Germany will lose its team silver medal from the 2017 European Eventing Championships in Strzegom.
The news comes as the German federation revealed that the B sample from Julia Krajewski’s ride Samourai Du Thot tested positive for controlled medication firocoxib.
The combination finished 18th individually at the championships, held in Poland from 17 to 20 August, helping the team to second place behind Great Britain.
H&H reported yesterday (9 November) that the A sample had tested positive for the substance, which has an analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect.
Controlled medications are substances commonly used in equine medicine, but must not be present in a horse’s system on competition days.
“Now it is [a] sad certainty: The [FEI] has informed the Deutscher Reiterliche Vereinigung today about the positive B-sample of a medication control, which was carried out during the European Championship of the eventing riders in Strzegom (POL),” said a statement from the German federation.
“Krajewski is subsequently disqualified, so the German team falls in the classification and loses the silver medal.
“Krajewski has now formally 21 days to decide whether she accepts an administrative punishment [by the FEI] or goes to FEI tribunal.”
The administrative penalty is a fine of 1,500 Swiss francs and 2,000 Swiss francs of administrative costs, but no ban on competition.
But the German chef d’equipe Dr Jens Adolphsen, a former chairman of the FEI tribunal, added taking this to tribunal “only makes sense” if Julia can prove how the substance came to be in Samourai Du Thot’s body.
Julia has said neither she nor her team has any explanation as to how the substance got into the horse’s system and “believe that it was not administered by any fault of our own”.
“Of course, neither I nor anyone around me has given this substance,” she said, adding she is “seriously worried” about what has happened.
“As part of the German team, which traveled to Strzegom as a co-favourite, I was aware that my horse would most likely be sampled at the championship.
“I am 100% behind our doping prevention system and fully aware of my responsibility and due diligence in dealing with this issue.”
This means Sweden will move up the team leaderboard to claim silver, while Italy will now take the bronze medal.
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In a statement on social media, Julia said the horse returned a negative test during routine sampling of the team horses heading to the championships on 3 August.
“Furthermore, there was not just a trace, but a substantial amount of firocoxib detected [in the sample taken at the championships on 20 August],” said Julia.
“The detected level together with the relevant decomposition time suggest an administration between Friday afternoon and Saturday morning (after dressage, before cross-country).
“Together with the result of sample B, we hopefully receive documents that may hopefully allow further conclusions about the exact time or amount of the ingestion.
“Unfortunately, there is no video camera survey in the stables in Strzegom, thus we can not fall back on video analysis, but have to rely on medical data.”
She added other possibilities have been investigated and they have eliminated the possibility of accidental feed contamination.
“To be absolutely sure, Sam has been tested again a short time ago, the result was negative,” said Julia.
“As we have never used or even handled Equioxx [the sole equine pharmaceutical containing firocoxib], it was not present in our equipment or environment, thus an administration to Sam by oversight (eg confusion with dewormer, vitamin doser) is not possible.
“One source of accidental contamination may be the dog medicament Previcox: It contains a much higher dosage than Equioxx.
“We are currently investigating the possibility of a causality of dogs and the positive result of Sam’s test.”
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