Almost a year to the day since the explosive announcement that Larry Glefke and Kelley Farmer were being suspended from the USEF, today our sport’s governing body announced that they acknowledge their mishandling of the blood samples, and all suspensions and fines will be lifted, and the trainer and rider now have full standing in the sport once again.
Here is the full statement from US Equestrian:
“USEF announced today that it has resolved the litigation with Kelley Farmer and Larry Glefke for their alleged July 2016 GABA violation. USEF is voiding the proceeding from the outset and vacating all penalties and suspensions, thereby restoring Ms. Farmer and Mr. Glefke to active membership effective July 1, 2017. They are free to enjoy all privileges of membership including participation in competition.
“The USEF must always treat its members fairly,” said Murray S. Kessler, President of the USEF. Kessler continued, “Late in the arbitration discovery process, the legal teams for USEF and Ms. Farmer and Mr. Glefke learned about errors in the laboratory’s handling of the blood sample in this case, that the USEF hearing committee was unaware of. Simply said, these errors were serious enough that we no longer can rely on the validity of the test and therefore, regret any negative impact that this had on Ms. Farmer and Mr. Glefke. All our members must be treated fairly. Accordingly, we are setting aside the suspensions as the USEF’s procedural integrity must be pristine in order to fairly protect our competitors. I have ordered a thorough compliance audit of the laboratory to ensure that what occurred in this case never happens again and that the proper procedures and checks are in place to be certain of that. I can assure our membership that any necessary corrective action will be taken.”
Importantly, USEF continues to be committed to aggressively investigating all reported drugs and medications violations as well as enforcing the rules. Maintaining a fair and level playing field and ensuring the welfare of our horses remains a top priority for USEF.”
Ultimately, this final settlement ensures that not only will there be no consequences for the prohibited substance found in the horse’s system, but also that there will be little recourse for US Equestrian’s failure to effectively test and prosecute cheaters. Short of USEF members collectively making a massive stink, it is unlikely that testing procedures will change, and even less likely that people gaming the system will be held accountable.
You can read all our coverage of this case below. As we said back in August, we sincerely hope that US Equestrian will make good on the promise someday to prioritize clean sport and enforcement, and that genuinely good horsemen in the sport will find a way to rise to the top and be the heroes that the hunter world so desperately needs.
Editorial: Pres. Kessler, Please Put Our Money to Good Use – August 3, 2017
USEF Agrees to Grant Farmer/Glefke Rehearing Request on Doping Case – February 23, 2017
KELLEY FARMER AND LARRY GLEFKE RELEASE STATEMENT ON USEF SUSPENSION – January 12, 2017