Saturday, February 07, 2015

FEI plays get-out-of-jail-free card in latest endurance controversy

It is hard to escape the conclusion that the FEI has chosen to play a get-out-of-jail-free card over the harrowing demise of an Australian-bred endurance horse in a race in Abu Dhabi.

An image which has circulated in social media, and was published by Britain’s Daily Telegraph on Friday, shows Splitters Creek Bundy standing helplessly, having snapped both his cannon bones in the Al Reef Cup, staged a week ago.

The problem? The race over 120km was not an FEI-sanctioned event. It was run under less stringent rules adopted by the United Arab Emirates’ equestrian federation for some domestic endurance races. On that basis, the FEI has no jurisdiction, or, as the Telegraph reported, the world governing body asserted it was “powerless to act”.

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