Thursday 02 February - 17h48 | Lulu Kyriacou

Endurance Death Toll Hits Double Figures

The death toll over the last three months of endurance horses in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has risen to eleven after another horse was listed as CI today and a comprehensive search of the FEI Database discovered another listed as deceased.

 - Endurance Death Toll Hits Double Figures

Using both the database and the results site Tawqeet, two more horses were found listed as dead. Neither was listed as Catastrophically  Injured (CI) on the rides in question but neither managed to complete their events. This makes a total of three horses at the Al Wathba venue and a staggering eight at Sheik Mohammed al Maktoum's Dubai Endurance International City (DEIC).  Only Sheik Sultan at Boudheib is managing to buck the UAE horse killing trend, bu reducing speeds and using natural tracks to go back to the more traditional format of endurance. There have been no deaths at Boudheib and almost 80% completing. Despite this, at the time of writing, no sanction appears to have been imposed on the other venues bastardised version of the 'sport' which involves galloping at high speed  over a what amounts to a race track.  This is contrary to the FEI welfare guidelines which are quite specific about events/rides/competitions being run in extreme conditions. The extremely high speeds of the first 12 home in todays Ladies CEN 100km ride can be seen in this screen shot and  Swift Stream, is listed as CI on the third loop.

​This week the Belgian federation strongly advised their riders to stop competing in the area after one of their own was riding one of the latest CI listed horses and have said that if their riders choose not to follow this advice voluntarily, the choice may be taken out of their hands. Sadly other countries are being slow to follow suit,  including Endurance GBR, but this could well be due to many of the committee members having ties or business interests in the area. A conflict of this nature has recently resulted in the resignation of a Swedish official. But should this really be a matter for individual federations and riders? The FEI has been put into a strong position  recently by events in the show jumping world which were challenging their right to be the sole ruling body of horse sport, after the challenge was settled out of court and perhaps it is about time this authority was directed at UAE endurance if the majority of events there persist in failing to comply with welfare guidelines.

The list of the Fallen......

The list of the Fallen...... - Endurance Death Toll Hits Double Figures

Credit : Swift Stream joins the list of the fallen

In chronological order the deaths in Al Wathba so far this season (2016/2017) are:
104BC51 - SHIKARA LA MAJORIE (UAE) 3rd December CEN 120 Km where she was FTC on loop one
104DJ34 - MOON'S SUNDANCE (UAE) dead after CEI 120km 17 December 2016
103CV25 - CASTLEBAR TAILWIND (UAE) CI at CEI 120km 17 December 2016

​NB. Both Shakira La Majorie  and Moon's Sundance are not down as CI on the ride results-but are declared dead on FEI database on the date of the ride in which they started.

In chronological order the deaths in Dubai so far this season (2016/2017) are:
12 December 2016
Dumna (was the first death this season in the CEI 1* 80km ride)

Then the 5 deaths in January are: 
ARACO'S ROMAN (CEI 3* 160km on the 7th of January)
TONG a 2005 chestnut gelding born in Russia but sold from Romania to the UAE in 2013
HIGHLANDS a 2009 grey gelding from South Africa, he has been in UAE for just over 6 months.
​The latter two horses died in a 40km qualifier
EL NIZE SHAREEF (CI at the Al Manara ride at Dubai 80km Qualifier 26th Jan 2017)
SWIFT STREAM ( Listed as CI on 2nd Feb 2017 Ladies CEN 100 Dubai)

Further reading...