• Abi Kroupa

USEF and USDF Competition updates - COVID-19: Suspension Extended Through May 31, 2020

by US Equestrian Communications D epartment | Apr 25, 2020, 8:15 AM EST

April 25, 2020 - Original article

Dear USEF Members and Competition Organizers (Licensees and Managers), We continue to carefully monitor the COVID-19 Pandemic situation and the position of health experts, including the CDC and other public health authorities. It appears that in several areas of the country, restrictions put in place by State Governors, such as the “stay-at-home” orders, are making a positive difference. Federal, state and local governments are discussing plans for re-opening the environment in the near future. However, this will not occur overnight and will very likely consist of a graduated easing of restrictions over several weeks, which may vary greatly state-to-state, as well as within the states themselves.  The success of these plans is predicated on a mindful and responsible approach to easing restrictions while also maintaining best practices that we have all learned and adopted in order to reduce exposure to and transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Once USEF competitions resume, we must all continue to support and maintain these best practices as part of our daily activities to help prevent further disruptions to our lives. We hope that resumption of competition comes soon. With that in mind, the suspension of all USEF owned and named events, selection trials, training camps, clinics and activities is being extended through May 31, 2020. This suspension also includes points, scores, money won, qualifications, or rankings toward any USEF award programs, USEF owned and named events, or selection to a US team including USEF National Championships. Upon the expiration of this suspension, competitions must comply with requirements issued by USEF for operating sport horse competitions in this environment. Collaborating with competition organizers, affiliate leaders and other industry experts, USEF has been developing competition protocols for safely operating competitions and mitigating the risks associated with COVID-19. Once finalized, we will be providing all competition organizers with these protocols as well as other risk mitigation tools for their use. These tools and resources will also be front-facing on our website and accessible by all members and website visitors. We have been working on amendments to qualification and selection processes for numerous USEF owned and named events as well as how USEF HOTY awards and ranking lists are calculated. We have started announcing modifications that will make the process as fair as possible for all participants, despite the disruption to the competition year and the likelihood of a staggered regional start-up. We have received inquiries as to whether USEF will grant exemptions to the junior competitor age restrictions, equine age restrictions and equine eligibility restrictions based on competitive experience. While these topics are being discussed, it is still too early to make definitive conclusions regarding these issues.  We will continue to assess the pandemic impact, and we will keep you informed of any updates to our position as circumstances warrant or as instructed by the government and public health authorities.  The safety and welfare of our members and their horses must continue to be our top priority. Stay safe,William J. Moroney Chief Executive Officer

USDF Updates

Dressage Competition

FEI North American Youth Championships (NAYC)

US Equestrian, Equestrian Canada, and the Mexican Equestrian Federation, in consultation with the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), have announced the cancellation of the 2020 Adequan/FEI North American Youth Championships (NAYC) for dressage and jumping. The agreement to cancel the 2020 NAYC was made due to ongoing uncertainty surrounding international travel as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the significant reduction of qualifying opportunities for both dressage and jumping athletes in Canada, Mexico, and the United States. The three national federations, collectively with the FEI, agreed that it is no longer feasible to host the championship this year, as horse and athlete combinations would not be able to properly prepare, qualify, or travel effectively for the event.

Qualifying Requirements for Festival of Champions

We have amended the Qualifying Requirements to reduce the number of qualifying competitions required across the divisions. Please also be aware that due to the cancellation of the FEI North American Youth Championships (see above), we will also be expanding the number of invitations granted for the Junior and Young Rider Dressage National Championships. Applications of intent are open online. Additionally, the Qualifying Requirements have been published on the USEFDressage Website and distributed to athletes via email and we have updated the ranking lists to reflect the changes. If you see an error in any of your qualifying scores please contact the Dressage Department.  

FEI World Breeding Championships for Young Horses in Dressage (Five, Six, and Seven Year old horses)

Please be aware that the Selection Procedures for 2020 FEI World Breeding Championships for Young Horses in Dressage (Five, Six, and Seven year olds) are currently under review for amendments due to presented challenges of COVID-19. All related documents to the Selection Procedures are also under review. You should expect changes to the procedures, including the application of intent deadline and qualifying period, once we have further guidance from the FEI and the WBFSH and depending on whether the date of this event is altered.

Annex A & Dressage Attire and Equipment Booklet

Annex A is a supplement to the USEF Dressage Rules and has been updated, effective 4/1/2020. You can find more information and review Annex A, as well as the Dressage Attire and Equipment Booklet on the USEF Dressage Website.

Selection Procedures for the Olympic Games (U.S. Dressage Team)

The U.S. Selection Procedures for Tokyo are currently under review, and amendments will be posted on the USEF Dressage Website and distributed to athletes via email. Specifically, any upcoming dates/deadlines referenced within these selection procedures are hereby postponed.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.  


US Equestrian Dressage Staff