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View Full Version : Spinoff-Why is it so much more expensive to show here than in Europe



crestline
Sep. 10, 2009, 11:57 AM
This is a spinoff from the thread asking about buying horses in the US. It is mentioned in that thread a couple times about how much more cost effective to show in Europe than in the US. My friend from Germany and I we discussing this last week so it's been on my mind ever since. The numbers are WILDLY different and all the shows they go to in Germany are sanctioned.

We are a breeding farm that spends a ton of time developing horses properly with correct basics and nice miles but we find, especially with the poor economy driving horse priced down, that it seems like the money spent on putting miles on green show horses is just money out that may have no hope of coming back. We do hit schooling shows to keep costs down but it's nice to have fancy youngsters be seen by bigger regional trainers like we can do when at the A shows. That is the target market for many of our homebreds so it's nice to bring them to the venues and people that we hope will eventually own them.

So why is it that our shows are so much more costly...what are we doing wrong. And I'm not talking about hotels, travel, day fees, trainer costs...just the costs of the shows. Where is the huge difference in costs coming from?? Does anyone know?

Showjumper28
Sep. 10, 2009, 12:01 PM
Because our shows, in general, are not sponsered. We run our shows typically on entry fees, so there fore the cost of showing is high since we are footing the bill.

MustangSally00
Sep. 10, 2009, 12:05 PM
I agree with the above and wanted to add that I believe that Europe still has a horsier culture. Something closer to what it would have been 50 years ago or so here. It seems to me that there are more not only more shows, but more people who keep their own horses, trailer themselves to shows, do their own work, etc. which cuts down on costs.

So in my eyes, the culture difference has a lot to do with it.

gasrgoose
Sep. 10, 2009, 01:12 PM
Because our shows, in general, are not sponsered. We run our shows typically on entry fees, so there fore the cost of showing is high since we are footing the bill.

Do you mean sponsored by a corporation? For example rather than the Atlanta Fall Classic we might have the GPA fall classic or the WEF remnamed the Antares winter Series? Have shows in Europe always been sponsored?

Hauwse
Sep. 10, 2009, 04:16 PM
Part of it is the same reason their breeding programs are successful.... government subsidies. Here USEF gets some funding from the U.S. Olympic committee, but none from the U.S. government.

Another part is going to be the same answer you are going to get for why we buy over there.... location. If we could pack all of our shows into the area of Ohio, Kentucky, and Illinois it would be pretty much the same as showing in western Europe.

Add in the fact that equestrian events are much more popoular there, imagine gettting 50,000 people a day at your bigger shows here (only show like that in North America is SM, and they cannot sustain that over the entire show, nor do I think they bring in those numbers), and calculate $5 a pop for these attendees, well you can see the financial benefit to having a show, and how the cost to participate could be subsidized.

I would also have to say that who even knows the BM's and AW's here? Only the people who are involved with horses. In Europe the top riders are like rock stars. That is in large part because the whole industry is an inportant part of their economy etc., and there is huge participation at a recoginized level.

Here, those outside the industry do not even perceive it as an industry, even though it is a huge industry, 112.1 billion GDP, bigger than the motion picture industry, railroad transportation, furniture and fixtures manufacturing and tobacco product manufacturing.
The perception here is that it is not a sport, but an activity for the rich.

july
Sep. 10, 2009, 04:30 PM
Because of the milage rule which the USEF has created, allowing for a monopoly - horse shows have locked in dates each year and there are not allowed to be other rated shows within the area. Shows know there are no other competition oportunities - if someone wants to qualify for the medal finals, etc then they *must* show there - or drive hours away to go somewhere else. It's snowballed worse and worse over the years into what it is today.

I've lived, worked and shown in five different countries -- US, Belgium, France, Netherlands, and now Germany. I could go on and on about this stupid rule.

This weekend for example I can choose from over 5 different shows which are all within 1hr drive from my stable, many only 15 minutes away. I choose based on footing and classes offered for my horses. All of these shows are overseen by the German Federation (FN).


Here, those outside the industry do not even perceive it as an industry, even though it is a huge industry, 112.1 billion GDP, bigger than the motion picture industry, railroad transportation, furniture and fixtures manufacturing and tobacco product manufacturing.
The perception here is that it is not a sport, but an activity for the rich.

Interesting.

poltroon
Sep. 10, 2009, 04:37 PM
Do you mean sponsored by a corporation? For example rather than the Atlanta Fall Classic we might have the GPA fall classic or the WEF remnamed the Antares winter Series? Have shows in Europe always been sponsored?

Think more like the Coca-Cola Fall Classic or the Pfizer Winter Series. Corporations marketing to the general public, not just to horse people.

Addison
Sep. 10, 2009, 07:12 PM
I wonder how much different the charges for coaching, day care, braiding, etc...that we incur here in the U.S. at each show, are when compared to those fees charged in Europe.

RyuEquestrian
Sep. 10, 2009, 08:17 PM
I'll report back on this thread. I leave tomorrow to go ride in England and Italy :-) My understanding is that the stable jockeys/grooms braid- so there aren't "Braiders" like there are here. But I'll look up show fees and training fees out of curiosity and report back.

quick&careful
Sep. 10, 2009, 08:39 PM
Long story short is in Europe "horses" is a professional sport and in America it is an amateur sport.
When people say that showing horses in Europe is cheaper they have to understand what is different, and that they are not comparing apples to apples. All of these young horses getting "miles" in Europe are going to local 1 day shows either once or twice per week but it's not like going to HITS or Wellington. Instead, it's like going to your local down the road barn or field where they either have a grass ring or a small ring but normally with great ground - that's the difference. These small local shows - where classes are offered from 1.00m up to 1.35m - 1.40m even have entry costs of 10 Euros and prize money of 50 Euros to the winner. You ship in, jump 1 round after being in a tiny schooling area filled with 30+ horses, grab a beer, and go home. It's not like here where you have beautiful big uncrowded schooling areas, big arenas, and all that jazz. Instead the local kids who ride at this riding school are helping set jumps, serving food, helping park lorries, and running the show. it's very basic and back yard but with decent course designers, good footing, and shockingly organized operations despite the normal young free help.
The thing is horses learn even more in this situation because there is no time for babying. A young jumper is basically thrown off a cliff to see if it can fly and mostly they do. The 5 year olds jump 1.10 at the beginning of the year and 1.25+ by year end if they are any good. And you can do this because of so many options for training that is available locally, not to mention the quality of the horses being so high. It's just a different sport there. it's about producing horses and not about pleasing or even training the people riding the horses.
But as for why america can't do the same? Maybe they can. If people would start holding more practice type shows at their stables that would be a start. Sadly though that's unlikely as clients will not likely be willing to pay to go jump down the street at another stable, like they would to go pay at a big show so trainers have no incentive to go a cheaper way. And to attempt to compete with Europe and get a horse mileage as a young horse you have no chance. Just compare the cost of shoes - right there you know they have you...
Best of luck!

DancingQueen
Sep. 10, 2009, 08:48 PM
I can't speak for mainland Europe but the system in Sweden is very much based on volonteer work.

Every rider has to be a member of a recogniced club in good standings (eg paying their dues) of the Swedish federation in order to be licenced to show.

Every club needs to host at least one or two horse shows every year to keep their good standings, it can be small C-rated day shows or could be A-rated or championships, you could do more or just the bare minimum.
The shows are mostly run by members of the club. Dads and brothers set jumps, mothers and grandmothers work the show office and food stand etc. This keeps the overhead down.
Also the shows are not run mainly to make money. Some money will be made and it usually goes towards renovating the warm room or new jumps etc that will benefit everybody, not one person. Riders from the hosting club will usually get free entry fees as pay for their families work! and some clubs make it mandatory for showing members to help out at shows (or send mom or dad in). Many clubs will pay for an interested member to get certified as course designer or judge and that member will usually set courses or judge for free.

Price money are generally much smaller but then again, so are the entry fees. Bigger classes will be sponsored but you could (at least 10 years ago) pay $40 to do a 1.50 (4'9-5'0) biggest class on most national shows. Win maybe $400 bucks which doesn't make anybody rich but you would also not loose a lot of money if you didn't win. Smaller jumper classes level 0-level 6 could be $20-25 to enter or sometimes even less with price money from $50-$100 maybe $200 at a big show with good sponsors.

4 and 5-year olds are not allowed to go against the clock and compete in a sect B (same course but clearround trip). 6-year olds have the choice to do Sect B or go with the big guys. Qualifyers for 4,5 and 6 year old championships run as a number of clean trips in Sect B. A Sect B will be run for all classes up to Level 6 and is usually cheaper to enter since there's no price money.

We also have a few big FEI shows each year that also takes a lot of help from volonteers. If you are jump crew you get prime seating, not ot mention setting courses with the best designers in the world!
Even parking or whatever for a few hours a day would get you free tickets so it's a pretty popular way for horse crazy people to get in.

There was a few attempts in NJ to start a league of unrated jumper shows with low entry fees and no price money but they fell through.

I suggest trying to get it running in your area. Contact a few barns in your area and suggest taking turns hosting open schooling shows for practice. It can be as real as you want it, loudspeakers, foodstand and even judging and ribbons or simply offering schooling trips, open ring 2,6 from 8-9am 2,9 from 9-10am etc.

It's a great way to get babys used to shipping and showing before spending a lot of money.

DancingQueen
Sep. 10, 2009, 09:25 PM
#quick and careful
Good post.

Also even most "amateur" riders at home will have their own barn, a few stalls in the back and an outdoor. They own a two horse (sometimes old) that they pull behind their Volvo combi. They drive to a group lesson once a week during off season and practice at home. They do their own grooming and their own braiding (if they want to). Walk their own courses, keep track of their own schedules and curse themselves out if they oversleep and miss a class. If you're from Europe and ever wake up in the freezing living compartment of your truck because they are calling your name over the loudspeakers as the next one to enter the course you know what kinds of words I'm thinking about here! LOL!

There's no shipping fees, no trainer fees and no board to pay. Most people are on a budget and would never dream of dropping the kind of coin we do on a show!

Even for pros the cost is different, a lot depends on the cost of owning a barn. $400,000 can get you 20 stalls 100 acres and an indoor close to all the good shows. You give lessons for cash but your clients ship in. You pay your 2 grooms $500-$1000 (showgroom) a month and feed, hay shoeings etc is a lot cheaper too.

My pricing might be a little off since it's been 10 years but even full training board with a World Cup rider could be had for $1000/month back then.
The cost to be a pro is cheaper and a lot of pros have some kind of endorsement deal helping them out.

Although there's nothing like WEF (we do have the Sunshine tour though :-) most showgrounds have as q&c said good footing and are well run. No hunters though only jumpers and most shows are one ring only.

There's no differentiation between people. You show over height and that's it. Most shows will have 3 or 4 classes in a day. Maybe 0.90, 1.00, 1.00 and 1.10. Maybe 1.20, 1.30 and 1,40 and so on. Classes may have 20 entries they may have 80 or even 150 entries! Always posted order though since it's just the one ring going and everybody rund their own race there's never any conflicts.

There's plenty of smaller shows close by, C-rated with anything from 0.90 to 1.30 Sat and Sunday, no stabling. B rated for classes 1.20-1.45 will usually go Fri-Sunday stabling might be $50 and usually inclueds first bags of shavings) and same with A-rated 1.30-1.60.
You never stay longer at a show. There's a different show everyweekend and you go to a show that fits you as opposed to following your trainer around to week-2 week long shows that has every division.
If your trainer is there he might give you a pointer or two or he might just watch you go if he has the time. Most often you report back at your next lesson if you had an issue or if you want to tell him how well you did after his last piece of advice!

Addison
Sep. 11, 2009, 07:38 AM
I often find that the check I write to my coach for services rendered at an A-AA show is larger than the one I write to the horse show itself for entries, stall and shavings. It is nice to have the help of a groom, braiding arranged for, horses fed and stall mucked but it is very expensive and that in and of itself limits the number of A-AA shows that I can do.

Many show barns do not give you the option of doing your own work. If I had that option I would be happy to do it and put the savings towards a couple more quality shows.

My cousin shows in England and she was shocked to hear about the charges we incur for services we receive when we show with a show barn.

I am sure that has alot to do with why it is a lot cheaper to get some quality miles on a youngster in Europe. That fact alone reduces the sum the owner/breeder is trying to re-coup as they market a young horse in Europe.

CrazyDog
Sep. 11, 2009, 07:42 AM
This thread is really interesting. I've shown in Canada, in Dubai, and now in Scotland. Canada was certainly the most expensive.

In the UK, shows pay out prize money relative to the number of people in the class (one place for every 5 entries) so a show with low entries pays out less in prize money. If a class is sponsored, the prize money always goes to 5th.

Show in the UK (4 hour drive from barn)

Petrol - £150
Entry fees for two horses (two classes a day for two days) - £145
First Aid fee - £4
Stabling for two horses for the weekend - £40-£70
Shavings and haylage - £45
Electrical hook-up for trailer - £30
Food - £60

TOTAL - £474-504 (~$900)

Show in Canada

Trailering - $500
Training - $150
Admin - $50
Entries - $240
Stabling - $300
Shavings - $30
Hotel - $150
Food - $150

TOTAL - $1570

Both are rated shows, but I always did my own care and braiding in Canada. I imagine this is about the lowest anyone could expect to pay for a two day rated show.

The end result is that I do more shows in the UK, although with friends helping me rather than a trainer!

Thomas_1
Sep. 11, 2009, 07:56 AM
What makes you believe it is actually cheaper in Europe???

I've not seen anything that does a price comparison.

Can you point me in that direction?

Addison
Sep. 11, 2009, 08:59 AM
I can do my own price comparison when I look at the post just above yours. Right down to the trailer hook up- it looks cheaper to me.

Thomas_1
Sep. 11, 2009, 09:09 AM
I can do my own price comparison when I look at the post just above yours. Right down to the trailer hook up- it looks cheaper to me.

I don't see how anyone would be content to rely on that:


Aside from the fact that you can't make that assumption based on just one example
That example is flawed
No direct comparisons - like comparing apples with pears!
No distances quoted
no comparitor for vehicle
Not even compared the same things! Hotel versus a trailer!!??
Re the UK prices..... no sense of reality! e.g. food £60 at a show!?
they must be eating caviarre and smoked salmon!! What is a first aid fee??
Why is there a trainer in the Canadian comparison but not in the UK one???
FACT: Petrol is cheaper in the USA.
That comparison is actually Canada not the USA - but it's flawed and not evidence so it doesn't really matter that much!

3eme
Sep. 11, 2009, 09:25 AM
Long story short is in Europe "horses" is a professional sport and in America it is an amateur sport.
When people say that showing horses in Europe is cheaper they have to understand what is different, and that they are not comparing apples to apples. All of these young horses getting "miles" in Europe are going to local 1 day shows either once or twice per week but it's not like going to HITS or Wellington. Instead, it's like going to your local down the road barn or field where they either have a grass ring or a small ring but normally with great ground - that's the difference. These small local shows - where classes are offered from 1.00m up to 1.35m - 1.40m even have entry costs of 10 Euros and prize money of 50 Euros to the winner. You ship in, jump 1 round after being in a tiny schooling area filled with 30+ horses, grab a beer, and go home. It's not like here where you have beautiful big uncrowded schooling areas, big arenas, and all that jazz. Instead the local kids who ride at this riding school are helping set jumps, serving food, helping park lorries, and running the show. it's very basic and back yard but with decent course designers, good footing, and shockingly organized operations despite the normal young free help.


I have to disagree with your assessment. We DO indeed have "A" show equivalents -- it is NOT all down the road, local stuff with 30+ horses in the schooling ring. We have shows of the same caliber as Wellington etc : Chantilly, Fontainebleau, Villeneuve Loubet, just to name a few. Not to mention that we have some fabulous CSI shows (with divisions for both pro and ammie) that are hardly backyard venues!

And prize money, even at the smaller shows, is way better than the 50 euros that you mentioned. On average, if an amateur wins a class, they take home maybe 100 - 250 euros. For pros, it is usually is more like ten times that. Can be more, can be less. But the only time you would get a 50 euro win would be for a dinky 1.0 class at a smaller show.

I am not sure where you are getting your info from, but it is a bit misleading. I promise you, I do not spend my weekends in a dinky field in someone's backyard.

I don't think that the difference is in the quality of shows, it is more in cultural differences of what Americans are willing to pay vs. Europeans. We do not have the same billing culture --- braiding, day care, coaching at the show, and all the little extras are not standard fare over here. I once explained the concept of a 'day fee' to a coach friend of mine, and he thought it was quite funny. On the amateur level, grooms are pretty rare. For pros, it's generally (but not always) seen only at the higher level, especially those that spend their time on the road doing int'l shows.

Entry fees are also a fraction of what you pay in the USA. However, they are not 10 euros, as you started. More like 20 - 50 euros per class for national shows. More for CSI. Prize money is usually generated from sponsors. If none can be found, the show organizer puts up the prize money and hopes to get enough entries to cover the prize money + some profit.

One thing where you are right is that most of the 'staff' at a show (outside of the officials) are volunteers : people from the barn that is organizing the show, for example, or even a class from an agricultural high school, etc. That can be found at both larger and smaller venues, and is a cultural thing.

Trakehner
Sep. 11, 2009, 09:51 AM
I recall lots of volunteers, pony clubbers and ex-riders supporting the shows in England...plus sales going on, draft horses, pony classes and even driving at the bigger events. Lots of places to shop and food stalls too at even the half-decent-sized events. There was stuff to see and do for observers....plus good beer and wine tents.

I was always amazed how nicely we were treated at the shows...great barn managers and show secretaries. Lots of crappy weather though.

Costs are going up and when one really big show was cancelled last year due to flooding of the venue, the show kept the money from both the riders and the vendors...this had a bunch of play in Horse & Hound forums. So, it's not all sweetness & Light no matter where you go.

Jsalem
Sep. 11, 2009, 10:11 AM
I can attest to the "culture" comment from an earlier poster. We Americans have become very spoiled to services and convenience and we're shackled to a certain level of "quality" due to our "sue happy" society. In my area, the farm shows aren't nearly as popular as they once were. Exhibitors require stabling (not an area to park the trailer to which the horse is tied), they require multiple rings, lunging areas, covered arenas, etc. All that costs money.

When I first started in business, there was no "day care" fee. Students and parents pitched in and wrapped, set-up, mucked, etc. To be honest, it was a crappy system, because I worked my tail off and there were many students that didn't pull their weight. It was extremely unfair to me. When I started providing daycare (and charging for it), my clients gladly paid for the service, because it freed them up to attend to other matters. Parents and kids are busy these days. It's not as though they have the time to hang out at the barn and learn to do for themselves- they have tons of homework and projects (the likes of which we NEVER had), IEA shows (to build that all important college resume), SAT prep courses (ditto), etc, etc, etc.

Until we Americans SLOW DOWN and get off the "Achievement Train", Horse Shows will continue to be big business. They're not for fun here, they're serious business. Which is silly really- I mean it's not as though a child's horse show career is going to change the course of history...... I make my living teaching riding and coaching at horseshows. I get it, but the parents kind of lose their minds. For the fun of it? Are you kidding?

Addison
Sep. 11, 2009, 10:50 AM
Thomas !

I am not trying to have a contentious debate.

I just think that prices and fees in th U.S have really gotten out of hand.

It is hard to argue the numbers when all you have to do is look in the prizelist of an A-AA horse show.

findeight
Sep. 11, 2009, 10:54 AM
Our shows offer many levels and offer HUNTERS, non exsistent in Europe for the most part. No Big Eq and not alot of Eq period and if you cannot get around at least 3'6", you are out of luck.

Plus, distances are great here with most states and even some counties bigger then many whole countries. That cuts down on an available volunteer base...oh, sure, you get some willing. When their kid is showing. Few are willing to come in Thursday morning and work 12 hours a day until the last check out at 9pm Sunday-for free. Even fewer have the expertise to manage a 1000 entry plus show running in 4 to 12 rings with 4 to 12 judges that need to be paid and a ring crew willing to sit there dawn to dusk all week.

Management here has to pay to rent the facilities and that is ranging from 5k to the vicinity 100k for a week long major venue-with no government support on the liability front, they have to buy insurance. Most of the shows cannot charge admission because nobody will come...or they will just go in the back way. No sponsered classes, no prize money offered.

IMO there is no comparison because it is NOT the same product offered under the same guidlines in the same type place. It's just different.

Maybe you can say our shows are too big and try to offer too much but...you want them to drop your division and tell you to go find someplace else?

curlykarot
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:20 AM
At H/J shows the ring crew is paid?!?! Seriously? That amazes me. I understand that eventing is different from H/J but every event runs on volunteers - for everything - jump crew, hospitality, jump judges (sit out in a field at one jump all day to mark if jumped clear or not), ring stewards etc. Maybe if there were more volunteers at H/J shows the entries might be cheaper!

Janet
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:23 AM
The OP was asking about "show fees ONLY". Not food, transport, trainer fees.

On that basis, the UK vs Canadian entry fees are roughly comparable ( £145 + £4 vs $240 + $50)

There is a big difference in stabling
( £40-£70 vs $300)

The rest are NOT show fees.

Janet
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:41 AM
At H/J shows the ring crew is paid?!?! Seriously? That amazes me. I understand that eventing is different from H/J but every event runs on volunteers - for everything - jump crew, hospitality, jump judges (sit out in a field at one jump all day to mark if jumped clear or not), ring stewards etc. Maybe if there were more volunteers at H/J shows the entries might be cheaper!

1- Yes, if H/J shows ran on volunteers, H/J shows would be cheaper.

2- But the ring crew at a big US H/J shows really ARE professionals at what they do. If you are used to Eventing, you would be amazed at how quickly and efficiently they can change courses ( a lot more than just changing heights).

3- Most US Events run over a few days, primarily on the weekend. Even so, it is a constant struggle to recruit volunteers.

4- The big US H/J shows run over a week or more, including week days, and run multiple rings. I cannot imagine trying to recruit enough volunteers for a big US H/J show.

quick&careful
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:48 AM
Hey 3eme,

I think you are misinterpreting what I was saying. I haven't learned how to do all of the fancy cut and paste in a blue box thing yet so let me do my best to explain my post.

Of course I recognize that shows in Europe can even be far far nicer then Wellington - look at the Global Tour - fantastic in every way at every venue.
But I am referring to the shows where most people are going to get the youngsters "mileage" that everyone has been referring to. Those shows are the reason that Europeans have the advantage in the horse market. They can give a horse tons of experience at a young age for barely any costs.

And everyone goes to these shows - even the top riders. My experience is only in Holland and Germany but it's normal to go to a "potatoe show" (in a field somewhere or at a local stable who holds events) on say a Wednesday with the young horses before flying out to a CSI5* on Thursday.

Of course there are also happy mediums. Look at the Sunshine Tour in Spain for instance. 1400 Euros or so for 5 weeks including stabling with 5-7yr old divisions. That's about a week in wellington.

So 3eme - what I am saying is in Europe in order to get these horses experience you do not HAVE to go to an "A" show to jump a proper course because you have these GREAT smaller options where a horse can jump for 10 -12 euros on proper footing with a proper course and get a high quality education. That is what is lacking in the USA.

And if you want to check on those entry fees you can go to
www.startlijsten.nl and look up a few shows. maybe some are 12 euros. As I said i am not referring to the big shows, just the ones where most horse dealers are sending their riders to in order to get their horses experience.

Further questions?

Janet
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:51 AM
I have been told that dressage judges in Europe are NOT paid.

I do not know if that is true for jumper judges as well. If so, it would be a significant difference.

Further, I expect that the competition resulting from the lack of a "mileage rule" drives down costs.

Another key factor is probably sponsorship. That is, for instance, often cited as the reason for the big diference in fees for AQHA fees vs recognized H/J fees.

poltroon
Sep. 11, 2009, 11:58 AM
In Europe it sounds like they naturally have many venues with good footing, near centers of population (at least horse population).

Here in California, the only decent footing is man-made, with material brought in and engineered at considerable expense. That in turn has to be protected with regular maintenance, and it requires water, etc. And with land so expensive and being taken for development, it's plain expensive to have any place with a riding area on it.

Since our riding areas are far apart, it's not so easy to have community volunteers running an event - they are a half hour to an hour away by car instead of five minutes. In Europe, the average person works fewer hours, leaving more time for leisure and volunteer work. It all adds up.

Smiles
Sep. 11, 2009, 12:11 PM
Show expense at a typical A show in the midwest: Basic = no trainer ad ons: Advance = trainer ad ons. Also note this would be for your average amatuer adult rider. Prices will go up for more advanced levels.

Hunter version:
Basic package: Stall $225/ Office fees $95 (which includes medic fee/drug fee/night watch fee/tax)/one division a/a hunters $175/shavings @ $9x8= $72/braiding $45x2=$90 Grand total before horse steps hoof into ring = $657

Advance package: Stall $225 + tack stall split .50 stall so $225 + 112 = $337 however this number can go up or down depending on the number of horses in the split. Add everything else up from the basic package and you get $769.

Jumper version:
Basic package: Stall $225/ office fee $95 + nom fee $175/child/adult 3.6ft two classics/one regular class $100x2+$40=$240/shavings $9x8=$72 Grand total before horse steps hoof into ring $807

Advanced package: add tack stall split to total and it comes out to $919.

Now can we have someone from europe do a similar comparision??? :winkgrin: Then maybe we could get an idea of the difference in price.

crestline
Sep. 11, 2009, 08:46 PM
Wow, this has been really interesting reading. Just to clarify a little my friend from Germany and I were talking about the smaller, "haul out for the weekend and school your younghorse" sort of shows. Up here we could use the bigger shows for that but maybe it's all the med fees, member fees, secretary fees, and having to pay stabling for a whole week that gets in the way. Our shows up here charge $50/day to haul in...yikes...I'd love to roll in on a baby, enter an ammy division or baby horse class and head home and maybe haul back in the next day to finish the division. It's hard when the haul in is more than the class entry. We mostly show pretty bare bones, all our own grooming, feeding, braiding, etc. Sometimes pay for a catch trainer to be eyes on the ground but often just roll on our own (it's the ex-eventer in me I think, lol)...but it still gets to be $$$$$.

I thought my friend said that lots of their classes are about $20-$25 US to enter. The last couple we've been to are more like $40 a class so that does add up.

Really interesting to see some of the comparisons.

And I agree our day fees, etc make showing really costly...with the trainer costs/grooming/day fees in the H/J world I dont actually know how any normal folks can do it! It's big bucks before you blink your eyes. Obviously that is different in Europe but even not paying those by doing everything myself our show bills get pretty darn huge.

Thomas_1
Sep. 12, 2009, 05:27 AM
Thomas !

I am not trying to have a contentious debate.

I just think that prices and fees in th U.S have really gotten out of hand.

It is hard to argue the numbers when all you have to do is look in the prizelist of an A-AA horse show.

The thread is about it being more expensive there than here though.

NOT whether prices have increased too much.

We've had one comparitor quoted and it's not valid and not even something I personally recognise.

The last show jumping we entered was August Bank Holiday and entry fees only ranged from £35 ($59) to £90 ($151) per horse per class and dependent on what class you were in.

Last one where I needed stabling the cost was £50 ($84) per horse per day (6am to 6pm).

Trailer (parking place only - no electricity available!) was £42 ($71) per day

So that means 2 horses x 2 classes x 2 day/nights (weekend show) =

Minimum of £424 up to £464 ($708 to $775)

Fuel = £5.84 ($9.75) per gallon

We don't pay people to braid unless of course you count those who employ full time grooms. If you don't then you do it yourself.

Minimum wage for an adult is £5.73 ($9.57) and if you took a groom to a show then you'd be paying for full time work for the duration. Proper grooms get more than minimum wage. More like minimum £7 ($11.70) per hour.

Addison
Sep. 12, 2009, 07:25 AM
OK Thomas. So you are posting one other comparison therefore the other one is negated. I get it.

toomanyponies
Sep. 12, 2009, 08:56 AM
A client of ours who travels frequently in Europe for business just bought a 5 yr old jumper in Holland last month. She will pay 800 Euros a month for training board at a nice stable plus a 50 Euro/month fee to go to a local one day horse shows (including everything). There is NO WAY we could even come close to that rate.

findeight
Sep. 12, 2009, 12:14 PM
Couple of points here...

We have the equivalent of "potatoe" shows here as well and they are excellent places to gain mileage. Called locals. Some are pretty good with footing and courses and run 20usd a class with stalls for the weekend at 85 to 125usd. some are even single day shows. Problem here is there may not be any within an easy day's drive.

Likewise, if I wanted to volunteer at my closest AA show? It's 135 miles EACH way-with local gas prices at 2.45usd a gal. Those shows run with 7 rings, about 1200 to 1500 back numbers issued and for 5 to 6 days. There is NO WAY an all volunteer staff can get that and few would even be willing to either drive several hours and blow a tank of gas daily or pay to hotel and feed themselves.

It just cannot be compared as a level playing field because it is not.

mvp
Sep. 12, 2009, 12:41 PM
People need to realize when they are part of the problem, and do what they can to change that.

Geography in the US is an intractable problem.

The milage rule is a long-term one, but not intractable.

The broad perception in this country that horse-related sport is unsponsorable because it is the slightly suspect, very elitist province of the rich is a very old problem. People can chip away at it, if they wished.

The lack of economical 'potato shows' is a problem for some parts of the country, and some barns with rated-show-heavy schedules and not others.

Reading about ammies in Europe, I am reminded of how I did it when I was younger and making up babies. Of course we went to one-day locals shows, groomed our own and treated the shows as competitions but also just mid-terms or pop quizzes for our young ones.

This thread started with a breeder who wanted to know why she couldn't find a way to put cheap milage on her horses. She absolutely can. But to say that she must go to expensive rated shows in order to have her horses seen by the right people is to perpetuate the problem.

The problem is that the horse-buying ammy has been made into a helpless ATM machine, who can't possibly save that coin, roll up her sleeves and go to a horse show in a field by herself. The other problem is that the breeder who wants top dollar for her horses benefits from the ammy who will pay for a more experienced horse rather than looking for one with less training and a lower price tag. You can't have it both ways.

findeight
Sep. 12, 2009, 12:55 PM
Hey, guys, can we officially coin a new COTHism?

Potato(e) show?

I like it instead of all the rated/unrated/local terminology that does not relly define what the heck kind of show it is.

smm20
Sep. 12, 2009, 02:09 PM
I really wish that some of the larger (and even smaller) shows were run with a volunteer option. At large academic conferences, where registration fees can be quite high, students have the option to volunteer for reduced or even free entry. Some conferences aren't worth the time, but others are, and I could see a similar system working at a large show, especially one that runs over several days. Here is an example:

I'm showing in a five-day show. I am only riding two of these five days with some schooling on the other days. In exchange for stabling, or entry or other fairly pricy item, I agree to volunteer for 10 hours. I register for this job in advance of the registration deadline and I sign an agreement stating that if I fail to show for my volunteer hours, I will be charged a $30 fee and of course will have to pay all entries and other fees. If I work 15 or 20 hours, my compensation increases.

Of course, some people would not be able to take advantage of this option - they work weekdays, or they only go to the show on the days that they ride, or they have other things going on. But, it would be a great thing for people who live close to the show, or for more responsible teens or young amateurs who are already spending a lot of time hanging around the show grounds anyway.

This scheme also assumes that (like an academic conference) the show is paid for by the previous year's entry fees, so that if the volunteer pool is low, the show doesn't loose money. I don't think this is the way some shows work, but others, like HITS may work this way.

quick&careful
Sep. 12, 2009, 03:16 PM
Okay, do we have local shows where you can pay low entry fees though and jump real courses? When I say real I mean a 1.10 - 1.20 - 1.30 jumper course?
In my area we don't as far as I can tell. There are shows where say a professional can go and jump the low hunters, and maybe if they are lucky find a 3'6" schooling jumper course but that's the maximum. Even then when stated as 3'6" the heights tend to be lower, with the oxers looking more towards being wide verticals. It's just not the same.
Glad you all like the potatoe show reference. I believe it's because in the old days they used to plow the potatoe fields/corn fields and then hold a show there. Someone would have to look that up.

quick&careful
Sep. 12, 2009, 03:26 PM
Wait, I think I have to learn how to spell Potato. Potatoe? Potato? Oops...Me and Dan Quayle have a lot to learn.

grandprixjump
Sep. 12, 2009, 03:32 PM
Local shows would do, if there was a way to have the points and placings tracked? Right now to show your horses mileage you HAVE to go to the big shows. If someone would come up with a new SMALL SHOW organization, that tracked points of one day shows. Just offer 3-4 different show bills EVERY SHOW MUST USE, competitors use the SAME number at all shows (number assigned to horse, or rider for Eq). Points accrued by number in class and placing.
Just a thought..

DancingQueen
Sep. 12, 2009, 03:35 PM
LOL @ potato show!

mvp
Sep. 12, 2009, 09:56 PM
Answering Dancing Queen and maybe the now MIA OP:

Wait a sec. What does "milage" mean to you, and how young/green are the horses you guys are talking about?

Are these in their pre-green year? First year greens? Are you looking for a way to educate the horse or put him in front of people?

Remember that one reason horse shows are an expensive way to sell horses is because they weren't built for selling horses, but competing them.

My point is that I assume the horse's education was the goal, and that it didn't need to be done at the most expensive venue. But I'm also assuming that breeders can advertise and would-be buyers will travel to see their stock. This could be all wrong, and (big) horse shows really now by far the best way to sell horses, even the ones you'd prefer not to show.

DancingQueen
Sep. 12, 2009, 11:41 PM
Here's a pricelist for a national show in Sweden.

Stabling 4 nights ~$160 (includes first bedding) $10 per each additional bag (big bags, not the small ones we get here, 3 bags usually fill up a stall)
Electricity hook up for campers/horsevans w living area. ~$43

1.10 (Level 3.5) Entry fee ~$23
Price money $115,$85,$60,$45,$23 for the following.

1.20 (Level 5) Entry fee ~$30
Price money $142,$115,$85,$73,$60,$30 for the following

1.30 (Level 6)Entry fee ~$40
Price money $285,$215,$142,$100,$80,$45 for the following

1.40 (Level 7.5) Entry fee ~$45
Price money $715,$430,$215,$115,$90 for the following

1.50 (Level 9) Entry fee ~$50
Price money $1,435,$1,000,$715,$360,$142
(nothing mentioned but the biggest class so you will probably get a nice cooler too :-)

Sect B ( 5-6 year old horses, all classes up to level 6, clearround, no price money)
Entry fee $10

Add a one time vet fee for all horses showing, ~$15


And for a different local/regional show

A small number of stalls available, please inquire if stabling is needed $?

1.10 (Level 3.5) Entry fee ~$18.5
Entry fee back to all ribbons and they promise gift cards for a local tack shop, amount undisclosed

1.20 (Level 5) Entry fee ~$20
Price money $85,$60,$30,$20 for the following

1,25 (Level 5.5) Entry fee ~$20
Price money $100,$70,$42,$20 for the followiing

1.30 (Level 6) Entry fee ~$22
Price money $115,$85,$60,$22
(they mention ribbons etc for every class here so probably no cooler for the biggest class but you never know)

Sect B (5-6 year old horses, all classes, clearround, no pricemoney) Entry fee $10

Add a one time vet fee for all horses showing ~$15

I could also go local and show in

0.90 Entry fee ~$15 ($7 for Sect B 4-6 year olds, clear round, ribbons but no money)
Price money: No

1.00 Entry fee ~$15 ($10 for Sect B)
Price money: No

1.10 Entry fee ~$15 ($10 for sect B)
Price money: entry fees back for all ribbons


Worth noting is that we will give out ribbons and price money far past 6th or 8th place. The number of riders determins the number of ribbons.
In a class of 80 there could be money for 18th place. 80+ makes a California split and two sets of ribbons and price money will be paid out.
Some shows used to/will still stipulate 1/2 price money if entries are less then 20 (or sometimes less then 10, usually for Small ponies) for their bigger classes. This seems to be less of an issue in the last decade where we will most likely be looking at 100+ entries and worry about daylight rather then about too few entries!

Also worth noting is that a vet has to be present at all shows. All horses trot up for the vet FEI style. The vet will charge ~$750 for the day no matter how many horses he/she sees and many shows will estimate the vet fee based on hte number of entries. Both price lists mention that there will be a vet fee and that they will let riders know how much in the PM sent out to pre entered riders.
A vet fee of $10-$20 seems to be/have been the norm. This is a one time fee/horse for the day or weekend.

For example
I could go to a big show with my great horse and pay $445 for the whole thing (1.20 friday for warm up, 1.30 and 1.40 Saturday and 1.50 Sunday). If I get in the low ribbons in every class I will make $307. If I get just one in the top three instead of just the ribbons in anything but my warm-up class I'll have paid for it! if I get top 3 in the big class I eat Lobster for dinner ;-).
If i suck, I'm still only out $445 in entry fees.
I could also bring a young horse along and pay $215 total for his experience at a stay away show.

Or I could take my super crack to the regional show instead, do two classes/day 1.20 and 1.30, pay $99 for four classes and get a $240 pay back for top three across the line.
If I also bring a 3 young horses Saturday and Sunday at $40 a pop for 2 classes each/day. A vet fee of 15/horse will still only put me $25 in the hole. Providing of course that I do place top three in each class with my super crack!
If he wins any class we have Mc Donalds on the way home! If he wins the big one we'll hit Applebees or open a bottle of wine after we bed the horses down. LOL!

I could also load up every 4 and 5 year old I have (7 will fit in the horse van) and go to the local show 10 miles away. $17 a pop will put them all in a level 1 and a level 2 each. Add the vet fee ($10/horse on a cheap day for a smaller event)
Less then $200 for the truck load and I'm sure to have a very exciting day with that many babys on the truck!

I might even loose a few pounds and there's a whole other piece of savings to be had on Jenny Craig!
Then again with 7 babys at a show the cost of my prescriptioin drugs are bound to go up so never mind! LOL

Janet
Sep. 13, 2009, 12:06 AM
Local shows would do, if there was a way to have the points and placings tracked? Right now to show your horses mileage you HAVE to go to the big shows. If someone would come up with a new SMALL SHOW organization, that tracked points of one day shows. Just offer 3-4 different show bills EVERY SHOW MUST USE, competitors use the SAME number at all shows (number assigned to horse, or rider for Eq). Points accrued by number in class and placing.
Just a thought..
There are plenty of state organizations that do that. VHSA in Virginia. And a similar organization in Maryland.

Janet
Sep. 13, 2009, 12:10 AM
Okay, do we have local shows where you can pay low entry fees though and jump real courses? When I say real I mean a 1.10 - 1.20 - 1.30 jumper course?
In my area we don't as far as I can tell. There are shows where say a professional can go and jump the low hunters, and maybe if they are lucky find a 3'6" schooling jumper course but that's the maximum. Even then when stated as 3'6" the heights tend to be lower, with the oxers looking more towards being wide verticals. It's just not the same.

We have at least one around here (TWA) with jumper classes up to 4'. The organizer will look at the competance of the horses/riders entered. If she thinks they are "stretching" it will be closer to 3'9". But if, as often happens, there are a couple of Advanced level Eventers, or serious show jumpers, entered, it will be a true 4'. And even at the lower levels, the oxers are true oxers.

poltroon
Sep. 13, 2009, 01:18 AM
If you're going for milage, do the points really matter?

(That said, yes there are local circuits of that sort.)

And if you want higher classes, have you mentioned it to someone holding local shows? If you can fill a class, they may be willing. One of our local shows writes in the premium that they will run classes with higher fence heights upon request.

SkipChange
Sep. 13, 2009, 01:07 PM
Local shows would do, if there was a way to have the points and placings tracked? Right now to show your horses mileage you HAVE to go to the big shows. If someone would come up with a new SMALL SHOW organization, that tracked points of one day shows. Just offer 3-4 different show bills EVERY SHOW MUST USE, competitors use the SAME number at all shows (number assigned to horse, or rider for Eq). Points accrued by number in class and placing.
Just a thought..


There are plenty of state organizations that do that. VHSA in Virginia. And a similar organization in Maryland.

Yes Janet there are plenty of state organizations that do that. But not in Mississippi where grandprixjump lives so I can see where he's coming from. There is only one show organization in MS, and it can be quite expensive for "local" shows.

grandprixjump
Sep. 13, 2009, 01:46 PM
Yes Janet there are plenty of state organizations that do that. But not in Mississippi where grandprixjump lives so I can see where he's coming from. There is only one show organization in MS, and it can be quite expensive for "local" shows.

If you put all the state organizations in an order of offerings, and quality, I'm afraid MS would be near the bottom of the list. I think there is a Blackhole of jumpers here.... I don't even have a decent tack shop within 100 miles..

shadytrake
Sep. 13, 2009, 02:01 PM
If you put all the state organizations in an order of offerings, and quality, I'm afraid MS would be near the bottom of the list. I think there is a Blackhole of jumpers here.... I don't even have a decent tack shop within 100 miles..

You must be in the south of MS because I'm in Memphis, TN which is on the border and we have a fantastic "B" series. www.alderwoodshows.com

If you are not too far away, head up our way and check it out. They have year end points and everything. It is a fantastic way to get experience. "B" show on the Germantown Charity Horse Show grounds "A" rated facility.

One division (2 O/F classes and 1 U/S) and One warmup. Stall and tackstall split.
Show Fees: $197
Trainer Schooling: $80 (2 days)
TOTAL COST: $277

Kareen
Sep. 13, 2009, 04:09 PM
Great thread :) One thing that is slowly turning into a pet peeve with me: There we go again... Anybody who believes horseshows in Germany receive any kind of state subsidaries is welcome (I mean really really piece of cake and cup of coffee on top) to share their knowledge with our local authorities *lol*. It's tough work getting together the sponsors it takes to pull of a local show +-0
It takes a lot of telephoning, bugging, and writing and this work is mostly done by volunteers who are boardmembers with the organizing riding club. It takes about 3-4K Euro to collect from local sponsors (or bigger sponsors if you can find any) to get away with a little profit that will support the club throughout the year. There are no payments for horseshows from the state (nor are there for horse breeders) but we've had that discussed here over and over again yet there still seem to be some who know better even if they have never bred or shown here ;)

As far as expenses go I very much second the helpless ATM machine comment from an earlier poster. In a culture where you are used to being catered to if you can pay for the service why would anybody stop this attitude when it comes to showing and all of a sudden do everything on their own?
It's not like everything is pink roses over here, our club system is struggling with a lot of competion from private ventures who have more of a business approach and are turning up expectations of their clients a lot (in the long run I would think this won't do much to their benefit as a lot of the success our sporthorse breeding and riding has produced over the last couple of decades was founded on good basics being established for virtually no money within the publicly accessible system where many kids learned to ride who would otherwise never have become riders let alone good riders).

Ravencrest_Camp
Sep. 13, 2009, 05:13 PM
Great thread :) One thing that is slowly turning into a pet peeve with me: There we go again... Anybody who believes horseshows in Germany receive any kind of state subsidaries is welcome (I mean really really piece of cake and cup of coffee on top) to share their knowledge with our local authorities *lol*. It's tough work getting together the sponsors it takes to pull of a local show +-0
It takes a lot of telephoning, bugging, and writing and this work is mostly done by volunteers who are boardmembers with the organizing riding club. It takes about 3-4K Euro to collect from local sponsors (or bigger sponsors if you can find any) to get away with a little profit that will support the club throughout the year. There are no payments for horseshows from the state (nor are there for horse breeders) but we've had that discussed here over and over again yet there still seem to be some who know better even if they have never bred or shown here ;)

As far as expenses go I very much second the helpless ATM machine comment from an earlier poster. In a culture where you are used to being catered to if you can pay for the service why would anybody stop this attitude when it comes to showing and all of a sudden do everything on their own?
It's not like everything is pink roses over here, our club system is struggling with a lot of competion from private ventures who have more of a business approach and are turning up expectations of their clients a lot (in the long run I would think this won't do much to their benefit as a lot of the success our sporthorse breeding and riding has produced over the last couple of decades was founded on good basics being established for virtually no money within the publicly accessible system where many kids learned to ride who would otherwise never have become riders let alone good riders).

I guess in the end it all comes down to $, or in your case Euros.

I am not sure if it is a culture of being catered to, or if that is all that is available. In North America it is very hard, if not impossible to get training from a professional at the top levels with out being a "full service" client.

mvp
Sep. 13, 2009, 08:57 PM
Kareen's post is enlightening. It's interesting that showing there is beginning "to industrialize" as it did here perhaps 25 years ago. The industrial revolution in the US seemed fantastic to most. In the greedy '80s, it was great, as an owner, to be able to spend and spend for weeks of fun with some competition thrown in. For trainers, it was a cash cow, easier than hauling everywhere, and a great way to sort your owners. Those who came to the shows were worth your while; those who didn't weren't.

It is true that footing and facilities got better. Our standards were raised, in a good way. I imagine that the opportunity to show at a better facility is compelling anywhere. For most of us, it might not be possible to live on the circuit but a combination of a desire to dip into a more elite, and actually nice show experience meant that many of us went to fewer shows, but saved to give our money to Tom Struzzieri's HITS behomoth.

Kareen also points out that with the restricted access to lesson opportunities (and good ones!) fewer people will learn to ride. If that has happened in the US during my watch (again, the last 25 years during which I was paying attention), then I am only now beginning to see systemic symptoms of that. The 2'6" divisions at the rated shows, the invention of the "auto change" horse, and the preference for the staid, dependable WB (where TBs used to be the fashion) all seem to signify that the average rider taking that leap from lessons to owning and showing does not ride as well as she used to.

mvp
Sep. 13, 2009, 09:21 PM
Kareen's post is enlightening. It's interesting that showing there is beginning "to industrialize" as it did here perhaps 25 years ago. The industrial revolution in the US seemed fantastic to most. In the greedy '80s, it was great, as an owner, to be able to spend and spend for weeks of fun with some competition thrown in. For trainers, it was a cash cow, easier than hauling everywhere, and a great way to sort your owners. Those who came to the shows were worth your while; those who didn't weren't.

It is true that footing and facilities got better. Our standards were raised, in a good way. I imagine that the opportunity to show at a better facility is compelling anywhere. For most of us, it might not be possible to live on the circuit but a combination of a desire to dip into a more elite, and actually nice show experience meant that many of us went to fewer shows, but saved to give our money to Tom Struzzieri's HITS behomoth.

Kareen also points out that with the restricted access to lesson opportunities (and good ones!) fewer people will learn to ride. If that has happened in the US during my watch (again, the last 25 years during which I was paying attention), then I am only now beginning to see systemic symptoms of that. The 2'6" divisions at the rated shows, the invention of the "auto change" horse, and the preference for the staid, dependable WB (where TBs used to be the fashion) all seem to signify that the average rider taking that leap from lessons to owning and showing does not ride as well as she used to.

That might mean, in turn, that showing gets more expensive and more industrialized. This because fewer people can afford to get in at all. We lose a great deal of talent that way, not to mention many dollars. People are spending money on horses, but they are flocking to western sports like reining.

The people who can afford to stay (often by working 40 hours a week themselves) just can't put in the time to do it themselves. Quite understandably, they need full service barns, made horses that will allow them to compete quickly for all their invested time and money, and/or really great-minded green ones if they are willing to go there. Employed ammies really can't afford to get hurt.

In short, the less willing we are to go to potato shows, the sooner we screw ourselves out of a system that is accessible to many people.

shadytrake
Sep. 13, 2009, 09:27 PM
Kareen also points out that with the restricted access to lesson opportunities (and good ones!) fewer people will learn to ride. If that has happened in the US during my watch (again, the last 25 years during which I was paying attention), then I am only now beginning to see systemic symptoms of that. The 2'6" divisions at the rated shows, the invention of the "auto change" horse, and the preference for the staid, dependable WB (where TBs used to be the fashion) all seem to signify that the average rider taking that leap from lessons to owning and showing does not ride as well as she used to.

What is wrong with 2'6" divisions at rated shows? As an A/A who wants, practices, and saves to show at some "A" rated shows but whose horse/rider combination is not quite ready for 3' +, why shouldn't I have access to the "A" rated experience? I don't think that makes me a lesser rider. Getting "A" show mileage is valuable no matter what the fence height IMHO. Not all of us had the opportunity to start as a short stirrup rider over the low fences. Some of us started riding as adults.

mvp
Sep. 13, 2009, 09:48 PM
What is wrong with 2'6" divisions at rated shows? As an A/A who wants, practices, and saves to show at some "A" rated shows but whose horse/rider combination is not quite ready for 3' +, why shouldn't I have access to the "A" rated experience? I don't think that makes me a lesser rider. Getting "A" show mileage is valuable no matter what the fence height IMHO. Not all of us had the opportunity to start as a short stirrup rider over the low fences. Some of us started riding as adults.

Not to be mean, but in the context of this conversation:

Exactly.

Look, I'm not going to the Olympics either and I'd like a place to compete. But that was not the point of this discussion. The thread was about the cost of getting inexpensive milage for babies. It morphed some into the structure and cost of showing in Europe vs. the US. From there, the delightful term "potato show" was introduced and their attending Euroammies were described. These DIY'ers would be "backyarders" here.... except that it sounds like they ride a hell of a lot better than do ours. I got all nostalgic (and on my high horse), because it turns out that I'm like a Euroammie who educated her young horse cheaply at schooling shows.

shadytrake
Sep. 13, 2009, 10:13 PM
Not to be mean, but in the context of this conversation:

Exactly.

Look, I'm not going to the Olympics either and I'd like a place to compete. But that was not the point of this discussion. The thread was about the cost of getting inexpensive milage for babies. It morphed some into the structure and cost of showing in Europe vs. the US. From there, the delightful term "potato show" was introduced and their attending Euroammies were described. These DIY'ers would be "backyarders" here.... except that it sounds like they ride a hell of a lot better than do ours. I got all nostalgic (and on my high horse), because it turns out that I'm like a Euroammie who educated her young horse cheaply at schooling shows.

I did too (educated my young horse at schooling shows). Now that he is consistent at the 2'6", I am happily adding the "A" shows to my schedule. My point is that having 2'6" divisions available at "A" shows does not necessarily mean I haven't done my homework. I think that it was a very smart marketing person who suggested expanding to include these divisions, but it doesn't mean that the schooling shows are going away.

poltroon
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:46 AM
What is wrong with 2'6" divisions at rated shows? As an A/A who wants, practices, and saves to show at some "A" rated shows but whose horse/rider combination is not quite ready for 3' +, why shouldn't I have access to the "A" rated experience? I don't think that makes me a lesser rider. Getting "A" show mileage is valuable no matter what the fence height IMHO. Not all of us had the opportunity to start as a short stirrup rider over the low fences. Some of us started riding as adults.

The problem, in the context of this discussion, anyway, is that the experience you used to be able to get showing 2'6" on a local circuit cost $100 a day. To get that experience now, you are spending $1000 at an A-rated show instead.

5
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:47 AM
Long story short is in Europe "horses" is a professional sport and in America it is an amateur sport.
These small local shows - where classes are offered from 1.00m up to 1.35m - 1.40m even have entry costs of 10 Euros and prize money of 50 Euros to the winner. You ship in, jump 1 round after being in a tiny schooling area filled with 30+ horses, grab a beer, and go home.
Best of luck!

Sounds kind of like the roping competitions. Who has the market there? Coold beer and low fees be the answer?

poltroon
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:50 AM
Sounds kind of like the roping competitions. Who has the market there? Coold beer and low fees be the answer?

You can keep entry fees a lot lower if you have volunteers running a beer concession. :D Brings out the spectators, too.

Kareen
Sep. 14, 2009, 01:29 AM
That wouldn't fly well with your dressage scene over there though. I couldn't imagine a rustic tentparty to go at any of the events I've been to in the US (not many I have to admit but enough to leave me amazed to see how different showing is compared to here in Europe).
With the hunters I don't see much benefit in beer consumption either and I don't even know if getting spectators out is something that would be appreciated? I agree with mvp's expressed view I see those same effects coming up here in 15/20 yrs from now. The FN can try to steer against it as long as water is wet but the climate of showing here has already greatly changed. When I was little pros blended with ammies just fine because many of the ammies rode just as well if not stronger than some of the lower-end-of-spectrum pros. Shows were mainly limited to Friday, Saturday and Sunday with classes kids classes held mostly on Sundays and the Friday being mostly reserved to young horse classes where the percentage of pros is naturally a bit higher to begin with.
Today expecially the young jumper classes have turned into something extremely unattractive for ammies to show in. First of all even at the smalles show you will face a gazillion of entries from huge, high end operations such as PS who will as a rule score 0.5 to 1.0 higher by sheer means of recognition. V. destructive to the sport. I for sure wouldn't want to compete there if I was still competing (I stopped completely in 2003 after graduating).
The newly designed models we have here (e.g. the europeanized version of hunters or adult equitation classes, GHP and all) certainly created a new playing field but that doesn't change a thing about the fact that the quality of riding is going rapidly downhill when fewer kids start out at a young age.
Don't get me wrong there is nothing wrong with adult novice classes and the late beginner is a very attractive clientele for trainers and all kinds of other professionals. But the meaning of a sport in general in any given culture is still mostly defined by how many people are actively involved and interested and those numbers are bound to go south if the current trend of commercialising it persists.
Isn't the result of show expenses being so high in the US that english riding remains an elite activity reserved for the at least fairly wealthy? Professionals should realize that their income will be at the stakes if numbers don't match. Surely it isn't as profitable to give 15 lessons a week each with 4-6 kids whirling around as it is to pamper one well-paying adult amateur through 7 days of showing in Wellington or elsewhere. But the industry as a whole (breeders included) would benefit so much more if two or three of those 75 kids stuck to it and turned into a Hubertus Schmidt or Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum caliber type of rider...

CrazyDog
Sep. 14, 2009, 03:47 AM
:)
I don't see how anyone would be content to rely on that:


Aside from the fact that you can't make that assumption based on just one example
That example is flawed
No direct comparisons - like comparing apples with pears!
No distances quoted
no comparitor for vehicle
Not even compared the same things! Hotel versus a trailer!!??
Re the UK prices..... no sense of reality! e.g. food £60 at a show!?
they must be eating caviarre and smoked salmon!! What is a first aid fee??
Why is there a trainer in the Canadian comparison but not in the UK one???
FACT: Petrol is cheaper in the USA.
That comparison is actually Canada not the USA - but it's flawed and not evidence so it doesn't really matter that much!


Interesting...I don't believe anyone was looking for a direct comparison. There isn't one. Showing is different in the UK, full stop.

If you look at what I posted, you will see that the items you point out are the ones that make showing in the UK less expensive than showing in North America. No trainer, no hotel, no eating in restaurants, transporting your own horse vs. paying for transport, a small first aid fee rather than large office admin fees.

As for £60 for food. I don't believe I need to eat cheap, unhealthy food just because I'm at a show. I can sit down to a meal of nice food and wine with friends just as easily as I can stop by the burger van for a fistful of grease. :)

mvp
Sep. 14, 2009, 09:05 AM
To follow up with Kareen's point about making riding accessible.

I don't think trainers in the US can make the same living they do if they increased their numbers. It may be physically impossible to teach as many kiddy lessons per month at home as you would need to do in order to get to the same figure you'd make catering to (showing, buying and selling) for a smaller set of wealthier clients. In that case, you really don't care if they get better. You make the same money whether they show at 2'6" or a foot higher. But the reality is that they probably can't afford the horse or the saddle time required to become a competent 3'6" rider.

With respect to the advent of 2'6" divisions at rated shows. This point has been discussed and facts presented. Trainers can only be in one place at a time. The economic reality of this business means that everyone wants to get into the segment of the riding population who can afford the horses, training and showing associated with the rated shows. Most trainers chase that business. Yet they also need to bring in new clients. So when a trainer can find a rated show that will allow her to bring her newer clients in, she does it! Who cares if the ammy or kid could have gone to a different show the same weekend for far less money? The trainer can't go and serve her larger clients, but she loses no money by asking the new client to pay 10X for roughly the same jumping experience.

The thing that bums me out about the US scene, and maybe the modernizing Euro scene, is that the good ammy-- the one who can get from muddy wild beast in a paddock, to turned out and well-behaved packer in the show ring-- is a dying breed. In my more bitter moments, I think that this type is being inadvertantly punished by our system. Someone else said that it's hard to get trainers' attention unless you are a full service client. While I understand how the numbers make that true, it still sucks for the good ammy, but ultimately, for the industry.

imapepper
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:09 PM
The problem, in the context of this discussion, anyway, is that the experience you used to be able to get showing 2'6" on a local circuit cost $100 a day. To get that experience now, you are spending $1000 at an A-rated show instead.

This is one of the main reasons that I am supporting the local circuit here. I can take my 5 year old who is starting to be very consistant at 2'6" and getting her changes consistantly to the NTHJC or the Dallas Scholarship Circuit and they have pretty fences, flowers, the courses are nice and I will pay $150 tops and most of the time be done by noon if they are doing the open 2'6" first thing for trainers to school their client horses ;) When she is ready to clock around 3 ft then I might open my wallet and go do the adults. But until then, I don't see the point in spending more for pretty much the same experience. She doesn't know the difference between an A show judge and a local circuit judge ;) And I can keep take my green jumper and show her at these shows as well. Why spend more money and haul further if there are nice local shows?

Weatherford
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:26 PM
I wonder how much different the charges for coaching, day care, braiding, etc...that we incur here in the U.S. at each show, are when compared to those fees charged in Europe.

Zero here in Ireland. We take ourselves to shows (as we did in the old days!) Neither the woman who starts my youngsters nor the trainer who helped me the other day have ever charged me for a day at a show (and they did/do as much or more than most of my "coaches" in the US). I pay for lessons, and when I go to the woman who starts my youngsters farm, I work for those lessons and pay for the horse's board. And I try to buy groceries for her while I am there, but she doesn't always accept.

Most people here do the work themselves, so there is no day care charge. Braiding consists of the old fashioned 13-20 braids in the mane - with elastics ( OK, some people sew them in, but my friend has been Supreme Hunter Champion and leading Hunter Rider many times at Dublin with elastics holding the braids, so , I think it's not a big deal!)

Showing here is much more like showing back in the 60's - except the courses are better!! There are no "divisions" nor "division champions" the way there are in the US - there is one class at each fence height for jumpers, plus an "amateur class" and one "ridden hunter" (on the flat) class, generally divided by horses' weight, and possibly a "Working Hunter" class (over fences - but the jumping still only counts 40% - conformation, hack, and judges ride count the other 60%).

Very different, and a LOT more fun!

And the jumpers do not go against the clock until you reach 1.1 meter in height - all doubles clears below that remain tied.

Weatherford
Sep. 14, 2009, 12:32 PM
I took my 5 year old homebred to his 5th show yesterday, jumped in 2 classes (2 different fence heights -2'9" and 3'0"), full rounds plus jump-offs (no time taken, he's still a baby), had a great time, fabulous footing, courses and fences... started at 2 in the AFTERNOON - home by 4:30... got a couple rosettes (tied for first in one class, tied for 3rd in the other)... and it cost me... E. 20 entry fees and a little diesel fuel for my lorry (OK, that is expensive, but the show was very close, and my lorry is very fuel efficient!)

Great day, great school, great fun! Doesn't happen in the US anymore like that!!

shadytrake
Sep. 14, 2009, 03:32 PM
To follow up with Kareen's point about making riding accessible.
With respect to the advent of 2'6" divisions at rated shows. This point has been discussed and facts presented. Trainers can only be in one place at a time. The economic reality of this business means that everyone wants to get into the segment of the riding population who can afford the horses, training and showing associated with the rated shows. Most trainers chase that business. Yet they also need to bring in new clients. So when a trainer can find a rated show that will allow her to bring her newer clients in, she does it! Who cares if the ammy or kid could have gone to a different show the same weekend for far less money? The trainer can't go and serve her larger clients, but she loses no money by asking the new client to pay 10X for roughly the same jumping experience.

The thing that bums me out about the US scene, and maybe the modernizing Euro scene, is that the good ammy-- the one who can get from muddy wild beast in a paddock, to turned out and well-behaved packer in the show ring-- is a dying breed. In my more bitter moments, I think that this type is being inadvertantly punished by our system. Someone else said that it's hard to get trainers' attention unless you are a full service client. While I understand how the numbers make that true, it still sucks for the good ammy, but ultimately, for the industry.

I guess I didn't explain my point of view very well and I guess my region of the US is the exception to the rule. There are 3 varieties of shows here to choose from (all with year end points).

There is the schooling show series held at a couple of barns which runs about $90 for one day. (1 Division, 1 Warmup round, 1 Eq class) I think they run 1 show / month.

There is the Alderwood Show series which is a true B/C rated schooling show on an "A" facility. They run about 1 show per month. I have already posted the costs.

There is the West TN H/J Association which is an "A" rated series which has 5 or 6 shows / year. The show fees from my last show ran $915 (2 Divisions, 3 warmups, stall and tackstall-no split and no daycare-I did it myself).

I am not a rich ammy by any means and do not have "full service" show care and I show at all 3 of these series on a regular basis. The point I was trying to make is that it is my choice as to which series I want to show and having the lower divisions at the rated shows is a bonus for those of us who enjoy the "A" rated experience. I am certainly not made of money but if I have the money saved and my trainer thinks I am well prepared, then we go rated.

I do feel bad for those Ammys who are stuck in a situation where they can't show due to expenses. It used to be that way around here until the Alderwood series started. They filled a big need in this area (I think they have been holding the series for 4 or 5 years now).

QUOTE The problem, in the context of this discussion, anyway, is that the experience you used to be able to get showing 2'6" on a local circuit cost $100 a day. To get that experience now, you are spending $1000 at an A-rated show instead.QUOTE

I guess I won't be moving from Memphis anytime soon, because we still have that here. Lucky I guess. :yes:

crestline
Sep. 15, 2009, 09:11 PM
So I was MIA getting our place and horses ready to host the RPSI inspection. Lots of work and it looks like I missed lots of good discussion.
Since my original post did refer to getting miles on babies I feel I should clarify. I really was looking as to the reasons that my friend in Germany can show rated shows for a fraction of what we do here.
Yes...we have local shows here. I, in fact, go to every one of them that I can fit into my schedule. Can you guys believe some of the stuff you see there. Some of those kids crashing around without trainers are scary and often I feel borderline cruel in what they put their horses through. That is hard to watch but we go anyway. I'm perfectly capable of getting my own stuff out and about...here is the rub...to get them SEEN by the bigger trainers it's way more productive to be at the "real" shows. This is for miles but also for trying to get them sold and make it easy for the trainer to see what you have...otherwise they just buy all their horses from other trainers already there at the shows. I could march around schooling shows for a decade and the horse could win every class and the "right" pros with buyers would not necessarily see it. Pros get busy, they're on the road, they don't want to travel to see just one horse, etc. They want to know "has it been shown". When I show up with it at an "A" show and pull some decent ribbons they've seen it and know it's been out.

Maybe the deal is that in Germany the beginners up to the trainers all hit the same "potato" shows to get their horses miles so they get seen at the same time. But that still doesn't explain why are these so much cheaper than here? Stabling? Mileage rules? USEF fees/offical costs?

It seems there are fewere people that can take a horse that is still green to showing and really get it finished...is that because they are having to spend $1000+ dollars a week to get it done. If the trainers are only hitting the big A shows then that's where your baby will need to go for trainer to give it miles...I guess I can see how that is a problem. Yet also a problem for breeders. I get calls/emails all the time "I'm looking for a nice 16.1hh WB, started W,T, C with some show miles and looking to spent $5K-$8K. Ouch! After raising and correctly starting these guys we're over that without ever hitting a show. At least if it were easier to get the bigger farms to see them at the bigger schooling shows then our cost for getting show miles on our babies would be much easier to swallow.

I"m also worried about where the kids are going that can really ride...it does seem like there are less of them...maybe the show thing is just too costly for many of the "normal" family parents to keep up with...esp in this economy...

luvs2ridewbs
Sep. 16, 2009, 01:41 PM
MVP- You are right asking where the limited budget ammies fit into this senario and also how to get grass roots people into the sport. This should be where the young trainers come in. They may have only been in business for a few years but that doesn't mean they don't have an excellent horsey education behind them. They are just not as well known, or in fashion like the MNTs and BNTs are. The young trainers are the ones that will take their barns to the more local rated shows, the one days, the local eq finals, etc. But it seems that no one wants to ride with them because they do not yet have a big name, fancy barn, and flashy horses. So it becomes hard for these potential BNTs and MNTs to get started. And then the same people who could have been potential clients of the young trainers are complaining that their more established trainers can only take them to expensive "A" shows. Its a vicious cycle.

imapepper
Sep. 16, 2009, 06:17 PM
MVP- You are right asking where the limited budget ammies fit into this senario and also how to get grass roots people into the sport. This should be where the young trainers come in. They may have only been in business for a few years but that doesn't mean they don't have an excellent horsey education behind them. They are just not as well known, or in fashion like the MNTs and BNTs are. The young trainers are the ones that will take their barns to the more local rated shows, the one days, the local eq finals, etc. But it seems that no one wants to ride with them because they do not yet have a big name, fancy barn, and flashy horses. So it becomes hard for these potential BNTs and MNTs to get started. And then the same people who could have been potential clients of the young trainers are complaining that their more established trainers can only take them to expensive "A" shows. Its a vicious cycle.

I sooo agree with this post. I think that BNTs should have asst. trainers or collaborate with LNT/MNTs to get their beginners and budget conscious clients to local shows. It would support the local shows, give their clients starting out a budget friendly place to get their feet wet and would give the LNT/MNT/asst. trainers a way to get their name out there so that maybe in the future, they will become the next generation of BNTs ;)