Equestrian body sets up anti-doping inquiry

Other News Materials 23 November 2008 02:59 (UTC +04:00)

The governing body of equestrian sport said it has set up an anti-doping inquiry to clear up confusion after six horses returned positive drug tests at the Beijing Olympics, TehranTimes reported.

The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) said riders, veterinarians and lawyers will report to a commission led by Arne Ljungqvist, a senior official with both the International Olympic Committee and World Anti-Doping Agency.

"The commission represents a united effort ... to overcome the gray areas that lie between therapeutic medication and doping," the FEI said in a statement from its annual assembly in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires.

The organization said it wants to protect horses and simplify the rules in a sport where some medical products can be used legally in training but are banned in competition.

In one case from the Beijing Games that caused further confusion, the FEI suspended Germany's Christian Ahlmann for four months because his horse tested positive for capsaicin, a banned pain reliever which has commonly been used during training.

Ljungqvist, the chairman of the IOC's medical commission and a vice president of WADA, will be asked to examine the sport's procedures for analyzing samples and produce clear definitions of anti-doping protocols.

"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, who represents show jumping on the FEI athletes' committee.

The IOC said in a statement that it "recognized the FEI's commitment in this area and we support their quest to ensure the delivery of a clean sport."