The competition many not have begun yet, but the drama is well underway at the Longines FEI World Cup Final in Omaha!
A questionable blood test result temporarily prevented several European horses from moving into Centurylink Center over the weekend.
From the press release:
There was a questionable result on the blood test on one of the horses that arrived from Europe on Saturday for the FEI World Cup Finals in Omaha. The USDA learned of the result on Sunday night and a retest was immediately conducted.
Although the horse had tested negative prior to boarding the plane in Amsterdam, as it had earlier in March, USDA acted to ensure absolute safety for all horses and continued the quarantine.
The horses that arrived on Monday were held outside the venue pending the result of the retest. Arrangements to house them elsewhere were made should it have become necessary.
Fortunately, the results of the retest were negative and quarantine was lifted at approximately 2:20 p.m. All USDA protocols were strictly followed and the system worked in ensuring the well-being of all the horses.
In other words: Phew!
It’s not the first dramatic turn of events for this year’s Final.
Over the weekend, defending FEI World Cup Dressage Champion Glock’s Flirt was declared a last minute withdrawal from the final after coming up lame before his flight to Omaha. Hans Peter Minderhoud (NED) will campaign Glock’s Voice instead.
Within hours of the announcement, Germany’s Jessica von Bredow-Werndl (GER) withdrew Unee BB, the 2015 and 2016 third place finisher, due to an episode of colic. Bredow-Werndl was already in Omaha awaiting her mount.
So goes the bumpy road to Omaha…
World Cup Final competition begins on Thursday, March 30 at 14:50 EST with Dressage Grand Prix. Catch the livestream on FEI TV.