EU Sports Law and the Equestrian World: A Galloping Area of Increasing Importance

S.E.M. Herlin Karnell

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This paper aims to look at a new angle of EU sports law, namely that of the equestrian sport. In doing so the paper investigates to what extent the horse sport including the racing industry complies with EU law. Sport has for a long time been recognized as falling within the scope of EU law if connected to economic activity. Nonetheless, some national equestrian and racing federations have special rules that are more favorable to home bred horses or only allow such horses to enter a race or a class. This sounds like clear-cut discrimination from a EU law point of view, but up until now there have been no, or very few, analyses of these issues and towhat extent these special national rules could be justified (for example to safeguard the breeding of national horses which is the common justification put forward by some national racing associations). Another area, which merits attention, is that of travelling with horses (with EU passports) to sports events in the EU. The EU regulation in question requires a health certificate from an official veterinarian but how these rules are applied in practice varies.Hence the purpose of this paper is to investigate a new area of EU sport law, which seems to have been neglected and remained in the shadow of other sports: that of the European horse world. In short, this paper examines an area, which has thus far not gained much attention in the discussion of sport and the Union.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Sports Law Journal
Issue number1
Early online date29 Mar 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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