The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) Tribunal has issued its final decisions on prohibited substances cases involving seven endurance athletes, three trainers, and nine horses from three different stables competing in events in Abu Dhabi and Dubai between Nov. 26, 2016, and Jan. 14, 2017.

The FEI imposed provisional suspensions in January following positive findings in eight of the horses for the controlled medications caffeine (a stimulant), theobromine (a vasodilator), theophylline (a bronchodilator), and paraxanthine (which, at the time of the finding, was a banned substance), with the ninth sample also containing flumetasone (a corticosteroid).

Since the proceedings were opened, the FEI Equine Prohibited List has been amended in order to downgrade paraxanthine (caffeine’s main metabolite) to a controlled medication before it was further reclassified as a specified substance, effective Jan. 1, 2018. The FEI said specified substances should not in any way be considered less important or less dangerous than other prohibited substances; rather, they are substances which are more likely to have been ingested by horses for a purpose other than the enhancement of sport performance, for example, through a contaminated food substance. In the case of a positive for a specified substance, provisional suspensions are not automatic.

The Tribunal has therefore agreed to the lift the provisional suspensions further to a request from the FEI given paraxanthine’s reclassification.

“The FEI accepts that the circumstances of the cases to be exceptional on the basis that the banned substance paraxanthine will be considered to be only a controlled medication rule violation in 2018,” said FEI Legal Director Mikael Rentsch.

The FEI Tribunal imposed two-month suspensions on the athletes and trainers from Jan. 30 with a six-month suspension for the case involving flumetasone, with fines of 1,500 CHF and contributions of 1,000 CHF towards legal costs per individual.

Additional details on these cases are available at inside.fei.org/fei/your-role/athletes/fei-tribunal/ead-decisions.

New Prohibited Substance Case

The FEI has also announced an adverse analytical finding involving prohibited substances.

The case involves the use of nandrolone (an anabolic steroid), its metabolite 5A-estrane-3B 17A-diol, and stanozolol (another anabolic steroid), which are banned substances under the FEI’s Equine Anti-Doping and Controlled Medication Regulations. The case involves:

Horse: 8 Minute
Person Responsible: Khalifa Ali Khalfan Al Jahouri
Event: CH-M-YJ-E 120 – Valeggio sul Mincio, Italy, on Sept. 23, 2017

The athlete has been provisionally suspended from the date of notification (Nov. 28) until the FEI Tribunal renders a decision. The horse has been provisionally suspended for two months.

Details on this case are available at inside.fei.org/fei/your-role/athletes/fei-tribunal/suspended-athletes-horses.