Monday, November 19, 2018

FEI's Ingmar De Vos - the irresistible rise of an expert administrator - Full Article

By David Owen Sunday, 18 November 2018

Often when I meet those who have scrambled to the top of international sport's greasy pole, I conclude that they are politicians first and administrators second.

After 90 minutes in company of Ingmar De Vos in his pleasant third-floor office in the Lausanne headquarters building gifted to the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) by his predecessor as President, Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, I am left with the strong sense that with the 55-year-old Belgian, it is the other way around. This is even though he began his career in mainstream politics.

This order of priorities equips him well, I think, for a period when sport in general and the Olympic Movement in particular is having to battle hard to cling onto the prominent and privileged role in society to which it ascended over a century or more. Suddenly glitz and hyperbole are out, better governance and a healthy awareness that sport is not the only thing are in.

Having established himself as an indispensable figure in equestrianism, to the point where his bid for a second term as FEI President at Tuesday's (November 20) General Assembly in Bahrain is unopposed, I would expect De Vos to emerge in coming years as an increasingly prominent voice in the conclaves and debates that will shape sport and Olympism's short-term future...

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