International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach has praised the gender equality aspect of equestrian sport at a special presentation in Lausanne this week.

“The sport not only has a long Olympic history, but has always been to the forefront of gender equality,” Mr. Bach stated at the Sports Forum hosted by Federation Equestre Internationale, equestrian sport’s international governing body.

Making a special presentation of the IOC President’s Trophy to FEI President Ingmar De Vos, Mr. Bach described the FEI as a “gender equality champion”.

Equestrian sport has been part of the Olympic Games for over 100 years, and while the IOC President’s remarks were widely welcomed at the Forum, the FEI has been under pressure to secure its future Olympic participation, and last year it conceded to a future reduction in the number of riders per Nations Cup team at Olympic Games from four to three in order to increase the number of participating nations.

Mike Dunne