The Euro Ice Hockey Challenge is a yearly series of 4 national ice hockey tournaments, organised during each of the four international breaks defined in the IIHF calendar in September, November, December and February. Tournaments are played in different locations in Europe.
The EIHC was founded in October 2001 by the IIHF. Participants are the ice hockey national teams of countries that are themselves at or around the level of the IIHF World Championship Division I. It is a second-tier equivalent to tournaments of the Euro Hockey Tour.
Almost all the teams use the EIHC as preparation for the World Championship later in the same year. It is an opportunity for teams to test less experienced players and for them to gain valuable ice time at an international level.
In 2001 the inital IIHF tournament scheme, planned to last until 2005, included the following 12 participating nations: Ukraine, Austria, Netherlands, Italy, Latvia, Slovenia, Poland, Belarus, Norway, Great Britain, France, Denmark and Hungary. Since then participating countries have evolved along with Division I level.
Tournaments organised under the label of the Euro Ice Hockey Challenge have included the following:
- Polesia Cup
- Tournoi International du Mont-Blanc(fr)
- Pannonia Hockey Cup
- Danfoss Challenge