Horses are always the center of attention at the world’s most important equestrian events. Whether dressage, showjumping, harness racing or racing – all around the world, it’s all about the horses on different dates of the year. It is even possible to bet on the outcomes of the events on horse racing betting sites – after all, betting and horse racing are seemingly inseparable. Many equestrian events are also dedicated to tradition. They revive historic races or provide an etiquette that few other events have. So if you are a horse fan, here are four of the most significant equestrian events in the world you should visit one day.
The Kentucky Derby is one of the greatest equestrian events in the USA. It is a galloping race in which only three-year-old thoroughbred horses compete. It has been held in Louisville, Kentucky since 1875. Tickets for the Derby are usually sold out a year in advance. It always takes place on the first Saturday in May. The horses race over a distance of 1.25 miles. The Kentucky Derby is so famous even the British Queen Elizabeth II has been a guest. The Kentucky Derby attracts around 150,000 spectators each year. The event is also famous for the special cocktail: “Mint Julep” made from bourbon whiskey and mint. An estimated 120,000 of these drinks are served every year at the Kentucky Derby to heat the atmosphere.
Palio di Siena
The Palio di Siena is an Italian horse race of a different kind. The focus of the race is to keep the medieval tradition. The Palio is held in the central square of Siena in the middle of the historic city center. Every July 2 and August 16, it takes place in Piazza del Campo. Ten riders from the 17 districts of Siena compete against each other. They wear historical jockey outfits and gallop around the piazza three times. Falls and accidents are the order of the day. The prize of the traditional race does not include money as in other races, but in addition to fame and honor, a painted silk banner called the “Drappellone” is given to the winner. The two horse races are cultural highlights of Tuscany and have folk festival characters.
The CHIO has been held in Aachen since 1924, almost 100 years ago. The international competition is considered the most significant equestrian event in the world, something like the Wimbledon of equestrian sport. During the event, which takes place in the summer, individual and team competitions are held. The highlight of the CHIO is the showjumping Grand Prix, which takes place at the end of the tournament week.
Prix d’Amerique in Paris
The Prix d’Amerique is always held in Paris on the last Sunday in January and is one of the most famous trotting races in the world. It has been held at the Hippodrome de Vincennes since 1920, more than 100 years ago. The weather is usually bad at this time of year, and the riders who start in the open air get properly dirty during the race. Only horses that have already won more than 160,000 dollars price money in other tournaments (including at least 31,000 dollars in the previous year) are allowed to participate in this world trotting championship. The prize money of the Prix d’Amerique in Paris is around one million dollars. The track on which the trotting race takes place is 1.67 miles long.