Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Fear Grows About Endurance Scandals at Tryon

Horse-canada.com - Full Article

August 21, 2018
by: Pippa Cuckson

Fear over a horse welfare scandal in endurance on the opening day of the World Equestrian Games have come to a head in recent days. A letter setting out the concerns of the American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) to USEF has been widely shared on social media, while a top French endurance vet has announced he is giving up after 33 years, in protest about the ongoing crisis in the sport. “The unacceptable fact I have had to see since these last years are peanuts comparing with what is coming next,” warns Dr Pierre Romantzoff.

With endurance having its roots in the US, the AERC had hoped Tryon would showcase the classic sport, using a natural, technically demanding trail. However, recent pictures from the venue show a 30ft-50ft wide manicured piste which, while designed to fulfil USDA’s tick-control requirements, will undoubtedly favour the racing style of the Group 7 countries.

AERC members have also taken to social media in recent weeks, aghast that Sheikh Mohammed’s Meydan corporation is title sponsor of the ride. At WEG 2014, Meydan stood itself down as sponsor because UAE controversies were at the centre of a media storm.

In his letter, AERC president Paul Latiolais points out the reputational damage to the national sport if there is a “mishap” in front of thousands of public with cameras...

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