Keyword Exclusive - Know more about the Games
Supplement to "Kentucky Living’s Guide to the 2010 World Equestrian Games”
BOOST YOUR EQUESTRIAN IQ
1. Headquartered at the Kentucky Horse Park, the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is responsible for selecting, training, equipping, and financing teams to represent the country in international competition and for equestrian sport reporting to the U.S. Olympic Committee; www.usef.org.
2. The Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) is the international governing body of equestrian sport recognized by the International Olympic Committee, and is the sole controlling authority for all international events in the eight World Equestrian Games disciplines. For detailed info on each discipline, go to www.fei.org.
3. The equine industry brings $4 billion to Kentucky each year.
4. The 2010 Games are expected to generate at least $150 million to the Commonwealth over 16 days.
5. England’s Prince Philip first came up with the idea for the World Equestrian Games in 1983 during his tenure as president of FEI. Before that, the world championships for each FEI discipline were held at separate locations; whichever country won a championship in a particular discipline would then host the competition for it four years later.
6. Alltech, a global-based animal health and nutrition company, is not running the 2010 Games but is a $10 million sponsor, a donation that gave it naming rights to the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.
7. During the Games, look for Horse Mania—a number of hand-painted horse statues that first appeared in 2000—to rear its head again on the streets of Lexington.
8. Horses will travel to the Games from around the world. Some may come through permanent quarantine facilities in Los Angeles and Miami, while others will visit a temporary quarantine facility set up just for and by the Alltech FEI Games at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.
9. The 2010 Games and the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics share similarities: more than two weeks’ duration, an international audience, and expectations to be the largest events in their cities’ histories.
BECOME A WEGspert
Impress your friends and broaden your enjoyment of the Games with your knowledge of everything 2010 World Equestrian Games:
WEGspert—go online to www.alltechfeigames.com/about/default.aspx?id=3696 and complete a video training program to qualify as a 2010 Alltech FEI WEGspert by learning about the eight equine disciplines, Kentucky Horse Park, spectators’ options, and how you can get involved. Once you’ve finished, you’ll receive links to more info and two downloadable videos. “We want fans to share the program with their own civic, equine, and business groups,” says Amy Walker, public relations manager for the World Games 2010 Foundation.
Alltech Horse Sense Classes—attend free, one-and-one-half-hour classes provided by Games sponsor Alltech at their Lexington headquarters and designated locations around the state. You’ll learn enough about the event to be informed when you watch and to pass the word along. “Most Kentuckians are familiar with horses and the Derby and racing, but vaulting?...para dressage?” says Susanna Elliott, Alltech’s public relations director for the Games. “Companies and individuals who have taken the course say the amount of information they receive is awesome.” Info at www.alltech.com.
Though she’d grown up riding hunters and Saddlebreds, Susan Gilliland was hooked the first time she watched a driving event.
“I ordered a carriage and harnessed my riding horse up and that was it,” she laughs. “That was 25 years ago.”
Driving discipline manager for the 2010 Games, she organizes driving events and is passionate about her chosen equine pursuit.
“As a sport, driving is beautiful,” says the Florida native. “It takes my breath away to watch the four-in-hand drivers in their highly polished carriages and formal attire. You have to be physically fit to control four strong horses with your hands and no aids. In dressage and cones, drivers carry a whip and use it like riders use their legs, to help bend horses and move them forward.”
A winner is determined by accumulated penalty points, she explains, which can be racked up for time spent within an obstacle, time taken to repair broken equipment within an obstacle, if the vehicle turns over, or a driver or groom falls out. The lowest number of points wins. Go to www.horsetv.com and click on the Carriage Association of America thumbnail below the video screen to watch a driving video.
Of all the equestrian sports at the Games, reining has the most American history. After all, quarter horses must be able to do quick accelerations, spins, and sliding stops day-to-day on a working cattle ranch, says Brad Ettleman, reining discipline manager for the 2010 Games.
“The best reining horses are those that appear as if they’re conducting the pattern on their own,” he explains. “There are a very few cues; the reins are very loose. These animals by nature are quiet and kind and love what they do.
“One thing we get a bit of a hard time about in reining is that our athletes tend to be a little older,” says Ettleman, who produces national and world championship horse shows and events through his Denver-based company, HorsePower Inc. “This is one of those sports where experience really has the upper hand over athleticism. It’s more about time in the saddle than about physique. Several of our riders are over 50.”
Though he has never shown reining horses, Ettleman now owns several. Competing would be a conflict of interest, so he rides them on weekends for fun.
“My guys have kind of won the horse lottery,” he laughs. “They don’t go to horse shows and only get ridden once a week.”
2010 GAMES FUN STUFF
Have a ball at hms.alltech.com/fei2010/funstuff.cfm, where you can download a screensaver with equestrian images and a clock counting the days, minutes, hours, and seconds to the 2010 World Equestrian Games; and download Games-themed ringtones for any MP3-compatible phone.
OWN A PIECE OF THE 2010 GAMES
Looking for a memento from this Kentucky history-making event? Just zip online to www.weg2010store.com. Here’s a sampling:
• World Equestrian Radio—a personal radio service with a souvenir radio receiver that allows Games attendees to listen to live commentary while viewing a specific event or discipline, $45
• Official 2010 Games poster with artwork by LeRoy Neiman, $50 to $250
• Official souvenir program, $15; detailed event book, $5 per discipline
• Golf shirts from $50
• Outerwear jackets from $79
• Glasses from $10 for a collectors’ 2-pack; stemless wine glasses, $36 for 2
• Logo caps from $18
• Lapel pins, $5; key rings, $10
When all that equine spectating makes your tummy rumble, sate your appetite at the 2010 Games and in the area.
Kentucky Horse Park
• The Farmhouse—a private club, location of nightly Celebrity Chef Dinner Series during the Games that pairs a Bluegrass chef with two celebrity chefs to prepare dishes reflecting their regional specialties for 80 guests per evening; a collaboration between the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, the James Beard Foundation, and the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation; sponsored by Kentucky Proud. Tickets at www.alltechfeigames.com.
• Clubhouse Restaurant—American fare; seating for 300 indoors, 60 outdoors.
• Vendor booths at the 2010 Trade Show, concessions throughout the park.
Hometown of the UK Wildcats; many eateries with TVs tuned in to sports. Downtown, try deSha’s Restaurant for great Hot Browns and views of Triangle Park, or Joe Bologna’s, the place for outasight pizza since 1970. Meat-lovers can steak-out at Malone’s, with a great wine list and cigars to boot; or chill with Southern comfort food—pot roast, meat loaf, chicken and dumplings—at Ramsey’s Diner. Or simply sip wine at Equus Run Vineyards near Midway. For more info, go online to www.visitlex.com or call (800) 845-3959.
An official FEI sport since the mid-2000s, para dressage allows riders with physical challenges the opportunity to participate in an equine sport at an international level. Disabilities can range from medical (such as multiple sclerosis) to a birth defect (being born without arms) to a sustained accident, often automobile-related. After an assessment by experts, each rider is issued a classification card, from 1A (most debilitated) through 1B, 2, and 3 to 4 (least). In the World Equestrian Games, riders must compete in their assigned category against similarly disabled individuals.
However, in United States horse show competition, riders can challenge themselves and ride at a higher level and can also petition the USEF (United States Equestrian Federation) to use aids, such as Velcro to attach arms to reins if the rider has no hands.
“I find para dressage riders a much more happy-go-lucky crowd generally than able-bodied riders,” says Lloyd Landkamer, 2010 Games discipline manager for dressage and para dressage and horse show producer. “They seem to really enjoy the freedom this sport gives them. At a competition, an able-bodied rider will be complaining about something small. And then someone goes roaring by in an electric wheelchair leading their horse, having a grand time. Often, the able-bodied rider will just get quiet. It puts everything in perspective.”
To read the Kentucky Living June 2010 feature that goes along with this supplement, go to Kentucky Living Guide to the 2010 World Equestrian Games.