FEI suspends German official, rider in horse doping case

May 29, 2009


Marco Kutscher and Cornet Obolensky. © Luca di Stefano/FEI

The world's governing body for horse sport has suspended one of its top officials and a rider and veterinarian amid a doping scandal involving the German Equestrian Team.

The FEI yesterday provisionally suspended FEI Bureau member Hanfried Haring, former secretary general of the German Equestrian Federation. The move came after a request made by a majority of the FEI Bureau members and then a protest by FEI headquarters with its Tribunal. The suspension was based on admissions by Marco Kutscher and Björn Nolting concerning the undeclared treatment given to Marco Kutscher's horse, Cornet Obolensky, at the 2008 Olympic Games.

The case also involves "the circumstances surrounding this treatment including the collapse of the horse which subsequently took part in competition," the FEI said.

The FEI recently set up an ethics panel to investigate the German team, consisting of former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Stevens, US Equestrian Federation president and formed Olympic rider David O'Connor; FEI Tribunal chairman Ken Lalo (Israel), and John Roche, FEI Director of Jumping.

Both Kutscher and Nolting are to be provisionally suspended from any FEI activities pending the results of the investigation being carried out by the Ethics Panel.

Haring is to be relieved of his responsibilities on the FEI governing body, on the basis that he had knowledge of the relevant facts and did not report them to the relevant authorities.