We are nearly two full months into a return to competition. While we are all grateful for the opportunity to enjoy competing again, the challenges and risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic remain part of our daily lives. Governors are beginning to pull back or even reverse reopening initiatives in several states as positivity rates are increasing.
We truly appreciate the diligence and cooperation of participants and organizers who have gone above and beyond to ensure the health and safety of their competition communities by adhering to the various state and local requirements, as well as the requirements and recommendations outlined in the USEF Action Plan for Licensed Competitions. However, USEF has received reports of non-compliance with and non-enforcement of the Action Plan. Every instance of non-compliance and non-enforcement not only endangers the health and safety of your fellow participants, but also threatens our ability to continue having competitions in this extremely tenuous environment.
The ability to keep competitions operating depends on every one of us, individually and collectively. It hinges on our cooperative participation in efforts to control the spread of the virus.
With that in mind, effective immediately, USEF mandates the use of face masks/face coverings at all times while on the competition grounds except when mounted on a horse or driving a horse-drawn carriage or cart. The USEF Action Plan update, released yesterday, reflects this strengthened mandate.
In addition to the updated face mask/face covering requirement, USEF expects that:
We all share the enormous responsibility of doing our utmost to maintain a safe competition environment. It is no easy task. It can sometimes be uncomfortable, even unpleasant. However, in this significantly altered environment, these steps are necessary to keep our competitions as safe as possible and keep them operating. We cannot lose sight of the wide-reaching and devastating impacts facing our industry that would result from competitions being shut down due to failure to comply with mitigation efforts. If you are unwilling or unable to adhere to the COVID-19 requirements mandated by USEF or state and local agencies, please stay home and refrain from attending or operating USEF-recognized events until the pandemic resolves.
We continue to monitor and assess the pandemic impact, and we will keep you informed of any updates to our position as circumstances warrant or as instructed by the government and public health authorities.
The safety and welfare of our members and their horses remains our top priority, and everyone must do their part and take every step necessary to keep fellow competitors as safe and healthy as possible and to keep the competition environment open.
James Alliston was the big winner today at The Event at Rebecca Farm, with three top two finishes in the FEI divisions. Alliston won first in the CCI4*-Long, as well as first place and second place in the CCI3*-Long.
We know a lot about the athletes representing the USA on our Tokyo team, but what about those essential people, the grooms? Catherine Austen finds out more about Courtney Carson, Emma Ford, Bridget London, and Steph Simpson in this edition of Tokyo Talk.
Ian Stark’s cross-country course resulted in changes among the FEI divisions on Saturday
Cross-country day for the FEI competitors at Rebecca Farm resulted in big changes in the top three standings in the 4* divisions. The current top three riders in the CCI4*-Long all put in double-clear rounds to maintain their dressage scores from the first day of competition.
Phillip Dutton and Z are on the road to Tokyo! Dutton, the 6-time Olympian, is going into his 7th Olympic Games. Dutton’s first three Olympics he represented Australia and helped secure the team gold medal twice (1996 - team gold, 2000 - team gold, and 2004). The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games were the first Olympic Games that Dutton rode for the U.S., and he has been on the U.S. Olympic team ever since. Dutton’s most recent Olympic performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics, he earned the individual bronze medal with Mighty Nice.