The largest equestrian event in the world takes place in Normandy as the finest horse riders assemble in Normandy for the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games and there will be extensive coverage on BBC Sport and British Eurosport.
Celebrated every four years and alternating with the Olympic Games, the World Equestrian Games features competitors from 76 nations who will go head-to-head for medals across eight different disciplines, including the three familiar Olympic competitions in show jumping, dressage and eventing, as well as para-dressage.
These will be combined with other lesser-known categories such as reining, vaulting, driving and endurance, all of which will feature both men and women competing in the same competitions, where both athlete and horse receive medals in honour of the achievement in becoming world champions of their chosen event.
In 2014, it is the French city of Normandy’s turn to host the world’s biggest equestrian event, with around half a million spectators expected to attend during the course of the two-week equestrian extravaganza, which spread across three locations in Caen, Sartilly and Haras du Pin.
Great Britain will be sending teams in all eight World Equestrian Games disciplines and will be hoping to repeat the success of four years ago, when the event was held in Kentucky, USA.
Back then, the British team topped medal table, claiming 19 medals, including nine golds, and the team heads to Normandy hopeful of a good performance after also impressing at the 2012 Olympics.
In the three-day eventing competition, Great Britain won silver at London 2012 and they will have high aspirations of leaving Normandy with another medal, with these games acting as the first qualifying event for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Headlining the British entry is Zara Phillips, who won gold at the 2006 World Equestrian Games on Toytown, and this year will ride High Kingdom, with whom she won Olympic team silver two years ago.
Double Olympic dressage champion Charlotte Dujardin is favourite for individual gold, particularly after the withdrawal of star German horse Totilas through injury.
Showjumper Scott Brash won on home turf at the London leg of the Global Champions Tour earlier this month and enters the World Equestrian Games as the world number one, with team-mate Ben Maher ranked third, while Britain’s para-dressage riders, including Natasha Baker, Sophie Christiansen and Lee Pearson, are undefeated in major team events since 1996 and will look to continue that streak in France.
Encompassing every discipline of the sport, the FEI World Equestrian Games, termed the ‘Equestrian Olympics’ by some, will provide a feast of breathtaking action over the next fortnight and there are a variety of ways to watch the action unfold.
BBC Sport will be screening extensive free-to-air coverage of the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France, starting on August 29.
There will be live coverage of selected events on BBC Red Button and online via the BBC Sport website, mainly focussing on the three-day eventing competition and the show jumping.
Alongside live Red Button coverage, BBC Two will broadcast three highlights shows throughout the latter week of the event, featuring all the key moments from Normandy, all presented by Clare Balding, with commentary provided by Michael Tucker.
The first show will feature highlights of the three-day eventing competition on Sunday, August 31, with the second show on September 6 featuring the best action from the team show jumping competition, while the third on September 7 will review the individual show jumping event, in a programme which will also feature highlights from the Burghley Horse Trials.
All TV coverage will be available to watch/listen online via the BBC Sport website and app, while the BBC Two highlights show will be on BBC iPlayer for seven days following transmission.
Viewers with Connected TVs will be able to access BBC online content for the latest news, videos, interviews and highlights from the Games.
British Eurosport will broadcast next-day highlights of all the key events from the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games.
Online streaming of British Eurosport’s coverage can be accessed via Eurosport Player (subscription required), plus there will also be additional reports and features via the British Eurosport website.
Horse and Country TV will be showing a daily highlights show throughout the 2014 World Equestrian Games, each reflecting on the previous day’s action, on Sky channel 253.
Following the event, a special edition Rudall’s Round-up will be looking back at the Games with exclusive rider interviews, airing on Monday, September 22 at 8.30pm.
FEI TV are showing comprehensive coverage of the event via its online subscription channel, from the opening ceremony on August 23 to the closing ceremony on September 7.
For more information on the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games, visit the official website.
.Wednesday 27th August DRESSAGE: Grand Prix Highlights: 12.00pm-1.00pm British Eurosport 2
Thursday 28th August DRESSAGE: Grand Prix Highlights: 12.00pm-1.30pm British Eurosport 2
Friday 29th August ENDURANCE: Endurance Race / EVENTING: Dressage Highlights: 11.30am-12.00pm British Eurosport 2 DRESSAGE: Grand Prix Freestyle LIVE: 12.30pm-3.55pm BBC Red Button
Saturday 30th August EVENTING: Cross Country LIVE: 8.55am-3.25pm BBC Red Button DRESSAGE: Grand Prix Freestyle / EVENTING: Dressage Highlights: 11.00am-12.30pm British Eurosport
Sunday 31st AugustEVENTING: Cross Country / REINING: Individual Competition Highlights: 10.30am-12.00pm British Eurosport EVENTING: Show Jumping LIVE: 1.25pm-4.20pm BBC Red Button Week 1 Review Highlights: 4.00pm-6.00pm BBC Two
Monday 1st September EVENTING: Show Jumping Highlights: 12.00pm-1.30pm British Eurosport
Tuesday 2nd September Week 1 Review Highlights: 12.00pm-12.30pm British Eurosport
Wednesday 3rd September SHOW JUMPING: Team Competition – Day 1 Highlights: 12.00pm-1.00pm British Eurosport
Thursday 4th September SHOW JUMPING: Team Competition – Day 2 Highlights: 12.00pm-1.00pm British Eurosport SHOW JUMPING: Team Competition – Day 3 LIVE: 2.25pm-5.15pm BBC Red Button
Friday 5th September SHOW JUMPING: Team Finals Highlights: 12.00pm-1.30pm British Eurosport SHOW JUMPING: Team Competition Highlights: 2.35pm-4.45pm BBC Two
Saturday 6th September SHOW JUMPING: Individual Qualifying LIVE: 12.25pm-3.55pm BBC Red Button
Sunday 7th September SHOW JUMPING: Individual Final LIVE: 2.00pm-3.45pm BBC Red Button Week 2 Review (Programme incl: Burghley Horse Trials highlights) Highlights: 3.00pm-6.00pm BBC Two SHOW JUMPING: Individual Final / DRIVING: Marathon Highlights: 6.00pm-9.00pm British Eurosport