"With other states interested in attracting major equestrian events —including New York's reported interest in hosting the 2014 World Equestrian Games-- the mayor of the Kentucky's largest city has joined those urging the 2007 Kentucky General Assembly to fund an outdoor arena for the Kentucky Horse Park in time to host the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010.
Louisville mayor Jerry Abramson, in a letter to House Economic Development Committee chair Ruth Ann Palumbo (D-Fayette), said his city and others in the region stand to benefit from the 2010 Games. "More importantly," noted Abramson, "the World Equestrian Games will place Kentucky and our horse industry in an international spotlight that can pay dividends for years to come as business leaders, investors, travelers and television viewers see what the Commonwealth has to offer."
By last week's deadline for filing legislation, no bill had been proposed calling for bond funding for the stadium and road improvements at the Horse Park near Lexington. An amendment to existing proposed legislation is possible.
Officials of the World Equestrian Games Foundation and the Kentucky Horse Park said the stadium must be completed in time to accommodate FEI testing prior to the 2010 Games. In addition, they note that a permanent stadium would enable them to leverage the momentum of the Games to continue hosting legacy events in the years following the 2010 event.
Text of Mayor Jerry Abramson's letter to Representative Palumbo: