For those who can’t stomach the Athens heat or have left getting their Olympic tickets too late, all is not lost.
The French Equestrian Federation, in association with France Galop, racing’s regulatory body in France, and Equidia, the French television channel devoted to horses, are to bring a live broadcast of all three equestrian disciplines live to an audience in the centre of Paris.
From the 15-27 August, show jumping, dressage and all three eventing phases will be shown at the Hippodrome d’Auteuil, more famous for its jump races than any Olympic association.
Equestrian fans, both French and international are being invited to “Club France”, as it is known, “to come and share the unforgettable emotions of the Olympic experience.”
Admission to Club France is free to all, with refreshments available for those who scream themselves hoarse or allow their emotions to get the better of them. Commentators and journalists will be present to make up-to-date analyses of riders’ progress and to report the results of the Olympic competitions.
All this, and live in the centre of Paris, so when the screen goes blank at the end of each day’s competition, spectators can enjoy the hubbub of street-caf life, tour the endless maize of the Louvre, climb the heights of the Eiffel Tower or simply stroll along the boulevards.
Potential visitors are invited to sign up at www.ffe.com, although it is not mandatory to do so, and visitors can simply turn up when they feel like it.
Meanwhile, although there is no such scheme in London, large screens set up in Leeds and Manchester will be dedicated to Olympic coverage (although not exclusively equestrian).
The BBC is devoting 250 hours of terrestrial coverage to the Olympics click here to see the schedule. A BBC spokesperson was keen to stress that as Britain has serious medal hopes in equestrianism, it is likely to feature strongly in their coverage.
The eventing team is heading out to Athens on 6 August, with the dressage team and show jumpers following closely in their wake on the 10 and 16 August respectively. The eventing competition runs from 15-18 August, the dressage runs from the 20-25 and the show jumping from the 22-27.