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Top Hats Off, Protective Headgear On for All Dressage Competitors

Top hats will be outlawed in all dressage competitions as of Jan. 1, 2021 and protective headgear only will be required, thus apparently ending a debate that was renewed recently by many senior riders seeking to keep the tradition alive.

The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) Board made the decision Thursday not to reopen the issue at the governing body’s General Assembly and to implement the protective headgear requirement as of Jan. 1, 2021.

The General Assembly voted a year ago to extend mandatory protective headgear across most international horse sports under its control, but gave dressage a one-year exemption so top hats could be worn only to Jan. 1, 2021.

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