FEI Endurance Strategic Planning Group Holds First Meeting

FEI Endurance Strategic Planning Group Holds First Meeting

The Endurance Strategic Planning Group was set up following a round table session at the FEI headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, on July 24.

Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt/The Horse

The Endurance Strategic Planning Group, which was set up following a round table session at the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, on July 24, held its first meeting via teleconference on Sept. 10.

The group, chaired by Andrew Finding (GBR), consists of Brian Sheahan, BVSc, MACVSc, (AUS), chairman of the FEI Endurance Committee; Jean-Louis Leclerc (FRA); Saeed Al Tayer (UAE); Joe Mattingly (USA); and the FEI’s Ian Williams (endurance director) and Graeme Cooke, MA, Vet MB, MBA, MCIM, MRCVS, TD (veterinary director).

“Together we reviewed the FEI Bureau’s direction to us and considered the mission statement we have been given,” Finding said. “We have all agreed that we are comfortable with accepting that mission statement and working to achieve the objective which is to create an environment within which athletes compete in the spirit of fair play while horses compete in partnership with human athletes where at all times their welfare is of paramount concern. The mission statement says, ‘The strategic plan for endurance over the decade 2013-2023 will define a global rate of growth for the sport; growth that is manageable and effectively supervised by the FEI and (national federations). Increased levels of participation, more events and improved standards are to be encouraged where all (national federations), athletes, trainers, officials, and organizers adhere to and promote the highest 'Clean Sport' standards and meet the FEI Code of Conduct for the welfare of the horse.’

“This was a really good and positive meeting in which all members of the group provided valuable input with a determined commitment,” he continued. “Every member has undertaken to add detail in their area of special insight and knowledge over the next two weeks. We will review this work when we meet for our first face-to-face session in the first few days of October. Progressively through September and October we will develop the draft strategic 'plan in outline' which we will reveal at the endurance session which will take place on Nov. 6 in Montreux (Switzerland) in the framework of the FEI General Assembly. As we move through our work, Dr. Brian Sheahan and Ian Williams will be consulting the FEI Endurance Committee.”

Sheahan added, “I am very happy. We have already made a big step forward.”

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