The FEI Bureau’s spring meeting took place at FEI Headquarters in Lausanne (SUI) on 8-9 June. The meeting opened with a minute’s silence for Dr Craig Ferrell, FEI Medical Committee Chair, and Jane Goldsmith, Member of the FEI Para-Dressage Committee, who passed away recently.
The main focus of the meeting was:
- to agree on proposed modifications to general rules, regulations and FEI Statutes before submission to National Federations for consultation and feedback, prior to voting at the FEI General Assembly 2012.
- to approve the allocation of Continental Championships and Finals, which have already been reported here.
- to approve modifications proposed by the Technical Committees on 2013 series rules in Jumping, Dressage and Para-Equestrian Dressage, Driving and Vaulting.
FEI Bureau Spring Meeting - Key Decisions by Disciplines
The FEI Bureau approved modifications to Article 656 and Article 659 of the FEI World Cup™ Jumping 2013 rules, which are highlighted here.
The Bureau also approved that the appointments of Chief Stewards for all FEI Championships, Games and Finals will be made by the FEI Director of Jumping in consultation with the Jumping Committee from 1 January 2013. Previously, these appointments were approved by the Organising Committees of the Events.
Dressage and Para-Equestrian Dressage
The modifications to the general rules for the FEI World Cup™ Dressage series and to the North American and Pacific League 2012-2013 season were approved and can be found here.
The following clarifications were also made:
- CDI-Ws prevail over other CDIs in case of date clashes.
- All 18 participants in the FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final can proceed to the Grand Prix Freestyle to Music.
- The Judges Supervisory Panel is appointed by the FEI.
Changes to the rules for the Para-Equestrian Dressage Rankings were also approved and can be viewed here. These changes, which will be implemented from 1 January 2013, include:
- Number of results counting towards the team rankings will be increased from one to three.
- Number of results counting towards the individual rankings will be limited to the six best, in line with the Dressage Rules.
On the advice of the FEI Eventing Committee, the FEI Bureau decided to postpone the implementation of the industrial standards for frangible/deformable Cross Country fence devices at FEI Events, which were presented at the General Assembly 2011 - and which had initially been planned for March 2012 - to allow more time for the manufacturers to meet the required standards.
As a result, the current rule of automatically allocating 21 penalties for the activation of a frangible device has been changed, leaving the decision to penalise the rider with the Ground Jury on a case-by-case basis until the standards are enforced and the devices comply.
The Eventing Committee Chair updated the Bureau on the key principles discussed worldwide in view of the revision of the FEI Rules for Eventing. These include the review of CCI and CIC competition formats and proposals to assess the values of the different formats, review of qualifications of athletes and horses and reverse qualification. The Rules will be voted on at the General Assembly in November, prior to implementation on 1 January 2013.
The FEI Bureau accepted the conclusion of the FEI Veterinary Committee on the elimination if unfit to compete processes across the disciplines. The Veterinary Committee stated that the current approach works well with respect to protecting horse welfare, but within some disciplines the structure does not practically allow a horse to be stopped to check for a problem, and then restarted. Feedback will be provided individually to each discipline.
The latest research on the issue of equine cloning was presented and debated at the FEI Sports Forum. The FEI Bureau accepted that the position of the FEI on equine clones and their progeny should be changed to “The FEI will not forbid participation of clones or their progenies in FEI competitions. The FEI will continue to monitor further research, especially with regard to equine welfare.”
The Veterinary Director presented the 2011 figures for the Medication Control Programme, showing a further decrease in positive cases. He outlined the next stages of the Clean Sport campaign, which centres around the production of a “toolkit” of resources that could be translated into several languages in order to give greater international reach.
The Bureau was also informed about recent progress on working with governments and the World Animal Health Organisation (OIE) to reduce the constraints in place in many regions on the movement of FEI horses. The OIE is the coordinating, cross-government body that sets both the Principles and the Code by which animals are moved internationally. Currently the OIE Principles and Codes do not have a technical mechanism to distinguish the elite/high performance horse as an official ‘sub-population’ amongst all other types of horses. After a review of the situation, the OIE has offered the groundbreaking opportunity to consider the creation of such a ‘sub-population’ of horses – the “high health, high performance” horse. One of the first steps is clarifying the criteria to be applied, and the means to easily identify such a sub-population.
The FEI Bureau also approved a broad review of the FEI passport system by FEI Headquarters.
The Chair of the Veterinary Committee presented a summary of the significant changes to the format and approach that will be made to the 2013 Veterinary Regulations, which will be voted on at the FEI General Assembly 2012.
FEI Solidarity Update
The FEI Bureau approved a full review and analysis of the FEI World Jumping and Dressage Challenges by the FEI Solidarity Department during the second half of 2012. Any proposed changes will be discussed at the FEI Sports Forum 2013. Findings from the Sports Forum will be presented to the FEI Bureau in June 2013, prior to submission to the FEI General Assembly for final approval.
FEI Bureau Spring Meeting - Other Decisions
A new system of categorisation and annual subscription fees for National Federations based on transparent and coherent criteria is being developed and will be presented to the FEI General Assembly in November.
The FEI Bureau agreed to sign the charter in favour of road safety, upon the invitation received from the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), and approved the FEI becoming a member of the International Fair Play Committee, which counts the IOC and UNESCO amongst its partners.