Mark Bellissimo, Managing Partner and CEO of the International Equestrian Group (IEG) and Tryon Equestrian Partners (TEP), announced today the inaugural annual World Equine Expo™ that will include the WEQx Games™ and World Horse Day™ and will run concurrently with the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG) between September 11-23, 2018.
The collective event theme is “Celebrate the Horse, Celebrate the Sport,” which honors and highlights the unique connection between horses and humans across the world. The Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) team, location of the 2018 WEG, today released its #Together video highlighting this powerful connection.
The FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 will run from September 11-23, 2018 and is equestrian sport’s most significant event featuring the World Championships for eight equestrian disciplines: Jumping, Dressage, Para-Dressage, Eventing, Driving, Vaulting, Reining, and Endurance. The Tryon WEG will have the highest attendance of any sporting event in the U.S. in 2018.
The World Equine Expo™ (Expo) – whose yearly event will run during the WEG – will be an annual event intended to create a platform to honor, celebrate, and promote horses and horsemanship through a significant trade fair, demonstrations, educational seminars, clinics, panel discussions, an equine art and film festival, and conversations on topics critical to raising awareness, and strengthening, innovating and expanding global equestrianism.
The Expo will include the WEQx Games™, which are spectator-friendly derivatives of equine competitions highlighting the accessibility, diversity, athleticism, and passion for horse sport for athletes of all ages with the ultimate goal of finding formats that promote personal, spectator, and commercial interests in equestrian sport. More comprehensive details surrounding the competitions to be included in the WEQx Games™ will be introduced in the forthcoming weeks.
Bellissimo commented, “All of our countries were discovered on the back of a horse. The horse and other equines (donkeys, mules) have been partners in humanity for over 4,000 years and remain a significant economic enabler in most developing countries with millions of equines supporting hundreds of millions of lives. These amazing animals continue to provide sustenance, transportation, security, entertainment, friendship, therapy, and sport throughout the world. The love of the horse is universal and profound. The opportunity is to better package the spirit of the horse and make it known and accessible to a broader audience.”
The social media theme “#Together” highlights the convergence and shared interests of many dualities including the FEI World Equestrian Games™ and the World Equine Expo™, east and west, horse and rider, equestrians and non-equestrians, athletes and spectators, and riders and grooms who all come together for the love and passion for horses. On the social media platform of Facebook alone, there are 250 million people that have horse-related interests. This compares with 7.9 million for ice hockey, 65 million for American football, 102 million for golf, 180 million for tennis and rivals American baseball of 288 million. Soccer leads the sporting disciplines with 762 million.