Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Endurance racing horse abuse case produces ground-breaking ruling against governing body

Telegraph.co.uk - Full Article

Tribunal finds FEI failed correctly to disqualify rider Sheikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa from winning King’s Cup in Bahrain after groom struck tiring horse

By Telegraph Sport
16 Sep 2014

A formal protest by two journalists – the Telegraph's Pippa Cuckson and Lucy Higginson, former editor of Horse & Hound – over a horse-beating incident during an endurance race has resulted in a ground-breaking ruling against the sport’s governing body by one of its own tribunals.

It found that judges from the International Equestrian Federation failed correctly to disqualify rider Sheikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa from winning the prestigious King’s Cup in Bahrain in February, when his groom ran onto the “field of play” and struck his tiring horse several times in the closing stages of the 80-mile leg of a desert ride.

It also dismissed the FEI’s claim that under “double jeopardy” an earlier punishment against the rider could not be reassessed.

Video footage unwittingly posted by the event’s own broadcaster the same day as the ride caused public outcry worldwide when the incident came to light. The incriminating pictures were seen next day by delegates at a global forum in Lausanne to discuss a clean-up of endurance racing, which is stricken with doping, horse fatality and cheating scandals...

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