Major National Partners
Support National Partners
Australian Team Partners
With one quarter of 2009 and three quarters of the financial year already over, it is now 'reporting time' for us to the Australian Sports Commission and to start work on the 2009-2013 Strategic Plan. To this end, the National Board conducted a planning session over the first weekend in March at its recent board meeting, so a start is made. The outcome of previous National Forums and meetings with Branch Chairs will play a role in the formulation of the plan, and Branch Managers will have a chance to review what is to be included when they meet at their next conference 20-21 April 2009.
The Global Financial Crisis and the delay in Government funding guarantees are adding uncertainty but we must not allow these things to stop us from planning our future. They just need to be factored in through options and contingencies.
It's always good to have Easter, if only to egg you on to have a look at the horse events that are happening around the place. In Sydney, the Royal Easter Show is giving equestrian activities an extra boost, including an FEI World Cup Jumping qualifier on 15 April. The Rolex FEI World Cup Finals for Dressage and Jumping will take place in Las Vegas 16 - 19 April. Edwina Alexander, Harley Brown and Heath Ryan are expected to compete. You can watch them live on FEI TV for a small fee.
In Australia, the Sydney Royal CSI-W and other events such as the Camperdown CIC in Victoria, including the delayed 2008 Young Rider Trans-Tasman Eventing competition, will build up to the 'Weekend of World Cups' at SIEC on the first weekend in May. This event includes Australia's only HSBC FEI World Cup Eventing qualifier and an FEI World Cup Jumping round. It will be followed a few days later by Australia's premier Dressage event, the Sydney CDI***. For other 'national' events, please consult the event calendar on our web.
Para-Equestrian High Performance Panel
After experiencing some delays in the nomination process, the newly established Para-Equestrian High Performance Panel met for the first time this month in the Board room of the National Office. The plan for the program is now being finalised.
New Dressage Tests
From July 2009, Dressage competitors in Australia will be using tests sourced from the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF). We have re-named the tests to suit our system and have made some minor language edits, such as replacing 'haunches' with 'hindquarters' and 'gaits' with 'paces'.
Quarantine, Vaccination and Emergency Disease Response
(Note: Due to space constraints, this item is necessarily 'superficial' and simplifies some aspects of the debate.)
The Equine Influenza outbreak was over by mid-2008 but its effects are still being felt in a number of areas. This is not surprising, as after decades in an EI-free environment, not too much attention had been paid to systems and procedures that might be necessary if the risk increased. Yes, there was the Emergency Animal Diseases Response Agreement (EADRA) and the AUSVET Plan, both designed to deal with emergencies, but the issue of vaccination and resulting 'herd' and event management issues was not high on the agenda with a number of stakeholder. And then the virus hit ....
The Federal and State Governments paid hundreds of millions of dollars to eradicate the virus and to provide financial and other support to many of those affected by the consequences of the outbreak. The latter went largely through the racing authorities and the NSW and Queensland Branches of the Equestrian Federation, because they had the necessary administrative structures in place to be able to swiftly organise the relief effort.
The Federal Government introduced horse levy legislation to ensure that the 'industry' would make a contribution to the cost of combating future potential outbreaks. The bills were recently rejected in the Senate, mainly because a fair levy mechanism could not be demonstrated. As a result, in the present situation, it would be doubtful if Federal and State governments would react as quickly and as decisively should an outbreak occur.
Equestrian Australia acknowledges that the horse sector needs to contribute to the cost of fighting a future outbreak. We do, however, find the current proposal that is based on initial horse registration not equitable.
There are also difficulties with the way the 'Gross Value of Production (GVP)' has been calculated for the horse 'industry'. We just cannot be compared with 'primary producers' who are in deriving INCOME from producing product for the market. While this may apply to the fairly small numbers of horse breeders and dealers, the majority of horse owners SPEND money to enjoy their horse(s) and all the activities that are connected with having a horse, rather than receive income from them.
We believe a new survey of the horse sector is needed to document its complexity, diversity and scale. When we met with the then Minister for Agriculture Peter McGauran (now CEO of the Thoroughbred Breeders Australia), he indicated support of such a survey but things have changed, of course. Maybe the survey could now become part of the much-touted 'infrastructure' investment by the Federal Government, making a useful contribution to the future management of the 'industry'.
State, Territory and the Australian Primary Industry Ministers have initiated a review of the costs and benefits of a range of equine influenza response and preparedness options, including vaccination, modified movement restrictions and other mitigation measures, should there be another equine influenza incident. The review is being led by Roger Beale, who recently completed a comprehensive review of Australia’s quarantine and biosecurity systems.
The Quarantine and Biosecurity Review chaired by Roger Beale last year reinforced the Callinan Inquiry recommendation for full cost recovery of quarantine costs associated with the live importation of horses. The Federal Government had accepted all recommendations of the Callinan Inquiry (rather hastily, I thought) and has been setting up a horse importation system accordingly.
Additional staff have been hired, other measures introduced, all this for some 600 horses being imported into (or returning to) Australia from places other than New Zealand. Only about 100 of them are 'equestrian' horses. Quarantine charges were increased last year and are about to be increased again because of the huge increases in costs. Sooner or later, the law of diminishing returns will set in, spreading the increased costs over smaller and smaller numbers of horse imports. The question is: Will it become impossible to import horses into Australia? For the sport, this means, of course, that we may not be able to afford bringing back horses from overseas competition.
National Education Manager Nathan Holman reports
EA Online Survey - Win a Bates Saddle or a Sony Ericsson C702 Cyber-Shot Mobile
Thank you to all EA coaches and officials who took the time to complete the EA On-Online Members and the Coach survey in 2008. The two University of Western Sydney students involved in developing the survey have presented their report to Equestrian Australia and the NCAS Committee.
Equestrian Australia is thankful to have the support of Bates Australia and Sony Ericsson in donating prizes (a Bates Australia saddle and Sony Ericsson C702 Mobile Phone) for EA members.
The data from the on-line survey will assist EA in marketing, advertising and sourcing long term sponsor partners to continue to develop the sport and provide additional benefits to our members.
Congratulations to Nicole Browne from Condong in NSW as the lucky winner of the Bates saddle of her choice. The following runners up will receive a Sony Ericsson Mobile – Silvia Smith (Qld), Hilary Keeley (TAS), Rachael Keeton (Vic), Nicole Swan (WA), Ben Netterfield (NSW), Sonia George (NSW), Portland Jones (WA) Melinda Williams (VIC)
Keep an eye on: www.equestrian.org.au for future on-line surveys for your chance to win.
EA Jumping and Eventing Officials Accreditation Renewal
In 2009 Equestrian Australia will require all National EA Jumping and Eventing officials to renew their official’s accreditation. Reaccreditation packs will be sent out to all nationally accredited Jumping and Eventing officials late March / early April for accreditation.
When you receive your registration pack please complete the Re-Accreditation Form and return it to the EA National office and your details will be displayed as an Accredited Jumping / Eventing official. All Jumping and Eventing officials who are re-accredited will have a new Official’s card with an expiry date of 01 April 2011.
Please note that you need to have current EA membership with your State Branch to be registered as an accredited EA official.
EA Horse Sampling Stewards
On the weekend of 21/22 March, Dr Warwick Vale (EA National Medication Control Officer) in conjunction with Equestrian NSW and Equestrian Australia ran an HSS course for new and existing Horse Sampling Stewards at SIEC.
Over 30 participants attended the 2 days and were involved practically with the sampling of horses as part of the NSW Show Horse of the Year show. EA CEO - Franz Venhaus was a willing participant to keep his HSS accreditation active.
For information on becoming or updating your HSS accreditation, please contact your Branch Medication Control Officer. Contact details are listed under the Officials search function on www.equestrian.org.au.
New EA Staff member – Rebecca Willis
Rebecca joins the National Office after several years of involvement in the NCAS with Equestrian Victoria and more recently with RDAA. Rebecca joins the EA as the Sports Consultant – Education, Coaching and Officiating and will commence duties on 1 April.
Supporters and Sponsors
Before I close, though, I would like to thank our funding agencies, sponsors and supporters for their continued assistance. The Australian Sports Commission is our Principal Sponsor and we hope that High Performance funding and other grants will continue beyond the next funding cycle.
Many thanks also to the Australian Olympic Committee, who apart from organising the Australian Delegation to go to the Games is also involved in securing more funding to guarantee Australia's medal success at future Games.
We are also looking forward to a continued good working relationship with the Australian Paralympic Committee in the management of the Para-Equestrian high performance program.
We hope our partnerships with our commercial sponsors can be strengthened further in the next Olympiad.
So in summary, we would like to mention
Make it a good day!
|Para-Equestrian High Performance Panel meets for the first time.|
A significant step for Para-Equestrian High Performance.
|AUS 1st and 2nd at New Zealand HOY Olympic Cup|
It was a successful weekend for Australia at the New Zealand Horse of the Year Show. Peter McMahon and Kolora Stud Genoa won the Bell Tea Olympic Cup.
|YR Trans-Tasman Eventing Team selected|
|National Youth Development Coordinators Announced|
The High Performance Program of Equestrian Australia have recently selected Youth Development Coordinators for Dressage, Eventing and Jumping.
|FEI launches 'FEI TV' - internet coverage of Equestrian|
The FEI has launched FEI.TV, a new broadband based video platform which combines live coverage, video on demand, highlights, interviews and equestrian lifestyle features.
|AOC and APC request urgent increase in funding|
The Australian Olympic Committee and Australian Paralympic Committee have submitted a High Performance Plan to the Federal Government which requests an urgent increase in funding for Australia’s Olympic and Paralympic athletes.
|Athlete anti-doping - Therapeutic Use Exemptions|
|AUS retains Trans-Tasman Jumping Trophy|
A count-back gave Australia victory in the Trans-Tasman test series at the North Island Showjumping Championships in Hawera
|Nominations for National Carriage Driving Committee close 15 April 2009|
We are calling for nominations for election to the National Carriage Driving Committee.
|2010 National Jumping Youth Development Squad Selection Policy Released|
|Veterinary Team appointments|
The Board of Equestrian Australia have endorsed the following Veterinary Team appointments for 2009–12.
|FEI Eventing Officials|
|EA NCAS Committee|
|Equine Dentistry Survey|
Currently, Australia does not have National Competency (training) Standards or nationally recognised qualifications for equine dentistry providers. This is a request to all horse carers to complete this survey by 25 March.