Qatar Loses Team Olympic Spot; FEI Reallocates Ranking Points From Non-Compliant Events

Feb 17, 2020 - 1:43 PM

Following concerns raised about some Fédération Equestre Internationale jumping events where Olympic and Longines ranking points were on offer, the FEI has investigated events at Villeneuve-Loubet (France) and Damascus (Syria).

The investigation into the three events at Villeneuve-Loubet in December 2019 established that, contrary to the FEI Rules (Article 110.2.3 of the FEI General Regulations), two competitions counting for the Olympic and Longines rankings were added at each event after the respective definite entries deadlines. The updated schedules for these three events were submitted to the FEI by the French national federation and were mistakenly approved.

As a result, and in accordance with Article 112.3 of the FEI General Regulations, the FEI has retrospectively removed these additional competitions, meaning that athletes who participated will lose their ranking points from these competitions. The Olympic and Longines rankings have been updated accordingly.

Additionally, the FEI established that three of the six events at Villeneuve-Loubet in January 2020 also had two classes counting for Longines rankings points added after the definite entries deadline, again contrary to the FEI Rules. As a result, these additional competitions have been removed, and athletes that participated will lose their ranking points for these competitions.

The FEI also reviewed the events that took place in Damascus between October and December 2019, and while it was established that there was no breach of FEI rules and regulations regarding FEI calendar entries, the event schedules or the number of events run, the investigation revealed an irregularity with the prize money at three of the events.

The events held in Damascus on Oct. 24-27,  Oct. 31-Nov. 3, and Nov. 13-17, 2019, had total prize money that exceeded the limit for a CSI2*, and the schedules for these events were erroneously approved by the FEI. As a result, the FEI has removed one FEI competition at each of these events in order to bring the total prize money within the specified limit, but this has no impact on the Olympic Ranking for Olympic Group F.

The FEI has also reallocated one of the two show jumping team quota slots from the Olympic jumping qualifier for Group F in Rabat (Morocco) in October 2019, following adverse analytical findings in two members of the Qatari team, Sheikh Ali Al Thani and Bassem Mohammed.

Both athletes tested positive for carboxy-THC, a metabolite of cannabis, which is a prohibited substance under the FEI’s Anti-Doping Rules for Human Athletes.

The FEI Tribunal issued a partial decision regarding the disqualification of the individual results of the two Qatari athletes on Feb. 15. As a result, Qatar loses its team quota place for Tokyo, and this has been reallocated to Morocco.

The FEI has now confirmed the team and individual quota places across the three disciplines of dressage, eventing and show jumping for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

The deadline to achieve the Minimum Eligibility Requirements is June 1, after which the organization will confirm approval of the FEI certificates of capability to the national federations. The final athlete/horse combinations for the three disciplines will be announced on July 6.

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