The main eventing decisions taken by the FEI Bureau at its in-person meeting on November 17 in Manama, Bahrain (BRN) are summarized below:
Olympic Games: The qualification period for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games starts on January 2, 2019. Applications to host FEI Olympic Group qualification events will be discussed at the FEI Group meetings tomorrow to provide clear recommendations for venues. Approval of these Olympic Group qualification events will be made at the second in-person Bureau meeting immediately after the FEI General Assembly on November 20. The Olympic Eventing test event (CCI3*-S) will be held at the Tokyo 2020 venues on August 10-12, 2019.
FEI Eventing Committee Geoff Sinclair (AUS) was appointed as a member of the FEI Eventing Committee for the four-year term 2018-2022 replacing the outgoing member Patricia Clifton (GBR). The Committee had expressed a preference for an official with a strong background of involvement in the integration of less experienced countries within the Eventing international competition framework.
The Chair of the FEI Officials Working Group clarified to the Bureau that during the transition period while the competency based evaluation system is being formalized, Officials who have reached the current age limit for their position within their discipline in 2018 or 2019 can apply to the FEI Secretary General for an extension. The Secretary General will consult with the relevant Sport Director, discipline Chair and Veterinary Director and Chair before a decision is made. Applicants for an extension must be in good-standing with the FEI and have a record of actively officiating at FEI events over the past two years. Performance metrics will be considered. Once developed, the competency based evaluation system will replace the age limit.
The Chair of the Eventing Committee provided an update to the Bureau on the latest developments and ongoing progress of the FEI Eventing Risk management programme, including the development of predictive analysis tools for risk management. The improved quality of the information being analysed will be further enhanced when the online reporting is introduced for officials at FEI Events. The Bureau also approved the rules for the Event Rider Masters (ERM) series 2019 and the TriStar Eventing Grand Slam 2019. The approval of the 2019 Eventing Nations Cup Calendar was postponed to the second Bureau meeting after the General Assembly. The Bureau agreed to a gradual implementation of the Eventing Committees’ rule proposal of increasing the Prizemoney for the Eventing Nations Cup for 2020. All rules will be published in due course on the FEI website here
FEI Director Eventing & Olympic provided an update to the Bureau on Multi Sports Games, highlighting the importance of the role of the International Federation in the delivery of the Games. The Olympic department will produce a guidelines document which will assist Organizers with planning and delivery of future multisports events.
There was also an update given on the XVIII Asian Games which took place in Jakarta, Palembang in September this year. Following the success of these Games, it was highlighted how much equestrian sport has grown in this region and how much enthusiasm there is for equestrian sport. A progress update was provided to the Bureau on the upcoming XVIII PanAmerican Games to be held in Lima (PER) in 2019 following the visit to the equestrian venue of the FEI Secretary General, FEI Eventing & Olympic Director and the Chair of Group V.
FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018
The FEI Games Operations Director provided the Bureau with a detailed report on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, highlighting the quality of the sport delivery and the sport itself (with the exception of Endurance), but also the areas of concern, particularly late delivery of the venue facilities. All these issues will be incorporated into the transfer of knowledge documentation for major FEI events. A report was provided to the Bureau by the Equestrian Community Integrity Unit on its investigation into the events surrounding the Endurance event at Tryon 2018. Findings from this report will be presented at the General Assembly on November 20.
FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2022
The FEI has twice opened the bidding process for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2022, but this has not resulted in any realistic bids. As a result, the Bureau unanimously approved the opening of a bidding process for individual world championships in all disciplines for 2022, but with preference being given to multi-discipline bids. The Bureau agreed that world championships for Dressage and Para Dressage should be combined. The President stressed that this does not necessarily mean the end of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ and bids to host the full seven-discipline Games for 2022 and 2026 will be considered. However, he made it clear that securing world championships for 2022 in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines was crucial as these serve as qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Games. The timeline would call for expressions of interest to host world championships 2022 by the end of February 2019, followed by workshops with bidders to understand their expectations and constraints. Bids would be fully evaluated over the spring/summer of 2019 with allocation at the in-person Bureau meeting at the FEI General Assembly in November 2019.
The FEI European Championships 2021 will be allocated at the in-person Bureau meeting at the FEI Sports Forum in April 2019. The FEI World Cup™ Finals 2022, 2023 and 2024, and the FEI European Championships 2023 will be allocated in November 2019.
The Bureau approved the new definition of the FEI’s Vision, Mission and Values.
The Bureau agreed to propose the affiliation of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Equestrian Association to the General Assembly.
The 2012 and 2016 individual Olympic champion, Germany’s Michael Jung, blazed into first place after dressage at the Tokyo 2020 Games with a superb test on Chipmunk.
Deservedly scoring 21.1 - a record for both rider and his country at an Olympics, according to EquiRatings - it was a joy to watch. From the first extended trot, the pair looked secure, positive, and harmonious. The test was as accurate and as well-delivered as that of long-time leaders Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class (GBR), but with more expression and ease. Jung and the Contendro 13-year-old demonstrated all this specially-written, short Olympic test asks for and each movement flowed into the next.
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While Great Britain has a strong lead in the team competition at Tokyo 2020 after the second session of dressage, the USA has climbed up two places to ninth courtesy of Phillip Dutton’s score of 30.5 on Z.
The world number one Oliver Townend has put Great Britain in gold medal position after the first of three sessions of dressage at the Tokyo Olympics.
Second into the arena, Townend delivered an extremely accurate performance and did not waste a mark on the flea-bitten grey 14-year-old Ballaghmor Class to score 23.6 - the fifth-best mark by a British rider at an Olympics, according to EquiRatings.