Euro Update: European Pony Bronze Medallist Tim Tests Positive to Medication

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Euro News from

The European individual bronze medal winning FEI dressage pony Tim tested positive to medication at the 2008 European Pony Championships in Avenches, Switzerland, July 27, 2008. Tim's urine tested positive to lidocaine, a Medication Class A prohibited substance.

Rider Elin Aspnäs from Sweden was notified by the FEI of the positive test result three months after the event took place, whereas the organization normally notifies the riders after three weeks.

"Normally it takes three weeks, but in this case the FEI notified after almost three months. This delay has had many consequences because much has happened during these months – sponsor contracts, nominations to honours and of course immense interest from media and the public," Elin's mother Johanna Aspnas told Eurodressage.

Elin is preliminarily suspended from all competitions during the investigation.

The Aspnäs family presented their case at a hearing at the FEI bureau in Lausanne in November 2008. They showed the FEI that the only substance used on the pony was Arnika Gel, batch No 57. Arnika Gel (qualifying period of 0 hours) is a substance which is allowed by the FEI.

The Swedish Equestrian Federation requested that the contents of the bottle used on Tim have been analyzed and it proved to contain lidocaine. The Swedish Equestrian Federation has also had another bottle of Arnika Gel tested. The supplier delivered the bottle of the same batch No 57 but in that sample no lidocaine was found.

The Aspnas family is strongly suspecting fraud in the matter of Tim's positive test results. They believe that lidocaine has been maliciously put into the Arnika Gel bottle that was used by Elin at the 2008 European Pony Championships.

"Somebody unknown to us must have administered the substance as the analysis of the supplier´s batch No 57 did not show any trace of lidocaine," Aspnäs said.

This year the Aspnäs family has been exposed to thefts, threats, and harassment. This slanderous campaign against the Aspnas family started with the dismissal of the Swedish Pony dressage team Chef d´Equipe, directly after the international competition in Weert, Holland, in May 2008.

"Somebody assumed that Mats Aspnäs, Elin´s father, had requested the dismissal of the Chef d´Equipe, which is not correct," Aspnas stated. "Another person reported the Chef d´Equipe to the Swedish Equestrian Federation. After the dismissal, the Federation received a letter in which Mats Aspnäs was accused of having reported the Chef d´Equipe. The Federation answered this letter and clearly stated that there had been no involvement on the part of Mats Aspnäs. Unfortunately, the misunderstanding has been widely spread and caused our whole family a lot of unpleasantness"

St. Emilion, Doletto and Lawito, Price Highlights of the 2008 PSI Auction

The 2008 PSI Auction achieved exuberant prices with three horses as price highlights of the collection. The dressage stars St. Emilion and Doletto and the 6-year old show jumping talent Lawito all sold for the top knockdown price of 550,000 euro.

The 4-year old black stallion St. Emilion (by Sandro Hit x Ehrenwort) and the 4-year old bay gelding Doletto (by Diamond Hit x Sion) were the most wanted dressage horses of the collection consisting of 51 show jumpers and dressage horses. St. Emilion sold to a client of Christoph Niemann, while Doletto moves to Marina van den Berghe's Haras du Champcueil in France. The 6-year old show jumper Lawito (by Landgold) sold for the same amount to the Danish investor Tailormade Horses, which were advised by Søren Pedersen to buy the stallion.

The second highest price paid for a PSI horse was 520,000 euro. Andreas Helgstrand's sponsors bought the Bundeschampion Laetare (by Lord Loxley) for this spectacular price. Wyllow R (by Wolkentanz II), which finished third at this year's Bundeschampionate, sold for 380,000 €.

Ullrich Kasselmann and Paul Schockemohle, the men behind Performance Sales International, have been organizing this auction for almost 30 years. This year they generated a turn over of 11,360,000 euro. The average price for a dressage horse from the 2008 PSI collection was 205,000 euro.

Ziësto, Westpoint, Vivaldi Win Second Leg of 2008-2009 KWPN Stallion Competition

The same stallions which won the kick-off of the 2008-2009 KNHS/KWPN Stallion Competition dominated the second qualifier at De Goubergh in Roosendaal, The Netherlands. Ziësto, Westpoint, and Vivaldi pulled a winning move in Roosendaal on December 12, 2008.

At L-level the battle was between Ziesto (by Lancet x Clavecimbel) and Zizi Top (by Tango x Ferro). Gerdine Maree and the bay KWPN stallion Ziesto excelled with their suppleness and lightfootedness, Hans Peter Minderhoud rode Zizi Top energetically, showing off the stallion's quick hind leg, power, and expression. Ziesto, however, scored half a point more and won the class. Zjengis Kahn (by Rousseau x Rubinstein) finished third.

At M-level Emmelie Scholtens and Westpoint (by Jazz x Michelangelo) reigned supreme. The stallion, which was quite impressed by the arena ornamented with Christmas decorations, spooked once but did not fail to impress with his basic qualities. He scored 87 points. At Z-level Hans Peter Minderhoud and the chestnut KWPN stallion Vivaldi (by Krack C x Jazz) won the class impressing with his uphill gaits and easy execution of all the movements.