Eventing is an Olympic Equestrian sport where individual pairs of riders and horses compete in three distinct phases (Dressage, Cross-Country and Show Jumping) in one competition.
The sport of Eventing evolved from its roots as a comprehensive cavalry test often referred to as "Militaire" which required the mastery of different types of riding by officers in the Cavalry Units.
Dressage originally demonstrated performance on the parade ground where precision elegance and obedience were key. Cross Country was a test of stamina, courage and bravery over difficult terrain, potentially showing a horse's ability to carry a dispatch through enemy lines. Stadium proved the horse's soundness and fitness after the difficult cross country day.
The first phase - Dressage - shows the graceful partnership of horse and rider through a sequence of movements on the flat.
The next phase - Cross-country – challenges the pair’s bravery, fitness and determination as combinations navigate a series of solid obstacles and varied terrain, within a prescribed time period. This is often regarded as the most exciting and challenging phase in the sport.
In the final phase - Show Jumping - pairs must again prove their precision as they clear a course of delicate fences.