At Last – Covid Rules Easing as Horseview UK Returns

After a break from ‘blog writing’, Horseview UK is back, ready to bring you our latest thoughts and comments once again for 2022. A belated happy new year to all our readers. While the news this year so far has been regarding whether or not the world should go to war over Ukraine, equestrian news has been on the rather benign side with covid still affecting shows in Europe. The cancellation of several World Cup qualifiers, like last year, has been most disappointing, but things do really look as if they may be easing at last after two years of disruption.

In the UK, it appears that the government has decided that we must move on from the corona virus epidemic and get back to normal – or at least pre-covid times. Most of the restrictions have been or about to be removed, allowing what we hope will be a full season ahead for equine competition in the UK. Europe too is beginning to relax most of their rules which means that despite the cancellation of many of the European World Cup qualifiers, the finals will be able to go ahead in April in Leipzig Germany – that is assuming that the west is not at war with Russia by then!

The world highlight of equestrian competition in 2022 is the World Equestrian Games, being held initially in Hernig in Denmark before the horse trial WEG takes place in Pratoni in Italy a month later in September.

H.M. Queen, with the rest of the world is celebrating Her Platinum Jubilee in 2022

The UK is celebrating the platinum jubilee of Her Majesty The Queen, with most of the celebrations centred around the Derby meeting at Epsom, where it is hoped that Reach for the Moon, a three year old colt, bred by Her Majesty and now racing in her colours will provide The Queen with a clean sweep of British classics during her reign. Her horses have won both the One and Two thousand guineas together with the Oaks and St Ledger. She was second in the Derby, but has still to win this iconic race. No pressure on trainers John and Thady Gosden then, to provide the potential magic moment. Whether Reach for the Moon is good enough to be a Derby winner, remains to be seen, but being by the Derby winning Sea The Stars, his pedigree certainly looks as he could do it, plus he has done nothing wrong on the racecourse so far.

Le Havre – prolific French racehorse and stallion with Mathieu Alex in Normandy

The news this week that the French champion sire Le Havre has been retired from stud duties at the age of 16 following health issues the horse sustained at the end of last year. Le Havre was fully booked for the 2022 season at a fee of 40,000 euros. He stood at Haras de la Cauviniere in Normandy and was the pride of French breeding having won the Prix du Jockey Club, (the French Derby) and several other top French Group races. At stud, he was even more successful, siring capias winners including classic winners throughout Europe. He will be sorely missed by the breeding fraternity. In other bloodstock breeding news is that the first of hopefully many foals has been born to the Juddmonte wonder filly Enable. She has given birth to a colt by Kingman. Finally, there have been a few sales throughout the world during the first two months of the year with prices continuing to hold up well across the board. Fasig Tipton January sale in Kentucky saw a record aggregate posted for the sale.

Enable with her first foal by Kingman born Feb 2022

The European Union have tightened up the rules regarding selling products including horses in order to help protect consumers from ‘cowboy’ sellers. With regards to horses, the rules which came into force on January 1st 2022, states that a horse has to be sold for the purpose it is intended. In other words, if it is sold as a dressage horse, the animal has to be able to have the ability to carry out dressage as a function. The penalty for disobedience for the seller is that a purchaser has a year to return the horse if it does not do what it has been sold to do. This is ridiculous. You might buy a tin of paint which states that it is a certain colour, and if when opened, this is not the case, then there may be some reason for a return as the product is clearly not what the purchaser thought they were going to get. However, when a horse is purchased, what is to say that the new owner buying a dressage horse is even capable of riding a dressage test? This is sadly another example of Brussels’s civil servants coming up with unnecessary red tape to thwart business.

Images courtesy Goldeneye, Juddmonte Farms and Haras de la Cauviniere

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