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Nadja Peter Steiner's suspension lifted after settlement agreement

Friday, 26 June 2020
CAS

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping Nadja Peter Steiner's suspension has been lifted. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.

 

Text © World of Showjumping

 


 

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has on June 18, 2020, ratified a settlement agreement between FEI and Nadja Peter Steiner.

In October 2017, at the CSI3*-W event in Tetouan, Morocco, Peter Steiner’s horse Saura de Fondcombe tested positive for O-Desmethyltramadol – a banned substance under the 2017 FEI Equine Prohibited Substances List. O-Desmethyltramadol is a metabolite of Tramadol, an opioid analgesic that is commonly used in humans for the control of moderate to severe pain.

Peter Steiner was provisionally suspended in November 2017, until this suspension was lifted by the FEI Tribunal in August 2018. In February 2020, the FEI Tribunal rendered its final decision in the case – sanctioning Peter Steiner with a period of ineligibility of two years – a period which, taking into account the already served provisional suspension, would have expired on 23 May 2021. 

In March 2020, Peter Steiner filed an appeal with CAS. However, the Swiss rider reached a settlement agreement with the FEI.

The FEI was now satisfied that Peter Steiner managed to establish, on a balance of probabilities, how the substance entered the body of the horse and that she bore no fault or negligence for the violation of the FEI EAD Rules.

Through further discussion with her family and members of staff, Peter Steiner had managed to identify that a member of her staff – that drove the horse from Europe to Morocco – had ultimately confessed to taking Tramadol pills to relief back pain during the trip. The support person confessed that he had urinated in the horse compartment of the truck and did also not exclude that he had urinated in the vicinity of the stables the following days. Peter Steiner explained that the support person initially did not realise that his conduct could have caused the adverse analytical finding. Moreover, he was concerned that his professional reputation would be ruined and as a consequence he would be fired. For these reasons, he did not mention his conduct immediately during the discussion about how the Tramadol medication could have ended up in the horse’s system. Two and a half years after the incident the support person had difficulties in recalling the exact details but accepted that his actions must have been the source of the adverse analytical finding. Peter Steiner explained how the Tramadol had most likely entered Saura de Fondcombe’s system when she ingested hay that had been urinated on. Upon arrival in Morocco, the mare had been left untied in the lorry to eat and drink while the boxes were being made ready. The left-over hay was then moved over from the truck to her box, leaving her with access to contaminated hay for an extended period of time. 

In their settlement agreement, FEI and Peter Steiner requested CAS to set aside the decision from the FEI Tribunal – lifting the Swiss rider's suspension with immediate effect. 


Read the full case here. 

 

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