After the drug scandals that rearranged both the team and individual medals in show jumping at the Athens Olympics, officials of the Federation Equestre Internationale determined that equestrian sport was due for some “cleaning up.”
In a report released Monday, April 29, immediate suspensions and four-year bans were introduced for doping violations. The new rules also specify clear distinctions as to what constitutes doping and what constitutes medication, with reference to specific substances.
If a horse tests positive for doping, the rider will be banned from competition for four years, or two years for first-time offenders. The penalty for medication class A offenses is a ban of up to four years for the rider, or one year for first time offenders. Medication class B substances carry a minimum warning and a reprimand or maximum one-year ban.
All of the provisions concerning doping and medication issues for horses now appear in one body of rules, which FEI officials hope leads to greater clarity for the competitors. The rules also bring horse sports in line with the World Anti-Doping Association code.