FEI Reports “Very High” Level of Interest, Quality of Submissions to Host 2022 Individual World Championships With 2 Weeks to Deadline

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The last World Equestrian Games combining all horse sports governed by the International Equestrian Federation?

LAUSANNE, Switzerland, Feb. 13, 2018–The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) reported Wednesday “very high” level of interest and quality of submissions two weeks ahead of the deadline to bid for world championships in 2022 of the eight international horse sports that for 28 years were combined into a single World Equestrian Games.

The FEI said it “has already received some exciting expressions of interest for 2022, with more submissions expected before the 28 February deadline.”

“I am delighted to say that the level of interest and the quality of submissions to host FEI World Championships in 2022 has been very high so far, and we are confident that we will have an interesting pool of candidates to choose from when the allocations are made later this year,” FEI President Ingmar De Vos said.

The FEI gave no details of interest in any of the disciplines of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, jumping, reining, vaulting and para dressage or from which countries. The 2022 championships will be awarded in November after a workshof interested bidders in March.

“Equestrian sport has become increasingly globalized,” he said, “but there are relatively few countries that have the capacity to host world championships in all disciplines simultaneously.

“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 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.”

A bid process for individual world championships of what the FEI previously listed as eight disciplines but has begun combining dressage and para dressage into a single sport to make it seven disciplines was begun late last year when no applicants for a combined 2022 WEG were received. The WEG was instituted in 1990 as the combined world championships of all horse sports governed by the FEI and staged once every four years midway between the summer Olympics schedule. An increase in the numer of sports–reining was not included until 2006 and para dressage in 2010–and increasingly greater costs of staging the event in a calendar already full of high quality regular annual competitions took its toll. More than 4,000 FEI events are organized globally every year, including annual World Cup Finals.

The FEI president, according to Wednesday’s news release, stressed that the individual world championships or smaller combinations “does not necessarily mean the end of the FEI World Equestrian Games concept,” and bids to host all disciplines together for 2022 will be considered.

Preference in the current round of bidding is being given to multi-discipline bids with emphasis on combining dressage and para bressage. The world championships for 2022 in the Olympic disciplines of dressage, eventing and jumping and para dressage will be qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Games.

The FEI will host an interactive workshop in Lausanne at the end of March for all national federations/organizing committees that submit an expression of interest in the 2022 championships. After that, interested bidders will be invited to submit a formal bid, outlining their plans and visions.

“This interactive workshop is a key factor in ensuring that we adequately convey the structure, opportunities and minimum requirements of hosting the FEI World Championships 2022,” Ingmar De Vos said. “By working more closely with the national federations and organizing committees from the very start of the process we can ensure a unified vision and establish an achievable set of goals to work toward.”