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International promotion of Jerez 2002 in France

Fino's Great Success At The Bordeaux World Cup

Fino, the Jerez 2002 mascot, was a great success among the public at this weekend's international meeting for the World Cup held in Bordeaux, the leading equestrian event of the autumn-winter season, which brings together, fundamentally, the biggest names on the international Showjumping, Carriage Driving and Dressage scene.

Amid great expectation, Fino took part in the prize-giving at this renowned international competition, and took the opportunity to meet many of the riders who will be competing next September at the World Championships in Jerez.

Jerez 2002 promoted its event among the elite of the international circuit and the public of a country, France, whose riders are always at the forefront at all the most important competitions.

The Jerez 2002 Organising Committee continues to promote beyond the Spanish frontiers the great equestrian-sporting event to be held in Jerez from 10 to 22 September this year. In the countdown, only eight months before the event, the most prestigious riding events in Europe are calling on Fino, the official Games mascot, who is now a well-loved figure among the public, and is in great demand at all manner of social and equestrian-sporting events both in Spain and abroad.

And so, Fino, the public image of the Jerez 2002 Games, was a great success this weekend among the international spectators at the World Cup event held in Bordeaux, the leading equestrian event of the autumn-winter season.

Fino once again captivated all those present, promoting Jerez 2002 internationally and making himself known to the elite of the professional circuit and to the public of a country, France, whose riders are always at the forefront at the most important competitions. Amid great expectation, the winged horse of Jerez 2002 was at the centre of the prize-giving ceremony at this important international competition, where he took the opportunity to meet many of the riders who will almost certainly be competing at next September's World Championships at Jerez.

Without doubt, the World Cup is the leading equestrian competition of the autumn-winter season. It is an indoor competition, held in covered arenas where the purity of the sport is never at odds with other types of equestrian shows, which goes to reflect the great diversity that the world of the horse can offer the spectator.

The annual World Cup programme, which dates back to 1979, includes a good number of international competitions held throughout the world, and grouped in circuits (Europe, North America, South America, Asia, Australia, etc.), in each of which there is a qualifying competition for the Final, traditionally held in April or the beginning of May.

The best riders from each continental circuit qualify for the Final, though the numbers from Europe and North America are considerably higher, these being the areas with most riders and where top-class sport is most widespread.

The World Cup events are basically reserved for the leading figures in international equestrian sport. The size of the prizes, and the prestige and media prominence of the competitions ensure that the bulk of the competitors come from the elite. It is the "great winter circus" of equestrian sport, and covers three disciplines: Showjumping, Dressage and Carriage Driving. The Bordeaux competition is a CSI-W, that is, a showjumping competition, although its programme also includes a Carriage Driving event which counts towards the World Championship in the discipline.

Only a dozen European cities are included in the Showjumping World Cup calendar. Oslo opened the programme last October, and the first half of the season ended in Mechelen on 30 December. January is traditionally a rest month, and activity resumed on 8 February in Bordeaux, one of the classic meetings of the European World Cup circuit. Sloothaak, Beerbaum, Fuchs, Pessoa, and many more were all competing for Grand Prix points that would win them a place in the final to be held in the German city of Leipzig from 1 to 5 May. The next stop for the circuit will be the Spanish stage, in Vigo from 14 to 17 February.

After the January break, the World Cup got back on the road in Bordeaux this weekend, with all the leading riders on the circuit, who were also beginning their final stages of preparation for the Jerez 2002 World Championships. A good result in the World Cup is, without doubt, an important pointer for the national team selectors when putting together their teams to compete at the World Equestrian Games, the big event at Jerez 2002.

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