Thursday, September 20, 2018

WEG 2018 - Will Tryon Spell End for Games? German Official Gives View - Full Article

Thursday 20 September - 09h45 | Stephanie Sieckmann

The first week of the 2018 Tryon FEI World Equestrian Games in North Carolina is over, four disciplines have wrapped up their competitions and four others – jumping, para-dressage, vaulting and driving – are now getting underway. Dressage, endurance and eventing riders from around the world are heading home from Tryon with very mixed experiences, and this halfway point is a good moment to look back at the Games so far. GrandPrix Magazine spoke to Sönke Lauterbach, Secretary General of the German Equestrian Federation, for his view.


GrandPrix: A venue landscape resembling a construction site, organizational chaos and storm warnings all left their mark on the first week of the World Equestrian Games in Tryon. Now that Week 1 is over, what are your thoughts on the event so far?
Sönke Lauterbach: We know that hosting the World Equestrian Games for the different FEI disciplines within existing infrastructure is always a challenge. And in this case, we knew that the organizers only had two years before the start of the Games to get ready after being awarded the contract. So we were aware that this might be difficult for everyone and that, for example, we would have to travel a long way to get to the site, as the accommodations for the teams are far away. That's not ideal, but you can live with it. The most important thing is that the horses are fine. And we would have felt safe with our horses even in a storm with wind gusts of 100 km/h. That's what matters.

Grand Prix Magazine: The accommodations for the horses are very good. What about the other conditions?
Sönke Lauterbach: There was a lot of rain, and the roads and parking lots were partly flooded, but the grounds in the stadiums and in the training areas are still very good. Everything dried up very quickly. The cross-country route for eventing was a real dream. I can not remember another championship track which was so fascinating: well prepared, well designed, good challenges, not too heavy, not too light, ideal for sports. Seen from this point of view, as far as the sporting conditions are concerned, one has to draw a positive conclusion. The conditions are very good here.

GrandPrix Magazine: So what points are there to criticize?
Sönke Lauterbach: While the conditions are good for sport, a lot of other things are not so good. We knew that would be the case. But we did not expect it to be so bad. One has to say that too. Our Chef de Mission, Dr. Dennis Peiler, was already here a week before the start of the Games. He called and said that it was worse than we had been expecting it to be. But you also see how something happens here every day. Day by day things get better. We have already had other events where it was difficult in the first week and then it got better as the WEG were taking place. Of course, it’s unfortunate for the organizer, as he wanted to show off his facility and business in a good light...

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Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Jean-Philippe Frances: "A World Championship in Europe ..." - Full Article

Saturday, September 15, 2018

On the way to the stables that Jean-Philippe Frances gave himself to some confidences.

The Spur: Many things have been said about the start of this race. But what really happened?

JPF: Until the day before the race, we did not know exactly where the start would be, or how to get there. The infos have been modified several times.

Spur: You have not made any recognition?

JPF: there was nothing to see! No beacon, nothing. We could not even see the curls on foot.

The spur: and departure in itself?

JPF: a group of riders took the start at 6:33 am under the orders of no one knows who ... here ...

The Spur: the arrival of the 1 st loop, the decision was made to neutralize the race. Good or bad decision?

JPF: The best decision would have been to cancel this race away!

The Spur: other riders wanted the same thing as you?

JPF: Spain wanted the race canceled and even signed the petition. The French federation did not want. For the team, I left. Spain, seeing that neither France nor Belgium was withdrawing, decided to leave again.

The Spur: how have riders been able to make fewer kilometers and continue despite everything?

The jury did not know who had traveled how far?

JPF: Impossible not to know! All riders were equipped with 2 GPS: 1 on the horse and 1 other on the rider. It would have been easy to eliminate those who had not traveled the right distance. As in cso or in cross: when there is a mistake of course, the rider is eliminated.

L'Eperon: Bénédicte Emond-Bon stated that she had been against the cancellation of the race because the "replacement" Championship would have taken place in Dubai. Have you tried to convince her otherwise?

JPF: there has never been a Championship in Dubai! I explained all this to Bénédicte and Sophie Dubourg.

The Spur: yet that's what is said ...

JPF: it's totally wrong! Sheikh Hamdan, Juma and I discussed the situation together during the break. Sheikh Hamdan was for the cancellation of the race.

He proposed that a "replacement" Championship be organized in Europe, where the team leaders would like it and that he would take care of the traveling expenses of all the riders and horses.

We shook hands, and Juma and I told him that we would forward his proposal.

L'Eperon: and the FFE has not changed its mind following this offer?

JPF: Bénédicte and Sophie Dubourg were categorical: it was a non-firm on their part.

Yet it would have been an opportunity to show the FEI that their vision of endurance did not go at all.

The Spur: this race in the United States was symbolic for you ...

JPF: the loop would have been completed after what had happened in Kentucky. The FEI had endorsed results that were false and we know more ...

The Spur: you have kept Tarzibus for this deadline. It's easy to imagine that you have rejected substantial purchase offers ...

JPF: That's right. But getting ready for WWW is very much for everyone. When I come back, I see my lawyer and if there is a breach, we attack.

From what I know, Sheikh Mohamed also wants to attack in order to recover the money he has put in these JEM and not only for stamina. (the sum would be 25 million).

The Spur: important question: how is Tarzibus? Not too stressed by the race?

JPF: Tarzibus is fine. The race was difficult. In Europe, it runs between 20 and 23km / h and there, at 20 to see a small 21km / h, it had huge cardiac variations. Many horses were hyperventilating.

This also raises another problem: that of qualification minima; they are ridiculous. To qualify for the JEM, these are the same conditions as for a 3 *, the same speed. With the deplorable organizational conditions and the weather we had, the cat is just normal.

The check mark to really shake things were missed in the 1 st stage ... Interviewed by Babsie Kaporal

First week of World Equestrian Games a 'rollercoaster ride' - Full Article

September 18 2018

The World Equestrian Games are hoping to finish on a positive note after a dreadful first week that included the cancellations of two events, an organizational mistake that sent riders in the wrong direction at the start of a race and one horse being euthanized.

"It has been a rollercoaster ride," organizing committee president Michael Stone said Tuesday.

The games, which are considered the "Super Bowl of equestrian competition," drew more than 600 equestrians and 700 horses from 71 countries and six continents to the Tryon International Equestrian Center in the small town of Mill Spring, North Carolina — about 90 miles east of Charlotte. More than a 500,000 spectators were expected to attend the event, which concludes Sunday.

The WEG got off to an embarrassing start Wednesday in the first competition when some riders in the 100-mile endurance competition were sent off in the wrong direction by race officials to start of the race, which began before dawn. Some horses ran nine miles before the race was stopped and the decision was made to restart.

However, the race was later called off midway through because of intense heat and humidity —as well as sloppy course conditions — following a mid-afternoon rainstorm, causing more frustration from the riders. The event was not rescheduled.

"That meant a few unhappy people who were leading the race," Stone said. "But the one thing we have to do is make sure the horses are looked after and are safe. Horses can suffer badly in those conditions."

The Federation Equestre Internationale, equestrian's governing body, has started an investigation into the error...

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Australia: Tom Quilty forum held by North Eastern Tasmania Tourism - Full Article

September 17 2018
Frances Vinall

Excitement is ramping up for the Tom Quilty, Australia’s premier endurance horse ride, to be held this year in Dorset.

Between 50 and 60 people attended a forum on Thursday night hosted by North East Tasmanian Tourism, which aimed to help local businesses prepare for the event.

The Tom Quilty is expected to bring more than 1000 people to the region, and NETT secretary Tony Scott said a significant number are likely to stay for about a week...

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Ireland: St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride resounding success continues for 2018 - Full Story

By Bree Rutledge - September 18, 2018

THE 2018 St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride, held on September 1, was a resounding success for all involved, whether riding, crewing or helping out, it was a brilliant day enjoyed by many. Beginning at the excellent venue of Downpatrick Racecourse, offering ample parking, on-site stabling, camping and the ever-popular burger van, over 100 riders headed out to explore the vast routes on offer throughout the scenic County Down landscape.

Whether you are a keen endurance rider or a pleasure rider out enjoying this event, everyone enjoyed themselves and the brilliant horseback riding available here. A misty start to the day transformed into beautiful riding conditions of glorious sunshine, perfect for the stunning photographs captured by the official photographer, SDS Photo...

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Chaos at the World Equestrian Games - Full Article

By Victor Mather
Sept. 17, 2018

For Tryon, in western North Carolina, the arrival of the quadrennial World Equestrian Games this month was a chance to host the type of big international event that seldom comes to small Southern towns. Organizers promised half a million spectators and $400 million in economic impact.

Instead, much has gone wrong.

Few could blame organizers for the effects of Hurricane Florence, which has caused the delay or cancellation of several events. One of the classic events at the Games, called the three-day event, had to be extended to four days because of the storm.

But a series of decisions and mistakes, over housing and a botched endurance race, have led to some far more acrimonious disputes, and created hard feelings among some at the Games.

The competition, which continues through Sunday, is one of the biggest and most important show horse gatherings outside of the Olympics. A thousand horses were shipped to Tryon, about 90 miles west of Charlotte, representing more than 60 nations.

But things got off on the wrong foot almost immediately when some of the competitors were sent the wrong way at the start of the endurance event last Wednesday. Tarek Taher, a rider from Saudi Arabia, told Horse and Hound that he followed a sign to the right and ignored a person who did not look official who told him to turn left.

As a result, organizers decided to restart the event at a shorter distance. “As there is no possibility to reschedule the ride tomorrow,” organizers said, “this was the only pragmatic solution.” But that decision sparked only more bad feelings, and competitors and others sounded off on social media and expressed anger on site that the shorter race benefited some riders more than others...

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Sunday, September 16, 2018

A Great Start for WEG Horse Care - Full Article

Veterinary care for horses at the FEI WEG Tryon 2018 is receiving high praise.


“The first big challenge is over” for the treating veterinarian team, said Anne Baskett, DVM, DACVS. Baskett, who was referring to the WEG Endurance competition. Even though the Endurance event was surrounded by controversy over a mis-start and cancelling of the race late in the day, the competition was considered a success for the veterinary care of the equine competitors.

Baskett and her husband, Bill Hay, DVM, DACVS, are in charge of FEI treating veterinarians at the FEI WEG Tryon 2018.

There was a large team of veterinarians attending the horses at the Endurance veterinary inspection and throughout the event, and six equine ambulances and veterinarians were available on course. When the Endurance event was cancelled due to high heat and humidity near the end of the day, “We were able, with GPS tracking, to go pick up horses that were still on course so we could give them a ride in,” said Baskett.

“We had a lot better access to horses on this course because of the clearing they did of the trail,” she added.

Baskett said most of the Endurance horses were recovered in the veterinary tent on course with fluids, but that even the more-intense medical cases are now good...

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WEG 2018 - Will Tryon Spell End for Games? German Official Gives View - Full Article Thursday 20 September - 09h45 | Stephanie Sieckmann The first week of the 2018 Tryon FEI World Eques...