Life is good: the foals here at Château de Fontaine are happy and healthy, our competition horses are kicking ass, and the Paris 2024 Olympics are right around the corner. Okay fine, maybe ‘right around the corner’ is a bit of an exaggeration, but with all the excitement you can’t blame us for starting the countdown a little early, can you?
The Paris 2024 Games set an unprecedented stage for the world of dressage in an undeniably regal fashion; the games are to be held amidst the breathtaking garden of the world famous Château de Versaille and royal palace of Louis XIV. Versailles itself is an explosion of grace, gold and grandeur, with its stretching gardens carving a maze from meticulously placed plants and small ponds, against a pristine, sandy ground. Setting the stage for 15 teams of three riders and horses to battle it out in a paragon of equestrian achievement, selected from among the very finest that the world has to offer.
Horses have a rich tie to the Olympic Games, going as far back as 680 BC with the introduction of chariot racing. The equestrian events have changed many times over the centuries, including high jump, polo, and the three events we see today: dressage, eventing and show jumping. Nonetheless, these events have since the very beginning been considered a true partnership between horse and rider, as well as a setting where men and women could compete on equal footing. In its brilliance, Château de Versailles feels like an apt backdrop for a sport that demonstrates the powerful bond between man and beast that is the product of millennia of sweat, blood and tears.
We are thrilled to be located just 90 mins from where the action is to take place, giving us ample opportunity to fully live and breathe the Olympic spirit. If you couldn’t already tell, we are more than excited for the games to begin. And as of writing this blog, there are exactly 787 days, 4 hours, 42 mins, and 18 seconds until that happens! https://www.paris2024.org/en/sport/equestrian/