Englishwoman Christy McLean is fond of equestrian sports. She was going to compete in the British Dressage Club. McLean, 31, was going to compete in a team event called Team Quest, which requires four horses. However, suddenly one of them limped and needed a replacement.

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McLean then asked the organizers to allow her to enter a mule named Wallace the Magnificent. But she was refused – according to the rules of the club, only horses and ponies can participate in competitions.

“Except for the big ears, for me personally, there is no difference with the horse,” said a disappointed McLean.

According to her friend Leslie Radcliffe, who also works with Wallace, he is highly trainable and has even competed in unofficial competitions.

“When the British Dressage Club said that only horses or ponies were mentioned in their rule book, I was very upset. Wallace is not a zebra. He is very smart. McLean said.

She argued that the stubbornness of mules was a cliché, and Wallace quickly understood all the rules of dressage. The mule, by the way, has a difficult fate. He is 11 years old and used to live in Ireland. However, the peasants there were unhappy that Wallace was eating grass and flowers in the fields. As a result, the mule was taken under its guardianship by the Society for the Protection of Animals and transported to England, to the county of Devon.

This story was written about in newspapers and on the Internet, and it suddenly received quite a lot of publicity. Equestrian enthusiasts from all over the world began to express support for McLean and demand that the British Club change the rules and allow Wallace to compete. For example, in the USA there are no restrictions in this sense and mules can participate in tournaments along with horses and ponies.

Under severe pressure, the British Dressage Club was forced to back down. At a specially assembled meeting, Wallace was equalized in rights with horses.

“After consultation with the International Federation (FEI), our board has decided to harmonize our rules with the international ones, based on the same wording. The FEI rules state that a horse also means a pony or any other representative of this species. This definition allows Mules to participate in tournaments on a par with horses, and our rules will be amended accordingly,” the club said in a statement.

“We are delighted that our attention has been brought to this situation and that our rules have now been aligned with those of the international federation. We are pleased to welcome Wallace and his comrades to our ranks,” said Jason Brautigem, Executive Director of the British Dressage Club.

“Wallace’s dressage success is amazing. He really does it at ease. Wallace is always calm and graceful. He just loves this sport,” said McLean pleased.

Another bastion of British tradition has fallen.