FEI Investigating Rolex Cross Country Injury

An incident on the cross country course at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, sponsored by Farnam, on April 28, has attracted the attention of the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI). Le Samurai, a 12-year-old bay Holsteiner/Thoroughbred gelding ridden by 2006 World Equestrian Games Bronze Medalist Amy Tryon, sustained a serious injury near the end of the course.

Footage of the incident shows the horse taking a misstep several strides before the final jump. Some have questioned the actions of the rider in continuing on, taking the final jump, and cantering past the finish line.

"Le Samurai had experienced an injury, and it appears that he lost the supporting ligaments in his left front leg," said Catherine W. Kohn, VMD, FEI veterinary delegate, after the event. "He was given a mild sedative to keep him comfortable, and he's being treated at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute."

Tryon released a statement on the Rolex Web site on Sunday, April 29. It stated in part: "Le Samurai is resting comfortably at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute and has the best care that could be provided anywhere in the world. I wish to express that I am totally devastated about the horse's injury he sustained yesterday, but cannot comment pending a review by the FEI."

An official statement from the FEI follows:

"The FEI was notified of an alleged case of abuse which occurred during the CCI 4* Lexington, Kentucky, USA, on Saturday, April 28, involving competitor Amy Tryon (USA) and Le Samurai.

"The preliminary investigation was conducted according to the regulations, whereby the Ground Jury met on Saturday following the cross country to investigate an incident of alleged abuse before fence 34. The Ground Jury collected written statements from the Fence Judges and Sector Steward and reviewed the video as well as interviewing the FEI Veterinary Delegate, Dr. Catherine Kohn.

"The rider, Amy Tryon, was interviewed on Sunday immediately after the Sunday morning horse inspection and gave her account of the incident. Following the interview, the Ground Jury referred the matter to the Appeal Committee. The Appeal Committee, in full possession of all the written statements and video recording, took the following decision:

"According to article 164.4.5 of the FEI General Regulations: 'In serious cases, immediate disqualification with one or more horses from a competition or from the whole event with a referral to the Secretary General (for referral to the Judicial Committee).'

"Once the FEI has collected all reports and evidence, the case will be submitted to the Tribunal (the former Judicial Committee) and all the relevant evidence will be reviewed prior to any decision being made.

"The FEI takes these matters very seriously and endeavors to ensure that the welfare of the horse is a priority."

TheHorse.com will continue to follow this story.

About the Author

Erin Ryder

Erin Ryder is a former news editor of The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care. She owns a portly gray gelding named Duncan and dabbles in several equestrian disciplines, with an emphasis on dressage.

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