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Equestrian High Performance and Covid-19 Update

Rowan Willis and Blue Movie had two rails today - © Michelle Terlato

Rowan Willis, pictured here at WEG 2018, has been competing post-Covid restrictions.

© Michelle Terlato


Equestrian High Performance and Covid-19 Update – 29th June, 2020

We hope you have all been keeping safe, well and healthy.

As Covid-19 continues to change the way we live, train and plan for the future we have seen some countries positively emerge from lockdown, whilst others remain in various stages of regulation. Through all this uncertainty it has been encouraging to see our riders once again take part in FEI competitions this past week with events held across Europe and North America. Our riders have admirably stepped out into the arena during these trying times and presented their best efforts as we all optimistically look ahead to a postponed Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2021.

Last week we announced the introduction of Hamish Cargill to the High Performance Panel who brings with him both extensive corporate and high performance equestrian experience. This welcomed addition was the outcome of a review conducted by the High Performance Panel who wished to have a greater athlete voice represented on the Panel to contribute to discussions and deliberations surrounding the future of the sport.

Although the Equestrian High Performance Program remains robust and financially sound we have sought to conserve this stable position by continuing our cost saving measures for a further three months whilst Covid-19 continues to affect the way our riders prepare themselves for Tokyo 2020. The decision has been made to extend the temporary salary reduction for all Equestrian High Performance staff until the end of September 2020 in an effort to preserve the longer-term viability of the program. Our dedicated staff will remain available to our stakeholders in their current roles and capacity as we all work towards a sustainable future. We wish to thank the staff and our key stakeholders for their positive response and understanding towards these sensitive measures.

We continue to have ongoing discussions with the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) and Paralympics Australia (PA) to ensure the current voluntary administration of Equestrian Australia has minimal impact on the nomination process.

The High Performance Panel and the National Selectors continue to closely communicate with the FEI, AOC, PA and the Australian Institute of Sport to ensure the participation of our athletes at the Tokyo Games is secure, and that all requirements for this to take place are met. Our National Selectors are also in the process of reviewing the Olympic and Paralympic Selection Policies following the FEI’s amendments to Minimum Eligibility Requirements. We look forward to presenting these updated policies to our riders and
stakeholders once they have been through the appropriate review process with the AOC and PA.

The FEI Board meeting took place last week via videoconference and addressed important topics ranging from the regulations for equestrian events at the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, to the allocation of FEI Championships and events. The outcomes answer many questions our high performance community has faced and moves towards clarifying a streamlined way forward post Covid-19. The summary and outcomes from all three days of the FEI Board meeting can be found by visiting https://inside.fei.org/fei/about-fei/governance/meetings/fei-board

On Friday the FEI launched their latest initiative, an online eDressage™ platform that provides a unique environment for FEI registered Dressage and Para-Dressage athletes to boost their training and development. Athletes can upload videos to the eDressage™ Online platform every week for their tests to be judged anonymously by a pool of FEI 5* level Dressage and Para Dressage judges. The eDressage™ Online platform has been specifically created for a non-competitive environment and as a training tool only. We encourage our Dressage and Para-Dressage riders who are seeking an additional way to enhance their training from home to explore the platform and the rare opportunity it provides by visiting https://edressage.fei.org/welcome

As always the health and safety of our people and horses remain our highest priority as we work together as a united high performance community to navigate these unprecedented times. We thank you all for your understanding and continued support and please feel free to contact the High Performance team directly if you have any questions or queries.

Source: Equestrian High Performance team





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