4/ AUGUST 2012 THE RIDER HON. COL. A.W. FINN CD: Founder
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Printed on Recycled Paper False Flags and True Principles By Akaash Maharaj
There are times to keep one’s own counsel, and there are times to speak out. This is a time to speak out. Needless to say, although I am a for- mer CEO of Equine Canada, the executive arm of the Canadian Eques- trian Team and the national govern- ing body for equestrianism, my Globe and Mail article represents my per- sonal views
In the soaring language of the Olympic Charter, the very first “Fun- damental Principles of Olympism” include “respect for universal funda- mental ethical principles.” But high words cast a long shadow over low deeds.
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mission did not even bother to take the horse out of its stall to examine it further or to test its movement for any signs of discomfort. There is no evi- dence that the horse itself was even aware of the scratch, other than when it was poked repeatedly.
The FEI acknowledged that Fos- ter had no ill intentions. It acknowl- edged that she committed no wrong- ful act. It acknowledged that she failed in none of her responsibilities. It presented no evidence that her horse was in any distress.
choose to not go gentle into that good night.
In a globalised world, we can pro- ject our values into the international system, or we can allow ourselves to become prisoners of the values of oth- ers. We can speak up for the ideals good sportsmanship, or we can stifle the voice of conscience when those ide- als are trampled. We can stand with our athletes, or we can collude with those who treat their dreams as expendable commodities.
Central Ontario Pleasure Driving Association
On Saturday, Tiffany Foster, one of Canada’s Jumping team mem- bers, was disqualified from the Olympics by the International Eques- trian Federation (FEI), after its Vet- erinary Commission discovered a superficial scratch above one of her horse’s hooves.
It nevertheless punished her by casting her out from the Olympics. By wrapping indefensible deci- sions in the false flag of horse wel- fare, the FEI has done more than wrong individual athletes. It has brought its commitment to horse wel- fare into disrepute, and demonstrated a willingness to make its most impor- tant rules the enemies of the most basic standards of justice.
The FEI justified its decision by citing regulations designed to protect horses from abusive competition practices, in which unscrupulous rid- ers scald or inflame their horses’ legs, to force the horses to leap higher in a desperate attempt to avoid striking hypersensitised skin against the fences.
The FEI has conceded that there is no suggestion that Foster acted improperly, neither through malice nor through negligence, neither through omission nor through com- mission. The FEI Veterinary Com-
How is such a state of affairs possible? The FEI regulations state baldly, “there is no appeal against the decision of the Ground Jury to dis- qualify a horse for abnormal sensitiv- ity.” There is explicitly no remedy for those who have been treated unjustly; there are no consequences for those who wield power capriciously. And power without accountability inevitably invites abuse.
The regulations are absolutely legitimate. The FEI’s attempt to apply them to Foster’s situation was absurd.
ty, and an affront to every athlete who has ever carried the maple leaf into competition. In response, Eric Lamaze, perhaps the greatest equestrian athlete Canada has ever produced, chose to announce that he will never again com- pete under Equine Canada’s authority, unless the federation reverses its posi- tion.
After Foster was sent home from the Olympics, Equine Canada, the Canadian Equestrian Team’s governing federation, chose to issue a statement thanking the FEI for its conduct in this affair. Its choice was a public obsceni-
This is more than a fight over the treatment of a single athlete. This is more than a struggle for the future of equestrian sport. This is a battle for the values, the honour, and the very soul of our country’s national sporting system. Lamaze has chosen to risk every- thing to stand with the angels. I believe in my heart that Canadians will not leave him to stand alone.
Clarification of the Statement from Equine Canada Regarding the Disqualification of
Victor, Canadian Show Jumper, from the 2012 Olympics
Many Canadians will shake their heads in sympathy for Foster, then shrug their shoulders in the belief that there is nothing to be done, that the forces arrayed against her and other athletes are simply too powerful, that the interests embodied in internation- al sport organisations are too entrenched. But this is only true if we allow it to be so.
As Canadians, we have a choice, and we have a responsibility to
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Opinions expressed in this newspaper, including those in Letters To The Editor, are those of the authors and not necessarily those of this publication.
From Our Founder Remembering August 1978
Wow, can’t believe that I have been writing this Remembering col- umn for 8 years.
I guess I am going to be perma- nently behind by at least 500 issues. August 1978 we were still a mag- azine format and priced at $1.00. The Rider drifted back to “The Days Before Yesterday”. The story was about Fairs back in the autumn of 1902 and stated that it was 76 years ago. How time flies. It would now be 100 years ago.
Ontario Combined Driving Association
The Ontario Appaloosa held a sale called Paymaker Sale. Roy and Joan Ionson purchased several well bred horses.
The Belvedere King Size Rodeo circuit had a few Rodeos to go before awarding the 1978 All-Round Cham- pion award along with all events win- ners.
The Ontario Rodeo Association (ORA) were using The Rider to pro- mote their upcoming elections. Look- ing for new board members and start- ing early was an advantage.
The first registered Tennessee Walking horse to earn it’s way into the Top Ten endurance horses received a $500 cheque from the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeder’s and Exhibitor’s Association.
Don Blazer wrote in his monthly column about the removal of 40 AQHA judges who failed a simple lit- tle test. Cries of protest came from every where.
August 8, 2012, London, England - Equine Canada has issued the follow- ing further statements regarding the International Equestrian Federation's (FEI) hypersensitivity testing protocol. "Equine Canada agrees that the FEI's hypersensitivity protocol is in place to protect the welfare of the horse and the fairness of our sport," states Mr. Gallagher.
"Victor sustained a superficial cut on the front of the left front coronary band," states Canadian Olympic Team Veterinarian for Jumping Dr. Sylvie Surprenant. "In our opinion the horse was fit to compete as he showed no signs of lameness.
take place in order to ensure a balance is reached between the philosophical intent and the real-world application. Canada looks forward to playing a role in those discussions along with other nations within the FEI family," states Mr. Gallagher
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However the FEI hypersensitivity protocol is such that if the horse is sen- sitive to the touch, regardless of the cause, the horse is disqualified. While the FEI rules for the hypersensitivity protocol were followed, we believe that there should be a review of this proto- col."
"We feel that further discussion of the hypersensitivity protocol needs to
Cowboys for Christ held services at the Appaloosa Nationals which were held in Billings, Montana. They can be contacted at www.co
In USA Bill H.R.10587 was receiving a lot of flack as it was designed to remove horses and bur- rows from public land.
The WHAO selected their 1978 Queen. Miss Patty Lee was crowned at Picov Horsemen’s Centre. She received the use of a two horse trailer from Crown Trailers of Paris, Ontario.
Rodeo rider Gerald Reber did very well at several calf roping events, all with the aid of several broken ribs. Sounds like George Hewitt eh!
The Rider had a new Subscription Contest going. This time the draw was for a $1,000 Silver Mounted Circle Y
"Equine Canada wants to make it clear that there is absolutely no accusa- tion of any wrongdoing on the part of our athlete Tiffany Foster or any mem- ber of the Canadian Team. Equine Canada fully stands behind and sup- ports our athlete Tiffany Foster, as well as our entire team. Everyone at Equine Canada and the Canadian Olympic Team are disheartened and extremely disappointed over the premature ending of Tiffany Foster's Olympic dream, and remain fiercely proud of both her incredible sportsmanship and athletic achievements," states Mr. Gallagher. Read more on the FEI’s hyper- sensitivity protocol - http://www.fei.org/hypersensitivity-
Festival Western of St-Tite Que- bec included a registration form in The Rider. The event was held on Septem- ber 8 through September 17.
Western World were moving right along with the show scheduled for October 6 to 9th at the Coliseum at Exhibition Place. The Ontario Rodeo Finals were scheduled as part of the show.
In 1978 we celebrated the 100th. Anniversary of the CNE.
The Canadian Finals Rodeo was announcing it’s events for November, 8-12.
Aidan W. Finn CD President
Ontario Reined Cow Horse Association
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