November 21, 2008 -- The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), governing body of international equestrian sport, announced on November 20 the creation of a commission on medication and doping chaired by Dr. Arne Ljungqvist, Chairman of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Medical Commission and Vice President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
The commission will offer a robust examination of the way the equine anti-doping policies can be further harmonized to WADA norms in order to ensure that horse welfare remains at the heart of the system and is fully protected. The commission represents a united effort by all concerned athletes, national federations, veterinarians and representatives of the judicial process to overcome the gray areas that lie between therapeutic medication and doping and to simplify and distinguish for equestrian athletes the practices that are acceptable from those that are not.
The commission will also seek to clarify all due processes and procedures relating to the analysis of samples in order to lead to a consensus on a simple definition that gives the IOC, WADA and all stakeholders a clear and unequivocal definition of parallel protocols to those used for human athletes.
"We are honored to have the support and guidance of the IOC in our ongoing commitment to a clean sport for current and future equestrian athletes," said Cayetano Martinez de Irujo, the jumping representative on the FEI Athletes' Committee.