Cuckson Report

Hello from over the pond!

I’m Pippa Cuckson and have been part of the furniture in the UK equestrian media for over 35 years, associated mostly with Horse & Hound and more recently the Daily Telegraph. Some of you may recognize my name from my more recent campaigning for a clean-up of endurance in the Middle East, and for the "phantom rides" expose. Endurance ended up becoming something of a global cause celebre, for which media colleagues around the world have generously recognised me, with a couple of awards.

I would not presume to label myself as an "investigative journalist," though I would love to receive your suggestions about any other subjects you feel wants putting under the microscope. And when I am not doing any delving, I look forward to sharing with you my personal ruminations about the overall European scene.

Change for the Sake of Change?

The marathon debates in Lausanne earlier this week, into the remodelling of equestrian sports for our survival in the OIympic movement, were stimulating and enjoyable. But now that I have slept on it for a few nights, too much of…

Why Pay Cards Face a Currency Devaluation

Money will always buy personal success in equestrian sport, but is it always going to have the facility to drive the sport overall in a direction suiting the agenda of the super-rich? Maybe not so much anymore. One of the…

Let’s Hope for Revolution, Not Revolt

In seven days’ time, the FEI and stakeholders gather in Lausanne, Switzerland to debate the most significant shake-up ever of its elite sport. It’s surprising there has been so little media attention thus far, because each discipline is set to…

Not So Untouchable?

For years, the FBI failed to pin down Al Capone for racketeering, but a special squad known as the “Untouchables” finally found a way to send him prison – tax evasion. For years, the FEI has failed to nail UAE endurance…

Like Taking Candy from a Baby

Colleagues discussing the latest drama in Middle East endurance often use the phrase “you couldn’t make it up.” But making it up seems exactly what the UAE has been doing for years, with the “bogus” ride scandal eclipsing everything else…

Too Good to be True?

My phone has been red hot this past week, with colleagues keen to discuss the politics behind the FEI’s unprecedented cancellation of two UAE CEI’s as the endurance crisis escalates. So it was a relief when one buddy called with…

Five Ways to Torment an Endurance Horse, with Total Confidence so that Officials will Look the Other Way

In Middle East endurance, the number of FEI disqualifications and yellow cards dished out are inversely proportional to the number of offences occurring. Dip randomly into any live-stream from the Middle East winter season, or any collection of photographs, of…

Crisis Mis-Management

Two weeks after the Al Reef double fracture scandal, the FEI president has finally managed to say something, in this email today to national federations, a cut-and-paste embellishment of something sent to the many individuals and groups who have already…

The Silence of the Lambs

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. That’s just as well, because the greater the scandal, the briefer the utterance we get out of the FEI. I refer of course, to the hideous image of Splitters Creek Bundy perched…

Sometimes Riders are Bigger Than the Team

Given the catastrophic issues raging in another equestrian sport, the Kiwi eventing community are lucky that the only thing apparently exercising them at the moment is whether or not Andrew Nicholson should be reinstated on the NZ performance squad, after…

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