Monday, April 13, 2009

UAE: Equestrian officials discuss endurance season and new rules

Gulf News
Staff Report
Published: April 13, 2009, 23:06

Abu Dhabi: More than 70 veterinary doctors, trainers, riders, stable owners and equestrian officials attended an 'End of Endurance Season' meeting organised by the Emirates Equestrian Federation on Sunday at Fairmont Hotel, Dubai.

The meeting was organised by the Emirates Equestrian Federation (formerly UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation) to discuss the UAE's domestic endurance season and to share the experiences of various officials involved in the discipline.

The focus of the seminar was primarily on the new FEI rules (which came into effect in January this year), National Rules, Veterinary issues and medication control.

Taleb Dhaher Al Muhairi, Secretary General, Emirates Equestrian Federation, welcomed the gathering and stated that it was imperative to have such meetings at the end of every season so that experiences and problems could be shared and solved and an amicable solution arrived at to avoid future impediments.

Dr. Hallvard Sommerseth, Head of Veterinary at the Federation discussed several veterinary-related problems, elaborated on the changes in the new FEI rules and the National rules.

Dr. Sommerseth said that the UAE had a very brief season for endurance (4 to 5 months) compared to many European countries (for instance in France it extends over 9 months) He said the country had done exceedingly well despite the weather conditions.

Giving details of the endurance rides, Dr. Sommerseth said there were 61 rides including 22 FEI rides, covering a total of 5,540 kilometres and featured 3,288 starters and as many as 1,528 riders, which amounted to "46.47 per cent completion which is comparable to anywhere in the world".

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