Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has reduced Abdul Rahman Saeed Saleh Al Ghailani’s ban from 12 to eight months, as the rider failed in his attempt to appeal a horse abuse decision.
Al Ghailani was sanctioned by the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) Tribunal last June, with the United Arab Emirates rider handed a 12-month sanction.
The case was launched last February after a protest was filed by Clean Endurance, which accused Al Ghailani of abuse on horse Sarab at the President Cup event in Al Wathba on February 9.
The FEI Tribunal ruled Al Ghailani was likely to cause pain or unnecessary discomfort to the horse "by excessive kicking of the horse and pulling of the reins with high hands" during the endurance event.
Their decision also found his support personnel were chasing the horse, which is prohibited.
Al Ghailani was unable to overturn the sanction at CAS, although his suspension was reduced with the panel noting that it was his first offence and added that this was "not an obvious case of horse abuse" with the horse having passed all veterinary checks during the event and the ground jury had not deemed an offence to have been made.
The CAS panel also determined there was "not an aggravating factor" regarding the support staff’s actions.
In addition to the eight month sanction, Al Ghailani was ordered to pay a fine and legal costs imposed by the FEI Tribunal, as well as CHF3,000 (£2,500/$3,175/€2,800) towards the FEI’s legal fees.
The FEI has also announced the decisions in two separate anti-doping cases.
The FEI Tribunal has accepted an agreement reached by the governing body and Emma Augier De Moussac to reduce her two-year sanction to a one-year ban.
The Czech rider tested positive for the banned substance hydrochlorothiazide at an Olympic qualifier in Budapest last June.
De Moussac was reportedly able to establish that the prohibited substance entered her system accidentally through a supplement and that she therefore had no significant fault or negligence for the rule violation.
Her one-year sanction ran from June 28 in 2019 to June 27 this year.
Mexico’s Nicolas Pizarro has also reached an agreement with the FEI related to positive tests of horses Linkin Park and Come Back in March.
The two horses tested positive for ractopamine.
The FEI said Pizarro was able to establish the source of the prohibited substance was caused by contamination of the feed at the feed production plant, meaning the Mexican bore no fault or negligence for the rule violation.
Pizarro will not serve any further suspension, other than the provisional one he had served since April 21.