Thursday, February 18, 2010

FEI - to facilitate clear implementation of the policy on warm-up techniques...


The composition of the FEI working group tasked with expanding current guidelines for Stewards to facilitate clear implementation of the policy on warm-up techniques following on from last week’s round-table conference on hyperflexion/Rollkur has been finalised today.

As announced after last week’s conference in Lausanne, the working group will be chaired by Dressage Committee Chair Frank Kemperman. Group members are Richard Davison (GBR), Rider/Trainer; John P. Roche (IRL), FEI Director Jumping/Stewarding; Jacques Van Daele (BEL), FEI Honorary Dressage Steward General/Judge; Wolfram Wittig (GER), Trainer; and Trond Asmyr (NOR), FEI Dressage Director/Judge. The working group will also draw on the expertise of a number of other specialists, including but not limited to the participants of the round-table conference*. The working group aims to have the guidelines completed by the end of March 2010.

The guidelines produced by the group will be communicated directly to Stewards and also to riders and trainers. The working group is expected to put forward further proposals for the education of Stewards to ensure that FEI rules are strictly adhered to and that the welfare of the horse is maintained at all times.

Guidelines for Stewards will incorporate the use of a range of sanctions, including verbal warnings and yellow cards for riders who transgress. Stewards will also be readvised to watch out for signs of distress in the horse, which may include but are not limited to obvious fatigue, profound or inappropriate sweating, persistent rough use of aids (i.e. bits, spurs or whip) and over-repetition of exercises.

The FEI Management is also currently studying a range of additional measures, including the use of closed circuit television for warm-up arenas at selected shows so that potential abuse accusations can be more readily identified and recorded.

The FEI will ensure that all findings produced by the working group are communicated on an ongoing basis.

Look at the video update from FEI Dressage and Para-Equestrian Director Trond Asmyr.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

FEI announce the launch of its first ever official mobile application.

The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) is happy to announce the launch of its first ever official mobile application.

“FEI EquiTests”, developed in close cooperation with Canada-based e-learning and visual communication design specialists Numen Communciations Inc., is a mobile application designed to help riders learn, reference and practice FEI Dressage tests. “FEI EquiTests”, is available worldwide through the Apple iTunes store under FEI license.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

World, Meet Equine Guelph!

EquiMania! Named the Official Youth Education Centre
for the
Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010
in Kentucky

 The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 has invited Equine Guelph’s EquiMania! to be the centre for youth equine education over the 16-day competition coming to Lexington, Kentucky next fall.


 EquiMania!, Equine Guelph’s interactive traveling education centre for youth, has been a popular exhibit in Canada – featured regularly at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, Can-Am All Breeds Equine Emporium, Royal Manitoba Winter Fair and rural agricultural fairs – but never before has the 5,500 lb. exhibit ever crossed international borders.

The Games, to be held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky from September 25 – October 10, 2010, are the world championships of the eight equestrian disciplines recognized by the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI).  Held outside of Europe for the first time, the competition involving 600 riding competitors and 700 horses from more than 60 countries is expected to be attended by as many as 600,000 spectators and viewed on television by an international audience exceeding 460 million.


 EquiMania! will be located in the centre of the Park – in the Carriage House.  The facility will be chock full of unique educational displays, activities and quizzes to engage youth about horse health care and safety.  Kids of all ages will learn: how to braid a tail, about potential careers in the horse industry, to tell the age of a horse by its teeth, horse farm and rider safety, to identify horse bones, colours of equine competition ribbons, equine nutrition, how to wrap legs and what parasites look like.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Ashley Holzer and Pop Art Finish Fourth in Grand Prix at CDI 5* Exquis World Dressage Masters in Florida

Three-time Canadian Olympian Ashley Holzer of Toronto, ON, and her 2008 Olympic partner Pop Art finished in fourth place in the Grand Prix test at the $145,000 CDI 5* Exquis World Dressage Masters Thursday. The competition is being held this weekend, February 4–6, 2010, at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, in Wellington, FL, USA.

Holzer and Pop Art (Amsterdam x Cabochon), a 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Rusty Holzer and Moreen Nicoll, earned a score of 72.468%. The pair was just 0.085% behind the third place finisher, 2008 Olympic individual silver medalist Isabel Werth of Germany, riding her Olympic mount Satchmo 78 to a score of 72.553%.

Belinda Trussell of Stouffville, ON, and Anton (Antaeus x Melit), a 10-year-old German-bred gelding owned by Robyn Eames, finished in 12th place with a score of 65.404%. Diane Creech of Caistor Centre, ON, and Devon L (De Niro x Wolkenstein II), a 10-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Douglas Leatherdale, rounded out the Canadian entries with a score of 64.085%.

“I was thrilled with Ashley and Pop Art's ride of over 72%. She was very close to Isabel's score and there is still room for even more improvement which is the best thing,” said Robert Dover, Dressage Canada’s Technical/Coach Advisor. “I felt that both Belinda and Diane have made extremely good progress since arriving in Florida and was proud of both of them and their horses today. These combinations are evolving quickly and show great promise to become truly world-class.”

American Steffen Peters and Ravel won the Grand Prix with a score of 76.851%. Second place, with 74.638%, went to the 2008 Olympic individual gold medalist Anky van Grunsven of the Netherlands on Salinero.

The top eight pairs are able to choose if they wish to go onto to the Grand Prix Special or Freestyle. Eight will go on to the $42,000 Moorland Grand Prix Special on Saturday afternoon and the other eight will compete in the $84,000 Exquis Grand Prix Freestyle under the lights on Saturday night.

The international judging panel for the CDI5* includes Dr. Wojtek Markowski (FEI O—POL), Gary Rockwell (FEI O—USA), Axel Steiner (FEI O—USA), Victoire Mandl (FEI I—AUT) and Freddy Leyman (FEI I—BEL).

In addition to this competition in Florida, Exquis World Dressage Masters (WDM) CDI5* will also have events in Munich, Germany and Hickstead, England each with €100,000 (US$145,000) in prize money for 2010 and 2011.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Official Athlete Blog for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games

Follow the road to Kentucky through the official 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games blog,

Blog posts will include inside information you want to know as we count down to September 25, including blogs from athletes on the competition trail, equine celebrities and insiders, past World Equestrian Games medalists including 2006 WEG Gold Medalist Megan Benjamin, and Olympic Gold Medalist, Beezie Madden!

We will feature athlete blogs twice per week, so check back often to read the latest on your favorite athlete or discipline. Reply to our blog postings to let us know who you would like to hear from on the road to Kentucky.

Find out more about tickets, accommodations and event information at

2010 Equine Canada Convention in Montreal - Agenda Update

Presentation and discussion session regarding national equine identification and traceability system to be featured
The 2010 Equine Canada Annual Convention is to be held February 1-8, 2010 at Le Centre Sheraton Montreal Hotel in Montreal, Quebec. The Breeds & Industry Delegate Assembly, scheduled for Saturday, February 6th, will include a presentation session to inform members about Equine Canada’s strategy for a national equine identification and traceability system.

Equine Canada recommends that convention participants make time to attend the important information session in light of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) announcement on January 29th regarding a new Meat Hygiene Directive for horses. The CFIA announcement outlines new record-keeping requirements for horses presented for slaughter at federally-inspected facilities starting on July 31, 2010.

The CFIA characterizes these new requirements as “the first step in the development of a comprehensive food safety and traceability program for the Canadian equine industry.” This CFIA Information Bulletin coincides with previous announcements from Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (AAFC) that outline the Government of Canada’s commitment to the development of a national livestock traceability system for Canada by 2013.

The Delegate Assembly presentation will include a stepped-through explanation of the development and implementation phases in the Equine Canada CanEQUID Strategy. Two pilot projects, set to begin in 2010 and designed to inform the development of industry protocols and procedures, will also be unveiled. 

Members attending the session will have an opportunity to ask questions and thoroughly acquaint themselves with the issues and challenges that the proposed CanEquid strategy aims to address. An important aspect of Equine Canada’s strategy is stakeholder involvement and participation throughout the development and implementation phases of the system. Equine Canada will rely on the recommendations of stakeholders to assist in the creation of a national system tailored to serve the requirements of the Canadian horse industry, while satisfying federal regulatory demands.

The development and implementation of a national identification and traceability system will affect members of all Equine Canada divisions — Sport, Recreation, Breeds & Industry and Provinces. All members are invited and encouraged to attend the information session and to educate themselves about the important developments in new and proposed federal government policies.

Jacqueline Brooks will Ride for Canada at Exquis World Dressage Masters in Florida

Jacqueline Brooks of Cedar Valley, ON, and Balmoral (Belcanto x Consul), a 10-year-old Canadian-bred Hanoverian owned by Anne & John Welch and Brinc Ltd., will represent Canada at the $145,000 Exquis World Dressage Masters, scheduled for February 4–6, 2010 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, in Wellington, FL, USA. 

Brooks and Balmoral qualified for a starting position in the Masters, by achieving a minimum of 64% in a Grand Prix at two different CDI3*–5*/CDIO competitions, and was awarded an invitation to the competition by the Exquis World Dressage Masters (WDM) organizing committee. Brooks joins Ashley Holzer of Toronto, ON, and Pop Art; Belinda Trussell of Stouffville, ON, and Anton; and Diane Creech of Caistor Centre, ON, and Devon L, as the Canadian representatives at the prestigious CDI5* competition in Florida.

A maximum of 20 rider/horse combinations, including Steffen Peters (USA) on Ravel, Isabell Werth (GER) on Satchmo and Anky van Grunsven (NED) on Salinero, will compete in the Grand Prix test with prize money of $14,500. Riders then advance to either the Grand Prix Special test with a purse of $43,500 or the $87,000 Grand Prix Freestyle.

The international judging panel will include Dr. Wojtek Markowski (FEI O—POL), Gary Rockwell (FEI O—USA), Axel Steiner (FEI O—USA), Victoire Mandl (FEI I—AUT) and Freddy Leyman (FEI I—BEL).

In addition to this competition in Florida, Exquis World Dressage Masters (WDM) CDI5* will also have events in Munich, Germany and Hickstead, England each with €100,000 (US$145,000) in prize money for 2010 and 2011.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Jill Henselwood the Canadian Olympian, on Road to Pfizer Million with Friday Grand Prix Win

Canadian Olympian Jill Henselwood rode out of the Grand Prix Ring on Friday afternoon at HITS Thermal feeling like a million bucks!

The show-jumping legend captured the blue ribbon in the $25,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health when she rode Beau Soleil to the fastest double-clear round on International Course Designer Marina Azevedo’s track.

More importantly, Henselwood took the first step on the rode to the Pfizer Million as she took a leg up on the competition with the early triumph. “What an opportunity,” said Henselwood. “I always thought the $100,000 class in Culpeper was great but a $1 Million class, WOW!”

The 2010 HITS Desert Circuit will host 16 Qualifying Grand Prix classes for the historic Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, which will take place on September 12 in Saugerties, New York. To qualify, a rider (on any horse or horses) must compete in at least eight Open Jumper Classes of $25,000 or more at any combination of HITS shows in 2010.