Germany’s equestrian federation has announced that sanctions imposed by the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) against its show jumper Christian Ahlmann are “too mild”.

Mr Ahlmann was banned from competition for four months and fined CHfr2,000 (£1,046) with CHfr1,500 (£785) costs by the FEI tribunal on 22 October, after his Olympic ride Cöster tested positive for a banned substance, capsaicin, during the Olympic Games in August. His ban runs until 18 December.

But Dr Hanfried Haring, general secretary of the German federation, the Deutsche Reiterliche Vereinigung (DRV), plans to refer the result to the Court of Arbitration in Sport (CAS) in a bid to seek a longer ban.

“A four-month ban is too mild,” said Dr Haring. “The punishment is not in accordance with the code of the world anti-doping agency or regulations of the DRV. The punishment should serve as an example.

“As a result, we shall be taking the case to the CAS to ask for a more severe sanction.”

Mr Ahlmann will not be considered for German national and international teams for two years, said Dr Haring. The rider will also be asked to refund transport and accommodation costs incurred by himself and his horse at the Olympics.

Mr Alhmann was not available for comment.

Read this story in full in today’s Horse & Hound (30 October, ’08)

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