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Equestrianism at the 2000 Sydney Summer Games

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Sports:

Host City: Sydney, Australia
Date Started: September 16, 2000
Date Finished: October 1, 2000
Events: 6

Participants: 195 (128 men and 67 women) from 37 countries
Youngest Participant: FRA Nicolas Touzaint (20 years, 134 days)
Oldest Participant: BRA Jorge da Rocha (55 years, 10 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 5 athletes with 2 medals
Most Medals (Country): GER Germany and NED Netherlands (4 medals)

Overview

All of the 2000 equestrian events took place at the Sydney International Equestrian Centre, or SIEC. The SIEC was built specifically for the Sydney Olympics, with construction starting in 1997 and the facility finished in 1999. The SIEC was located 39 km west of Sydney’s business district, in Horsley Park.

In 1956, equestrian events could not be held in Australia, when the Games were held in Melbourne, because of quarantine restrictions on horses entering the island nation. They were moved to Stockholm several months before the Melbourne Olympics. In 2000, the veterinary services of the Department of Agriculture, Fishery and Forestry was much more accommodating, allowing equestrian sport to be conducted in Sydney, although with severe restrictions. The Olympic horses had to spend two weeks of pre-shipping quarantine in Europe and then, upon arrival in Sydney, they were placed in isolation for another two weeks. The pre-shipping quarantine began on 7-8 August. The horses left on 23 August from Frankfurt Airport and landed, after a 30-hour flight, on 25 August in Sydney, where they stayed in quarantine until 9 September, one week before the first competition on 16 September.

The program consisted of the standard six events of individual and team events in dressage, eventing, and show jumping. Nine nations won medals, with Saudi Arabia the most notable, as it had never won a medal before, and only competed in Olympic equestrian before at Atlanta in 1996, finishing 17th in team show jumping. The Netherlands and Germany both won four medals and two gold medals, with the other two events won by Australia and the United States. The USA won three medals with Australia taking two.

Medalists