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Rodrigo Pessoa elected as FEI Athlete Representative for jumping (2022-2026)

Friday, 11 November 2022

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ Rodrigo Pessoa. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.

Brazil’s Rodrigo Pessoa has been elected as FEI Athlete Representative for the jumping riders, representing them in the FEI Jumping Committee and in the FEI Athletes Committee for a non-renewable four-year term (2022-2026). 

At Thursday’s FEI Board meeting in Cape Town, South Africa, the FEI Director of Governance & Institutional Affairs presented the athletes that have been elected in each FEI discipline. The Board noted the limited participation from the athletes’ community in terms of candidatures received, with only three disciplines receiving multiple candidates, as well as the limited participation in the voting process despite targeted communications to national federations, official stakeholders and eligible athletes. 

For jumping, 569 athletes were eligible to vote, but only 57 chose to do so – resulting in a 10,02% voting participation. To be eligible to vote, an athlete had to be at least 18 years of age at the time of the vote, and have represented their country in a team or individual competition at the Olympic Games, Paralympic Games, Continental Games or World Championships for seniors or Continental Championships for seniors in any of the eight years preceding the date of the elections (including for the avoidance of doubt in the year of the election, i.e. in 2022). 

“I’m happy with the outcome, and I look forward to be working with my colleagues in the Jumping Committee,” Pessoa comments to World of Showjumping. “It’s a well-balanced committee, with some great people in it, and hopefully – together – we can work to improve and grow the sport in the right direction.”

“This will be the third time for me as FEI Athlete Representative in the Jumping Committee, and the last,” Pessoa laughs. “By now, I know how it works, and I am ready to give it the required effort and time.”

“I will be representing the riders globally and follow their agenda,” Pessoa adds. “If anyone has an issue they would like me to address to the committee, they can reach out to me and I will bring it forward.”

“I’m a bit disappointed with the voting participation, which shows only 57 out of 569 eligible athletes voted – this illustrates that it’s actually only 10% of them that really care about the sport. If we as riders want change, this is the path for it.”

The Jumping Committee now consists of Stephan Ellenbruch (Chair), Henrik Ankarcrona (Deputy Chair), Diane Baxter, Louis Konickx, Michael Stone as well as Rodrigo Pessoa.

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