WEG Test Events This Year, But Not for Dressage & Jumping

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Stade d’Ornano in Caen that will be the stage for dressage and jumping at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France next summer.
Stade d’Ornano in Caen that will be the stage for dressage and jumping at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France next summer.

Organizers of the World Equestrian Games in Normany have scheduled test events for three disciplines in August, but dressage and jumping at the main Stade d’Ornano in Caen will not be tested until next June, two months before the Games are to start.

The organizing committee announced that endurance will be tested at Sartilly Aug. 16, eventing at Haras National du Pin (Orne) and Caen’s SHUC equestrian centee Aug. 16-18 and driving at Caen race track Aug. 23-25.

The three events are part of a wider testing program running over the next 10 months, the organizers said in a statement.

The dressage and jumping test event will be staged in Stade d’Ornano in Caen next June 20-22, exactly two months before the start of WEG.

The stadium is used mainly for soccer and will not be available for construction of competition arenas for the WEG until May, 2014.

“The site configuration and resources used at the August 2013 test events will not be representative of what athletes, media and spectators can expect in 2014, as the priority will be on testing technical and organizational processes,” the organizers said.

The tests include the smooth running of the competitions, interaction with the athletes and national federations, layout of the competition and training arenas, footing, and the volunteer workforce as well as electronic timing and results services.

Both organizers and the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) have dismissed concerns over the late testing of the dressage and jumping vnuee and footing.

The 2006 WEG in Aachen, Germany was tested by its major competitions several months ahead of the Games while the 2010 WEG in Kentucky held a test event more than a year in advance of the competition.

A test of the equestrian facility at Greenwich Park for the London Olympics a year ahead of the 2012 Games led to issues with the footing that took six months before a solution was approved by the FEI.