Kentucky to Bid for World Equestrian Games

Release from Kentucky Horse Park

Gov. Ernie Fletcher announced July 8 that Kentucky, on behalf of the United States, will submit a formal bid to the International Equestrian Federation to host the 2010 World Equestrian Games.

The games are considered the most important high-performance equestrian competition in the world, and are held every four years in a country designated by the FEI, the international governing body for equestrian sport headquartered in Switzerland.

"I am very pleased to announce, along with representatives of the United States equestrian industry and the Kentucky Horse Park, Kentucky's bid to host the 2010 World Equestrian Games," Fletcher said. "Our great Commonwealth is known around the world for our state's signature horse industry, and Kentucky would be honored to host this prestigious event right here in the Bluegrass."

The games are comprised of the world championships for seven equestrian sports: eventing, show jumping, dressage, driving, endurance, vaulting, and reining. They are held two years prior to the Olympic Games. The 2002 World Equestrian Games in Spain attracted close to 300,000 spectators, 800 equestrians from 45 countries, and 1,000 media representatives.

The event would bring international competitors and tourists to Kentucky, from 10 days to two weeks, in September 2010. The impact would be in terms of both direct and indirect spending with an estimated attendance of 250,000 people.