FEI Celebrates 90 Years of Horse Sport

FEI Celebrates 90 Years of Horse Sport

Photo: Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI)

November 24 was a historic day for the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) as the Federation celebrates its 90th birthday and joins in the celebrations for the 1000-day countdown to the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in 2014.

On Nov. 24, 1921, representatives from national equestrian organizations from Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, and the United States gathered in Paris, France, with the objective of forming an international federation. The inclusion of equestrian sport in the Olympic movement and the rapid development of the sport overall made it clear that internationally recognized rules supervised by a world governing body were essential. The FEI was born and Baron du Teil of France was elected as the first FEI President.

"The FEI was founded in 1921 at a small gathering in troubled post-war Europe; now, 90 years later, the FEI is an international organization with 132 Member Federations and is in charge of almost 3,000 events organized all over the world. More than 50,000 horses and 32,000 riders, drivers and vaulters are today registered with the FEI," current FEI President, HRH Princess Haya, commented.

"We are proud of the history and tradition of our sport, which celebrates the centuries-old relationship between humans and horses. We continue to celebrate equestrian sport, which has proved beyond any doubt that it has the magic and charisma to remain attractive and relevant in the modern sporting landscape. What an incredible journey it has been and what an incredible journey it will continue to be over the next 90 years."

2014 WEG Logo

Another important date was also marked today with the launch of the 1000-day countdown to the FEI’s flagship event, the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Caen (FRA). To celebrate the occasion, the French minister for sport David Douillet, personalities representing the Organizing Committee, the region of Lower Normandy, and the city of Caen, as well as Alltech Chief Marketing Officer Catherine Keogh, and FEI Secretary General Ingmar De Vos unveiled the 2014 Games’ official logo at the Caen Fine Arts Museum.

The logo, which depicts a horse’s head and a human’s head superimposed on a leafy green background, demonstrates the unique bond between human and horse at the heart of the Games. The shared profile and shared eye are a creative way of showing the relationship between two elite athletes and their combined determination to win. The beautiful host region of Normandy is present in the bold green color and the apple blossoms on the backdrop.

A totem pole constructed from three Jumping rails pointing up towards the sky will be erected near the stadium Michel d’Ornano in the city of Caen, where the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games opening and closing ceremonies will be held. A solar-powered countdown timer will be placed on the totem pole, so that the Games become a part of the local residents’ everyday lives even before the event gets underway.

Celebrations will continue on Nov. 26 when the people of Caen will be invited to learn more about equestrian sport through games and family-oriented activities.

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