Liege Airport: The horse transit hub

Liege Airport will this Septemember be somewhat of a horse transit hub as 500 horses will come through the Horse Inn and fly to the US for the FEI World Equestrian Games.

From 11 to 23 September 2018, the FEI World Equestrian Games will be held in the USA, at Tryon (North Carolina). Over a period of two weeks, this event will be home to the World Championships for eight disciplines.

For more than 10 years, Liege Airport has been specialising in the transport of horses. In 2016, an infrastructure dedicated to horses – the Horse Inn – was opened to improve services even further. The handling company LACHS manages the Horse Inn.

Deputy general manager, David Alexis said: “We are used to managing the transport of horses for the biggest equestrian competitions in the world, but here the number of horses and flights is much greater.

“We have planned teams of experts at each stage of the handling chain: equipment for the horses, reception of the horses in the boxes, loading the planes and also the cleaning. For each operation, 25 people will be present to ensure smooth running.

“Nothing can be left to chance in this type of operation which has become a trademark of Lachs and Liege Airport for more than 10 years.”

For Liege Airport, this is an important logistical challenge, conducted with LACHS and leading equestrian transport and logistics specialist, Peden Bloodstock. Peden has extensive experience in equine airlifts of this kind having been the Equine Transport and Logistics provider for the nine previous Olympic Games, and all World Equestrian Games since their inception in 1990.

For this, the 8th World Equestrian Games, Peden Bloodstock will fly more than 500 horses representing 57 national federations and several metric tonnes of material to Tryon for the equestrian competition. Emirates is the airline providing 19 flights between Liege Airport and Greenville-Spartanburg International (South Carolina).

Ambassador of the Horse Inn for Liege Airport, Félix-Marie Brasseur said: “For several years, Liege Airport has become a reference in the transport of horses. We have strengthened our services so that horse owners, riders and grooms are fully satisfied.

“After the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016, this operation places Liege even more on the international map for the equestrian world. We are also responding to our mission of economic development by creating and consolidating jobs in Wallonia in the equestrian sector.”