he CSIO5* event at Piazza di Siena, Rome over the last weekend of May will be a very special occasion. Organised by the Italian Equestrian Federation (FISE) and by the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI), the show will have a totally different look due to the re-grassing of the arena and staging based on the extensive improvement and environmental protection of Villa Borghese.
Supervised by the city’s Fine Arts Department, the CONI and FISE project envisages a significant upgrading of Piazza di Siena’s original structure involving the walls and terraces bordering the oval arena.
This week, it was also announced that the historical Roman show has entered a very valuable partnership, becoming part of the calendar of prestigious Rolex sporting events. The Swiss watchmaker is now the event’s official timekeeper and title sponsor of the prestigious Grand Prix – the Rolex Gran Premio Roma – which takes place on the Sunday with €350,000 in prize money.
“The partnership is a natural extension of our position at the pinnacle of the sport, and an exciting addition to our support of the finest show jumping events.”
“We are delighted to partner the prestigious and historic CSIO Roma Piazza di Siena as part of our long-standing commitment – over 60 years now – to equestrian excellence around the world,” said Gian Riccardo Marini, President of Rolex Italy. “The partnership is a natural extension of our position at the pinnacle of the sport, and an exciting addition to our support of the finest show jumping events.”
The Rome Piazza di Siena CSIO is acknowledged as being one of the most beautiful shows on the international showjumping circuit. With it elegance, style and glamorous events, it attracts visitors from around the world. The partnership with Rolex will see Piazza di Siena return to its original traditions and setting, respecting its legacy and long history.
The arena is once again grass, with its VIP and public spaces now restored to harmonize with the existing environment and enhance the vibrant natural setting of the Villa Borghese gardens. Piazza di Siena will look particularly enchanting this year with the new grass surface. This marks a return to its origins, since grass was replaced with sand in 2007.
- The 86th Rome CSIO, scheduled for May 24th-May 27th, has a full and well-organised technical program with four days of jumping (from Thursday May 24th to Sunday May 27th) with international classes (11 for the CSIO and three for the 7- and 8-year-old horses competing in the CSIYH) as well as national classes.
- The most important classes in the CSIO will be the Nations Cup scheduled for Friday, May 25th, the 1.50m/1.55 m on the Saturday and the much anticipated Rolex Grand Prix on Sunday. The spectacular Six Bar class will also be held on Saturday. There will also be three international classes for young horses.
- The arena has been widened from 5,900 square metres to 7,100 square metres and now measures 150 x 50 metres.
- The Nations Cup will be of an extremely high technical level with nine top international teams competing: Canada, France, Germany, New Zealand, Holland, the United States of America, Sweden, Switzerland and obviously Italy.
- Some of the CSIO’s classes, and more specifically the first class of each day (from Thursday to Saturday) will be held in the new sand arena at the Villa Borghese Galoppatoio, while all other classes will be held in Piazza di Siena. The same applies to the two preliminary classes in the CSIYH for horses aged 7 and 8 (Thursday and Saturday), with Sunday’s final reserved to the best ten horses who will instead jump in the grass arena on Sunday afternoon after the Rolex Grand Prix.
- Prize money amounting to 835,000 euros is a significant increase compared to past shows (235,000 euros more than in 2017). The prize money is one of the highest on the international show jumping circuit as well as the highest ever for Piazza di Siena. Prize money for the Nations Cup amounts to 250,000 euros with 350,000 euros for the Rolex Grand Prix.
Source: CSIO Rome Piazza di Siena