Five countries are in the running to host the FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) in 2018.
Rabat in Morocco; Bromont in Canada; Budapest in Hungary; Vienna in Austria; and Wellington in the USA have all have their applications confirmed by the FEI, which included a comprehensive questionnaire.
A record eight countries put forward Expression of Interest documents in November 2011. However, applications from Australia, Russia and Sweden were withdrawn earlier this year, leaving the final five to battle it out.
Their bids were officially presented to the FEI Bureau at its meeting in Lausanne in Switzerland on 8-9 June.
Notable by its absence is Great Britain, who did not make a bid to host the games. According to the British Equestrian Federation, they are simply not financially viable. Since WEG began in 1990, out of the seven games held, Aachen (2006) was the only one to make a profit.
However, FEI Secretary General Ingmar de Vos said that the new bidding process, which was put in place last year, is “competitive, well structured and transparent”.
“It is fantastic to have five really strong bids for hosting the FEI World Equestrian Games in 2018 and there could be no better endorsement of the FEI’s flagship event”, he said. “The new bidding process that we put in place last year has generated a huge amount of interest and we now look forward to welcoming the 2018 bidders to FEI Headquarters next month.”
When the five nations meet again in Lausanne on 11 July they will be given a presentation explaining the expectations and procedures for the games.
The final stage in the bidding process will be at the FEI’s spring 2013 meeting, when the candidates will formally present their final bids. The bureau will then announce the organisers of WEG 2018.