A new home has to be found for the FEI World Equestrian Games in 2018.
The Games were due to be held in Bromont, Canada, but the organisers and the FEI have ‘agreed to part company’ due to ongoing financial issues.
“We are sad that the Bromont organising committee is no longer in a position to host the Games in 2018,” said FEI President Ingmar De Vos.
The Games had been allocated to Canada in June 2014, after the application bid promised ‘substantial government backing’. However, last week it was confirmed that no funding would be forthcoming from the Canadian Federal Government.
There are now two years left to find a new venue and plan the huge scale event.
“We are now looking at possible alternatives for 2018 and we are hopeful that we will be in a position to make an announcement shortly,” added Ingmar De Vos.
“Of course it isn’t easy for any organising committee to put on an event of this magnitude in a two-year timeframe, but it is not unprecedented and the Italians hosted a brilliant World Equestrian Games in Rome in 1998 after Ireland pulled out less than two years before the Games, so we are confident that a workable solution will be found.”
The Canadian bid for WEG was blighted with financial problems from the outset, with the FEI choosing to re-open the bidding process in June 2013 after the Canadian delegation was unable to provide the full public sector financial support required. They were susequently awarded the Games, but did not manage to secure the crucial financial backing required.
The World Equestrian Games were first formed in Stockholm in 1990, and have been held every four years since. However, hosting an event of this scale – with dressage, showjumping, eventing, para-dressage, vaulting and reining all held at the same time – has serious implications in terms of funding, suitable venues and infrastructures.