A rule that made eventers who repeatedly ran into cross-country trouble drop down a level or undergo training has been hailed a success.
British Eventing’s (BE) “continuing performance requirements” (CPR) rule was triggered 189 times this season.
The governing body found it helped riders reflect on and improve performance, and that it highlighted how BE can give better support when it is needed.
“In 2019, of 11,187 horses who ran across country twice, 189 or 1.7% triggered the rule,” BE chief sport officer Paul Graham told H&H.
“Based on previous experience and the data, I think it’s fair to say in the early part of the year, with it being a new rule, people weren’t necessarily as tuned in to it. By the end of the year, it was pleasing that by the time we contacted riders who had triggered the rule, they had already dropped down a level.
“It has really highlighted [to individuals how they are performing] and made people reflect on their performance.”
Mr Graham said BE has also seen improved results from some of those who have triggered CPRs, both at lower levels and when they have stepped back up.
CPRs were triggered at all levels, most at BE90 and novice.
“There is quite a big step up from BE100 to novice. That’s one reason we introduced BE105 and there’s only been one CPR at that level,” said Mr Graham.
As BE80 is the lowest level, a CPR triggers enforced training and BE is planning to boost support for these riders in 2020.
“This year, they have been referred to a BE-accredited coach, but the plan is to refer them to regional development officers and give them more support,” he said.
“We felt we can improve the journey — we want to see them improve and have a nice experience in the sport.”
He added BE was finding issues riders face in competition were not being replicated in training, often due to the different atmosphere and pressure. They will now be given more help at competitions, as well as training.
The CPR rule came about through an ongoing partnership with EquiRatings, which means BE members will have access to their horses’ performance metrics online from 2020.
“It will be another tool to reflect on performance and help make informed decisions,” Mr Graham said.
BE CEO Jude Matthews told H&H the organisation is “pleased the new rules have embedded as we had hoped”.
“It is also encouraging our members are taking the initiative to move back a level after experiencing problems to gain the confidence or fix an issue before stepping back up,” she added. “The CPR is a great example of a change introduced by BE to improve rider and horse safety.”
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