Archive | December, 2012

Rolex OUT, Longines IN!

31 Dec

FEI Longines

FEI has announced in its usual bland, dictatorial fashion that it has dropped Rolex  and made a long-term mega-deal with Longines.

Rolex World Cup Showjumping will now be Longines World Cup etc. And the winner will presumably win a Longines watch.

The Official Timekeeper for FEI events will now be Longines.

The official FEI rankings will now be Longines FEI Rankings.

But…what about Rolex Kentucky, whose website is Will America’s premier 4* event now…use Longines timepieces?

What about Aachen?

Both Rolex Kentucky and Aachen are still featured on the Rolex website.

And most of all–what the hell happened?

From the FEI itself  ( ) we learn that in 1957, Rolex sponsored its first equestrian,the legendary British show jumper Pat Smythe.

Also, “Rolex has also been Title Sponsor, since 2007, of the Western European League of the FEI World Cup™, which includes indoor competitions from October to March. The annual Rolex FEI World Cup™ Final and the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final are at the forefront of the preeminent jumping competitions, while the biennial European Championships, also sponsored by Rolex, bring together Europe’s best equestrian pairs.”

Of course, Rolex also sponsored the Jumping Owners Club, but as we all know, that club along with all the other FEI Associate Members has been abolished by FEI who undoubtedly will get together with stakeholders in order to pave the way for better communication,blah blah blah.

Longines is part of the Swatch Group, and  the Chair of  the Swatch Board, Mrs. Nayla Hayek, represented her company in making the joint statement with  Princess Haya. An official signing ceremony will take place in Lausanne (SUI) on 15 January 2013, when the contract will be signed jointly by FEI President HRH Princess Haya, and Mrs Nayla Hayek, Chair of the Swatch Group Board of Directors.

So we now have Reem Acra sponsoring dressage World Cup.

The Saudi Equestrian Fund sponsoring Nation’s Cup show jumping.

And now Longines, who have basically sponsored endurance for guess-who and flat racing (again–guess who?) and will now embrace equestrian everything.

So Princess Haya will have equestrian sport in the hands of a great MidEast power bloc.
Perhaps she is  still worried about the  47 country-strong European Equestrian Federation.


watch haya

I’m sure that will be Longines from now on…




Holiday Greetings!

25 Dec

Hoping for a year of Personal Bests for everyone:family, friends, and humanity in general — even dressage judges!



three minis xmas

It seems simple enough

17 Dec

new cars guns


Part of my heart wishes best luck to all the competitors at Olympia CDI-W later today.

Part of my heart stands in silent tribute to the 26 shining lights that were gunned down in  Newtown, Connecticut.

Two annual meetings. Two different sports. Sigh…

11 Dec

Here is a link to a report on the U.S. Dressage Federation annual meeting:

From the above report, here is the ENTIRE description of the Board of Governors meeting:

<< The board of governors voted to limit riders to one regional championship per year, starting in 2013. Riders can still contest multiple divisions at one championship.>>


Here’s an entire ARTICLE about the USEA’s BOG meeting:


Here is a report on the U.S. Eventing Association’s annual meeting:

On the USEA home page is a VIDEO of the convention’s highlights as well as discussion of the main areas of interest covered during the convention.


On USDF’s home page is…a suggestion to register for the convention that has just finished.


I wrote a long list of questions raised by the different information made available, the response from people who were at each of the two conventions,etc.

But honestly, I think the links speak for themselves.


Looking at the wrong horse?

4 Dec



USDF (United States Dressage Federation) is holding its annual meeting, starting tomorrow.,

On everyone’s mind  is the ‘sanctioned/unsanctioned’ FEI rule — the idea that if you show/officiate/participate in a local or unrecognized-by-National Federation-show, the FEI will personally ban you from competition for six (6!!) months.

Of course, the FEI wrote this ridiculous, dictatorial rule with only one object in view: to prevent competition with their own FEI shows so that they can control horse sport AND reap ALL the reward$ without having to do much –like hire a marketing whiz, or come up with a better plan than their competitors.

Aware that this makes the FEI in fact as well as intent a monopoly, and that this would result in legal battles that could cost huge fees, FEI wrote the rule as obtusely as possible, citing, unbelievably, ‘horse welfare’ as its reason for being.

So here we are, with the FEI issuing ‘clarifications’, and various NFs reassuring their constituencies that they are in talks with FEI.

All over a ruling that is meaningless for all except the top echelon of internbational competitors/top sport participants who might dare ride at or officiate at a show that is not giving enough money or control to FEI.

Sure. Why bother becoming better, striving for excellence, giving a measure of something back to its own stakeholders, when there is the easy way of total dictatorship/monopoly?

What ‘stakeholders’ should REALLY be complaining about/discussing is the totally inexplicable, rather disgusting abolishment of all  FEI’s Associate Members: the ‘banning’ of International Dressage Riders, International Jmper Riders, International Show Organizers, Owners, etc.

No sooner did FEI agree several years ago to the creation of these clubs, giving them Associate Memberships so that they could actually have a dialogue with, offer input and reaction to, FEI, then FEI abolishes such discussion.

Pesky Associate Members– complaining openly about the ridiculous and  fabricated  ‘hypersensitivity rule’, used so famously against McLain Ward at  show jumping’s  FEI World CUP Final:

and then more recently at this Olympics:

And of course, the outcry from dressage riders when FEI went against its OWN RULES to give the single Olympic dressage spot they claimed was available for South America to Brazilian rider Luisa Almeida (Brazil, perhaps coincidentally, is holding the 2016 Olympics) and refusing to add one more slot for Dominican Republic rider Yvonne Losos de Muniz:

So– where is the outcry from riders and other participants at having their ONLY forums for their sport stripped of FEI recognition,thus eliminating meaningful, productive dialogue???

Big sigh.