Equestrian-Australian show-jumper Rose stood down for wearing mankini costume


FILE PHOTO: Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Equestrian - Eventing - Jumping Individual - Final - Equestrian Park - Tokyo, Japan - August 2, 2021. Shane Rose of Australia on his horse Virgil competes. REUTERS/Molly Darlington/File photo

(Reuters) - Australian three-time Olympic equestrian medallist Shane Rose has been stood down from competition for wearing an orange mankini at a closed event in Wallaby Hill near Sydney, Equestrian Australia said on Sunday.

A silver medallist in team eventing at the 2008 Beijing and 2020 Tokyo Games, the 50-year-old apologised on Facebook, saying he did not intend to offend anyone.

Rose is hoping the incident does not affect his preparations for the Paris Olympics, which start on July 26.

Riders were encouraged to wear fancy dress at last weekend's event and Rose had three costumes for the showjumping — an orange mankini inspired by the comedy film "Borat", a Duffman beer suit from "The Simpsons" and a gorilla suit.

"With a bit of luck this will all be a bit of a laugh in a few days and we can all move on," Rose told The Sydney Morning Herald. "For my sake, I am hoping I have done nothing too bad because I have an important competition in the next few weeks."

Equestrian Australia expect a resolution next week.

"Concerns were raised to Equestrian Australia and the Government sporting agencies regarding Shane Rose's attire...," the sport's governing body said in a statement.

"Equestrian Australia has an obligation to address these concerns and is currently reviewing the matter.

"Shane has not been suspended or sanctioned ... He has been stood down from competition for several days while the review is carried out. This does not affect his ability to train or otherwise participate in the sport."

(Reporting by Pearl Josephine Nazare in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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