Swiss Style Horse Racing
Though the Swiss have been attached to horses since Roman times, horse racing in the country has begun to come of age only of late. The Swiss Trotting Federation (STF) has almost 500 members and annual sports betting tops 100 million Swiss Francs. Switzerland now has more than 50 days of horse racing events every year, and the popularity grows by leaps and bounds. The Lake Geneva Region leads in this activity, with Avenches, which was known as Aventicum in Roman times, as the country’s premier center. However, German-speaking parts of the country have begun to take to horse racing, and may soon be a major simulcast wagering site in the near future.
The Institute Equestre National Avenches deploys cutting edge technology at the race track, and features steeplechases and trotting apart from flat races. It has three racing surfaces and separate facilities for training. Punters enjoy about 20 days of horse racing and related events at this modern site.
The horse racing world knows Switzerland best for the annual St. Moritz event, which is conducted on a frozen lake. This unique event draws horse racing enthusiasts from all over the world, and is held every February. The CSI in Zurich is also famous for stadium jumping events.
Switzerland has an enviable collection of Arab blood lines, apart from the indigenous Freiberger breed. The Swiss love horses and many keep them as companions or to recount their traditional use in agriculture. Switzerland has also won Olympic medals in dressage riding.
It appears that Switzerland is set to repeat its track record of leadership of varied fields in horse racing as well!