Games comprise each of the seven FEI disciplines – jumping, dressage and para-equestrian dressage, eventing, driving, endurance, vaulting and reining. The event has been held every four years since 1990, with the French region of Normandy staging the most recent edition in 2014.
Bromont and Montreal will jointly stage the 2018 Games after the FEI in 2014 awarded the Canadian cities hosting rights. The Bromont Olympic Equestrian Park, which was used as a venue during the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, will serve as the hub for the event. The 2018 Games will mark only the second time the event has been staged outside of Europe after Lexington in the US played host in 2010.
“The FEI World Equestrian Games is one of the major events on the global sporting calendar and we are looking for host cities that can deliver an exceptional experience for both athletes and spectators,” Ibáñez added.
“The FEI World Equestrian Games represents the greatest gathering of top-level equestrian athletes with eight World Championships in one event, uniting our disciplines, our community and our fans. The 2014 Games in Normandy attracted more than 500,000 on-site spectators and a worldwide television audience of 350 million, as well as delivering an economic impact of €368m ($420m) to the French economy.”
Interested parties must enter an Expression of Interest form by May 15 and must then submit a questionnaire by August before a final list of candidates is revealed by the FEI in December.
From January to May 2017, the FEI will visit the candidate cities and review each bid. Final bids must be submitted by June 2017, after which point the FEI will evaluate each applicant and receive bid presentations before reaching its decision in November next year.