The FEI has created a video showing a strange man urinating in a family’s dining room as they eat – to warn of the dangers of contamination.
The Think Outside the Box campaign features a video showing a family enjoying a meal, when a man walks past their table to the side of the room, where he unzips his jeans and relieves himself on to a trolley.
“Shocked?” a caption asks. As the scene changes to show the same man mid-wee in a stable occupied by a horse, the caption says: “So am I.”
H&H has reported on a number of cases of horses’ giving samples that test positive for banned medication, which have been traced back to people who were taking the drugs and had urinated in the stable or lorry.
“The FEI has today launched thought-provoking campaign Think Outside The Box, aimed at raising awareness and educating stakeholders around the risk of contamination in and around the stables, and the potential consequences from a rule’s violation perspective as well as the general threat to the health and wellbeing of their horses emanating from other avoidable hazards,” an FEI spokesman said.
“What began as a brainstorm between the legal and education departments at the FEI as to how they could best inform and educate stakeholders and in particular FEI athletes, grooms, owners and support personnel around the potential for contamination and subsequent doping cases soon expanded to include general best practice recommendations for the wider equestrian community in a bid to promote safety and wellbeing for horses, regardless of their competition status.”
The FEI hopes its video will “astonish viewers, and challenge conventional expectations associated with the FEI”.
Legal director Mikael Rentsch said: “We wanted to create a buzz and get people’s attention.
“For some time, we have seen that there is a real lack of awareness in the community when it comes to the risks for contamination in the stables, and there are a lot of common practices which are contributing to inadvertent positive doping cases. And for all the emailers and official information campaigns we have attempted, we realised we were not getting through to our target audience – the riders, the grooms, the owners and the support personnel.
“And this is really unfortunate, because athletes are having to learn the hard way.”
The campaign, which also covers equine health risks posed by contamination, is based on four themes: behave, organise, maintain and secure, each featuring specific points, actions and risks of not complying.
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