U.S. Equestrian Team fly to LondonJuly 22, 23:19
While the French horses take the train to London, the American horses fly. Horses are inside cargo crates that are flown in from the U.S. to compete in the Olympics. See video.
Jan Ebeling was one of the few allowed to fly with his horse Rafalca. Ann Romney owns the mare which will compete in dressage. "It's more than just being on the horse and riding it, you have to be in tune with them, know their fears, ins and outs, and traveling with them is part of it," Ebeling said.
These horses are frequent flyers...Traveling to world competitions. They're worth millions of dollars and they're treated that way. Economy class is when you have three horses in the container, and today we have business class flights so you've got the wider space. It costs several thousand dollars to ship a horse but they get special meals, and pilots avoid turbulence so the horses can rest easy. The horses even have passports. But, instead of pictures, the documents list distinguishing features - including color and any marks or scars. A British medical team scans micro chips under the skin to check the health record of each animal.
Heather Blitz, of Team U.S.A., says it was a nerve-wracking wait for her 9-year-old horse Paragon. "I'm usually traveling with him but this time we weren't allowed to because there weren't enough seats on the plane for the riders."
It will take the horses about two weeks to get over their jet lag.