Reining on shaky ground as FEI prepares to vote on its future

FEI President Ingmar de Vos, at centre, at today's FEI board meeting in Moscow. © FEI
The FEI Board held its in-person meeting in Moscow on Saturday. © FEI Liz/Gregg

Reining faces an uncertain future as the FEI General Assembly prepares to vote on whether it will be retained as an FEI discipline.

At the weekend FEI Board members heard details of an agreement with the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) and proposed Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to ensure the growth of the discipline of reining.

These will be discussed in further detail at today’s dedicated Reining session, and a decision on the future of Reining as an FEI discipline will be made during the Extraordinary General Assembly (EGA) on the morning of November 19. If the General Assembly votes to retain Reining as an FEI discipline, the proposal to remove Reining from the FEI Statutes would be withdrawn.

At the 2018 General Assembly, the FEI terminated its agreements with the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) and the NRHA. At the time, both groups were told that a binding commitment to implement the FEI rules on anti-doping, stewarding requirements and the age of competing horses were prerequisites for any future cooperation.

The FEI Board, the body responsible for the general direction of the FEI and for all relevant matters not consigned to the General Assembly, held its meeting at Russia’s Hyatt Regency Moscow Petrovsky Park, venue for the full FEI General Assembly 2019.

New FEI family members

The Bahamas, Mongolia and the Ivory Coast have applied to the FEI for full membership and voting rights. The trio was approved by the FEI Board at its meeting at the weekend during the organisation’s General Assembly 2019 in Moscow, Russia.

Bahamas (Regional Group IV) and Mongolia (Regional Group VIII) were previously affiliated to the FEI and, after a period of reorganisation, have applied for a return to membership.

Appointments and departures

Several new appointments to FEI technical committees were announced at the meeting, and outgoing board members were thanked for their service.

They included FEI Vice-President Sheikh Khalid (BRN) and Chair of FEI Regional Group VII from 2006 to 2019, Sadyr Mamytov (KGZ), who has chaired Regional Group III from 2015 to 2019, Medical Committee Chair Dr Peter Whitehead (GBR) (2009 to 2019), and FEI Tribunal Chair Henrik Arle (FIN) (2011 to 2019). Betty Wates (JAM), who has chaired the FEI Nominations Committee since 2015, has also completed her four-year term.

New format for eventing considered

At the meeting, the board discussed rule revisions and clarifications for each of the disciplines.

It was noted that the Eventing Committee is exploring the possibility of introducing a 5* short format, which is not currently included in eventing rules. A survey is being conducted and feedback received will allow the Eventing Committee to make a recommendation for next year on the potential creation of this new category for 2021.

The Board was informed of the cancellation of the FEI World Cup Vaulting series. Despite a successful season last year, this season’s series was cancelled because of an insufficient number of organisers to host the minimum number of qualifiers required for rules compliance.  The Vaulting Committee will now review the series with the goal of increasing the number of participating events while reducing the costs for participants and organisers in order to allow the series to go ahead next season.

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One thought on “Reining on shaky ground as FEI prepares to vote on its future

  • November 19, 2019 at 4:03 am

    This should be interesting…
    I doubt AQHA will agree to the age issue.
    That aside, reining shows have the highest number of entries of any discipline I know.



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