Saturday, July 19, 2014

Senior Dutch endurance official steps down over WEG selections

By on Jul 19, 2014

A senior endurance figure in The Netherlands has resigned from a key role over his concerns about three horses in the frame to be competed by Dutch riders at the World Equestrian Games.

Marc van den Dungen announced last Monday he was standing down as independent chairman of the Endurance Technical Commission of the Royal Dutch Equestrian Federation, the KNHS.

His resignation followed the nomination of three riders for the Dutch endurance team with horses, at least two of whom are owned by interests in the United Arab Emirates.

Van den Dungen’s concerns centre around the racing workload of the horses and he accused the Dutch equestrian body of not putting horse welfare as a top priority – a claim the federation has rejected. The federation backed the selection of the horses in question, saying it was in line with recent FEI rules.

Van den Dungen said: “The reason for discontinuing my function is the fact that I do not want to be associated with an organisation which pays lip-service to horse welfare that, when it comes to success at the World Equestrian Games 2014, no longer places horse welfare at the top of its agenda.”

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