The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has scheduled to hear Cian O’Connor and Team Ireland in the case that they claim cost them 2016 Olympic qualification. The CAS hearing will take place in the middle of December.
"The CAS hearing is scheduled to take place December 16th in Lausanne as far as I am aware,” O’Connor says to World of Showjumping. “I am confident that CAS has the power to rectify the Aachen incident, and put right the FEI’s failure to implement their own rules on Fair Play that state that at all levels, ‘(…) only the best man, woman or team should win fairly and squarely, having competed under even and equitable conditions and under rules that are themselves fair, realistic, and applied with scrupulous competence and even-handedness. No result can be meaningful or valid if it has not achieved on a level playing field.'"
The CAS hearing relates to the on-course incident that occurred during the team final at the European Championships in Aachen this summer, in which a member of the arena fence crew is described in a press release from the FEI to have run 'across the track as Irish rider Cian O’Connor was turning towards the 11th fence'. O’Connor’s horse Good Luck hit a rail on the 11th fence to complete the course on four faults. These additional four faults caused the Irish team to miss out on qualification for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. External video footage of the incident can be seen below.
In September, Horse Sport Ireland and Cian O’Connor ended up filing an appeal to the FEI Tribunal. Now, the case has ended in CAS.
“It will be interesting to see how the case plays out. At this time I’m not prepared to discuss the various arguments of the case, but I will have plenty to say when all is completed,” Cian continues.
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