Belgian Federation responds to Van Paesschen and Campenhoudt statements…


The Royal Federation of Belgian Equestrian broke it’s silence via a press release in response to the press conference held by Alain van Campenhoudt and Stanny van Paesschen.

Response by Belgian Federation

In recent days many press releases were issued Constant Van Paesschen and his advisors. There have been three court proceedings initiated by the entourage of Constant Van Paesschen. The Belgian Federation declared that the FRBSE has not been heard in the two procedures and therefore could not defend itself so far.

Initially the trial court imposed unilaterally that the FRBSE include Constant in the selection, as the CBAS has not acted. The CBAS decided Thursday, August 21 that Constant had to be taken in the selection for the WEG. A decision whose motivation is not yet known. The Federation has done this since the beginning of the procedure required reserves with the CBAS. On Friday, August 22 a new unilateral requisition was introduced to compel the enforcement of the decision of the CBAS under penalty of a fine of 5,000 euros.

The FRBSE, assisted in this case by his advisers, meanwhile takes all necessary steps to respond to this, and to challenge those requisitions.

We note, moreover, that the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport Belge is impossible because we can not include Constant Van Paesschen in the selection, without removing another rider. We therefore look forward to the reasons for the decision. The Federation does not want to stand here above the law, but will undertake other legal actions necessary to continue to defend this selection against all odds. By this we want to be an example for other sports and sports federations. The fact that a coach be constrained by legal means to adapt a selection defies imagination and would be a brake for each sport at this level.

Sports background

In addition, the Federation wishes again to emphasize that coaches, on balance, proposed at the end of their deliberations, the right team. They are supported in this task by the Jumping Committee that made the decision unanimously. Selecting this team is based on past performance, experience gained in major championships on the freshness and shape of horses, and expectations for the near future. Criteria that were used by all the other coaches in the past, and have proven themselves. Community patterns have and will never have an influence on the selection, even though some say otherwise. We also note that if in the past, the selections for the World Championships will be made solely on the basis of rankings or Jos Lansink in 2006, Philippe Lejeune in 2010 or could not participate in the World Championship and would therefore have never become World champion.

All riders, Constant Van Paesschen included, signed a charter with an integrity clause, an information and a code of conduct clause, for themselves and those around them. The events of recent months are in striking contradiction with the commitments made in the Charter.

Personal situations

We deeply regret any statements and attacks made by the entourage Constant Van Paesschen against people like coaches, FRBSE President, members of the commission of an obstacle, the members of the veterinary commission and other stakeholders. These personal attacks are defamatory, but we do not react in the press here. The Federation wishes in this matter – to put it in a sportsmanlike manner – focus on the game and not on man. The non-selection of Constant Van Paesschen do not question the results achieved to date and the bright future that awaits him. We wish again to emphasize explicitly that all the selections that were made in a similar manner, including earlier this year, have proven successful. We hope and assume that this will also lead to a similar result in Caen.

The Federation wishes to emphasize that we now want to concentrate fully in the preparation of the World Championships for Equestrian Sports, which meanwhile have already begun. Our Belgian Team are now preparing their trip to Normandy. The JEM is an equestrian event which marks the culmination of a sport where fair play and sportsmanship are still important values. We will ensure that in the future, it is always the case.

Source: Translated text – The Royal Federation of Belgian Equestrian

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