A vote to retain reining as an International Equestrian Federation (FEI) discipline was passed unanimously at the world governing body's Extraordinary General Assembly in Moscow today.
FEI Reining Committee chair Sven Friesecke received extended applause when he thanked delegates profusely for their support of the discipline - designed to show the athletic ability of ranch-type horses in the confines of a show arena - and for their commitment to keeping reining in the FEI stable.
A formal agreement with the National Reining Horse Association will now be signed by the FEI, which will also reach out to the American Quarter Horse Association to agree terms for cooperation.
In an attempt to ensure that reining is moving forward in a sustainable way, Key Performance Indicators have been put in place for the next four years aimed at growing participation in the discipline.
Today's proceedings at the Russian capital's Hyatt Regency Moscow Petrovsky Park also saw new endurance rules voted-in by an overwhelming majority.
FEI President Ingmar De Vos announced 94 votes in favour and 19 against, with no abstentions.
Prior to the overall vote on the endurance rules, voting opened on four amendments supported by the Endurance Temporary Committee (ETC).
It was followed by voting on four additional amendments proposed by National Federations (NFs) during yesterday afternoon's dedicated endurance rules session, and on the date of implementation.
Votes were all taken by a show of hands and those approved were then included in the overall vote on the endurance rules.
The four amendments supported by the ETC - correction to Article 832.3 on novice qualifications; revised wording of Article 802.4.2 regarding the distance for three-star championships; amended text for Article 833.3 on consecutive requirements for the qualification procedure for CEI (Concours de Raid D'Endurance International) two-star and three-star events; and the correction to wording in Article 836.1.2 (b) qualification for two-star senior championships - were all passed with a large majority.
Of the amendments proposed by NFs at yesterday's endurance rules session, delegates approved the revision of Article 805.1 on minimum athlete weight for senior CEI two-star events, which was amended from 75 kilograms to 70kg, but the proposal to reduce the minimum athlete weight for young riders and juniors from 60kg was not approved.
Article 838.3.3 on the exemption from the CEI three-star combination requirement for athletes with elite status was approved, as was Article 836.1.2(b) regarding the proposal to reduce the number of combination rides required for three-star championships from two to one.
A separate vote on the implementation date offered two options: full implementation of the rules on July 1 2020, or partial implementation on January 1 2020 with certain provisions to be implemented on the former date as determined by the FEI Board.
In a close vote, 49 were in favour of implementation on July 1 and 55 against, meaning the new endurance rules will be implemented on January 1.
De Vos had opened the vote on the proposed revisions to the endurance rules with a special thanks for the work done by the ETC.
"It's a very special day, not only for endurance, but it's also the birthday of Committee chair Sarah Coombs, and I know what birthday present she would like today."