Uvodni govor predsjednika FEI gosp. Ingmar De Vos-a povodom održavanja Balkanskog prvenstva u dresurnom jahanju u zajedničkoj organizaciji Hrvatskog konjičkog saveza-a i Zagrebačkog konjičkog saveza, a koje će se održati od 30. lipnja do 2. srpnja na Zagrebačkom hipodromu.
By the FEI President
Welcome to Zagreb for the FEI Balkan Dressage Championships for Seniors, Young Riders, Juniors and Children 2017.
Hosting an even…t of this magnitude which focuses on athletes ranging from 12 years of age in the Children’s category all the way to athletes well into their 50s, 60s and maybe even 70s is a remarkable feat and a great representation of the equestrian landscape – which is by its very nature diverse and multifaceted.
This Championship provides the perfect environment for the younger generation to watch and learn from the older and more experienced riders and their horses, and it offers a great opportunity for the seasoned veterans to share their skills, knowledge and support with those who are only on the first rung of the equestrian sports ladder. This is a very unique trait, there are few sports where competitive careers can span decades and where up and coming athletes can learn and then compete alongside their idols. The same goes for gender equality, with boys and girls of all ages sharing the same arena and judged under precisely the same criteria. I believe we should be very proud of these aspects of our sport which fit perfectly with the fundamental Olympic ideals.
Team participation brings its own challenges, and at the FEI we see Championships as key to all that’s best in equestrianism with its combination of national pride, international rivalry and the camaraderie between team-members and even their opponents. This is the spirit of great sport.
The FEI is delighted to be working alongside the European Equestrian Federation (EEF) and the EEF Balkan Championships Working Group for the success of this Balkan Championship and I’d like to thank the Organinsing Committee and their partners as well as the officials, supporters and volunteers for their hard work and dedication, without their enthusiasm and expertise our sports cannot thrive. I’d also like to pay tribute to the many horse-owners, and to the skills of the breeders of the amazingly talented horses who have lifted the profile of Dressage so that it now has a huge following around the world.
To all the competitors I send my very best wishes for a top-class Championship conducted in a spirit of warm friendship and true sportsmanship.
Ingmar De Vos