Ten-year suspension imposed by FEI Tribunal over use of electric spurs


A 10-year suspension has been imposed on a United States showjumping rider found to have been using electric spurs on horses.

Andrew Kocher has also been fined 10,000 Swiss Frances and ordered to pay costs of 7500 francs.

The FEI Tribunal, in a decision expected to be released in full in the next few days, also disqualified Kocher from eight events between June 2018 and November 2019 for his use of electric spurs.

The FEI Legal Department notified Kocher on June 29 last year that an investigation had been opened after allegations of electric spur use had been reported to the independent Equestrian Community Integrity Unit.

It was alleged Kocher had used electric spurs on several FEI registered and national horses in international and national events, and during training.

Following the investigation, the FEI formally opened disciplinary proceedings against Kocher last October. He was provisionally suspended on October 28 after a hearing before the FEI Tribunal, and this period will be credited against the full suspension.

Kocher will be ineligible to compete through to October 27, 2030.

During the suspension, Kocher is barred from participating in or attending, in any capacity, including as a spectator, any competition or event authorised or organised by the FEI or any national federation.

The sanctions also include disqualification of all results obtained at events for which the FEI Tribunal was provided with photographic evidence establishing the athlete’s use of electric spurs. They are:

  • CSI4* Hickstead, Britain, 21-24 June 2018;
  • CSI3* Lexington, Kentucky, 14-18 May 2019;
  • CSI2* Lexington, Kentucky, 22-26 May 2019;
  • CSI5* Calgary, Canada, 5-9 June 2019;
  • CSI5* Calgary, Canada, 27-39 June 2019;
  • CSI3* Traverse City, Michigan, 7-11 August 2019;
  • CSI3*-W Columbus, Ohio, 2-6 October 2019; and
  • CSI4*-W Toronto, Canada, 5-9 November 2019.

Parties to the case can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) within 21 days of receipt of the full decision.


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