Author: pogo

Reporter, Andy Brown of The Sports Integrity Initiative, reports on the FEI equipment approval process and how this process disadvantages WTP Bit. 

On the face of it, a simplified single Equipment Expert Group seems like a good idea. However, certain equipment manufacturers allege that this will allow the FEI to retain and internalise a corrupt, flawed, and dangerous equipment approval process. More specifically, they allege that by not approving equipment that is internationally recognised as placing a greater priority on rider safety, the FEI is putting riders at risk of injury or death.

Andy Brown | The Sports Integrity Initiative

Click the link below to read the article published by independent and internationally reputable company The Sports Integrity Initiative, known for its in-depth research into sports integrity issues and cases.

Despite indefensible evidence concerning the WTP Bit equipment testing and its approval for use at FEI-level competitions the FEI has failed to list it as now approved on the FEI web site.

A piece of equipment that is shown to enhance rider safety and horse welfare, deems the WTP Bit should have been approved in 2014. We believe we have not been provided the Equipment Working Groups reports in 2014 and the alleged 2016 reports, due to personal interests, biases and abuses of power within the FEI.

In breach of the FEI Constitution, Code of Ethics and new equipment testing procedures that compel all FEI members to respond in a timely manner, and provide information that is accurate, complete and objective, this matter remains of gravest public concern.

Violating deeply held values of honesty, integrity and transparency, of both the FEI and the global equestrian community, growing interest in this matter, including of equestrian athletes, professionals, participants and media, demand its timely resolution.

We have asked FEI president Mr. Ingmar de Vos, to fulfil new equipment testing procedures that stipulate the release of all information that is pertinent in the resolution of this matter both openly and without delay.

Further on the 31 October 2018 we asked Mr. De Vos the following giving him the opportunity to respond.

  • The opportunity to supply a reason why its approval status has not been changed;
  • The opportunity to deny the Equipment Working Group testing riders did approve the WTP Bit in 2014;
  • The opportunity to deny claims made by the FEI that re-resting was conducted again in 2016 were false and misleading; and
  • The opportunity to deny claims made in press releases distributed by the WTP Bit Company in relation to this matter.
However, Mr. de Vos, was unable to deny any of our claims or the content of media articles in relation to this matter.

We have received many enquiries questioning why the FEI has failed to list the WTP Bit as approved for use in FEI-level competitions following the withdrawal of any previous objections.

Further Mr. De Vos stated in his 2014 election speech horses are our partners, and their welfare cannot be compromised. Therefore, it is the president’s duty to honour his promises, and the FEI constitution as the equestrian community and FEI sponsors would expect no less.

In addition, this is supported by the 37 expert reports that have stated the WTP Bit should be approved in the interest of horse welfare. We, therefore, ask the FEI to approve the WTP Bit for use in FEI-level competitions and disclose its approval status on the FEI website without further delay.

Media and other Enquiries

Contact Mr Adrian Morgante
WTP Bit Company

Pressure is now mounting on the FEI President Mr. Ingmar De Vos to be transparent or resign, following global outrage on two well publicised issues of dishonest equipment testing within the Fédération Equestre Internationale.

Documented in several press releases, including the most recent press release on the WTP NP Bit, members of the global equestrian community and media have continued to question the integrity of the FEI, its Departments and Committees in relation to equipment testing.

A matter of grave public concern, the FEI’s clear lack of integrity was first called into question in 2015, when the issue of the WTP NP Bit was brought to the attention of the global equestrian community by the WTP NP Bit Company and its founder Mr. Adrian Morgante.

Over the course of 36 months, new developments have continued to emerge, bringing to light unethical misconduct under the FEI Constitution and Code of Ethics, which compel its members to respond in a timely fashion, and provide information that is accurate, complete and objective.

Following the circulation of the recent press release on the WTP NP Bit, an issue which has immensely angered many worldwide, members of the equestrian community have contacted the FEI requesting a reason why the WTP NP Bit is not listed as approved on the FEI website.

A piece of equipment shown to be conducive to horse welfare and rider safety, the FEI and its President Mr. Ingmar De Vos have not supplied any reason since the FEI objection was withdrawn in 2016. Instead, they have taken a stance of silence and blatantly ignored members of the equestrian community without apology.

As a result, members of the equestrian community, including prolific individuals who are athletes and experts in their respective fields, have shared the following testimonies, which reflect the feelings of discontent and disbelief now rife amongst the global equestrian community.

  • This is a sign of sheer arrogance and if the FEI President is not willing to now approve the WTP Bit, he should resign immediately.
  • [The FEI President] must have a vendetta against your company for exposing the truth.
  • This smacks of corruption.
  • So sad to know what you’re up against, corruption.
  • If you ask me, the whole regulation system for equipment and tack needs a big overhaul, especially considering the lack of an evidence-based and transparent process as you have experienced.
  • This is disgraceful. If they won’t supply the reports, it stinks of corruption and the FEI President should be sacked.

In addition, National Federations and industry experts have clearly stated, as a matter of horse welfare, the WTP NP Bit should be approved for use in FEI Dressage competitions. However, it appears, such requests continue to fall on deaf ears within the FEI.

Based on email correspondence between the WTP NP Bit Company and the FEI, and what has transpired over the past 36 months, the global equestrian community is now infuriated by a matter that could have been resolved long ago by the FEI.

Had the FEI honoured its own Constitution and Code of Ethics and provided the 2014 WTP NP Bit testing reports and the alleged 2016 WTP NP Bit testing reports, the FEI would have maintained an image of transparency, rather than betray the values it supposedly upholds.

Echoing the 2008 scandal, whereby the FEI Dressage Committee was forced to resign immediately, we now face a case which is far more serious; one that threatens the welfare of horses, the safety of riders and the future of equestrianism on the global sporting stage.

The WTP NP Bit Company and its founder Mr. Adrian Morgante asks all individuals and organisations who care for horse welfare and rider safety to join in our request to receive the 2014 and 2016 WTP NP Bit testing reports at the 2018 General Assembly on the 16-20 November 2018.

In the event whereby these reports are not released, we invite your support in asking the following members of the FEI to resign, due to their involvement in what we allege to be a blatant cover-up regarding the WTP NP Bit and its approved use in FEI competitions:

  • Mr. Ingmar De Vos
  • Ms. Anna Milne
  • Ms Chloe Harty
  • Ms. Bettina De Rhams
  • Ms. Sabrina Ibáñez
  • Mr. Frank Kemperman
  • Ms. Aine Power
  • Mr. Mikael Rentsch
In reference to the WTP NP Bit case, the following comments have been received from the media:

That all of the FEI claims regarding the WTP NP Bit were based on deception and lies to mislead the National Federations and equestrian community, which challenges the ethics, integrity and reputation of the FEI.

A sentiment now being felt in another recent case of dishonest equipment testing, publicised in the recent press release on the STS Safety Irons, which suggests there still exists a serious transparency problem within the FEI which must be rectified. The global equestrian community has had enough. They are bound by strict rules and transparency standards and expect no less from the FEI. The FEI presidency is a paid privilege and, therefore, the FEI President Mr. Ingmar De Vos must be completely transparent or resign. Press release on the STS Safety Irons : FEI President Faces safety equipment scandal

Media and other Enquiries

Contact Mr Adrian Morgante
WTP Bit Company