One of the most prestigious events in the horse sport calendar has been the first to take a stand against the International Equestrian Federation’s (FEI) rule to allow bute in competition.
Horses will not be allowed to compete at the World Equestrian Festival, CHIO Aachen in Germany next year if they have been given bute or any of the other five controversial substances permitted by the FEI last week.
“We do not want unsound or injured horses in our sport,” said Michael Mronz, general manager of the Aachener Reitternier GmbH.
“The CHIO Aachen 2010 will not be carried out on the basis of the current FEI regulations, but according to the ethics of clean sport.”
Aachen director Frank Kempermann was one of the many vocal opponents to the plans during the FEI general assembly in Copenhagen last week.
Elected as chairman of the FEI’s dressage committee, Kempermann made no secret his vehement opposition to the new prohibited substances list — allowing six drugs to be given — after they were voted in.
Afterwards, he said: “The FEI’s decision is a contradiction to our idea of clean sport.”
In Germany, giving isoxuprine to a horse is a criminal offence.
A spokesman for the FEI said: “As an international event, CHIO Aachen will be run under FEI rules. However organisers of FEI international events will not be required to adopt any elements of the new prohibited substances list that violate the national law of the jurisdiction in which the competition is being held.
“European countries have been contacted to establish where such exceptions will need to be made.”
• An online petition has been set up to fight the new ruling. Visit www.no-fei.com