Thursday, August 16, 2007

Malaysia on track to host world equestrian meet

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia is set to host the FEI World Equestrian Championship (WEC) for the first time.

The event would be held at the Terengganu International Endurance Park (TIEP) in Setiu next year.

With the inaugural Sultan's Cup Terengganu Endurance Challenge at Lembah Bidong last year under their belt, event organisers Yayasan DiRaja Sultan Mizan are confident that they would meet the technical requirements of the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) in hosting the WEC.

The Sultan's Cup Terengganu Endurance Challenge 2006 and 2007 were official trial events for the WEC.

Yayasan DiRaja Sultan Mizan vice-chairman Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Mohd Nor said that to get the licence to host the WEC, they needed to host two trial events with a minimum completion rate of 40% of the participating field.

"We had a completion rate of 57% in last year's competition and we are confident of surpassing the mark this year," Dr Salleh said at a press conference after the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin launched the second Sultan's Cup Terengganu Endurance Challenge at the Palace of the Golden Horses Thursday.

Some 40 local and international riders from 16 participating countries will be competing in the second Sultan's Cup Terengganu Endurance Challenge 2007, which will be held at the newly upgraded TIEP in Setiu from Nov 9-11 this year.

Participating countries are Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Holland, Malaysia, New Zealand, Qatar, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the United States.

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