Dressage fans will be able to watch the FEI World Cup Grand Prix Freestyle to Music live from the Olympia Horse Show (15-21 December) for the first time on the BBC’s red button and internet services on the evening of Wednesday 16 December.
The BBC’s decision to show the dressage live was taken following outstanding viewing figures of its coverage from the dressage finals of the recent Alltech FEI European Jumping and Dressage Championships at Windsor in August.
Michael Cole, deputy editor BBC Sport, said: “The Olympia Horse Show is a great entertainment spectacle and also a hugely important sporting event on the build up to the 2012 Olympics in London.
“With the popularity of dressage increasing — highlighted at the recent European Championships — it was a natural decision for us to include it within our Olympia Horse Show package.
“We’re looking forward to giving viewers such extensive coverage of a fantastic show.”
The BBC signed a four-year broadcasting deal with Olympia Horse Show bosses HPower last year and will also broadcast the Accenture Christmas Puissance on Friday 18 December, through the red button service.
Highlights of the Accenture Christmas Puissance will then be shown on BBC2 on the afternoon of Saturday 19 December.
On Sunday 20 December, the FEI World Cup Show Jumping Qualifier will be live on BBC2.
And on the evening of Monday 21 December the entire evening performance will be shown live on the red button service.
Olympia Horse Show director, Simon Brooks-Ward said: “Dressage is on a meteoric rise in terms of public interest and we’re delighted the BBC has decided to include it in its Olympia coverage.”
Exact details of how to access the coverage on the red button service will be available ahead of Olympia. Check www.olympiahorseshow.com for more details a week ahead of the show.