More than 40,000 people from more than 20 countries are in Nebraska this week to attend the 2917 FEI World Cup Jumping and Dressage Finals in Omaha. Omaha was one of sixteen cities from around the world that competed to host this annual event and local organizer Lisa Yanney-Roskens is very pleased with their decision.
Yanney-Roskens says the competition includes jumping and dressage. Dressage is an event where the horse and rider perform a series of precise movements that takes years of practice and training. She says, "Probably the youngest horse in the competition will be 10 years old. It takes the first decade of their live to learn the immediate responsiveness and yet they have to be relaxed to be able to do it beautifully. It is really a decade of their lives before they are ready for this level of competition."
Today the warm-ups are taking place. The first competition starts at 2 p.m. on Thursday and will continue through April 2nd at the CenturyLink Center. The event also features a horse discovery zone, educational forums on dressage, jumping and showing horses to the EQUUS Film Festival.
The FEI World Cup started in 1979 and has been held around the world, including several in the U.S. This is the first time the finals are being held in Omaha.
The FEI World Cup is expected to have a $50-million economic impact on the city of Omaha and surrounding areas.