Enzo Truppa has received a fine of €10,000 after he sold a horse to Brazil ahead of this summer’s Olympics.
Mr Truppa was the former owner of grand prix dressage horse Eremo Del Castegno (pictured, top, with Valentina Truppa), which had achieved qualifying results for Rio 2016 with his daughter Valentina.
But the horse was sold in January to Brazilian millionaire Jorge Ferreira Da Rocha, a long-term sponsor and investor in Brazilian dressage who was hoping to ride at his home Games.
The Italian Equestrian Federation (FISE) who brought the case against Mr Truppa claimed the sale was in breach of contract. Mr Truppa disputed this.
As well as the fine, he has been given a four-month suspension from his FISE roles.
Mr Truppa told H&H that he plans to appeal the decision.
A civil case is set to start in November.
The suspension has been postponed until 1 September as Mr Truppa is the current coach of all Italy’s dressage hopefuls for this year’s Games.
Italy has one dressage place at Rio — Valentina has two horses (Chablis and Ranieri) on the long-list of three combinations. The other rider in contention is Micol Rustignoli (Black Coral).
H&H reported in 2012 that FISE had renewed a 2010 agreement with Enzo that Italy’s top grand prix horse would be retained for the country until the Rio Games.
The federation gave Enzo €70,000 per year for securing the horse, which Enzo’s daughter Valentina competed for Italy in two European championships and the London Olympics.
A statement from the FISE said: “The president and the federal council of the FISE express full support for the work of the secretary general in the affair which involved the sale of Eremo Del Castegno and that, instead, had to be maintained contractually available to the rider Valentina Truppa through to the Rio Olympics 2016.”
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However, Mr Truppa has told H&H that the money was given not only for Eremo and Chablis, but also for a number of goals. He said these included training horses and riders up to grand prix level with the purpose of taking part with a team at European and World Championships to qualify for the Olympics.
“All obligations up to 31 December 2015 were fulfilled, including qualification for Rio,” said Mr Truppa.