Thursday, November 15, 2018

Tunisia Spurs On Equestrian Sports - Full Story

5 November 2018

We take a look at how FEI Solidarity has helped to generate a new generation of equestrian enthusiasts in the North African country of Tunisia...

In early 2011, few in Tunisia had a real, tangible interest in equestrian sports, with the number of licensed riders idling at barely 200.

Just five years later, that total had shot up, with 1,500 nationals registered with the Tunisian Equestrian Federation, over seven times the previous count. Here, we look at how this remarkable growth has come about and the role FEI Solidarity has played in popularising the sport...

The upsurge in public interest has been brought about in no small part thanks to Maher Berrachid, President of the Tunisian Equestrian Federation (FTSE).

Maher had clear ideas on what was holding back the sport in Tunisia and how these obstacles could be surmounted.

With Tunisia itself undergoing a significant political shift in 2011, the FTSE shed its previous designation as a military federation to become one overseen by the Ministry of Sport, giving it a wider scope for self-governance and the implementation of its own strategic plan.

FTSE has since overseen a near-complete revamp of the processes that govern it and the way it structures the sport.

“Before 2011, there weren’t any real objectives for the sport in Tunisia. No national training, no long-term perspective, but from the moment we focused our objectives on an international level and implemented a calendar, interest grew very rapidly,” says Berrachid.

“There’s been an entire dynamic created thanks to the trust that the people have in the Federation since 2011. The sport becomes more attractive, parents invest and allow their children to take part from a younger age, and clubs have more incentive to develop their offerings.”

The effect of these changes is perhaps most evident in Endurance competitions, which has seen some impressive results...

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