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No licensing of stallions at Vilhelmsborg03-03-2021 - 10:15

Due to the authorities' lack of feedback with approval of this year's licensing of stallions at Vilhelmsborg, and in addition the prevailing equine herpesvirus in Southern Europe, Danish Warmblood has consequently cancelled the selection of stallions at Vilhelmsborg. Instead, the selection will be conducted as a selection tour at various locations in week 11

Already in the autumn of 2020, it has been evident due to the COVID-19 situation that one of the world's largest stallion events for four decades, the Danish Warmblood Stallion Licensing, would not be able to take place in 2021 in its usual format in MCH Messecenter Herning with thousands of visitors in week 10.


Therefore, a much smaller event was sketched to be held without audience and cut right to the bone with a professional settlement of the actual selection of stallions which was to take place in week 11 at Vilhelmsborg. However, Danish Warmblood has not succeeded in getting a response from the responsible authorities regarding approval of the outlined event, despite many written inquiries focusing on a streaming setup behind closed doors.


The prevailing equine herpesvirus which is currently raging at an international equestrian competition in Valencia, Spain, has led the International Equestrian Federation FEI to issue a European competition ban until 28 March. For that reason alone, it is inconceivable that the foreign stallions that are enrolled for the licensing will show up in Denmark.


Therefore, Danish Warmblood is bringing plan B into play. In January, the licensing committee travelled around the country to pre-inspect stallions for the licensing. The licensing will now be conducted in the same way in week 11.


The licensing committee – the jumping committee and the dressage committee, respectively – will visit designated locations (where the stallions are situated) to assess the stallions in a procedure equivalent to a normal stallion licensing, and the stallions will be filmed and photographed as usually.


Once all stallions have been inspected, the stallion owners will be informed about the licensing verdict which will be published on the Danish Warmblood website where video recordings of all stallions will also be made available. An online press conference for the international press will then be held.


All aspects come into play during this difficult time, but our consideration for the stallion keepers and the health of the stallions counts the most. We have now been waiting for almost four weeks for a response from the Danish authorities as to whether we can legally conduct the licensing behind closed doors with a large streaming setup, but without a concrete decision we cannot drag it any further. The decision to completely cancel a gathering of numerous stallions was made after closely having followed the situation of the equine herpesvirus outbreak with epicentre in Valencia. We are very sorry to have to make this decision, but times are very challenging, and we have become accustomed to acting in the short term. The licensing committee looks forward to viewing the stallions in week 11, and we promise to provide good footage of the stallions, so that you can still follow the licensing from your homes, although in a different format than desired, concludes Casper Cassøe, director of Danish Warmblood.


All stallion owners will be notified about the final conduction of the selection which will take place in week 11 behind closed doors.


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