Equestrian Takes Legal Action To Ensure Its Rights As Governing
Body Of Horse Sports
Asks that U.S. Olympic Committee Observe Federal Law on Sports
USA Equestrian, the national governing body for equestrian sports
in the United States, filed papers today in the U.S. District
Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky to ensure that its
authority as national governing body is not illegally interfered
with by the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC).
Equestrian asked for a preliminary injunction or a temporary restraining
order that would require the U.S. Olympic Committee to observe
the provisions of the Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act.
USA Equestrian is asking that the USOC be prohibited from taking
any steps to interfere with a binding arbitration process that
is under way, as required by the Stevens Act.
year, the United States Equestrian Team (USET) asked the USOC
to substitute the USET for USA Equestrian as the national governing
body for Olympic horse sports in the U.S. After a hearing last
fall, the USOC ruled against the USET's request, but held that
unless USA Equestrian and USET agree to some new structure for
governing the sport, the position of national governing body would
be declared vacant.
Equestrian, after repeated unsuccessful efforts to engage in negotiations
with USET, formally asked that the decision of the USOC be resolved
in binding arbitration, as provided by federal law in the Stevens
Act. However, the USOC announced that it may review and take actions
to change the governance structure of equestrian sport before
the arbitration is complete.
Equestrian is asking that its recognition as national governing
body not be further reviewed or interfered with by the USOC while
arbitration is under way, and that federal law on this issue be
Equestrian Inc., as the National Equestrian Federation of the
U.S., is the regulatory body for the Olympic and World Championship
sports of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, reining, show
jumping, and vaulting, as well as 19 other breeds and disciplines
of equestrian competition. As
the country's largest multi-breed organization, the Federation
has over 80,000 members and recognizes more than 2,800 competitions
nationwide each year. It governs all aspects of competition, including
educating and licensing all judges, stewards, and technical delegates
who officiate at these shows.
The vision of USA Equestrian is to provide leadership for equestrian
sport in the United States of America, promoting the pursuit of
excellence from the grass roots to the Olympic Games, based on
a foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare of its
horses, and embracing this vision, to be the best national equestrian
federation in the world.