Monday, May. 20, 2024

‘No Violation’: Buck Davidson’s FEI Suspension Lifted



The Fédération Equestre Internationale has lifted its June 2 suspension of Buck Davidson, which it instituted following a positive drug test for a prescribed medication at the Land Rover Kentucky CCI5*-L. Davidson’s FEI Therapeutic Use Exemption paperwork, which he has been filing with the FEI since 2013, had not been renewed on time. After he found out about the lapse, he immediately filed for a retroactive TUE.

“I go to the doctor every quarter,” Davidson, Ocala, Florida, said when the suspension was first announced. “I’ve had the same doctor, same medication, same everything, since I was a kid. This was a paperwork mess-up. I get drug tested all the time. Everybody knows I don’t drink, and I don’t do drugs. I’ve never taken recreational drugs.”

Today, the World Anti-Doping Agency signed off on the paperwork and his FEI suspension has been lifted.

The International Testing Agency, which handles drug testing issues for the FEI, confirmed that Davidson’s suspension is over in a statement:

“The ITA confirms that on 15 June 2023, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) approved the athlete’s request for a retroactive TUE under Article 4.3 of the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemption.

“The case is therefore not considered as an anti-doping rule violation and no consequence will be imposed. Accordingly, the provisional suspension imposed on the athlete has been lifted with immediate effect.”


Buck Davidson rode Erroll Gobey to the top of the $50,000 Devon Arena Eventing on May 28 at the Devon Horse Show (Pa.) in his last competition before the suspension started. Mollie Bailey Photos

Davidson said he was grateful to the U.S. Equestrian Federation for standing behind him as he worked to resolve the matter.

“I’m thankful that I can get back to doing my job and what I have to do, and that I can actually look forward,” he said. “I’m sorry for the black eye that I gave everybody in our sport and the FEI and my family, my mom and my dad. It was a simple, honest mistake, but hopefully I won’t make this mistake [again].

“I think there’s some good changes that can happen because of this and have already been started,” he added. “When life gives you lemons, you’ve got to make lemonade, and it doesn’t do any good to blame anybody—it’s my fault. If I can help someone else not go through this situation [that’s a good thing].”

Davidson ultimately missed competing at two events on his schedule, including the Mars Bromont CCI (Quebec), during the time he was suspended, but he noted the speed with which the issue was resolved.

“I think that a lot more good can come out of this than bad,” he said. “I appreciate them coming back so quickly to clear me.”




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