Germany disbands show jumping, dressage and eventing teams

  • Germany has disbanded all its national dressage, show jumping and eventing teams, and suspended show jumper Ludger Beerbaum from competition, in the wake of further suggestions of doping and medication of horses.

    And the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) has called for the suspension of the former secretary general of the German equestrian federation — Deutsche Reilterliche Verinigung — Hanfried Haring from the FEI bureau.

    Yesterday (28 May) the German federation stated all teams had been shelved and that any rider wishing to ride for Germany would be vetted by an independent panel to be set up by the German Olympic committee.

    The panel will meet next month to look into the allegations.

    On 4 May rider Marco Kutscher admitted using arnica and lactanese on his horse Cornet Oblensky in an interview with a German magazine (news, 14 May).

    Following the revelation the FEI announced the setting up of an ethics committee to investigate the actions of German show jumpers at the 2008 Olympic Games.

    Kutscher’s team mate Christian Ahlmann was among five show jumpers whose horses tested positive for prohibited substances in Hong Kong last August (news, 28 August 2008).

    Now Beerbaum has told a German newspaper that he has also used illegal practices on his horses.

    “In the past I had the attitude that anything that could not be detected was allowed,” he is reported to have told Frankfurter Allgemeine.

    FN president Breido Graf zu Rantzau said: “We want to take an important step towards credibility with the disbanding of the squads.”

    The FEI has requested the suspension of Marco Kutscher and former team vet Bjorn Nolting from all FEI activities pending the results of the ethics committee.

    And it says Mr Haring should also be suspended from the FEI Bureau “on the basis that he had knowledge of the relevant facts and did not report them to the relevant authorities”.

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