Event Guide: EQUESTRIAN
Page last updated at 12:21 GMT, Monday, 16 January 2012
Equestrian has strong claims to be the most unique of all Olympic sports.
The only one to revolve around animals, it is also the only event in which men and women compete entirely on equal terms.
It is also one of the most varied and enthralling of sports - from the discipline of dressage to the danger of eventing to the drama of jumping, equestrian is an entertaining and exciting spectacle.
- Equestrian consists of three disciplines - dressage, eventing and jumping.
- All three have a team event and an individual event.
- It is the only Olympic sport in which men and women compete on equal terms.
The equestrian events at the 2008 Olympics were somewhat sidelined by the fact that they were held in Hong Kong, 1,200 miles away from host city Beijing.
In London, by contrast, the sport will be right at the heart of things, with the events being held in Greenwich Park, where a cross-country course and central arena have been specially constructed.
Great Britain have a rich equestrian history yet have just won just one Olympic gold since 1972 - and even that came in controversial circumstances when Leslie Law and Shear L'Eau were promoted to the top of the podium in 2004 after the original winner was disqualified for a rules infringement.
GREAT OLYMPIC MOMENT
- The 1960 team eventing gold was won by Australia after Bill Roycroft insisted on leaving his hospital bed to compete in the jumping test.
- He had suffered concussion and a broken collarbone after falling during the endurance event.
But the host nation will have several team members capable of rectifying that at the 2012 Games - they are likely to include the evergreen Mary King, who is on course for a sixth Olympics at the age of 51.
The legendary Kiwi Mark Todd is another golden oldie looking to roll back the years, having first won eventing gold back in 1984.
That came before Laura Bechtolsheimer was even born - but in London, the British rider will be aiming to win Britain's first-ever Olympic medal in dressage.