The cost to the FEI – the body governing global horse sport – of sponsoring the 2011 Nations Cup series was 3.4m Swiss Francs – £2.3m.

Meydan, owned by Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Makhtoum, funded the series in 2010 but now sponsors FEI endurance.

FEI financial director Neerja Tannan said the federation’s income in 2011 was 24.1m CHF ( £16.5m) but expenditure was 27.5 CHF ( £18.8m).

The FEI managed to find £1.3m extra revenue from FEI TV, cutting the loss to £824k.

And the previous year the FEI was forced to spend £824k to refloat the finances of the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, reducing its income surplus to £52k.

The FEI is set to break even in 2012, added Mrs Tannan.

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (24 November 2011)