USA Olympic Rider Adrienne Lyle, Under-25 Rider Kaitlin Blythe Provisionally Suspended For Prohibited Substance Found in Horses

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Adrienne Lyle riding Horizon at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival after the horse’s first CDI victory. © 2017 Ken Braddick/


WELLINGTON, Florida, April 6, 2017–United States Olympic team rider Adrienne Lyle was notified Thursday she was provisionally suspended for two months for the finding of a banned substance in the horse Horizon. Under-25 rider Kaitlin Blythe was also provisionally suspended for the identical substance, an additive widely used by American feed manufacturers, found in Don Principe.

The banned substance is Ractopamine that the International Equestrian Federation FEI) said was found in both horses during testing at a CDI3* at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida Feb. 8-12.

The substance is a supplement manufactured by the well-known drug company Eli Lilly used to promote growth in animals and is widely used by companies manufacturing feed for animals in the United States, Canada and many other countries.

Adrienne, 32 years old and based in Wellington in winter and Sun Valley, Idaho in summer, told she was “devastated” by both the finding and the penalty that is provisional but starts immediately. She is a highly admired team rider who has surrounded herself with top professionals with unimpeachable reputations in the sport.

The FEI Tribunal will make a final decision as to whether to maintain the ban for two months or make another finding, such as contaminated feed.

In addition to banned and controlled substances, the FEI has adopted the concept of Specified Substances that are described as “more likely to have been ingested by horses for a purpose other than the enhancement of sport performance, for example, through a contaminated food substance.”

“We are making every effort to find out how this could have happened,” said Adrienne who rode Wizard for the United States at the 2012 Olympics and the 2014 World Games.

“I fully support the FEI’s clean sport policy and am always committed to making sure no prohibited substances ever get near my horses.”

If the suspension is maintained, Adrienne would have to scrap plans to compete at a CDI3* in Tryon, North Carolina later this month seeking to qualify for the national championships in Gladstone, New Jersey in May.

The substance was found in the 10-year-old mare Horizon (Hotline x Don Schufro) that Adrienne competed at national small tour last year and began competing in CDIs this year

She and Horizon started in CDIs 10 times at Prix St. Georges and Intermediate 1 during the three months of the Florida winter circuit.

In addition to Horizon, Adrienne competes the American syndicate-owned Salvino, a 10-year-old stallion, that she rode at Grand Prix in their first CDI at the end of March and planned to take to Tryon seeking a second qualifying score for the national championships.

The horse Don Principe, an 18-year-old Hanoverian stallion ridden by Kaitlin Blythe of Rougemont, North Carolina in Under-25 CDIs in Wellington this winter, including the U25 Nations Cup at the end of March.

The horse was previously competed at Grand Prix by James Koford.

The same substance, Ractopamine, was found in Don Principe during the same CDI Feb. 8-12.

Kaitlin, 24 years old, competed as a junior and young rider in the North American Junion & Young Rider Championships before moving up to the Under-25 ranks with Don Principe.