The modern-day equestrian sport originated in England, spreading through Europe in the 16th Century. In the past, the equestrian sport was historically enjoyed primarily by members of the aristocracy and still retains a sense of elegance and nobility today. The competitors were always dressed in formal attire and the events were attended by large audiences. For centuries it was considered to be the sport of Kings and nobles. Equestrianism has a long history in China dating back to the Han and Tang Dynasties. Several equestrian-related leisure activities were extremely popular during this time, including mounted archery and polo. At the second modern Olympics in 1900 show-jumping became an official competition event. Members of royal families from several different countries have often participated in the equestrian disciplines at the Olympics, the most notable of whom is Princess Anne, daughter of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, who participated in the 21st Olympics in 1976.
An enthralling sport with a history that dates back 700 years and a watch-making brand with 180 years of magnificent tradition – after almost a century of collaboration the thundering hooves of galloping horses have enabled the world to experience the captivating wonders of speed and time. The close ties between Longines and the world of equestrianism took another step forward in early 2013, when Longines and the FEI signed a 10-year agreement appointing Longines as the FEI’s first Top Partner as well as the Official Timekeeper and Official Watch of the FEI. This partnership has opened up a series of collaborative opportunities with the FEI. The watchmaking expertise of Longines harmonises perfectly with the requirements of equestrianism: concentration, precision and experience. Longines has been the timekeeper of equestrian events since 1881.
The Showcase and Experience Area enhances the event with a number of highlights: The exquisite equestrian equipment, the model horse, the show-jumping obstacle – all of the showcased items succeed in capturing the attention of the guests. Onsite exhibitors introduce their displayed merchandises, explain the rules of the competitions and provide the guests with equestrian facts and background information, ensuring that every guest has the chance to experience the appeal of equestrian sports.
The “2013 Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters” is a world-renowned equestrian event that has been brought to China by the combined efforts of the Chinese Equestrian Association (CEA); the Beijing National Stadium; Dashing Equestrian; the “Aachener Reitturnier GmbH” (ART) which is the marketing agency of the very well-known “CHIO Aachen” and the “Father of the German Equestrian Sport”, Ludger Beerbaum. The event aims to promote the culture of the equestrian sport, while at the same time demonstrating the city of Beijing and its unique fusion between tradition and modernism to the world.
Michael Mronz from Dashing Equestrian talked about the current state of planning of the 2013 Longines Beijing Equestrian Masters: This year’s Equestrian Masters competition has attracted many internationally renowned riders and also local riders from the host country of China. Additionally, the grass arena in the Bird’s Nest will be replaced by a sand arena for this year’s event, which will attract approx. 100 of China’s best show-jumping horses. There will also be equine performances by Chinese participants, who will demonstrate equestrian vaulting and dressage at the Opening Ceremony of the event, enhanced by beautifully designed LED lights. The ceremony will be a magnificent visual treat for the audience. The event will also showcase the distinctive appeal of an open-air evening show-jumping competition. A series of equestrian activities including the China Horse Owner Competition, the U15 Youth Competition, the Equestrian Training Camp as well as a number of further activities will be staged during the event. The “Elegance Photo Contest” will also be held, which will give photography enthusiasts the opportunity to take photos of the various equestrian scenes and thus capture moments of timeless elegance. Furthermore, the equestrian festival on the first floor of the Bird’s Nest will offer the spectators interactive and experiential activities. This year’s more affordable prices also mean that more Chinese people will be able to attend the event.
Pan ZhiChen, Chairman of the Chinese Equestrian Association, also expressed his approval of the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters. He stated that as a 2-star FEI show-jumping competition, the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters has heavily influenced the brand and quality conscious development of China’s equestrian competitions. Besides boosting the communications between local and international athletes, the competition also promotes equestrian activities as a sport. The expansion of the Chinese equestrian culture also means that Chinese equestrianism is connecting to the global equestrian scene and is stimulating as such the globalization, specialization, socialization, commercialization and professionalization of the Chinese equestrian development.
Dennis Li, Brand Manager of Longines China stated that Longines is proud to be the Title Partner and Official Timekeeper of the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters for the second time. Being the Title Sponsor, Official Timekeeper and Official Watch of the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters as well as Title Sponsor of the Longines Grand Prix enables the brand to be associated to a high-level and thrilling event. This year, Longines is delighted that the Swiss rider Jane Richard, the Longines Ambassadress of Elegance, is competing at the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters. Longines’ commitment to equestrian sports dates back to 1878, when it produced a chronograph engraved with a jockey and his mount. Seen on the racetracks as early as 1881 and extremely popular among jockeys and horse-lovers, this model enabled its user to time performances to the very second. In addition, the brand was involved for the first time in the Concours Hippique International Officiel de Genève as its timekeeper in 1926. Today, Longines’ involvement in equestrian sports includes participation in show-jumping, flat racing and endurance competitions.
The 2013 Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters is not only currently the leading equestrian competition in China, it also introduces style, fitness and entertainment aspects to the competition. During the course of the event, every guest will be able to experience top-class services, five-star cuisine and will have the chance to participate in an equestrian training camp and interaction opportunities with celebrities from various fields and clients.
The success of an event attracts the involvement of numerous sponsors and we would like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to Reignwood Group, Beijing Mercedes Benz, Castel, Red Ru, Equidorf and ELLA for the support they are offering to the Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters here. Thank you.
For more information on the 2013 Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters:
Longines has been based at Saint-Imier, Switzerland, since 1832. Its watchmaking expertise reflects a strong devotion to tradition, elegance and performance. It has generations of experience as the official timekeeper at world championships and as a partner of international sports federations. Over the years, the brand has built up strong and long-lasting links with the world of equestrian sports. Longines is a member of The Swatch Group S.A., the world’s leading manufacturer of horological products. Enjoying an excellent reputation for creating refined timepieces, the brand, whose emblem is the winged hourglass, has outlets in over 130 countries.
Aachener Reitturnier GmbH
The Aachener Reitturnier GmbH is the marketing agency of the CHIO Aachen. The CHIO Aachen is the exclusive event conducted at the famous showground in the Soers of Aachen. The World Equestrian Festival began in 1898, and looks back on a history of over 100 years. This annual equestrian celebration is not only the most famous equestrian event in the world, it has since expanded into a global festival enjoyed by all. The event includes the three Olympic disciplines show-jumping, dressage, eventing as well as other non-Olympic events such as vaulting and driving. The event attracts an attendance of over 300,000 visitors. The crowds can enjoy the most riveting competitions and interact with the top riders and horses. In addition to the competition sport, the visitors can look forward to culinary delights, wonderful music and high-quality merchandise. Amid such exciting entertainment, the spectators can relax and enjoy themselves.
Dashing Equestrian’s core competences include organizing, managing, and promoting both national and international equestrian events. A professional event management team, good relationships to the local government and a solid financial background are what ensured the company’s success in launching the highest-ranking equestrian competition at the Beijing National Stadium – the “ Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters”.
Dashing Equestrian partnered up with the World Equestrian Festival – CHIO Aachen to found the professional equestrian event management company – Dashing-Aachen. They worked together on the “Longines Equestrian Beijing Masters” to ensure the continuation of the event at the Bird’s Nest. Both parties collaborated on this project to promote Chinese equestrianism and Beijing’s city image and they will expand their endeavours to include similar top-class events in Shanghai in the future .