Not that we are actually looking for more work to do but the World Equestrian Games are getting closer and closer.  Many riders and horses will depart for Europe well before they have to move into the stables at Aachen.  Unfortunately, there is no common departure date as requirements and plans differ between the various Disciplines.
We have already highlighted the limited supply of hotel accommodation in Aachen itself.  This also applies to team members. Teams and their horses competing in the first week of the Games will have to vacate their accommodation to make room for those whose turn it is in the second week. This makes the logistics for us more complex than at Olympic Games where on the last two occasions, all horses arrived and stayed together for the duration.
After the departure of Peter Horne who was to be the head of our delegation, the Board appointed Geoff Sinclair as the new Chef de Mission.  Geoff will hold a meeting with key personnel in a couple of weeks to progress the planning and nail down more details, including the budget.  High Performance Funding from the Australian Sports Commission will shore up the Olympic Disciplines of Dressage, Eventing and Jumping.  The others sports (Carriage Driving, Vaulting and Endurance) will receive funding support from the EFA to a limited extent and will need to rely on other sources to cover the substantial expense of going to Aachen.
New High Performance Manager
I am pleased to announce that Brett Mace is joining our hard-working staff as High Performance Manager.
Brett comes from the sport of Triathlon and has considerable experience in areas of High Performance Management. Brett’s most recent appointment was that of Coach and Athlete Development Manager for the International Triathlon Union.  He was responsible for the establishment of an International Coach & Athlete Development Program designed to assist more National Federations throughout the world in qualifying for the Olympics. Before this assignment, Brett lived in Chennai, India, filling the role of National Triathlon Coach and Development Manager for a period of four years.
Brett has coached in Triathlon and in Strength and Conditioning at various levels and was Team Manager of the AUS Triathlon Team at a number of World Championships.   Before his move to Triathlon, Brett was in the Royal Australian Navy where in the last three years, he was Physical Training Instructor.
Vale Anne Honner
On a very sad note, well-known Dressage coach and judge Anne Honner passed away on Friday after a long battle with bone marrow cancer. Anne was a very active member of the Dressage community and of the NSW Dressage Council (Dressage NSW).
Having received a lot of enquiries about the use of treeless saddles in Dressage competitions, we can advise that its use is not prohibited.
There are a number of rule changes in the pipeline for Jumping and Dressage, particularly as a result of changes to FEI rules.  Please make sure you have a look at the Rules section on our web at regular intervals.
World Cup Finals in Dressage and Jumping
In April, the Finals for these two World Cup series will take place: Dressage in Amsterdam 20 - 23 April and Jumping in Kuala Lumpur 26 - 30 April 2006.  Right now it looks as though Australia will have no representation in Dressage. For Jumping, the winner of the Australian League, Tim Amitrano, will travel to Malaysia without his horse, to be in the League Winners line-up.  Second-placed Michelle Barrera will ride Kayak van Het Gravenhof under the Philippine flag. Peter McMahon will take Robert Lang's KS Genoa and represent Australia in the Final. Since the FEI General Assembly takes place at the same time in Kuala Lumpur, there will be another three Aussies cheering.
The National Office has been distributing the first draft of EFA General Regulations to its Sports Committees for comment and input.  The draft follows the format of FEI General Regulations very closely and will include rules and regulations that are applicable to all sports conducted under the EFA umbrella.  This will simplify the rules of the individual sports.
We will place a copy of the draft on our web in the near future, giving all members a chance to have their say.
Logos and Their Use
Copies of EFA, FEI and other logos are often used in publications and on garments, banners, signs and other material produced by Equestrian event organisers and other people involved in the sport.  We have noticed, however, that on too many occasions, these logos are published in a form that changes their original design. This is definitely not welcomed by the organisations that own the logos.  Many of these have produced 'Style Manuals' and other guidelines that make it quite clear when, where and in which format these logos can be used.
There a very good reasons for this.  Often a lot of thought and expense has gone into logo design.  The logo is the 'marque' of an organisation intended to reflect its 'brand' and the values that go with it. Bodies like the Australian Sports Commission and the Australian Olympic Committee have very strict rules about the use of their logos. The FEI has published its own style manual that makes it very clear when and how the logo can used.  We will do the same later this year.
General rules for logo use are as follows
- The user may need clearance from the logo's owner before it is used in any way.
- Logos must not be distorted, cropped or changed in any way. If resized, the original height/width ratio must be maintained.
- Logos may not be reversed or 'flipped'. (Note: a number of organisations have artwork in a number of styles.)
- Logos may not be segmented and then re-assembled in a different way.
Please do the right thing! Follow logo use instructions and your relationship with the logo's owner will not be upset.
New Functionality and Information on Our Web
You will find it useful to explore what our web now offers.  We are working on adding even more features in the future but here is a quick overview:
In 'Searches', you can search for:
- news items and pages to find what you want more quickly
- results that have been uploaded on to our National Database.  Please note that only 'grading performances' are listed for Jumping and Dressage.  For Eventing, we show only a results summary.  The database itself contains complete information for use by our office staff.
- horses and horse names that then lead to results for horse and riders
- coaches and their contact details
- rider profiles.  This facility was added recently and will be further expanded.
Under 'Events', you get access to events in the various Equestrian sports.  Depending on where you started, i.e. on the National, WA, Tasmanian or Victorian site, you will initially see only events listed for that Branch.  If you go to 'advanced search' you can get to all events listed by the Branches that are using our web system for that purpose.
In the near future, we will offer our web facility to affiliated Equestrian clubs that are active in our sports.  The offer will include the use of a member management system called 'MyClub' that will be integrated with our database.  This means that when clubs (the Trusted Club Official - TCO with access) enter members and they are already on the database, they will not have to re-enter basic data if that member is already an EFA member or a member of another club.  The next step will be to enable members to update their own personal details themselves and also to have a web-based renewal system integrated with our database.
And by the way, if you wish to receive this newsletter or for some reason wish to unsubscribe, you can do this under News > Monthly e-Newsletter.
You can look up the event calendar for March to see numerous Equestrian events and other activities listed.  The list of Branches using our new web and the event calendar facility is growing. From the National perspective, I mention the Australian Jumping Championships taking place in Sale (Vic.) 31 March - 02 April.  This event is part of the Selectors' Series for the World Equestrian Games and includes the opportunity for riders and horse to gain a Certificate of Capability (COC) from FEI Assessing Delegate Olaf Petersen (GER). Olaf will also conduct a FEI Candidate Course Designers' Seminar at Werribee just before the Championships.
There will be a meeting of the EFA Show Horse Committee on 04 March 2006 in Sydney.
National Carriage Driving Committee
According to EFA Committee By-Laws, two Committee members, Anne Lindh and Bob Edwards, will complete their first term and are eligible for re-election. We are now calling for nominations to fill the vacancies.  You can find more information on our web: The EFA > National Committees.
Supporters and Sponsors
I cannot close without thanking our funding agencies, sponsors and supporters.
In particular, we would like to mention
• the Australian Sports Commission,
• the Australian Olympic Committee,
• Kentucky Equine Research and Ridley Agriproducts,
• Horse Deals magazine, and
• Aon Risk Management Services.
Make it a good day!