The FEI European Open Endurance Championship has found a new home.
The event had originally been scheduled to take place at the Stourhead House estate, Wiltshire, in early August, but the British organisers pulled the plug on 10 May, quoting funding problems.
The FEI immediately set out to find a replacement venue and three federations — the Netherlands, France and Italy — pitched for the championship. After considering the three proposals, the FEI “accepted the French Federation’s offer to run the championship in Compiègne, near Paris.”
The Compiègne organising committee is highly experienced and they had already staged the 2000 World Endurance Championship, which undoubtedly weighed in their favour.
The European Open Endurance Championship will be part of the Compiègne Horse Festival, which takes place between 25 and 28 August. The championship will be held on Sunday 28 and will replace a CEIO. Details on the event and the exact schedule, however, have yet to be released.
“We are currently working on the programme. It will be available on Monday 23 May,” said Nicolas Wahlen of the Compiègne organising committee, who confirmed that further information will be published on the Compiègne website www.open-60.com, which also has an English version.
Meanwhile, Endurance GB are hoping to host the 2007 championship at Thoresby Park, in Nottinghamshire. When they heard of the Stourhead cancellation, the EGB Management Committee looked at Thoresby Park as a possible replacement venue because it already had many of the facilities which would be required for the Europeans.
After consulting with the British Equestrian Federation, they decided not to put Thoresby Park forward for this year, but they have hopes for the future. “We believe that we have identified a good venue,” they wrote in a statement. “With the backing of the on site hotel, [we] believe it is worth investing more time to come up with a more detailed and grandiose proposal for the 2007 championships.”