Tickets for the 2018 World Equestrian Games will go on sale in September. Costs run around $3,000 per person for a single week in the 14-day event, or $6,000-$7,000 for the full program. Rates include accommodations. The games are described as the Olympics of horse racing. Teams compete for medals much like they do in the horse games in the Summer Olympics, which include dressage, jumping, vaulting, and endurance. Mark Bellissimo, the developer behind the 1,600-acre, $175 million Tryon International Equestrian Center, where the games will be played, wants to make equestrian games to Western North Carolina what horse racing is to Kentucky. Bellissimo started lobbying for the games when he heard Bromont, Quebec, had backed out of the 2014 games due to problems securing public financing. At the time, he stated Aachen, Germany was the only city poised to possibly compete with Tryon. Assistance was solicited from the governors of North and South Carolina, resulting in a $500,000 North Carolina Rural Development Authority grant for US Precision, the manufacturing company servicing construction for the equestrian center; and $295,755 for waterline improvements. Sharon Decker, now the center’s chief operating officer, was serving as the state’s commerce secretary at the time.