The Quintana Knightly Tournament is a challenge in which a knight must hit a target with his spear. Six knights participate in representing the districts of the city.
In this joust each rider must make three consecutive attempts which are repeated three times. If the Palio is won, a canvas painting created every year by a famous artist is given as a prize to the winner.
The tournaments (jousting) were typical of the Middle Ages and were used to train the cavalry in the art of war. They were very popular during 1200-1300 and the Giostra della Quintana is reported in the Municipal Statutes of 1377.
The events take place over a period of almost two months in the summer with numerous events such as the Palio of the Flag – wavers in July, a competition of 5 specialties fought between the flag-wavers of the city and which takes place in the magnificent Piazza Arringo. An incredible game of colors and sounds capable of thrilling every spectator.
Flags fly in the summer sky like colorful butterflies to the music of the drums. The skill of the musicians is so high that they have also been involved in modern arrangements and have participated in national television shows.
The two editions of the Historical Parade and the Giostra della Quintana take place in July and August. The historical procession is one of the largest in Italy with 1500 “actors” wearing sumptuous costumes from the 1400s. The procession is accompanied by ladies, knights, bridesmaids, armigers, archers, musicians and flag-wavers. There are also representatives of the 9 Castles of Ascoli Piceno.
The playing field is set up inside the football stadium.