Seems it doesn’t pay to speak your mind if you are an FEI judge. Leif Tørnblad opened up with his views on the direction of dressage in an interview with Christopher Hector – for his pains he has been abused by the Dutch press, and now suspended by the FEI. What hasn’t happened is that anyone thinks and responds in an intelligent way to the serious issues the Danish Five-Star judge has raised:
The FEI has suspended Leif until the end of the year. He’s allegedly broken the codex / Article 2, that says judges have to avoid conflict of interests and maintain a neutral, objective conduct towards riders, owners, trainers, organisers and officials.
The FEI says they’ve carefully considered the decision, and took Leif’s statement into consideration as well. Leif’s integrity and capability as a judge are not in doubt.
Article 7 of the codex says the FEI and the dressage committee have the right to sanction disciplinary action towards judges when they break the codex. That disciplinary action includes warnings, suspensions, taking them off the judges’ list etc etc.