After months spent in discussion, debate in open forums and behind closed doors, the rule changing the allowable therapeutic non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs from two to one passed with a seeming collective sigh of relief at the U.S. Equestrian Federation Board of Directors meeting today, Jan. 17, in Louisville, Ky.
In a nutshell, the two new changes to GR 410 Equine Drugs and Medications will work in concert to allow an interim time to collect data and educate the membership. But effective Dec. 1, 2011, only one NSAID will be permitted.
Other details include:
- From April 1, 2010, to Nov. 30, 2011, two NSAIDs will be permitted. If a horse receives two NSAIDs, a USEF NSAID disclosure form must be filled out and filed for data collection.
- A first offence in not filling out the form will result in a warning. Thereafter, failures to fill out the form will result in an administrative penalty.
After five days of intensive work this week, Jan. 13-17, from USEF staff, committee members and volunteers, today was the deadline to finalize rule changes and present them to the BOD.
Even up to the 11th hour changes were being made, language clarified and compromises made. But, in the end, it was a relatively quiet meeting with few rule changes taking center stage for more than a perfunctory discussion. Because of substantial work at the affiliate meetings in December, many of the rule change proposals found themselves in the approved consent calendar that the BOD voted on en mass.
Similarly, many of the hunter rule change proposals actively discussed at the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association Annual Meeting in December—and debated in committee meetings here—were referred to the USEF Mid-Year BOD meeting in August, including those regarding competition rules, mileage restrictions and first year green and green reinstatement. USHJA President Bill Moroney noted that “more tweaking” was necessary.
A few rule changes of note that passed for hunters and effective Dec. 1, 2010, included:
- HU106 – combining the regular and green conformation divisions.
- HU107 and 108 – regular working hunter/open hunter divisions were folded together to establish three separate divisions with USEF Horse of the Year awards: a High Performance working hunter (4’-4’6”); a performance working hunter (3’6”-3’9”) and a performance working hunter (3’3”).
- HU146 – hunter classic rules are now consolidated into one place with two options: 1) traditional format hunter classes with one designated class as the first round; 2) separate two-round classics will receive double points.
In another compromise, the USEF National Jumper Committee withdrew all of its rule change proposals to eliminate the word owner from the definition of an amateur jumper. In return, the USHJA Amateur and Owner Committees will now support an extraordinary rule change proposal that will allow amateur-owner jumper and hunter competitors the opportunity to ride one additional horse not owned or leased by them at a competition where they compete in an owner-restricted division.
A change to GR913 Unpaid Entries, effective immediately, was seen as a boon to catch riders who are no longer held responsible if the horse’s owner fails to pay entry fees. After seven drafts, the rule passed today with a seal of approval from Legal Review. In addition, the rule change provides an extension of the period to settle indebtedness from two weeks to 30 days and a reduction of the $750 fee to $250.
The changes should be a benefit for those who are on the road for long periods of time and mistakenly bounce a check for entries but don’t receive notification in time to fix the problem with in two weeks.
For more coverage of the USEF Annual Meeting and photographs, see The Chronicle of the Horse published on Jan. 29.