Eventing Updates regarding Coronavirus Covid-19 | An Eventful Life

Eventing Updates regarding Coronavirus Covid-19

 

Please refer to previous Australian Updates here

 

8th August - summary

 

Australia

Sydney Eventing @ SIEC to run three days of competition at their Spring Horse Trials from Friday 4th – Sunday 6th September, including the NSW State Interschools Championships

Quirindi Eventing to run 21st- 23rd of August 2020 including MER classes for Wallaby Hill

 

British Eventing

A new fixture added at Warwick Hall (X) on 15th & 16th August

Dubarry Burghley Young Event Horse Series is going virtual with an online competition open to participants around the world (link)

 

Eventing in Scotland to recommence

Non-contact competition, include eventing can resume, subject to Scottish government guidance as of 7th August. horsescotland has produced guidance for the resumption of equestrian competition, and say 'it is now down to the sports to formulate their plans to implement and get competitions up-and-running'

 

Ireland

Punchestown 2a cancelled

Ireland announced its first localised lockdowns on Friday 7th August due to coronavirus outbreaks in three of its 26 counties, causing the cancellation of Punchestown Horse Trials 2a this weekend

 

 USA

2020 American Eventing Championships (AEC) at Kentucky Horse Park cancelled

"With riders coming from 41 states we could not ignore the geographic pull of this event and the implications of that” The USEA cancel the 2020 American Eventing Championships (AEC) at Kentucky Horse Park in late August

 

Fairhill International, Maryland scheduled to go ahead on August 7 – 9

 

 

30th July - summary

Australia

The Australian Olympic Committee now has the authority to nominate and select athletes to a team for Tokyo 2020 should Equestrian Australia, currently in Voluntary Administration, be unable to do so

 

British Eventing

Updates to fixtures schedule

Goring Heath and Sapey Horse Trials both cancel their 2020 fixtures on 5-6 September

Launceston Horse Trials, Cornwall, will move from 29-30 August to 5-6 September.

A new fixture at Ascott Under Wychwood, Oxfordshire, has also been added on 5-6 September. 

Richmond (2), North Yorkshire, also takes places over that weekend on 4-6 September where we will be filming all competitors on cross country

 

USA

Following in the footsteps of Ireland, the United States Equestrian Federation has mandated the use of face masks/face coverings at all times while on the competition grounds except when mounted on a horse or driving a horse-drawn carriage or cart. The USEF Action Plan update, released on 28th July, reflects this strengthened mandate 

 

Ocala Jockey Club cancels November CCI Event

The Ocala Jockey Club International 3-Day Event, Florida, USA (November 12th - 15th 2020) has announced its cancellation “While most 5* and 4* Eventing competitions around the world have cancelled months ago, until recently we have felt that our intended strategies were feasible to employ even in a very uncertain environment. However, with recent spikes in infections and changes in the demographics affected, available public health metrics no longer give us the same comfort that the strategies within our control would reliably overcome the elements outside of OJC’s control.”

 

The Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse East Coast Championships are now confirmed to take place at the Virginia Horse Trials, Wednesday-Thursday, October 28-29, 2020.

 

 

17th July - summary

 

View our Updated Cross Country Video calendar

 

Australia

Denman Horse Trials was the first Covid-19 event to take place last weekend in NSW but, with lockdown re-invoked in Victoria, the Eventing Victoria Spring Horse Trials has been cancelled

"Due to the reinstatement of Stage 3 Restrictions, we have made the tough decision to postpone the running of the Off The Track Spring Horse Trials due to take place 11-13 September 2020. At this stage, we are looking at options for October/November and will let you know as soon as we can"

 

Ireland

Face masks are now mandatory for every athlete going cross country in Ireland. They can be worn under the chin but will be pulled up if the rider has a fall to protect the frontline workers.

Eventing Ireland has confirmed two International FEI events will run in August at Kilguilkey House on 14-15 August (CCI4*-S, CCI3*-S, CCI2*-S and CCI1*-S) and Ballindenisk on 29-30 August (CCI4*-S, CCI3*-S, CCI2*-S and CCI1*-S), enabling riders to attain qualifications for Ballindenisk International in September

 

British Eventing

A successful re-start to the sport, says BE CEO Jude Matthews "We are pleased to have been able to add additional days of competition to events due to popular demand and we will continue to adapt our fixtures accordingly. The fixtures calendar for September and October has recently been released and we will continue to monitor and add additional days of competition to where they are needed"

Updated BE calendar here

 

Scotland

Although British Eventing fixtures are taking place on the second weekend of the sport resuming, Scotland is not so lucky with all Scottish equestrian competition on hold.

"On 15th July 2020 we have received the feedback that we are unable to resume our sport at the moment. We are looking into a revised proposal to the Scottish Government ahead of the next review on the 31st July 2020 with a more local approach" says Horse Scotland

 

Poland

The second half of the Strzegom Summer Tour is underway this week with riders from 18 countries and over 300 horses competing in four short-format classes from the 1* to 4* level, as well as a 2* class for ponies

Livestream of cross country on Saturday and Sunday available at www.eventing.strzegomhorsetrials.pl

 

France returns to international competition at Haras de Jardy

 

Tokyo 2020

Equestrian dates and venues confirmed for Tokyo 2020 in 2021

 

26th June - summary

Back to it at Burbury 2020 - Barbury Horse Trials will be one of the first events kicking off the return of the British eventing season next month on 11th-12th July

 

We will be filming at Aske Horse Trials, North Yorkshire on 11th & 12th July

 

FEI Board Meeting 23rd June: 470 FEI Eventing competitions cancelled so far due to Covid-19. Finance, event cancellations and Championship allocations were key topics on the agenda for the first day of the FEI Board meeting

 

Festival of British Eventing cancelled

The Magic Millions Festival of British Eventing in August this year has been cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions and other related issues.

“We were simply not able to guarantee the medical cover and other key resources to ensure the safety of our competitors, volunteers, officials and estate staff which is paramount to all of us at the Festival” says Event Director Peter Phillips

British Eventing has confirmed that qualifications for the 2020 Novice Restricted, Intermediate and Open British Eventing Championships will be carried over to the 2021 Festival of British Eventing. Combinations qualified for 2020 Novice Regional Finals will instead be able to compete in the 2021 Novice Regional Finals. All qualifications being carried over will be subject to eligibility as per the BE Handbook.

The Magic Millions Festival of British Eventing will run from 6th – 8th August in 2021 (subject to confirmation from British Eventing).

 

The Netherlands

Competition in the Netherlands to re-start from 1st July in line with Government and RIVM measures

 

Germany

Some areas of Germany, including Warendorf, the home of the German Equestrian Federation, are back in lockdown but the CCI3* competition at Luhmuhlen going ahead this weekend

 

19th June - summary

Le Mondial Du Lion to take place in October

 

Le Grand Complet at Haras Le Pin, FRA to take place from 13 - 16 August 2020

"We decided to get started," said Valérie Moulin, President of Ustica. "We heard the clear message from the institutions in favor of a gradual resumption of activities. The test program is currently being finalized and will be communicated very soon”

 

14th June - summary

British Eventing has released its latest update regarding the resumption of eventing with revised competition information for July and August

Burgham International Horse Trials is moving from its traditional date (23-26 July) to 20-23 August for 2020 and will be the first CCI4* class in the UK in 2020.

There will be no BE90 classes at this year’s event to aid compliance with the additional requirements necessary at present and it is unlikely to be open to the public.

Event Director Martyn Johnson said: “We are doing our absolute best to run Burgham – which is a vital part of the eventing calendar and very popular with riders. As many other major events have been lost this year, particularly in the North, a later date was considered important and we hope that this will allow us to run the best event possible with the very high standards for which Burgham is known.

“We will, of course, be complying with government and sport-specific guidelines, which will impose restrictions on what we can and cannot do. Burgham is increasingly popular with spectators, who come to watch the world’s top eventing stars, and we shall miss the great atmosphere that they create, but we look forward to welcoming them back in 2021.”

 

12th June - summary

Tokyo 2020 - Latest Update and RoadMap following Executive Board meeting on 10th June

 

Australia

Equestrian Australia enters into voluntary administration following removal of funding from Sport Australia

The NSW Office of Sport Olympic Venues and Sport and Recreation Centres will commence reopening from 13 June onwards. It is proposed the Sydney International Equestrian Centre will reopen from Saturday 13 June 2020

 

New Zealand

All restrictions removed in New Zealand but the country's borders remain closed.

The National Equestrian Centre at Taupo will be hosting a Mini ODE on 11 July 2020

 

British Eventing

In anticipation of further relaxation of lockdown requirements, some events are now confirming July eventing dates.

Little Downham (2) has confirmed its date of Tuesday 28th & Wednesday 29th (from 18th & 19th July) as it ‘gives us more time to and fairer chance of being able to produce an event we believe that people would like to run at’ and other events are expected to announce confirmed dates for July soon 

 

Ireland

Eventing Ireland is expecting national eventing to start from 29th June and is working with the event organisers to confirm training and national dates on the calendar.

 

Sweden

The Sweden International Horse Show Organising Committee has decided to postpone this year's event and will now run two shows in 2021; February 18th - 21st and the original 2021 event from November 25rd - 28th.

 

USA

Last weekend the USA saw competitors returning to the field of play at three events across the country: River Glen in New Market, Tennessee; Feather Creek in Norman, Oklahoma; and Plantation Field in Unionville, Pennsylvania

 

Germany

CCI2* & CCI3* competition underway at Westerstede

 

 

5th June - summary

 

British Eventing is working closely with event organisers with the intention of resuming sport from 4th July 2020 and yes, dogs will be allowed ....

Barbury Castle Horse Trials,UK will hopefully be able to happen ‘in some format’ on 4th and 5th July

The Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill will not take place in 2020 and the inaugural CCI5* event will now take place in October 2021

Les Etoiles de Pau, scheduled to take place from 21st – 25th October, is hoping that the event will carry on as planned this year

CHIO Aachen, which was to be held from 1st – 7th June 2020, but has been cancelled due to Covid-19 is gearing up to run a digital version of the event as a one-off special

'In the Middle of Difficulty lies Opportunity' With the postponement of Tokyo 2020 and the recent hope for competition resumption under Covid-19 conditions, what sort of a lead-up will eventing have and what sort of an Olympic Games will we see in 2021?

Millstreet Horse Trials, IRE cancelled

Somerford Park International, UK in August cancelled

 

29th May - summary

 

Eventing Waregem cancelled 

Camphire Horse Trials, IRE cancelled 

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials cancelled

A 'socially distant' resumption for British Eventing

30 minutes with Alec Lochore, Competition Manager for Equestrian, Tokyo 2020

“What was the norm two weeks ago is not the norm today. A week in this whole pandemic is a long time” Alec Lochore talks about preparations for Tokyo 2020 and his hopes for the resumption of eventing in England in July

Interview with Shane Rose

His preparations for Tokyo in 2021 and how the events he helps organise in Australia will re-group after cancellations

Land Rover Blair Castle International, Scotland cancelled

 

15th May

Military Boekelo Cancelled

What was to be the 50th anniversary of Military Boekelo - Enschede, to run from 1st – 4th October 2020, is the latest casualty of the Covid-19 pandemic

 

USEA and USEF Webinar “A Safe Return to Competition”

Panellists for this informational webinar session included USEF Managing Director for Eventing Jenni Autry, USEA CEO Rob Burk, USEA President Max Corcoran, USEA Vice President of Competitions and Organizer Representative Jonathan Elliott, USEF Managing Director of Athlete and Horse Services Lisa Owens, USEF Director of Competition Licensing, Evaluation, and Safety Katlynn Sacco, and U.S. Eventing High Performance Athlete Lynn Symansky.

The panellists addressed concerns about returning safely to competition from a number of perspectives, including that of the competition organiser and that of the competition, before fielding questions from the audience.

 

 

14th May

 

FEI European Championships for Ponies 2020 cancelled

The 2020 FEI European Championships for Ponies, to have taken place in Strzegom, Poland from 15th – 19th July has been cancelled but the European Pony Masters may take its place later in the year

 

Burghley Box Office opening date postponed

The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials has put its Box Office opening date back once again. Normally scheduled to open in April, the Box Office opening date was moved to May and now June 17th for general purchases

“The latest information now available to us all has, very reluctantly, prompted the further rescheduling of the opening of the Box Office to Tuesday 16th June for Members’ Day and Wednesday 17th June for all other ticket purchases"

"It is clear that there can be no major changes to current safety policy in the immediate future; our priority must continue to be the health and safety of all our visitors, together with the competitors, contractors, officials, sponsors and trade exhibitors who are so much a part of the Event” says Event Director Elizabeth Inman

 

Ireland enters Phase 1

Outdoor equestrian activities fall under the Irish government’s Roadmap for Reopening of Society and Business, Phase 1, due to commence on May 18, according to Horse Sport Ireland. 

“I am delighted to say that following proactive engagement between Horse Sport Ireland and Sport Ireland, that Equestrian Sport has been deemed an outdoor sporting activity and as a result is permitted to reopen in Phase 1, due to commence on May 18. This is subject to ensuring that the guidance protocols are in place and strictly adhered to by all stakeholders. It is very positive that equestrian activity, is deemed a non-contact, outdoor activity and therefore eligible to resume in Phase 1 in strict adherence with the Government guidelines” says Horse Sport Ireland CEO Ronan Murphy

 

 

13th May

British Equestrian statement: Stance on riding reviewed

Following the UK Prime Minister’s broadcast on Sunday 10 May, the Board of British Equestrian (BEF) has convened to discuss their position on riding and training in the current coronavirus pandemic.  Although the crisis remains at stage four, according to the government’s COVID Alert Levels, the spread of the virus is under control and the peak has now passed.  While there has been no major relaxation of lockdown restrictions, the government did announce some changes that enable us to review our advice for the equestrian sector.

The recommendation to only ride/drive where strictly necessary was in place to negate any extra burden on the medical and emergency services.  However, with the NHS now operating within capacity, the equestrian public can exercise their own horses, or those in their care, as they require, including hacking.  This must be within any UK government guidelines, including the restrictions on travel that remain in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Social distancing must be observed at all times, as should public health, hygiene and biosecurity requirements.

We continue to request that riders/drivers/vaulters consider the risk of their activity and ride/exercise where it is safe to do so and within their capabilities and fitness levels for them and their horse.  Those residing in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland should remain within the boundaries of the premises where the horses are kept, where at all possible.

In addition, for riders in England only, the government’s relaxation on travel for exercise and call to return to work where you cannot do so from home, means that one-to-one training is also now permitted. Coaches can travel to yards for individual face-to-face training in controlled outdoor environments, while riders can also travel to have one-to-one lessons, as long as social distancing is adhered to throughout.

Coaches, for both face-to-face and online training, must ensure that the necessary measures, risk assessments and safeguarding provisions are put in place, including checking insurance cover with their providers.  They should only ride a client’s horse where any shared clothing, tack or equipment has been appropriately disinfected and social distancing of two metres can be maintained at all times.

Riders are now permitted to transport horses to a venue for an individual lesson or facility hire outdoors. They may meet with one other from outside their household which may be a coach or other participant, all with the proviso that the appropriate social distancing and hygiene practices are in place. Those involved in travelling to or from a venue must all be from the same household.  Venues should conduct full risk assessments and ensure that the required public health, hygiene and social distancing measures are implemented effectively.

The BEF Board and Chief Executive will continue to monitor the situation closely, based on direction from the UK government to strengthen lockdown or tighten travel restrictions, which could lead to a revision in the position on riding and training in England.  We will also review any specific requirements across the devolved nations and work with regional bodies to provide specific advice, as the respective governments in each country may continue to enforce different restrictions.

BEF Chairman Malcolm Wharton commented; “Right across the country most people have upheld their societal responsibility to help with the management of the pandemic and the equestrian community has certainly risen to the challenge. These have been testing weeks with many riders separated from their horses, coaches and grooms, often without income, and riding schools without their clients – whatever our situation, none of us have been unaffected.

“Many have followed our advice to the letter and some have continued to ride, but as safely as is possible and I thank you all for your support. Conditions are right that we can soften our message, as we all know the proven health benefits, both in terms of physical and mental well-being, that exercising with horses brings. We need to remain vigilant, stay alert and not take any undue risks, so that we can continue to ease towards the full resumption of activity, when the time is right.”

British Equestrian will issue a further update on equestrian premises (riding schools, livery yards, training establishments and therapy centres) in due course.

A number of the BEF member bodies are releasing their own operational plans, detailing the stages towards a resumption of organised training and competition activity, when it is safe to do so. The BEF is finalising an umbrella plan to complement those plans and act as guidance for the equestrian sector and all of its stakeholders.  We believe that wider equestrian activity and some horse sports can adapt well to any social distancing requirements and should be in a position to get underway quickly, once conditions permit and government gives the go ahead.

 

New Zealand Update

Following yesterday’s announcement on the transition to Alert Level 2, Sport NZ has confirmed that the 10 person gathering limit does apply to all community sport.

"We anticipate it being possible for competitions to be able to commence from around 30 May, subject to New Zealand’s continued containment of COVID-19 and the advice of the Director-General of Health.  Some sports may choose to take longer to start competitions depending on their specific circumstances."

 

Australia

Some restrictions removed on a State by State basis 

 

8th May

FEI Eventing European Championships for Young Riders & Juniors cancelled

The FEI Eventing European Championships for Young Riders and Juniors 2020 and the NAF 4* International Horse Trials, to have run at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire in July and August, have been cancelled

 

British Eventing Championships Update

Airowear 2019 BE80(T) Championship

BE is in discussions with both Burghley and Norton Disney about the rescheduling of this championship. 

Science Supplements Cup for the BE90 and BE100 Championships – 5 & 6 May 2020

The Science Supplements Cup Championships for 2020 will be held alongside the 2021 Championships next May. Plans for qualification for the 2021 Championships in process

British Pony Championship – 28 – 30 May 2020

The British Pony Championships due to take place at Belsay International are cancelled but discussions are taking place about alternatives

 

Australia's Northern Territory re-commences equestrian competition

Australia's Northern Territory Government has revised the initial easing of restrictions and equestrian competition can now re-commence, providing a 'test case' for the rest of Australia

 

USEA to resume educational activities after May 13th

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) Board of Governors held a conference call last week and voted to resume recognizing educational activities after May 13, 2020. All educational activities must follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as federal, state, and local guidelines.

Educational activities scheduled to be held after May 13 that will be eligible for USEA recognition include clinics, camps, and cross-country schooling. All other activities applying for USEA recognition will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis until further notice.

The USEA is continuing to mirror the USEF’s suspension for recognizing competitions – the current suspension period lasts until May 31, 2020. The USEA will announce as soon as possible if recognition of events can resume after May 31.

 

Germany reopens sports clubs

Sports clubs across Germany have been allowed to reopen as part of the initial relaxation of restrictions across the country. Under the relaxed regulations, outdoor sports for children and non-professional leagues will be allowed to take place

 

Kilguilkey International, IRE 1-5 July Cancelled

 

2nd May

Ireland prepares for safe return of equestrian sporting activity with submission to Irish Government 

World Health OrganisationDocument: Considerations for sports federations/sports event organizers when planning mass gatherings in the context of COVID-19 (Issued 14th April)

 

 

29th April

FEI Board Meeting Resolutions from Eventing Calendar Task Force virtual meeting 

 

The British Equestrian Federation and British Eventing have issued updates on their plans to safeguard equestrian sport and resume activities when restrictions can be relaxed but both warn of tough economic challenges ...

 

No sporting events in France before September

The French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has said that no sporting events will be staged in the country before September - even those without any spectators present. 

The latest information from the French Government has advised that it will be possible ‘to practice an individual sporting activity outdoors, obviously respecting the rules of social distancing’ after May 11th however "It will not be possible, neither to practice sport in covered places, nor team or contact sports"

Gatherings on public roads or in private places will still be limited to 10 people

 

Cancellation of both of Hickstead's international fixtures in 2020, the Al Shira'aa Hickstead Derby Meeting originally scheduled for 24-28 June and the Longines Royal International Horse Show from 21-26 July including the Eventers Challenge
 

 

26th April

USEF and USEA extend suspension of events

The suspension of all USEF owned and named events, selection trials, training camps, clinics, and activities has been extended through May 31, 2020 and US Eventing is to follow suit

 

23rd April

Australian International 3 Day Event cancelled

FEI Update: Further resolutions on Covid-19 actions

CHIO Aachen now cancelled but will run virtual event

 

16th April

 

FEI Board and Executive Resolutions include Eventing Task Meeting date of 24th April 

 

Saumur Complet cancelled but hopes to run later in the year and provide a pre-Tokyo run in 2021

 

FEI issues statement regarding the running and participation of athletes and officials in online competitions. In a statement issued by Hans-Christian Matthiesen, President of the International Dressage Officials Club

“The position of the FEI Board is that FEI judges are not permitted to judge in national or international online competitions.  This type of competitions falls under the category of “unsanctioned events”, and they don’t guarantee some of the fundamental FEI principles”

Read the full statement here

 

Equestrian Relief raises £250,000 for the NHS COVID-19 Appeal

Equestrian Relief, won by Team Eventing, surpassed their aim of £100,000 by raising a massive £250,000 thanks to some innovative equestrian tasks and fantastic support from riders and celebrities

 

4th April

 Musketeer Event Management has announced the ‘inevitable’ decision to cancel this year’s Saracen Horse Feeds Houghton International Horse Trials.

 

2nd April

FEI puts in place new policy for calculating world rankings from 1st April until calendar returns to normal 

British Eventing takes action to reduce staff costs during Covid-19

Equi-Trek Bramham International Horse Trials cancelled

 

30th March

Equestrian Canada competition suspended until June 1st

The suspension of Equestrian Canada (EC) sanctioned competition has been extended to June 1, 2020, due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The initial return to competition was set for April 12, 2020, but has been extended due to federal government and public health authority directives to limit COVID-19 transmission. 84 EC sanctioned competitions were scheduled during the timeline of March 16 to June 1, 2020.

No competitions will be sanctioned by either EC or the Provincial/Territorial Sport Organizations (PTSOs) for the period of suspension. All matters pertaining to the accumulation of points, scores, qualification or rankings towards any EC awards program or team selection will be addressed once a return to competition framework has been developed. Competition hosts will be able to receive a full refund of their sanctioning fees or have the funds held as a credit for future competitions.

All in-person meetings, clinics, events, Rookie Rider and Learn to Ride/Drive activities will continue to be suspended until further notice. Virtual participation in these programs and events is encouraged where available; options are being explored for programs that do not have virtual options at this time.

 

27th March

2020 Tattersalls International Horse Trials - cancelled

Following on from the Government’s increasing COVID-19 public health restrictions we are sorry to announce that it is no longer possible to stage the Tattersalls International Horse Trials in any capacity between 27 and 31 May 2020.

 

26th March

CHIO Aachen postponed

Chatsworth International, UK cancelled

Bromont CCI 3 Day Event (June) Cancelled

Organisers of the MARS Equestrian Bromont CCI Three Day Event scheduled for June 3rd to 7th have announced the cancellation of this event for 2020

The Bromont CCI-S Three Day Event, to be held from August 13th to 16th including the leg of the FEI Eventing Nations Cup™, is going ahead as planned.

 

25th March

Tokyo 2020 rescheduled to a date no later than summer 2021

 

24th March

New Zealand support postponement of Tokyo 2020

New Zealand Olympic and Paralympic Athletes have said they support a postponement of the Olympic Games, an approach backed jointly by the New Zealand Olympic Committee, HPSNZ and Paralympics New Zealand.

New Zealand Olympic Committee CEO Kereyn Smith said she welcomed the athlete feedback gathered in a New Zealand Athletes’ Commission survey this morning and thanked them for their input.

“Our focus is first and foremost the athletes, she said. “It has been important to us to give them the opportunity to talk to us.  We value their resilience and flexibility and we know working through the changes won’t be easy.”

“We support their position and will now share their views with the IOC as we advocate internationally on behalf of our athletes and sport. We reiterate the need for a swift decision.”

 

AOC Statement

Australian Olympic Committee CEO Matt Carroll addressed the media on Monday 23rd March 2020, to say Australian athletes should prepare for a Tokyo Olympic Games in the northern summer of 2021, following the IOC’s announcement of a potential postponement of this year’s Games and changes in public health landscape in Australia and across the globe due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Full Statement from the AOC

“The AOC says Australian athletes should prepare for a Tokyo Olympic Games in the northern summer of 2021, following the IOC’s announcement of a potential postponement of this year’s Games and changes in public health landscape in Australia and across the globe.

The AOC believes our athletes now need to prioritise their own health and of those around them, and to be able to return to the families, in discussion with their National Federations.

The AOC held an Executive Board meeting via teleconference this morning and unanimously agreed that an Australian Team could not be assembled in the changing circumstances at home and abroad.

AOC Chief Executive Matt Carroll says athletes have needed certainty - they wanted to do the right thing for themselves, their families and the world community.

“We have athletes based overseas, training at central locations around Australia as teams and managing their own programs. With travel and other restrictions this becomes an untenable situation.

“The IOC had adopted the key principles of putting athlete health first and ensuring it acted in their best interests and the interests of sport. This decision reflects those principles.

“We are now in a position where we can plan with greater certainty.”

“I would like to thank AOC Athletes’ Commission Chair Steve Hooker for his valuable contribution to discussions today and over the last week, representing the views of our athletes,” Mr Carroll said.

Australian Team Chef de Mission for Tokyo Ian Chesterman says he has communicated to athletes after receiving feedback from athletes from more than 25 sports last week.

“It’s clear the Games can’t be held in July. Our athletes have been magnificent in their positive attitude to training and preparing, but the stress and uncertainty has been extremely challenging for them.

“They have also shouldered the burden of concern for their peers around the world. That has been a consistent message to me.”

“While there will still be much to work out as a result of this change, the timing will allow athletes from around the world to properly prepare with the hope the coronavirus crisis will be under control.

“We are aware that for many such a postponement will present a range of new issues. But when the world does come together at the Tokyo Olympic Games they can be a true celebration of sport and humanity.”

Mr Chesterman said there were numerous issues that flow from any postponement, from qualification through to logistics on the ground in Tokyo, but that these can be worked through in a timely way.

Mr Carroll says he will be communicating with National Federations around Australia today to work through the issues now the situation has become clearer.

 

23rd March

Canada withdraws from Tokyo 2020

IOC Reviews Postponement of Tokyo 2020

"Cancellation is not on the agenda" The IOC is reviewing the scenario of the postponement of Tokyo 2020 and is confident that it will have finalised these discussions within the next four weeks

 

22nd March

British Horse Society

Updated advisory regarding teaching and riding lessons "We have not asked our BHS Approved Centres to close. The BHS advises that Approved Centre activity and freelance coaching by APC is able to continue with the following considerations (find out more here)."

 

FEI Update

Dear friends, members and the greater equestrian community,    
 
First and foremost, I hope you are all well and that you and your loved ones are safe.
 
We are facing an extraordinary situation with the Covid-19 pandemic, and we have all had to adapt both our personal and our working lives in order to play our role in protecting the health and welfare of our nations. This is our collective responsibility and it must be a priority, but it does come at a cost.
 
Like all industries, the equestrian sporting world has effectively shut down and many of our members are feeling the impact and the related financial strain as a consequence of the restrictions imposed at national level in countries impacted by the virus. All of this is extremely challenging and I want to reiterate our commitment and our determination to help in any way we can to minimise the effects on each and every individual and organisation in our community.
 
For athletes, your support teams and the nations aiming for Tokyo 2020, this is also extremely challenging as your meticulously planned preparation and training will have to be adapted and modified. I fully appreciate that the uncertainty about the Olympic and Paralympic Games is frustrating, but the FEI is proactively looking at all the measures that will need to be taken in order to guarantee you are given fair and equal opportunities to reach your goals, whilst ensuring that your health and wellbeing always comes first.
 
We are fortunate that we have completed our Olympic and Paralympic qualifiers, which is sadly not the case for many other sports, but we must continue our preparations and be flexible where we need to be, such as rescheduling cancelled events and potentially extending the timeline around the Minimum Eligibility Requirements (MER), without modifying the requirements themselves.
 
The disruption to the FEI Calendar as a result of Covid-19 is not just affecting athletes aiming to achieve their MERs, but also has a major impact on the Rankings across all our disciplines. We are monitoring every aspect of the sport and we are taking action wherever needed in order to provide support to our National Federations, our organisers, our athletes, our officials and the entire equestrian industry.
 
There will have to be compromise and it probably won’t be perfect, but we are absolutely committed to finding the very best solution for our community and for our sport, and I sincerely believe that we will.
 
Resilience, determination and dedication are synonymous with the equestrian community, and they are the values we will need to embrace now more than ever before in order to overcome the widespread consequences of this global pandemic.
 
Let me be very clear - the FEI is always here for you. The FEI Headquarters remains fully operational and even though we are working from our homes we will continue to provide all our stakeholders with a professional and proactive service, including regular updates and comprehensive information around Covid-19 and our sport, such as the newly-published FAQ (here).

 
How we tackle every day, and how we find solutions together will counterbalance the cost for our community. This sense of solidarity and this dedication is not only our remit and our mission, it is what defines our sport and the FEI Family.
 
Thank you for your time and please be safe.

FEI President
Ingmar De Vos

 

21st March

Badminton Horse Trials cancelled

 

Floors Castle International Cancelled

 

British Horse Society

Advises that "all BHS Approved Centres and riding schools to stop offering riding lessons and cancel clinics with immediate effect. The Government advice is that the risk to public health is deemed too significant for group activities at riding schools and clinics to continue, despite the very best efforts to adhere to social distancing practices that the equine community has undertaken"

However "Professor Whitty, the UK’s Chief Medical Advisor, has stated that it is “very important” for adults and children to continue taking exercise and that being outside is “a very good thing to do”. Activities which involve crowding together in groups for long periods are to be avoided. Hacking out is being encouraged, not just for exercise for you and your horse but also to help your mental wellbeing during these difficult times"

 

SsangYong Blenheim Palace International delay Box Office opening

In light of the recent Covid-19 outbreak, although we are planning for the SsangYong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials to go ahead in September, we know many of our loyal visitors may be experiencing cash flow issues and therefore we are delaying the opening of our box office for ticket sales till June.

We will continue to work from our home offices on the planning of what we are anticipating will be a fabulous showcase of top class eventing and we hope to see you for our 30th anniversary September 17-20 – make a note of the dates in your diary!

 

19th March

While all British Eventing events until the end of April have been cancelled, the first events in May have now also started to cancel. The next fixture on the calendar still undecided is Badminton Horse Trials

 

Rockingham International Horse Trials Cancelled (1st - 3rd May)

With just weeks to go until this year’s competition, given these announcements and the evolving situation that we are currently facing, we feel we have no choice but to take this step.

“It is with heavy hearts that we have had to make this decision, but these are incredibly challenging times and priority has to be with the wellbeing of our competitors, volunteers and supporters,” says event organiser, Lizzie Saunders Watson.

“We’d like to thank our sponsors, volunteers and all of our support team for their help over the last few weeks and in recent years. We urge everyone to stay safe and look forward to welcoming everyone back to the Great Park next year.”

 

Frenchfield Horse Trials Cancelled (2nd & 3rd May)

 

British Eventing organised training cancelled "I have been asked how long the restrictions will last for – I wish I had the answer!" says British Eventing CEO

 

18th March

New Zealand

Equestrian Sports NZ has announced it will cancel all ESNZ events in Jumping, Dressage and Para-equestrian, Eventing and Endurance for a three-month period effective immediately. This will be reviewed at the end of April or as required.

“The decision has not been made lightly and is in response to the Government directive on mass gatherings. The cancellation does have a financial effect on the sport and is disappointing, but it is the responsible course of action. Many other sports have reduced or cancelled sporting gatherings including club games and training”

“Officials and volunteers should not feel compelled to officiate at any events in the next three months if they are asked, personal safety is of the utmost importance. ESNZ organising committees, including area groups, and those using ESNZ rules, should not be running any events in the next three months”

 

17th March

Badminton Horse Trials

Following on from the cancellations of the Land Rover Kentucky Horse Trials 2020 (see below), Badminton Horse Trials has issued a statement saying that

“Following the Government’s update on Monday 16th March, their plan to deal with this current pandemic is accelerating rapidly. At present we are reliant on external guidance which is not in our power to accelerate. We thank all of our customers, tradestands, competitors and suppliers for their patience and understanding in these abnormal times. An update will be posted here as soon as it is to hand”

The event is scheduled to run from 6th – 10th May and last year attracted more than 180,000 visitors. The event was cancelled in 2012 due to wet weather

 

16th March

British Eventing cancel all events

Statement from British Eventing

"In light of the government announcement today, the Board of British Eventing has taken the very difficult decision to cancel all events with immediate effect.  

The government advice has been to minimise social contact and non-essential travel, and the restrictions on the support of the emergency services means that the responsible decision is to take all action necessary not to further burden the NHS or risk members' safety at events.

We thank all of our members, organisers, officials, volunteers and staff for their support during these unprecedented times.  We will continue to monitor the situation and will resume sporting activity as soon as we are able.

For those events that have passed ballot date, members will have their entries refunded under the abandonment insurance and those pre-ballot will be refunded in full"

 

Kentucky 3 Day Event cancelled

Equestrian Events Inc. (EEI) is cancelling the 2020 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™ and the Kentucky CSI3* Invitational Grand Prix presented by Hagyard Equine Medical Institute. The events had been scheduled for April 23-26 at the Kentucky Horse Park.

“This marks the first cancellation in the event’s 42-year history, but the worldwide health crisis and concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 make this the only decision possible,” said Lee Carter, EEI executive director. “This is incredibly disappointing to everyone on so many levels, but the health and wellbeing of everyone—spectators, volunteers, athletes, staff and officials—is our number one priority and given the current situation, there really is no choice.”

“Sporting events and large public gatherings are being called off all across the country and it is with deep regret, and with the highest concern for all our patrons, that we take this step,” said Mike Cooper, EEI president. “With the recommendation by the CDC to cancel or postpone events with guests for the next eight weeks, it became apparent that this was the only acceptable course of action.”

 

 

FEI

Following last week’s communiqué to National Federations on the recommendations from the World Health Organisation (WHO) regarding Mass Gatherings and the necessity of Event Organisers to conduct a full risk assessment together with local authorities, the FEI has issued a further message to the equestrian community:

“The spread of the Coronavirus Covid-19 has taken a rapid turn for the worse and sport worldwide is affected. We as a community have to make our contribution to limit the spread of this virus, as the sooner it can be contained the sooner we will be able to get back to normal life and normal sport. And this is something that every other sport is doing.

“The FEI appreciates the amount of work and incredible investment every Organiser puts into their Event. While the FEI does not itself organise any FEI Events, in light of the escalating numbers of persons affected by the virus and the restrictions imposed by national governments, the FEI strongly recommends that Organisers should cancel all events for the next four weeks until a reassessment of the situation can be made.

“The FEI and Board will work together with the International Equestrian Organisers Alliance to evaluate what can be done to try and accommodate dates for Events that have been impacted during this period.

“We are aware that this is no simple matter, as clearly no single Organiser can be favoured to the detriment of others, and we do not know how many Events will be impacted nor how long the current situation will last.

“We have decided that Calendar fees for events that have had to be cancelled because of Covid-19 will be waived. We are also assessing the impact of cancellations of Events on other areas such as ranking points and on athletes and horses seeking MERs for the Olympic or Paralympic Games and qualifications for FEI Championships.”

“We can guarantee you that we are monitoring the situation hour-by-hour and that we are constantly looking at what specific situations need to be addressed. Our thoughts are with all of you and we strongly believe that our community will do the right thing and work to support each other through this crisis.”

 

Ireland

Updated 16th March

The Eventing Ireland Board cancelled all national events due to run in March with immediate effect (March 13th)

Today Ballindenisk International had advised that " ... as things stand currently we are ready to run in April if we are given the green light to go ahead. With a new arena, a Nations Cup event and so many riders looking for Olympic qualifications we hope we will be running but public health is of the utmost importance and we take our civic responsibility seriously so we will be following the guidance of our public health experts, the Irish government and our governing bodies"

 

USA

 

Updated 15th March

Cancelled: The Fork at TIEC Eventing competition on April 2-6

Cancelled: March 19-22: Carolina International CCI and Horse Trials

Follow USA event updates on USEA website here

 

Update from USEF Managing Director of Eventing, Jenni Autry

Effective Monday, March 16, all USEF training camps, clinics and activities will be suspended for 30 days through Tuesday, April 14. All High Performance Open Forums scheduled during this time period are cancelled.

The USEF strongly recommends that Organizers cancel all competitions running within the next 30 days, and the FEI strongly recommends that Organizers should cancel all events for the next four weeks. However, all USEF Licensed Competitions and U.S. FEI competitions can still run during the next 30 days if the Organizers still choose to run.

For competitions that do run, no National MERs can be obtained during the 30-day period. However, all FEI MERs earned within the 30-day period will still count for qualifications, including Olympic qualifications. All FEI points earned within the 30-day period will still count for the FEI Eventing World Athlete Rankings. All prize money earned in both National and FEI divisions during the 30-day period can still be paid out.

Please be advised that the USEF strongly recommends that athletes do not compete for the next 30 days. If you do choose to compete, it is your responsibility to monitor each competition’s current status. USEF recommends that you take immediate steps to limit your exposure to COVID-19 and practice social distancing. Click here to read recommendations to limit exposure.

The Land Rover Kentucky 3 Day Event is due to take place shortly after the 30 day suspension period from April 23rd – 26th and the organisers have provided information via video

 

 

British Eventing

 

“The FEI have today, Friday 13th March, strongly recommended that all International classes, across all disciplines, are cancelled for the next four weeks.  British Eventing are working with the BEF to determine what steps should be taken, and we will update on Monday 16th March following further discussion and a British Eventing Board meeting.

We thank our members for their understanding in these difficult times, and we will update as soon as we can”

Eventing fixtures are carrying on as normal this weekend with Swalcliffe Park the only event running as two other fixtures have previously cancelled due to ground conditions

The first International event of the British Eventing season is set to take place at the Eventing Spring Carnival at Thorseby Park, the replacement for Belton International. The organisers, BEDE Events are currently moving ahead with plans to run the event but have issued a statement regarding spectator and hospitality management

“Due to the uncertainty over the course that the Coronavirus will take, we at BEDE Events, have taken the difficult decision to revise the format of the Eventing Spring Carnival.  We appreciate that outdoor events are a low risk environment and are committed to continue with the event and are taking steps to reduce the high-density cross contamination areas of the event. 
 
When assessing risk areas it becomes apparent that hospitality marquees with large numbers of people in close proximity creates unnecessary risk and we have therefore taken the difficult decision to cancel all hospitality and members facilities.
 
It is critical for the athletes taking part that the event continues for their preparation for both Badminton Horse Trials and the Tokyo Olympics of which the Eventing Spring Carnival forms a key step.  Those attending Thoresby will see many of the world’s top riders competing; this line up will be headed by World Number 1 Oliver Townend, World Champion Ros Canter and former European Champion Zara Phillips.  Many countries will be sending their Olympic hopefuls which will ensure that the inaugural Eventing Spring Carnival sports one of the most exciting line up of competitors in this country”
 
 

New Zealand

The New Zealand Government announced on Saturday 14th March that, effective from midnight Sunday 15th March, all travellers, except for those coming from the Pacific islands, will have to self-isolate for 14 days on their arrival to New Zealand

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced all travellers will have to self-isolate on their arrival to New Zealand, apart from those coming from the Pacific Islands, saying that these will be the strictest border procedures in the world implemented for Covid-19 prevention

New Zealanders have been advised not to travel overseas if they don't have to and all cruise ships have been asked to not come to NZ until June 30th 2020

There will also be further announcements on mass gatherings. These will be based on the criteria of large events in close proximity, events that are non-ticketed and events that have a large overseas number of people and, although no decision had yet been made regarding how many people constituted a mass gathering, it is understood that the overseas criteria of 500-1000 is similar to New Zealand’s Government’s thinking.

This may impact some eventing competitions due to take place in New Zealand but ESNZ have not yet issued a directive

 

Canada

Equestrian Canada has advised that “The number of cases in Canada is small. At this time the risk of contracting COVID-19 in Canada is very low” and have issued a statement saying that

“Equestrian Canada (EC) is closely monitoring news from the World Health Organization, Canadian sport system partners, national and local authorities to help minimize the effects of coronavirus (COVID-19). Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we endeavour to provide the best possible level of service while simultaneously protecting the health and wellbeing of our community and employees”

Office Operations
Effective March 16, 2020, the Equestrian Canada (EC) office will be temporarily closed and staff will be working remotely. The return to office date is set for April 6, 2020; however, given daily changes to the status of the COVID-19 outbreak, there may be adjustments to this schedule.

During this time, day-to-day business operations will continue as normal, except for those requiring in-office activities, in-person meetings or travel. Please expect delayed processing times for items sent via mail or courier, including FEI Passports.

EC staff will remain accessible via phone and email during office hours.

Competitions
Regarding the status of EC sanctioned competition, please connect directly with the event’s competition organizer.

In terms of international competition, we strongly recommend refraining from international travel to countries that have been identified as having high outbreaks of the coronavirus for the foreseeable future.

EC is communicating closely with the Fédération Équestre Internationale (FEI) to monitor competition status around the world. For the status of FEI events, please check their online database and read their statement (above).

 

Event Rider Masters

The Event Rider Masters Series organisers have confirmed that they will not be running in 2020 at the four events scheduled

“Event Rider Masters has conducted a full risk assessment of the rapidly evolving Coronavirus Covid-19 situation in line with the recommendations of the relevant health authorities in order to evaluate whether the health and safety of all ERM Staff, Contractors, Organisers, Volunteers, Riders and Rider’s Staff can be assured.

The ERM 2020 series is spread over 3 countries, all of whom are currently affected by Covid-19 and involves a production team of 60 people travelling from 6 different countries. The ERM Riders throughout each season represent at least 20 different nations. The logistics of moving the multinational production team from venue to venue is impossible to implement in a manner that has an acceptable risk level.

As a result of this assessment, it is clear that there are too many risks associated with conducting the ERM Series this year and regrettably ERM has made the decision to cancel the 2020 Series. 

Currently all individual host venue events: Burnham Market, Chatsworth, Arville and Jardy are planning on running their own events.

The commercial partners and backers of ERM are committed to making the series run in 2021”