The mainland’s first Olympic Eventing rider says the Chinese governing body will pay for the horse’s upkeep in the lead-up to next year’s Games. Olympic fans from all over the world are invited to book Olympic 2020 tickets from our online platforms for Olympic Tickets. Olympic Eventing fans can book Olympic Eventing Tickets from our ticketing marketplace exclusively on discounted prices.
Hua is the youngest Olympic eventer, having taken part in the 2008 Beijing Games competition in Hong Kong at the age of 18 China’s first-ever Olympic Eventing rider, Alex Hua Tian, is on the lookout for owners who can supply him with top quality horses to help him in the lead-up to the Olympic 2020 Games – with the Chinese Equestrian Association willing to pay for its upkeep leading up to Tokyo Olympic.
After an excellent eighth place at the 2016 Rio Olympics aboard Don Genero, the 29-year-old Hua is confident of putting on an even better performance in Tokyo but needs a greater choice of horses to boost his preparation. who was born in Britain and grew up in Beijing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong – has put an ad on social media sites and elsewhere seeking horse owners.
“My ad is very much targeting existing western owners who already have a horse and try to encourage them to come over to China because they will get a better opportunity, better odds of their horse going to the Olympic Games,” Hua told the South China Morning Post.
“And also my federation will help to cover their costs. At the same time, we are investing time and effort at owners in China who are unlikely to be existing owners but who have the funds to invest in buying a horse.”
Eventing riders depend on owners to supply horses and these parties act as patrons, similar to the role played by racehorse owners. Hua was the youngest ever Olympic Eventing athlete when he competed as an 18-year-old at the 2008 Beijing competition in Hong Kong.
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He said he already had four horses that he was working with, including PSH Convivial – also known as Spike – with whom he won a bronze medal at the Asian Games in Jakarta last year. He is looking for at least one more to complete his Olympic stable. He said it costs between £20,000 (HK$205,000) and £25,000 to maintain from now until the Olympics
Although only one horse would eventually be selected for the Olympic 2020 Games, Hua said his odds were much shorter than those of many riders from European countries.
“That’s probably the best odds anyone can offer,” said Hua, who won a silver at the 2014 Incheon Asian Games. “If you are an owner of a British horse, you are in a pool of about 150 top qualify horses.
So that’s a key proposition. As a Chinese athlete, the sport is a lot smaller and the odds are greater of going to the Olympics. It’s also a very special arrangement that’s unique, I believe, in which my federation will support one more horse.
One of the perks of being the owner of an Olympic equestrian horse is access to the stables during the competition. Hua admits there is a little financial benefit to gain but the prestige of being an Olympic horse owner is enough to convince many to supply horses to top riders.
“It’s not like a commercial relationship arrangement,” Hua said. “It’s a much more personal relationship between rider and owner.
“It’s a very special way for an individual or family to be involved in the Olympic Games,” said Hua, who is in a strong position to qualify for the Tokyo Eventing competition. “Just because I ride for the Chinese team it doesn’t mean I don’t welcome owners from other parts of the world to be involved as well.
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“The Olympics is the Olympics and the Western owners of my previous horses loved the process and enjoyed the whole thing and what made it even better was that we had a good result and, with good support and preparation I hope to get good results again.”