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USA Equestrian (formerly American Horse Shows Association), the national
equestrian federation for the United States, today issued an email
communication to its board from United States Equestrian Team (USET)
president Armand Leone, Jr. It also issued its response to Dr. Leone, as
well as the stipulation entered into before the United States Olympic
Committee (USOC) between both parties on October 19. The USET commenced
litigation against USA Equestrian in February 2001, attempting to take over
the role of equestrian sport's National Governing Body (NGB) through a
formal challenge before the USOC of USA Equestrian's historic status.

A special teleconference meeting of its Board of Directors has been
scheduled by USA Equestrian for Tuesday, November 13, at Noon Eastern time.
Arrangements are being made for media and public participation.

Dr. Leone criticizes USA Equestrian and its president, Alan F. Balch, for
refusing to withdraw a motion "seeking relief in aid of litigant's rights"
pending in New Jersey Superior Court since October 3, to apply the Court's
ruling of August 16 to USET's attempted corporate acts since then. However,
USA Equestrian attorneys point out that the stipulation agreed to by all
parties during the latest mediation includes no reference to pending
litigation, including the New Jersey motion which was pending at the time
the renewed mediation began. The officers of USA Equestrian, on advice of
counsel, unanimously agreed that the motion ought to be postponed if
possible, but not withdrawn. In addition to Balch, they are Judith Werner,
Linda Allen, Kathy Meyer, David O'Connor, and Stephen O. Hawkins.

An email from Leone to Balch on October 21, when the mediation was underway,
states: "I would suggest that, provided I can get the USET board to agree
in principle to pursue this solution, you offer to have your NJ attorneys
'carry the motion' until the next motion day (the Friday two weeks after
10/26) and if we are close to resolution for another 2 weeks so we can sign
definitive documents. Carrying the motion does not dismiss it, it simply
just says that the parties agree to have the judge decide it at the later
date. Politically it is important for you to make the gesture. You should
fully expect a significant number of trustees to insist that you dismiss the
NJ lawsuit in its entirety; however, this is an answer that I can buy time
without jeopardizing your position (whatever that may or may not be) before
the Court and can be described as a step on the way to dismissal pending

USA Equestrian complied with this request from Dr. Leone. Although the
Court initially denied it, and the USET refused to join with USA Equestrian
attorneys in seeking further consideration, Balch authorized his counsel to
try again, unilaterally, given the importance of the settlement. The judge
agreed on the afternoon of Thursday, October 25, to postpone hearing the
motion until November 16, as Dr. Leone had asked. However, the USET board
of trustees had met on Wednesday, October 24, and applied new conditions for
settlement discussions to continue, specifically the requirement that the
motion be withdrawn, not postponed as originally suggested by Dr. Leone on
behalf of USET.
"While we recognize that everyone in the sport is dismayed by all this waste
of resources on legal wrangling, as we are," said Balch, "the principles of
good faith, fairness, and good corporate governance are critical to uphold.
The USET's leadership is now apparently attempting to personalize the issue
even more than in the past, and draw attention away from its own conduct.
Fortunately, the communications from Dr. Leone, and the stipulation, as well
as the New Jersey legal documents, speak for themselves much louder than I
ever could. When our board meets in a very short time, we will welcome the
opportunity to discuss all this at length, publicly, and provide the full
story to anyone interested."

The USOC board of directors met in Salt Lake City, Utah, on October 27 and
28, 2001. Its General Counsel, Jeff Benz, entered the stipulation between
the parties into the official record, and made it available publicly. He
reiterated that absent a settlement between USET and USA Equestrian, the
decision of the hearing panel that had met in Austin, Texas, earlier in the
month, would be issued in writing, and approval of that decision would be
obtained from the USOC board by mail ballot.

Balch commented, "I made it clear to Mr. Benz on behalf of our membership,
as I have so often, that we are still entirely willing, as we have been for
years, to reach a settlement through mediation. We made that abundantly
clear in the hearing and in all the months leading up to it, as well. We
sometimes forget, but we never should, that none of this litigation has been
welcomed by us. Every penny we have spent has been only in defense of our
organization, and the historic governance structure of the sport that has
served us well for over 50 years."

All documents referred to above are available at

USA Equestrian Inc., as the National Equestrian Federation of the U.S., is the regulatory body for the Olympic and World Championship sports of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, reining, show jumping, and vaulting, as well as 19 other breeds and disciplines of equestrian competition. As the country's largest multi-breed organization, the Federation has over 77,000 members and recognizes more than 2,800 competitions nationwide each year. It governs all aspects of competition, including educating and licensing all judges, stewards, and technical delegates who officiate at these shows.

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