Excerpted from Horse and Hound magazine’s website:
Team chasing is to review its medical and major incident procedures after the recent fatalities in eventing.
Current guidance from the governing body, the Masters of Foxhounds Association, states team chases should have one doctor, two paramedics and two ambulances on site.
No advice is given if a rider fatality should occur, and whether specialist medical personnel should be sought is not stipulated.
Event organisers attending the sport’s national conference at Cheltenham on 6 May queried whether the guidance is adequate.
At the Berks and Bucks team chase on 5 April, Maria Badder sustained serious head injuries in a fall. She is now at home recovering.
Organiser Gordon Whickman said: “It is hard to find a doctor with the experience to cope with the type of injuries that occur.”
While acknowledging that “trauma-trained” doctors are rare, VWH organiser Jo Verey stressed it is important to check the relevant experience of ambulance crews, too.
GP Sarah Myhill, a member of national champions the Art Hotel Chasers, will look into the issue and report to the team chase committee.
Ms Myhil said: “In my experience, paramedics do a fantastic job.”
Procedures in the event of a rider fatality are also to be drawn up by the committee after Belvoir organiser David Selby said the death of eventer Ian Olding at Belton Horse Trials last month had alerted him to the issues involved.
At the conference, chairman Joe Cowen said team chasing is in “very good shape”, with strong entries for novice and intermediate classes.
One area for concern is the lack of entries in some open classes, which has led the Badsworth and Bramham Moor event to relinquish its open qualifier in March 2010.
Also missing from the spring calendar in 2010 will be the VWH event, on hold for a year due to organisers’ personal reasons.
The Berkeley will move to the spring season from its current autumn slot and Berks and Bucks comes forward by a month, with the championships at the Fernie bringing the open events to a climax.
Chesterton Humberts is to continue its sponsorship of the open classes and championship for 2009-10, while the Goring Hotel is to back the accumulator.
[Here is a video example of team chasing]