Friday, April 19, 2019

The Heart(rate) Of The Matter: Endurance Committee Proposes Significant Changes At FEI Sports Forum - Full Article

By: Laura Lemon
Apr 18, 2019

“How do we shift the focus of endurance away from racing and more to completion and riding?” was the question at the heart of the endurance discussions at the 2019 FEI Sports Forum, held April 15-16 in Lausanne, Switzerland. In the hopes of pushing forward proposals that would help ground the discipline in its roots, the Sports Forum spent an unprecedented entire day devoted to a single topic.

After years of endurance turmoil, including many horse welfare issues and the cancellation of the championship at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games (North Carolina), the FEI Bureau announced that it had set up the Endurance Temporary Committee on Oct. 22, 2018, to assess the sport through an in-depth review of rules and research.

“We need to bring the discipline back to the principles of the FEI where welfare of the horse and horsemanship prevail,” said FEI President Ingmar De Vos at the time. “The temporary committee will conduct a thorough review of the discipline with the aim of getting back to real endurance riding, with the focus on horsemanship and partnership between horse and human. The sport has evolved, and there needs to be a recognition of that, but the essence of the sport must remain the same. What we need are rules that place greater emphasis on completion of the event, rather than the ‘win at all costs’ mentality that is more and more threatening our sport...”

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