|Published: November 2017|
New Delhi. The equestrian sport patronized by the Maharajas of Rajasthan has transformed house riding into an adventure & competitive sport at national & international levels. While the equestrian sport is competed in various disciplines at national level, Show Jumping, Eventing and Dressage are the prime competitive events at the Olympics.
As a unique initiative, Southern Command has combined the Regional Equestrain League with Southern Star Horse Show with the dual aim of spotting the talent for a medal in Olympics as also to provide a visual treat to the horse lovers of Pune. The event will be conducted at Race Course Grounds, Pune Camp from 16 November 2017 to 19 November 2017.
Though the National Equestrian championship has been in existance for many years but Regional Equestrian League (REL) commenced in the recent past. Apart from providing an opportunity and platform to the budding riders of both the civil & the Services to compete at various levels, REL also helps to identify the talent at regional level while simultaneously filtering the meritorious & deserving riders for National Championship in various Equestrian sports. It is pertinent to mention that inspite of the prevalence of Equestrian foot marks in the country for decades, an Olympic podium finish has been elusive for the Nation.
Set to realise this elusive dream, the journey started with the country joining the league of Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) thus acquiring the eligibility for competing at International events. Riders like JS Ahluwalia, Mohammed Khan, Hussain Khan & Daya Singh, the first ones to represent India in Olympic, were devoid of medals because of their lack of experience and exposure in cross country phase of Eventing. Determined to make a mark at the International level, the sport infrastructure has now been developed in India & also its awareness has risen manifold.
Equestrian Federation of India (EFI), the regulating body of Equestrian sports in India started organising Equestrian sports competitions in India for Show Jumping, Eventing & Dressage. With the strong tent pegging contingent garnering country’s first gold medal in 1982 Asiad, equestrianism was brought to the attention of millions.
Though the interest in sport has grown but the medals continue to elude the country in Show Jumping & Eventing. Contributions from Services riders like GM Khan, Indrajeet Lamba, AJ Singh, Rajesh Pattu, Palwinder Singh and civ rider Imtiaz Anees have made a mark at International arena. Imtiaz became the first civilian rider to represent India abroad. With the development of the Equestrian Node, sports infrastructure and provision of quality horses, riders like Rajesh Pattu and Bhagirath Singh were able to remain in contention for individual medals in Asian games in 2002 & 2006. In the last ten to fifteen years the civilian involvement has grown enormously as a result of increased equestrian activity in various regions.
It is against this back drop that Regional Equestrian League and Southern Star Horse Show is being organised for Puneities with effect from 16 to 19 November 2017 in which participation by promising riders from all over the country is confirmed. To make it a holistic adventure sports and recreational activity, Army band, Dog show, Air show, free pleasure horse riding etc are also being offered as a onetime opportunity for the spectators. The event would be held with its usual pomp and show everyday from 10 AM to 1 PM & 3 to 5.30 PM at the Race Course Grounds, Pune Camp. It’s time for Puneites to avail this unique opportunity with their families and children to break the monotony and witness an enchanting and entertaining competitive equestrian events.