Wednesday, August 5, 2009

WEG

Today is a day when I really love my job. One of the projects that our company is working on is we are providing consulting services to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for transportation improvements for the World Equestrian Games. For those of you who don't know what this is, it is basically the Olympics for horses and it is coming to Lexington in the Fall of 2010.

My role in this project is very small. I create traffic simulation models to hopefully ensure that the transportation plans that are being made will be successful. Because of that I get to go to meetings once a month where I get to sit and listen to very smart people come up with how they are going to handle all aspects of transportation in regards to this event. Let me tell you, I just sit there and listen (while furiously taking notes) and am amazed at everything that goes into this process. All of the details that are thought through and all that goes into making sure that people who have likely never been to Lexington can get to and from the event (most of whom will have to park somewhere besides the Horse Park and take a bus there) just everything that goes into it, I am amazed at their smartness and thought processes.

One of the coolest things is they will be thinking through various issues and say, "Well, for the Salt Lake City Olympics, this is what we did." That's right, these people have been in charge of handling all of the transportation issues for the Olympics, Super Bowls, and pretty much any major event. And I get to sit in a room with them and listen to them figure out how they are going to make it all work here for the WEG. Such a cool job. I love it!

Sometimes I wish that I had their jobs, but those people are constantly moving from city to city, wherever the next event is and spend their lives traveling, which I probably wouldn't enjoy. But it is amazing to sit in a room and see how they figure out these complex issues.

Here is a picture of something you might see at the Equestrian Games:


Also, I learned interesting facts about the endurance event at the meeting. On one day of the WEG, there will be an endurance event, which is a 100 mile race. It begins at 7 am and lasts until between 7 pm and midnight. Riders don't have to ride the horse the whole time, they can walk or run beside it if they want, they just have to ride it for a certain distance or time, I can't remember which (but it wasn't very much, I want to say like an hour or 10 miles or some very small percentage of the time) and they have to be on the horse when it crosses the finish line. I guess the purpose of this is to not wear out the horse by riding it the whole time, but could you imagine running or walking next to your horse for like 90 miles? Sounds crazy to me. It would be interesting to see though.

1 comment:

Julie said...

Anne...you do have a fabulous job!!! Sometimes I get really excited for the WEG and then other times I feel glad that I don't live in Lexington because I know it will be crazy. But maybe we will visit just to check it out. :) Looking forward to visiting at the end of the month. We need to catch up!!