Summary of the Annual Sport Meeting 2009

March 8 2009 | Sport

The Annual Sport Meeting 2009 addressed various items regarding the welfare of the horse. An inventory was made of the actions taken in the various member countries regarding this subject. The newly introduced checks on oral wounds at sport competitions proved to be succesfull: various countries reported a reduction of wounds and sensitive spots during the season and an increasing awareness of riders for the subject. This policy on checks will be continued in 2009.
The meeting also decided to prepare a proposal to limit the number of tests a horse can participate in per day. Also a proposal will be prepared to reduce the weight of protective equipment (boots) from 300 g per foot to 250g, following the current rule in Iceland. It is the aim of the Sport Meeting to limit the Five Gait Tests (as of 2012) to oval tracks with a minimum length of 250 m, or p-shaped oval tracks. Until that date, this is a recommendation.
The meeting was inspired by a lecture of the Austrian dressage rider and
trainer Micheal Lausegger, focussing on the level of training of riders and
horses in relation to our current sport tests. A comparison was made between our sport tests and the traditional dressage tests in the general horse sport. Three main areas to work on in 2009 were determined:
a.) to review our view on the structure of our sport tests, where the level
of difficulty is fitting to the increasing level of competence of rider and
b.) to re-create a number of simple tests that are fit for starting and young riders, comparable to what is done in gæðingakeppni;
c. to come to guidelines that describe requirements in detail and also what to avoid, focussing more on the different levels of skills of riders and
Of course this requires studies and discussions, when possible and needed in close cooperation with the Education department and the Youth department.