I understand that all three teams have been disbanded, but would love to hear some details and educated opinions on how this will affect the dressage team, as well as the indivudual riders. Also, how big a ripple effect do you think this will have on the other teams, as well as competitions all the way down through the levels?

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the background is the doping and medical treatment of German show jumping horses at the HongKong Olympics. The German FN officials were really very upset about it.

The trigger however was an interview by Ludger Beerbaum during the Hamburg Derby show last Sunday in the main national TV channel and a printed version in FAZ, Germany's most wide spread daily newspaper. In that Interview he admitted that he had acted in the past as "what cannot be found is allowed". He also said that he has changed his attitude and will change his stable management to comply with strict medication control.

At the same show the journalist interviewed than one of the top guys of the German FN Reinhard Wendt (team captain in HongKong) who said he was surprised and shocked by Luger's statement.

3 Minutes later at the same show Ludger, confronted with Wendt's statement, said that he had explained his behaviour several times before also within the FN and to FN offcicials and that he cannot understand why Wendt is now pretending not know it.

All this happened in 15 minutes interviews on TV and get a printed article in FAZ the next day.

The FN top people got really mad about this.

Also it was mentioned that Veterianrians know that this is almost done by everybody in the international horse show community and that we see already an effect that foreign riders do no longer come to German shows because they want to avoid the strict doping controls.

The German FN offcials wanted to set a strong signal of no tolerance for doping and hence excluded Ludger from international team competitions and cancelled all other core team nominations.

They called an independent committee, consisting of 2 high level retired judges (real judges) one having been at the german supreme court and is now member of the German Olympics Sports Committee and the other was head judge of the courts of Cologne and director of the German thouroughbred association, plus a vet specialist who owns one of the countries most recognized vet institutions. The committee can decide about punishments to be implemented.

This committee will know question all riders (78 in total) who want to get an official international competition licence to implement a strict 0 tolerance policy.

The first ones to be questioned next week will be Bjorn Nolting, the german team vet in HongKong and Ludger Beerbaum. Both have already agreed to this procedure.

Will be interesting to see the next steps.
Thanks for the very clear explanation, Bernd. From a distance, it is a bit difficult to sort out what's going on. It will be very interesting to follow the ripple effect to other countries and also throughout all level of competition.
I wonder why Beerbaum was suddenly so forthright. This must have made quite riveting news in Germany!


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