Major 2019 Rule Changes For FEI Eventing
The FEI have announced their rule changes for the coming year, with Eventing facing the most major alterations.
Heavily-debated areas of the sport have come under-fire this year, leading to changes in the flag, blood and whip rules.
The altered star-system, which was approved in 2017, is set to come into force with the new-year rule changes. The revised star system will now see 1.05m level as “one-star”, also getting rid of the old CIC definition in favour for “international one-day events”.
The flag rules has been reworded for 2019 to define clearly that if the horse’s body fails to pass between the majority of the obstacle, it will be considered a run-out; the combination will be awarded 20 penalties and continuing on the course will result in elimination. Additionally, instead of the current 50 penalties, missing a flag when the majority of the horse’s body has passed through the flags will result in 15 penalties. Only official videos recordings will be used as evidence against mis-conduct.
Whip-use has also come under-fire this year, causing rule adjustments for 2019. The Ground Jury’s scope for dealing with excessive or un-necessary whip-use had been broadened so it is not limited to example scenarios. New rules also state the whip cannot be used more than two-times per incident, and that whip-use will always be deemed excessive if the horse has visible marks or broken skin from the whip.
Blood anywhere on the horse, during the dressage phase, will cause the combination to be halted for examination, whether it is caused by the athlete or not. Fresh blood will cause elimination during dressage, however minor cases may warrant continuation of the competition with an issued warning if the cause was a result of the athletes doing.
The 2020 Olympics are set to be shook-up by rule changes too, which may effect overall team placings. Changes include three riders and one travelling reserve per team, therefore all scores will count toward the placing. Also, those who do not complete the dressage or showjumping phase will receive 100-penalties. An incomplete cross-country round will result in 200-penalties.
Other rule changes are coming into force, regarding equipment, prize money and dressage scoring. For more information see “FEI Eventing Rules: Mark-Up”