Sporting events in Germany: always on the edge of your seat ...

Faster, higher, stronger – and above all more exciting! That just about sums up sport in Germany, from packed football stadiums and motor racing weekends watched by hundreds of thousands of people to the world's biggest sailing regatta. For visitors as well, the Olympic motto says it all – being there is everything!

The impressive location for the Windsurf World Cup is Brandenburg Beach near Westerland, on the island of Sylt. The only stop in Germany on the world tour of the Professional Windsurfers Association (PWA) and the only venue to stage events in all three disciplines (wave riding, freestyle and slalom), this competition in Schleswig-Holstein has the status of a super grand slam. The after-surf parties every evening keep the mood bubbling, and the windsurfing night session is a firm favourite, with spectacular action guaranteed.

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Every year in late May, Klein Flottbek, a Hamburg suburb not far from the river Elbe, hosts the German Show Jumping and Dressage Derby. The Derby's show jumping course, including the notorious 'Pulvermann's Grave' obstacle course, has remained unchanged since 1920 and is regarded as one of the most challenging courses in the world. Unsurprisingly then, the meet is also one of the stages on the international DKB-Riders Tour. A special feature of the dressage derby is the exchange of horses in the final round, whereby each competitor has to take to the ring on the horse of one of his opponents.

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Top-level sport from the world's best kitesurfers, beach parties that last well into the night, an exciting programme of supporting events and hip music acts: if you're a fan of the kitesurfing scene, there's no better place to be than the North Sea resort of St. Peter-Ording in Schleswig-Holstein during the Kitesurf World Cup. Why not join the crowds of spectators as competitors in the three disciplines – freestyle, course racing and air style show – ratchet up the tension in a battle of thrills and skills?

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Golfers have been pitching and putting their way to victory at the BMW International Open since 1989. The annual event, which was originally based in Munich, will be held alternately in Munich and Cologne from 2012 onwards. With a prize pot of a cool two million euro, this is one of the most sought-after titles on the European circuit. International superstars such as Seve Ballesteros, Fred Couples, Lee Westwood, Bernhard Langer and Martin Kaymer have all teed off at the BMW International Open.

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Heavy horses and historical carriages form the centrepiece of 'Titanen der Rennbahn' (Titans of the racecourse), one of Germany's most unusual equestrian events. The programme includes bareback racing, obstacle courses and chariot races, and the awarding of the title 'strongest coldblood'. There are also historical parades featuring Roman chariots and Prussian stagecoaches, a selection of market stalls and an adventure village. Every year, the event attracts around 20,000 horse enthusiasts to Brück in Brandenburg .

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The small medieval town of Halle in North Rhine-Westphalia is the venue for the Gerry Weber Open, Germany's one and only grass court tennis tournament and an ATP event since 1993. Tennis stars such as Olympic champions Michael Stich, Roger Federer and Yevgeny Kafelnikov have all achieved notable victories here. In addition to the matches, a supporting programme of music, shows and information keeps visitors to the Open entertained.

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The annual Four Hills tournament gets under way with ski jumping in Oberstdorf and Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Bavaria . These world cup events are among the sport's most prestigious competitions. Oberstdorf hosts the opening event at the end of the year, which is followed by the New Year's ski jumping in Garmisch-Partenkirchen .

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