Eventers will now receive 25 penalties for breaking a frangible pin (pictured) during a cross-country round at International Equestrian Federation (FEI) events.

Since January this year riders have been eliminated for breaking a pin, but this rule change was confirmed for implentation from 15 April at the FEI bureau meeting on 1 April.

British Eventing (BE) was among the national federations to send comments to the FEI on the proposed rule changes before the meeting.

“We’re completely against 25 penalties for breaking a pin, as we were elimination. You cannot penalise people for something they can’t control — we have data to support the fact that pins weaken,” BE chief executive Mike Etherington-Smith told H&H.

In another rule change discussed at the meeting, riders will be eliminated for cross-country falls on the flat from 1 July this year.

BE had concerns with this because of the potential difficulty of policing the rule, as there are areas on some courses which cannot be seen by any officials.

The FEI acknowledged this problem in the document released after the meeting, but said it was the riders’ responsibility to admit to a fall.

The document states: “The comment made by several NFs [national federations] in regard to the difficulty to determine if a fall has taken place between fences — it has been established that riders need to take the responsibility of such a fall.”

Read the FEI document about the changes