FEI Approves Footing for London 2012 Equestrian Events

The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) has given final sign-off on the footing that will be used for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Equestrian Events at Greenwich Park.

The London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) conducted footing tests at a site near Preston in the north of England Dec. 20-21, 2011. The final mix for the footing is composed of nonwaxed sand, felt, and fiber.

Testing of the new footing concluded on Dec. 21 when international riders Geoff Billington (Jumping) and Richard Davison (Dressage) rode on the surface, which had been laid on the platform structure that will be used at Greenwich Park next year.

Leopoldo Palacios, technical advisor to LOCOG, FEI Technical Delegate Frank Rothenberger, footing expert Bart Poels, and FEI Director Jumping John Roche attended the test on Dec. 21. The technical experts produced detailed reports that were submitted to the FEI Executive Board for further evaluation prior to sign-off.

The test was also attended by International Jumping Riders Club representative John Whitaker, show jumping riders Peter Murphy and David McPherson, two representatives from the Union Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne, and Peter Hart, LOCOG Modern Pentathlon Competition Manager.

"The riders gave some very positive feedback on the footing and this was backed up by the technical reports we received from the officials that attended the test in December", FEI Secretary General Ingmar de Vos said. "The FEI Executive Board has now signed off on the footing and, together with LOCOG, we are delighted that the process is now in place to deliver the best possible footing for the 2012 Games. We are looking forward to excellent Olympic and Paralympic sport at the wonderful Greenwich Park venue next summer."

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