Credit: The Hub

Citius, Altius… Ponius?

That motto could probably use some work. In the meantime: The Equestria Games are afoot! (Ahoof?)

In this week’s episode of My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic, the Mane Six find themselves on a mission to help the once-cursed Crystal Empire win the honor of hosting a prestigious athletic competition. One of them is particularly determined to achieve this goal — as voice actress Ashleigh Ball explained to EW during our interview, “Rainbow Dash, she’s especially nervous because when she was a filly, Cloudsdale had the opportunity to have the Games there — and it didn’t quite work out. So she’s really desperate to see the games happen in the Crystal Empire.” See how a tiny Rainbow Dash responded to the agony of defeat in this exclusive clip:

Does any of this seem familiar? It should — as Ball recalled, the episode “kind of reminds me of when we had the bidding for the 2010 Olympic games in Vancouver.” Hooves crossed that the Crystal Empire follows in the Canadian city’s footsteps rather than Cloudsdale’s.

The Equestria Games’ city selection isn’t this weekend’s only major pony event. On Saturday, Feb. 9, The Hub will host its gala Coronation Concert — a live musical event featuring a screening of Friendship Is Magic‘s royal season 3 finale, an interactive sing-along, and an appearance by Equestria Games Olympic gold medalist Carmelita Jeter — in Los Angeles.

Recently crowned Miss America Mallory Hagan will host the soiree — even though as a kid, her heart belonged to a different cartoon character. “You know, I was not so much a My Little Pony fan growing up. I was more of a Strawberry Shortcake fan,” she confessed to EW in an interview. “But since I’ve learned about My Little Pony, it’s kind of incredible — the parallels [between] what it’s teaching young girls and what Miss America is trying to teach young women as well. It’s all about friendship and acceptance… and I think it’s a great way to show little girls that they can be empowered by trying to reach their goals.” In other words: getting on a high horse has its benefits.

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My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
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