Lausanne, Switzerland – April 7, 2016 – Below are the key decisions and updates from the FEI Bureau’s spring in-person meeting at FEI headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, which followed the two-day FEI Sports Forum.
FEI Sports Forum 2016 Recap
Following the full-day session on FEI Officials at the FEI Sports Forum, the Bureau agreed to set up a working group to focus on harmonizing the education, core roles, appointment, remuneration and promotion of FEI Officials on a global basis and across all FEI disciplines. The composition of the working group will be proposed in due course.
The Bureau concluded that for the Olympic Games nations can qualify with either a team of maximum three athletes, or, if they have not qualified a team a maximum one individual per nation for each Olympic discipline, and the Bureau asked the Technical Committees to finalize their proposals in that direction to be submitted to National Federations prior to a vote at the General Assembly in November.
In addition, all Technical Committees were asked to take on board the contents of the Sports Forum debate and incorporate into their proposals for the formats of the competitions.
The Bureau asked all the Technical Committees to work in the same direction for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ but understands that differences across the disciplines are still possible.
The following timelines were agreed:
Draft rules based on the discussions that took place at the FEI Sports Forum and over the last 12 months, will be sent to National Federations on 15 July with a deadline of 9 September for Federations to revert to the FEI with their feedback. Final drafts will be published on www.fei.org on 28 October with Federations voting at the FEI General Assembly in Tokyo (JPN) on 22 November 2016.
The FEI Bureau approved the Commercial Strategy as well as the phased approach which was presented to deliver this Strategy. The FEI Commercial Department will now prepare timelines and more details and will organise the implementation of the various work streams.
Given Agenda 2020, the Bureau asked if there was still a place for single gender events in equestrian sports. The Bureau also agreed that harmonization of the age limit for male and female veterans should be debated.
The FEI Bureau also agreed to further develop the automatic online entry system for Jumping into an online invitation system in order to correctly implement the invitation rules. The FEI IT department, working with the FEI Jumping Committee, will progress with developing this system, which will be reviewed later this year.
The Bureau agreed that the FEI should ask National Federations to submit proposals on horse name/prefix charges and that the FEI, together with the National Federations, will fine tune the proposals before they are presented for approval at the FEI General Assembly.
UAE National Federation Update/FEI World Endurance Championships
The FEI Bureau acknowledged the efforts that have been made by the United Arab Emirates National Federation (UAE NF) in Endurance since the reinstatement of the National Federation in July 2015. However, despite the hard work and progress to date, the FEI Bureau is of the opinion that the UAE NF is not currently in a position to guarantee that horse welfare would be fully protected at an FEI World Endurance Championship in the UAE this year.
As a result, the Bureau decided to remove the FEI World Endurance Championships 2016 from the UAE. The Championships, which were scheduled to take place from 10-17 December 2016 at the Dubai Equestrian Club (DEC), were originally allocated to the EEF by the Bureau in December 2014.
The bid process will now be reopened to find a replacement venue outside the UAE for the Championships. The deadline for receipt of bids is 18 May and the allocation to a new host will be made during the Bureau teleconference on 14 June. It is expected that the Championships will now take place in September or October, so the qualifying period will be moved back by two months and results starting from September/October 2014, instead of December 2014, will now count for qualification.
At the same time, there was also unanimous agreement among the Bureau Members that rule breaches are absolutely unacceptable and that the FEI must work even more closely with the UAE NF to guarantee the National Federation’s full implementation of FEI Rules and Regulations as well as on the July 2015 agreement which will guarantee the welfare of the horse in National and International events. Additionally, and until further notice, the FEI will not sanction any events organised by the DEC.
International Horse Movement
The FEI Bureau was informed that the FEI is continuing to work on the international movement of horses and that the FEI Headquarters will produce in draft form a user friendly manual on the High Health, High Performance Horse (HHP) concept for the entire equestrian community, to complement the existing handbook developed by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) in collaboration with the FEI, which is currently used by governments around the world.
Jumping: The Bureau approved several rule changes for the European Youngster Cup U25 Jumping. These will be published in due course here.
Dressage: Following evaluation of the judging in Dressage in 2015 and 2016 and taking into account experiences in other sports that have similar judging systems, the Bureau mandated the creation of a Dressage judging working group to improve judging of the discipline.
Eventing: At the recommendation of the Eventing Committtee and based on Art 20.3 (vii) of the FEI Statutes, the FEI Bureau approved the immediate modification and implementation of Art 548.1 of the Eventing Rules (see underlined text):
“548.1 Faults at Obstacles
¹* Explanatory note and procedure for the implementation of the penalty for “Activating a frangible device”:
Each Athlete activating a frangible device will be awarded 11 penalties whenever the activation occurs as expected (i.e. activation by significant pressure exerted by the Horse which modifies the dimension of the fence).”
The FEI Bureau approved the following series for 2016: Luhmühlen meets Copenhagen, Tri Star Eventing Grand Slam and some minor modifications to the Eventing Riders Masters rules.
Vaulting and Driving: Amendments to the FEI World Cup™ Vaulting and FEI World Cup™ Driving rules were approved by the FEI Bureau. One key amendment in the FEI World Cup™ Vaulting rules is that the winners (male, female and pas-de-deux) of the FEI World Cup™ Vaulting Final will receive automatic qualification for the following series. The rules will be updated in due course here (Vaulting) and here (Driving).
The Chair of the FEI Veterinary Committee highlighted the importance of upcoming May meetings with the National Head Vets (NHVs), the visit of the Rio 2016 Veterinary Service Manager to FEI Headquarters and members of the Rio 2016 Veterinary Commission at the CCI4* Badminton Horse Trials. The Bureau was updated on progress on the global implementation of the Equine AntiDoping and Controlled Medication Programme (EADCMP – www.fei.org/system/files/Global%20EADCMP%20Guide.pdf).
FEI Championships & Finals 2017-2019
The following Championships and Finals were allocated for 2017-2019:
FEI European Dressage Championship U25, Lamprechtshausen (AUT), 30 August – 3 September
FEI World Cup™ Vaulting Final, Dortmund (GER), 2-5 March
FEI European Championship for Ponies (Jumping, Dressage, Eventing), Kaposvár (HUN), 9-13 August
FEI European Jumping and Dressage Championships for Young Riders, Juniors & Children, Fontainebleau (FRA), dates TBC July
FEI European Eventing Championships for Young Riders & Juniors (Eventing), Fontainebleau (FRA), dates TBC July
FEI European Jumping Championship for Veterans, Nörten-Hardenberg (GER), dates TBC June
FEI World Breeding Endurance Championship for Young Horses, Samorin (SVK), September, 22 September
FEI European Endurance Championship for Young Riders & Juniors, San Rossore (ITA), 13- 16 September
FEI European Driving Championship for Young Drivers, Juniors, & Children, Ászár-Kisbér (HUN), dates TBC August
FEI World Driving Championship for Pairs, Drebkau (GER), 11-15 September
FEI World Driving Championship for Ponies Four-in-Hand, Pairs & Singles, Ászár-Kisbér (HUN), dates TBC August
FEI World Endurance Championship for Young Riders & Juniors, San Rossore (ITA), dates TBC September
FEI World Breeding Endurance Championship for Young Horses, San Rossore (ITA), dates TBC September
The Bureau accepted that Asian Continental Championships can be organized. Details have still to be finalized with the Technical Committees and the first championships will be possible from 2017. Following the President and the Groups I and II Chairs visit to the Balkan region, it was agreed that the proposal for modifications concerning the Regional Championships be brought to the General Assembly in November. Under this proposal Regional Championships will be the responsibility of the relevant Regional Group or recognized Continental Association. A two-year transition will be applied.
Olympic & Paralympic Games
The Bureau was updated on the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games venue development and the FEI’s active role with the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee.
Progress at the venue has accelerated following the appointment of a new contractor, and the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee has assured the FEI that the venue will be ready on time.
It was highlighted that all qualified nations for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games have confirmed take up of their slots.
The FEI President thanked Luiz Roberto Giugni, FEI Executive Board member, Chair of FEI Group VI and President of the Brazilian National Equestrian Federation, for his extensive work on the ground with the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee and Brazilian government agencies involved in the Games.
The Bureau was updated on the Youth Olympic Games 2018 in Buenos Aires (ARG) – the 3rd Summer Youth Olympic Games – regarding the acquisition of horses and venue development.
FEI World Equestrian Games
The FEI Bureau was provided with an overview of preparations for the FEI World Equestrian Games 2018 including financial, commercial (including branding, website and broadcast), the Organising Committee (COJEM) team, project management, venue planning and development and operational planning.
The FEI Bureau approved the framework relating to the governance, financial and commercial model for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2022, for which the bidding process has opened.
A further update on other Games was provided to the Bureau.
The Bureau took note of the progress report on FEI Solidarity activities and the deadline to apply for FEI Solidarity assistance for 2017 as 1 July 2016. The next FEI Solidarity Committee meeting will take place on 1 September 2016 at FEI headquarters in Lausanne.
A detailed financial report, which showed the healthy financial situation of the organization, was presented by the Chief Financial Officer. The financial statements 2015 was approved by the Bureau and will be submitted for approval at the General Assembly.
The latest FEI HorseApp designed to help National Federations facilitate all administration duties for their equine athletes was presented to the Bureau. This joins a growing stable of free FEI apps for National Federations, athletes and equestrian fans, including FEI SportApp, FEI RuleApp, FEI Clean Sport App, FEI TV On the Go and Horsify Me, which are available on the Apple Store and Google Play.
Grooms – FEI Family
The President proposed and the Bureau agreed that the relationship with grooms should be improved and that they should be registered and brought closer to the FEI Family.