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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Correction and a Clarification

Monica Theodorescu and The Whisper Game

Not only is her horse called Whisper, she has also become the victim of the Chinese whisper game (you know, the party game where a message gets passed around the room by people whispering in the ear of the person beside them until the message is all but lost by the time it returns to the original whisperer). In all the flurry of press releases and news items during and following last week’s momentous change in the FEI Dressage Committee, I committed a journalistic sin. I wrote something that had not come from an indisputably reliable source. The origin of the mistake was none other than a German magazine, so no one could blame language a barrier as the cause of the complete misapprehension. But somehow someone failed to correctly hear Monica saying that she was resigning from the IDRC, not returning to it. And just in case this is also wrong (you never know), if anyone out there knows otherwise, please post a comment here or send me an email so I can correct the correction.

The New and Improved Dominican Republic (DR)

Following my last blog, I received an email from Eduardo Muñiz, husband of Dominican rider Yvonne Losos de Muñiz (individual bronze medalist at the last two Pan Am Games). First of all I have to say I was rather proud to discover that my blog gets read by the likes of the Muñiz’s. Eduardo contacted me because of the situation that I mentioned with the DR losing its affiliation in the FEI. I am pleased to share this extra information here, and I hope that it will be seen as an open invitation to anyone out there who knows more than I do about a topic that I mention on this blog. Please, pretty please, just come straight at me with the relevant info so that I can put it out there.

It would seem that the terms ‘patronage’ and ‘cronyism’ are not the exclusive domain of the recently departed DC, but have been alive and well in the DR. Eduardo explained to me as follows: “the country per se was not and is not out of the FEI, we just got a brand-new federation. This comes as an answer from the FEI to an internal dispute orchestrated by a group of private riding club owners who have been for close to one year sabotaging attempts by our NF President to impose new statutes and a new, more modern and democratic structure, mandated by the IOC on all federations in our country.” The private club owners have been running a little fiefdom, which was observed by John Long, who was sent to DR by the FEI to check out the situation. So now the DR can go forward with its house-cleaning complete. “With this step, now there’s a light at the end of the tunnel,” says Eduardo. Amen to that!

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