Tuesday, December 03, 2013

FEI: Would the Accused Stand


From left to right: Mr De Vos, Mrs Haya, Mr Buchman

December 1 2013
Leonard Liesens - Endurance-belgium

Would the accused stand! That's the title of the article published in the Belgian magazine "Hippo Revue", the biggest equestrian publication in dutch in Belgium. Mark Wentein is the main actioner but also the President of the Flemish wing of the Belgian Federation.

Follow this link to display the copy of the article: Hippo-Revue-Article

In a six pages article, mark Wentein starts by listing the events that lead to the whole endurance scandal, as it has been also published in many daily newspapers in French, English, German languages: Sh Mohammed suspension in 2009, the scandals of the flat racing stables in Newmarket, doping cases in endurance, the interview of Pierre Arnould ran by Pippa Cuckson of The Telegraph, the reaction of FEI...

Arnould says to Hippo Revue : "the non-disclosure document I signed doesn't forbid me to say what I think about what's going on in endurance in the Middle East, come on". Wentein adds his comment and regrets the unilateral behaviour of the FEI (and De Vos in particular).

A Blacklist published by Hippo Revue:

- permanent conflicts of interests
- FEI representatives and FEI officials seen in the VIP tents of the Gulf countries during the course of the event
- when a VIP is suspended, private races are organized (with the help and the active working of FEI representatives and FEI officials and veterinarians), like the 'Ride with the Stars' at Euston in 2009
- the night before the race, but also during rest periods, horses are put on drip and doped. This is a systematic way of doing in the Middle East but it also took place in Europe, for example at Euston Park WEC2012(Ali Kalfan), Czech Rep 2006 (Warsan team)
- cheating about the minimum weight, even in Europe (Compi7gne, Dillingen, Assisi)
- cheating with the qualification rules for horses (systematic in Middle East)
- racing of horse on CEI while these never appeared at national level
- disrespect of the maximum speed for qualification events, disrespect of the minimum rest time between events
- frequent changes of horse names (and of labels of chipnumbers on FEI passports) to enter horses more frequently on races without respecting rest time
- disrespect of the course; VIPs can use shortcuts on the trail while officials are keeping their eyes shut; obviously the total length of the course doesn't correspond to the FEI schedule in the Middle East
- frequent use of long reins to use it as whip to push horses
- most of the sanctioned riders are from the Middle East
- little reaction from the FEI in inquire about causes and responsibles in case of horse fatalities and fractures; obviously no sanctions of the responsibles persons: 3 deaths in France in 2012 (Qatar); 2 deaths in Europe in 2013 (Dubai); 80 deaths during season 2011-2012 in Group VII (obviously not an official number-officially FEI reports 10 fatalities)
- exchange of horses on one event without any reaction from the officials or from the FEI (photos of evidences forwarded to FEI)
- use of two different saddles during event, one heavy (for weighting), one light (for racing), reporting for example at Dillingen 2013 with photos
- active corruption of officials by distributing envelopes and benefits in kind

Hippo Revue reports also the Jaume Punti episode where FEI answered: "this falls under the British juridiction so this is not the FEI business". Hippo Revue compares this case with Lance Armstrong not giving back his Tour de France Yellow Shirts while convinced of doping in USA.

Finally Hippo Revue relates the FEI GA at Montreux. The petition ran by the emerging countries and not supported by most of the major European Federations. But this was weirdly supported by Belgium, well by Jacky Buchmann the President while the rest of the Belgian delegation was furious and ashamed at the same time. Hippo Revue put this back into its context reminding the excellent relationship between the President of the Belgian Federation and Princess Haya and also the big support given by Buchmann to Ingmar de Vos for accessing at the FEI Sec Gen duties. (nftr: that's the reason finally)

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