PDA

View Full Version : Trainers doing intro, seriously?



fur ball
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:16 PM
I know, I know…. I should have a little cheese with my whine…

But, does anyone else think it is inappropriate for a professional to enter Intro A and B at a local schooling show? I know this is a free country and that anyone can enter whatever class they would like.

Nevertheless, at the past few local schooling shows I saw this happening and I couldn’t help but think it was inappropriate. It is not just one instance…the person in question is “campaigning” a clients horse on the local circuit at Intro. The remainder of the class is consistently AA’s with green mounts and kids on ponies. The most recent show, they took first with a 78%, a 10+% lead over the person in second (not me, we were second to last in the low 60s). :eek:

I am an AA with that is working very hard to bring my new horse along on a budget. I take lessons and have great help, but I am his primary rider and it is taking us a long time to get things together. I feel like competing against professionals in a dinky W/T class takes away any hope of placing well and/or obtaining a decent average for year-end awards.

It is just a schooling show but is my personal Grand Prix.

Discuss.

FB

Wayside
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:27 PM
I have no problem with a Pro showing a greenie at Intro, but there's a local trainer I saw when I was at a show a few years ago who was showing intro on a sales horse that was advertised as "ready to show 1st", and I thought that one way or another, that was a little weird and shady.

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:28 PM
I hope I don't get flamed, given my prior posts on this board.... But, wow, if said trainer can't get the client/owner up to the point that client/owner can ride an Intro test by themselves.... Hell, my trainer says I can't show until I've memorized the Training Level tests, and I'm a hopeless ammy on a school horse. ;)

Curious — did the trainer collect his or her ribbon?

Velvet
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:29 PM
My advice? Take the opportunity to watch and learn. Learn why they are getting the high scores and emulate them. There aren't too many that do go in at that level (I have strong opinions posted out here about showing, levels and moving up, but there are always exceptions and I don't know the full situation). Go to the show with the intent of watching and learning.

(Just an FYI, if the owner is paying then they'll usually go for the ribbon and will compete at whatever level the owner wants. This can be just to see the horse collect ribbons or to prepare it for the owner to later ride at that level. If the trainer is doing it for some specific training need for the horse, they will generally not go for a ribbon in the class but will ride hors de concours.)

Oh, and don't sell yourself short. If this is your GP, then you need to really work at figuring out what you can do to clean up at that level. I'd set my sites a bit higher if I were you, too. ;) Even if it's just Training Level at a recognized show.

mickeydoodle
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:34 PM
I think any trainer ought to at least show training level- unless it is a rank bronc that they just want to get out in one piece and alive at their first show. But if they can get 78% at intro with a pro riding, they need to move up.

paulaedwina
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:37 PM
Well it's the difference between the AKC and the UKC. In the American Kennel Club your dog can be shown by a professional handler. In the UKC the dog must be shown by the owner.

Paula

JCS
Jun. 13, 2011, 03:39 PM
That specific situation does sound icky--trainer "campaigning" at that level and earning 78s? Ummm... 'kay. For a super green horse or one with issues, or one needing its start in the ring, I don't have a problem with it. Keep in mind that said "issues" may not be apparent to the casual observer.

My trainer showed a client's horse at Intro a few times last year (in her top hat no less), and I was scribing. She looked great and the horse behaved very well, so I could sort of tell the judge was like, "Why is she at this level...?" But the behind-the-scenes story is that the horse is uber hot, so she was starting out at Intro to be safe and give the horse a good experience. No one not "in the know" could have known her reasoning.

Paddys Mom
Jun. 13, 2011, 04:08 PM
My local organization separates Pros and Ammy's, so I don't run into that, but I do run into people showing Training Level for 3 years with the same horse and getting in the 70's consistently. Maybe time to move up? No worries, I plan to "lap" them. :winkgrin:

Heinz 57
Jun. 13, 2011, 04:25 PM
I feel like competing against professionals in a dinky W/T class takes away any hope of placing well and/or obtaining a decent average for year-end awards.


Last time I checked, it was about the score and not the ribbon/placing/award. Unless the show wants to designate open and amateur classes, you will be placed in classes with professionals at any level. The best ride always receives the best score, and generally people pay professionals because they put in a better ride. :confused:

I guess I don't understand how the professional being in the class affects your ride OR score? Maybe you don't get a primary color ribbon, but the example you gave was that you were second to last anyway.

MyssMyst
Jun. 13, 2011, 04:48 PM
That specific situation does sound icky--trainer "campaigning" at that level and earning 78s? Ummm... 'kay. For a super green horse or one with issues, or one needing its start in the ring, I don't have a problem with it. Keep in mind that said "issues" may not be apparent to the casual observer.

My trainer showed a client's horse at Intro a few times last year (in her top hat no less), and I was scribing. She looked great and the horse behaved very well, so I could sort of tell the judge was like, "Why is she at this level...?" But the behind-the-scenes story is that the horse is uber hot, so she was starting out at Intro to be safe and give the horse a good experience. No one not "in the know" could have known her reasoning.

Exactly this!

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 13, 2011, 04:51 PM
I'm a pro (although really just a hunter/jumper pro) and I did intro with a 4 year old VERY skittish type wb- the type that can come unglued in an instant. I only did intro with him at his first show though. Honestly, some babies need "easy" mileage to gain confidence.

However I do think it is silly to continue to show in intro once the horse is consistently doing well. Maybe you could request that they create an open intro division (separating the AA and JR) if it is that common of an occurrence.

atlatl
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:05 PM
Last time I checked, it was about the score and not the ribbon/placing/award. Unless the show wants to designate open and amateur classes, you will be placed in classes with professionals at any level. The best ride always receives the best score, and generally people pay professionals because they put in a better ride. :confused:

I guess I don't understand how the professional being in the class affects your ride OR score? Maybe you don't get a primary color ribbon, but the example you gave was that you were second to last anyway.

This

seeuatx
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:06 PM
Ok, so on the one hand the idea of a pro (as in real pro who also shows 2nd or above as opposed to the pro by default who breaks babies or teaches up-downers) actively campaigning at into is a little hinky. I'm not a big fan of intro in general anymore (for me), so I took greenie training 1 at first show because we can w/t/c without dying. So I'd probably think if trainer is campaigning she should do so at least at training.

On the other hand, OP doesn't know if or what issues horse might have at home that makes Intro the most viable option. Maybe horse becomes unglued in the transition to canter (been there done that), maybe horse is coming off injury and is Ok'd for trot work but not canter, maybe horse has an evil streak a mile wide and trainer doesn't have a death wish, maybe horse is just green and trainer made a game plan with owner of Xshows at intro to get horsey acclimated and then we move up.

When I was a teen we (trainer and several other students) took our horses to a local dressage show. Friend was set to ride Intro (which was only an Open class), but she got bucked off twice in warm up and was obviously freaked out. Trainer got on, friend went to secretary to switch the riders, and trainer rode said wanna-be rodeo horse to an 82% amidst much grumbling from other competitors. Just saying there is often a back story that you are not and do not need to be privy to.

fur ball
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:08 PM
"Last time I checked, it was about the score and not the ribbon/placing/award. "

H57, Honestly, wouldn't it be nice to not have to tell ourselves that ?

I am more then happy to compete against people at my own level of training. I take issue with this individual because they have continuously entered the lowest level of competition available and continue to blow everyone else out of the water. To me, it isn't sportsmanlike.

Some of the responses here raise good points. There may be a training issue - I honestly don't know their reasoning behind entering intro with the pro on board. The horse seemed to be going beautifully from where I was sitting, they put in a lovely test. They have been collecting ribbons and the proud owner has been at every show.

Maybe I am being petty and selfish to think that it would have been nice to come in one place higher. So what if I am? :lol:

I did get a ribbon in the class, a pretty pink one. :winkgrin: The judging was fair and I think my 62% was a fair assessment of how my horse and I rode the test.

The first place rider (pro) scored 16 point something % higher than I did in both tests...good for her.

I think will go see about that cheese now...

Capriole
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:17 PM
I think it's super tacky for a pro to show Intro. Especially more than once.

mp
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:23 PM
"
Maybe I am being petty and selfish to think that it would have been nice to come in one place higher. So what if I am? :lol:

OK. You have emboldened me to post my own whine.

I showed at an open, all-breed (not dressage) show a few weeks ago. It was a nice show, lots of folks, all different breeds of horses, and rail classes. Some friends of mine and I had decided to show in the Mae West/Jack Benny class because we ride different disciplines and never get to compete against each other. And, well, what the hell, it's a fun class.

A pro who'd just turned 40 took his best client horse (not a greenie -- horse was high point on this show circuit last year and had won a bunch at breed shows, too) and won the class. I don't usually get grumpy about this stuff, but come on. Don't you, Mr. Trainer, have anything better to do than ride a seasoned horse against a bunch of old biddies in a walk/trot class?

/whine

PS -- a pro riding Intro once or twice to put some miles on a horse is one thing. But a pro "campaigning" a horse at Intro is tacky.

Heinz 57
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:25 PM
"Last time I checked, it was about the score and not the ribbon/placing/award. "

H57, Honestly, wouldn't it be nice to not have to tell ourselves that ?



No, because that's the whole POINT of the scoring system. Ribbons are pretty, sure. My point is - I'm more likely to brag about the 72% that earned me 3rd place than I am the 60% that got me a 1st. Score matters, ribbon is relative but looks nice on the wall.

Now, get out there and ride to BEAT that 78%! :yes:

CatPS
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:27 PM
My current trainer just took her WB mare to a schooling show this spring and did all three Intro tests... she walked away with three blues. I'm sure many people weren't thrilled with that, but knowing this mare's backstory, that was what she needed at that point in her training. They bumped up to Training at the very next show, partially because that positive experience at Intro allowed this mare to progress and to be more prepared for the higher level next time out.

If you aren't happy about being put in the same class with pros, then you should contact the show secretary, or just choose shows that separate pros and ammys for placing. When I was just starting out I frequented a schooling show series that separated the Intro classes in an interesting way: once you had won a blue ribbon at Intro at one of their shows, you were automatically in the Open class. I know that's not practical in all situations, but it worked out very well for them and it was quite nice to be able to take lesson kids on steady-eddie school horses and let them at least have a chance to earn a ribbon at their first show.

creekridgefarm
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:30 PM
It is about the score... at least, it should be. Also, remember that even though they are a "trainer", the horses they may be riding might not be ready for canter work. It may be a first show for the horse, or it might be a psycho-in-retraining. Who knows? Who cares? Worry about the score YOU receive, not the color of the ribbon.

lorilu
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:34 PM
Our club has three Intro divisions: Novice Horse (Intro A and B only), Novice Rider (Intro A and B only) and Intro Open (which includes Intro C, division was added this year). Each division is eligible for year end awards separately. (Last year, Intro Open, before there was Into C, was NOT eligible for any YEA. When I brought out my spooky guy, my triner rode him in Novice Horse, and we did the open division, because I was SO over competing against other Intro riders. Gotta admit, tho, I still wish there had been a nice award for me:cool:!)

Works out very well.

carolprudm
Jun. 13, 2011, 05:35 PM
Back when I was eventing and the divisions were split it was not at all uncommon to see a certain olympic rider with a horse in each of several divisions. Riders who complained were told that it was a scheduling thing.

Yeah right

CHT
Jun. 13, 2011, 06:03 PM
I think at all levels it would be good if there was some regulation to encourage riders of a certain level, on horses that have scored well consistently at that level, to move up. I don't think it is just intro. I see pros on horses that used to show 3rd or above moving the horse down to 2nd or below with them, and then having the client show the level below them...so a 4rth level horse competing at training and first...and scoring very well.

As for a pro competing at intro? As stated it may be the best class for the horse. Training level with the stretch trot and higher requirements isn't that friendly for a nervous/hot horse.

Actually, i wouldn't mind seeing two streams of tests; one for green horses, and one for green riders. Showing a greeny against a (former) PSG horse at training level is tricky too!

netg
Jun. 13, 2011, 07:27 PM
You are all seriously making me consider entering intro with my horse and riding hors concours.

He is very solidly ready to show 1st based on how he goes at home. The lengthenings aren't as rhythmic as I would like yet, nor are the transitions into/out of shoulder in and haunches in for higher levels. He's schooling (large) canter pirouettes, offering half steps without us actually consciously trying to get there, but the collection is just very easy and natural for him. He's just kind of always known how to do lead changes - I assume from his track training.

And at shows, he turns into a complete nutjob. Specifically shows he stays overnight at, at the one location we typically have rated shows. He's super tense, back goes hollow, and he throws in bucking and rearing just to make it interesting.

I've discussed it with the vet who thinks it's very likely he needs ulcerguard when going away from home, so we'll be buying it in bulk in the future. But just schooling him (multiple times, every chance I get during other shows at the same location) hasn't gotten him over freaking out about going into the arena for a test. Each ride at one show gets better, he gets more cooperative, and he's more relaxed at the end of a ride than the start. But maybe we should go even lower pressure on him. We have to start over next time we go back to a show there, and it should be improving. This talk about why you might do intro is making me think maybe that low pressure a ride would be a really great thing for him. And if we do it, there is just no way I think I should be judged against the folks on green beans! (That said, I'm not even positive we have intro at our rated shows... I need to check on that!)

shawneeAcres
Jun. 13, 2011, 07:34 PM
I am a pro, albeit a "small name" one. I will often take greenies into Intro tests to get them acclimatized to the show arena without overfacing them. I see nothing wrong with that, as that is what Intro is for, green horses AND/OR riders. Many of the schooling shows I attend tho do separate the Novice riders from the pros.

whitewolfe001
Jun. 13, 2011, 10:08 PM
I think it's super tacky for a pro to show Intro. Especially more than once.

I have to agree. I would expect a pro to have the ability to school the horse well enough to be able to canter in a show in a relatively short time. Intro should be left to the ammies and kids who want to enjoy a show experience without having to lesson for years first.

If the pro cannot safely canter the horse in a show environment, then s/he hasn't done a very good job training... and if the horse is truly the type that will "become unglued" easily, then the horse needs to be brought to a showgrounds a couple of times without entering a class. There's a reason people do that.

If I were the owner of a horse in training, I would not let my trainer show my horse at intro.

PiaffePlease
Jun. 13, 2011, 10:26 PM
I hate when I see this. Its very frustrating. Same thing when a GP rider shows a very capable horse at training and shows the whole series and gets grand champion for the season. The 2nd place person has half as many points but went to the same amount of shows. Ive always wondered why there isnt some way around this. When I sign up for a show, and then see that Im competing against a pro GP rider, I know I'll place below them. 1. because they are better, 2. because they always ride nice horses, and 3. because they are a BNT at a schooling show and someone would have hell to pay if they scored poorly.

And no, Im not likely to brag more about a 3rd place 72% ride than a 1st place 62% ride. When I see scores like a 72% and 3rd place, I think "dang, that judge is a high scorer".

whitewolfe001
Jun. 13, 2011, 10:27 PM
Sorry, I realized my post sounded really harsh, but that's just my opinion.

Maybe I'm dating myself but it seems like not very long ago, there was no such thing as Intro level. You had to be able to canter in the showring, and if you didn't, you just didn't show yet.

I think the creation of Intro was a great idea, because it expanded participation for young riders and ammies. I just personally don't feel that green horses under professional trainers belong there. I don't feel that is very sportsmanlike. I am not a pro but I would not enter Intro myself, even with a young green horse, because I do not want to compete against the kids and amateurs and take away a ribbon from them. I will take my greenbean to a couple of shows without entering a class if I'm that worried about his composure.

Forte
Jun. 13, 2011, 10:47 PM
Back when I was a pro (small "p" pro, breaking lots of babies and teaching up downers) I showed Intro on a few occasions. Always on a green broke horse just as a schooling experience to get them around the show ring. If they were well mannered and safe (they usually were), I would do training level the next time. Classes were always divided between adults and juniors, so I wasn't robbing any little kids of ribbons. I figure a schooling show is just that . . . for schooling. A pro with a wing dingy 3 year old has just as much right to school a walk/trot test and have a safe/positive experience as a nervous amateur or a kid on a pony.

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 13, 2011, 11:13 PM
I have to agree. I would expect a pro to have the ability to school the horse well enough to be able to canter in a show in a relatively short time. Intro should be left to the ammies and kids who want to enjoy a show experience without having to lesson for years first.

If the pro cannot safely canter the horse in a show environment, then s/he hasn't done a very good job training... and if the horse is truly the type that will "become unglued" easily, then the horse needs to be brought to a showgrounds a couple of times without entering a class. There's a reason people do that.

If I were the owner of a horse in training, I would not let my trainer show my horse at intro.

Some/many clients would rather their trainers show in intro rather than just school a horse. Heck, some clients would rather their horse do well in intro than miss a lead or throw a buck in training level. Many times it comes down to the owner's expectations rather than the trainers.

Personally I would much rather see any horse/rider combo (ammie, pro or jr) easily succeed at the level that they show in rather than struggle. Many people seem to settle for low 60s/high 50s in the lower levels then wonder why they never hit 70+ as they go up. That's where holes in a training foundation comes from.

So I guess what I am saying is it is better to be overly cautious/reserved when moving up rather than move up before you are ready. And honestly I doubt any pro would do intro for the bragging rights.

Sonoma City
Jun. 13, 2011, 11:23 PM
Trainers in other disciplines take their greenies in the baby divisions, often at unrecognized shows/events, so I don't see dressage as any different. Every horse has to start somewhere. Yea, it may seem frustrating when they clean up, but there's a reason they are there. I'd be really surprised if the pro was competing at intro just for the heck of it so they could get a good score. No pro I know has made a name for themselves getting a 78% at intro ;)

Big_Grey_hunter
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:15 AM
No pro I know has made a name for themselves getting a 78% at intro ;)

They make a name for themselves, but not a very good one.

GreyStreet
Jun. 14, 2011, 07:53 AM
I personally don't care if a trainer shows intro level with a greenie a few times. It's one thing if the trainer is introducing the horse to the show environment and the dressage ring. It's another if the horse is clearly over prepared for the type of test it's being asked to do. I certainly expect a pro to score above me in most cases - that's why they are a pro! Besides, while I would be lying if I said placing well isn't nice, it's more about the scores for me and comparing how well I did *this* show to the last show, or comparing our training progress if we're moving up a level.

Also keep in mind that just because it's a pro riding, doesn't mean you're automatically out of the placings. I can only afford to show in a local schooling series at this time, but my mare and I have placed above certain well known trainers at times simply by being consistent. She may not be the flashiest mover, but she knows her job and we work well together. So - we've surprised ourselves sometimes.

Again, I think there is a fine line between getting the green horse some show experience and just continuing to blow everyone else out of the water (IF that's even happening).

On the flip side, I have a friend who is learning to ride her schoolmaster. He has competed several levels above training but she is making her debut at training on him. She is showing at the appropriate level for her first show experience and they will move up as they learn each other.

People seem to get upset either way - someone said earlier that is what the intro and training levels are for. Green horses and/or green riders (or, riders just green to showing). Sometimes those green horses are going to be ridden by pros, and sometimes those green-to-showing riders are going to be mounted on schoolmasters who blow the less flashy horses away. That's just the way it is.

Tiki
Jun. 14, 2011, 08:44 AM
If the pro cannot safely canter the horse in a show environment, then s/he hasn't done a very good job training... and if the horse is truly the type that will "become unglued" easily, then the horse needs to be brought to a showgrounds a couple of times without entering a class. There's a reason people do that.
Obviously some of you, especially being lower level ammies, have never dealt with some of these horses. Many of these youngsters are pretty safe riding around the grounds, or in a populated warmup ring. However, for some of them, leaving the company of others and entering at "A", all by themselves, is a very frightening experience that is much better handled in the beginning without the added possibility of a bolt at canter.


Introductory Level

Tests for Introductory Level are designed for horses or riders who are new to dressage competition. They ask for straight lines and large circles (20 meters or about 65 feet, the full width of a dressage arena) at the walk and trot only, with no cantering. There is absolutely no reason a Pro can't take a real green bean into an Intro class. And NO, they DON'T always win because some of these horses have real issues going in the ring by themselves that should NOT be complicated by canter.

If it really bothers you, petition to have the classes separated into Novice Horse and Novice Rider, or if it really, really bothers you, petition USEF to make it mandatory for a Pro to show Hors Concours, but you must understand that some green horses really do need this 'training' that cannot be duplicated any . other . way!

Beckham03
Jun. 14, 2011, 08:51 AM
We have a trainer in the area who ALWAYS shows something in Intro...I can understand doing it when needed, but this happens all of the time. And this trainer is pretty much the only trainer I have seen in this area do it. I do feel bad for the AA's and kids that are always stuck in there with her.

Benito21
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:00 AM
If you can't canter then stay home. We keep making the sport easier and easier. No wonder everyone is at into and training forever. Now we are able to post at first level. Ridiculous. I think intro is definitely NOT OK for a professional. I don't even think it should be allowed. I think it is ok for a young rider who has never shown before or maybe a timid amateur who needs a bit of exposure. Don't hang me!!! Just my opinion. :)

fargonefarm
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:02 AM
I'm a professional and I've taken horses into the Intro. levels! And I'm a pretty accomplished Dressage and event rider.

I work with A LOT of young green beans, esp. OTTB's, and as anyone who has worked with OTTB's knows, sometimes their canters are...um....not easily installed ;) Plus, I like to try to consistently get them into the show atmosphere and teach them that not every outing from here on out is going to involve running as fast as they can. So Intro provides a nice opportunity to get them out there and get in a show ring, esp. if their canters haven't gotten to the point where I want them to be seen in public :winkgrin:
To me it's more important that I get these guys "out there" from the very beginning and let their training accumulate along the way then it is to wait until everything is absolutely perfect.

So next time you see a pro out there doing *gasp* Intro.....remember that while the trainer may be quite accomplished, the horse he/she is riding may be accomplished only because it got in the trailer and surviived the warm-up! :lol:

grayarabpony
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:03 AM
So only sucky riders should enter a class so that crappy riders can get ribbons? :lol: Sure a trainer can enter a training level class. They usually do so on a green horse. If they do well then you need to do better next time if you want to place.

mvp
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:27 AM
I don't get the fight over a W-T class.

But if some kids and ammies think this is an important bit of turf for them, then I think the pros should respect that and stay out.

I do understand the "problem" of the client wanting their very green horse to start showing, ASAP or the trainer who thinks this is how she must build a business.

HunterWorld is notorious for "dumbing down" competition. Dressage pros who exploit the possibility of not waiting until their horses can canter and taking ribbons from new riders seems a bit worse. I mean really? You want to show a horse before you can ride it at its third gait? Even the hunter folks clamoring for those under 3' divisions expect more training before they leave the farm!

As a client, I think I'd rather put my money into more training at home and a horse who came along to a show for a school but didn't compete at Intro. If *I* wanted a division that matched my riding level and allowed me to maybe be competitive, I'd like to think I could use Intro that way for me and my horse.

RunningwaterWBs
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:35 AM
I groomed for a pro who did this with greenies she'd recently backed. Horse's first show experience at a local series of three schooling shows. The horses were three or four depending on their maturity and the trainer figured three shows ought to be enough to move on to rated shows.

The trainer entered the shows with the idea that if the horse wasn't upset by the horses in the warmup, she'd take them into the ring and try the tests. Because it was a trainer, the horses didn't look like the greenies they were and it clearly annoyed some fellow competitors. Two women (friends who showed together) actually came over to our trailer to complain and told us we had no business being there!

I also groomed for a BNT who debuted greenies at third or fourth level at USDF shows. After the above-mentioned trainer was questioned by those fellow competitors, she decided to try bringing greenies to bigger shows instead. She shouldn't have doubted her right to go to schooling shows; in the first test she tried with a greenie at the bigger show, said greenie decided to forget steering and walked right over the little fence surrounding the ring! Greenies can embarrass you. Better to do it in a place where you feel the most confidence.

Obviously, those women at the schooling show didn't know the backstory about the horses being greenies, just made their own assumptions. These women only showed their horses in schooling shows (????) and felt their chances of year-end awards were being obliterated. I'm sorry, but there comes a time to get informed and/or move up to non-schooling shows!

magnolia73
Jun. 14, 2011, 09:52 AM
I think we all have a right to want a fair competition and a chance to win ribbons. And we also want to go to competitions and have a positive experience for our horse. Sometimes that means a pro riding at a beginner level- intro, crossrails, 2', maiden. And sometimes you have meltdown and sometimes the horse is a star.

However, while I can see paying a pro to show my horse walk trot until she can deal with the atmosphere.... I can't see paying to campaign the horse at such a low level. If the horse goes to a show and is good, but still can't canter... spend the money on training that you are spending on showing, then when you can canter, come show again.

If I was a pro, I would not want to be known for cleaning up in the intro divisions.... It kind of advertises- hey it takes me a really long time to get a horse to canter a 20 m circle but I'll take your money and show walk trot for eons.

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 10:06 AM
To me, all of this is, "It depends. It depends. It depends." Followed by, "It's only a show and quit your belly aching about not winning your class. Work harder and win it away from the pro." Needing remedial classes at a show is nothing to brag about (pro or non-pro) and complaining about someone coming in and wiping up the floor with you is sourgrapes.

Get over it. Get on with your training. Then do what is making you so jealous now--beat the others in an easy-peasy walk/trot class and take home a blue ribbon.

Isn't that what this really is all about?

(Man, the whining and need to feel "special" and to beat others is just so childish. Get off your duff. The world doesn't owe you ANYTHING. Work harder and set higher goals. Otherwise, just stop whining. I'm guessing that a LOT of the people up in arms over this issue are also the ones that don't want to have to qualify to move up the levels. :rolleyes: )

AlterBy
Jun. 14, 2011, 10:34 AM
To me, all of this is, "It depends. It depends. It depends." Followed by, "It's only a show and quit your belly aching about not winning your class. Work harder and win it away from the pro." Needing remedial classes at a show is nothing to brag about (pro or non-pro) and complaining about someone coming in and wiping up the floor with you is sourgrapes.

Get over it. Get on with your training. Then do what is making you so jealous now--beat the others in an easy-peasy walk/trot class and take home a blue ribbon.

Isn't that what this really is all about?

(Man, the whining and need to feel "special" and to beat others
is just so childish. Get off your duff. The world doesn't owe you
ANYTHING. Work harder and set higher goals. Otherwise, just
stop whining. I'm guessing that a LOT of the people up in
arms over this issue are also the ones that don't want to have
to qualify to move up the levels. :rolleyes: )

^This.

And I don't believe that Pros go into Intro classes without a reasonably good reason. They don't go there with the idea of getting ribbons and becoming famous about being soooo good at Intro level.
Anyway, Pros here can't go to championship or get year end awards at those levels.

On the other end, I've beaten some Pros in both Dressage and Hunter rings and Yay!, Was I proud of myself!?! :yes:

It can be done!

Right now I have a young mare doing 'ok' in the hunter and I'm agaisnt a lot of 75k older horses btdt doing fantastic job packing around young kids. Am I complaining because there should be a class for AA with spooky horses worth less than 30k? No. I do my best agaisnt the kids, I believe I'm a good rider and eventually my horse will be successfull and go way further than 3' hunter classes. I don't whine. Actually, I was proud last week getting a 7th place agaisnt those kids! We were +30 riders in the class!

ThreeFigs
Jun. 14, 2011, 10:40 AM
Did I miss the part where this trainer was "campaigning" the horse at intro?

I haven't done an Intro class since my mare was a greener than green and a very wallflowerish horse. One show, one class at Intro, then on to training level. We just wanted to see how she'd react at shows. We scored a 72% -- yep, she was fine and ready to move up. Handled the show nicely. Mission accomplished.

I'm also a "small p" pro. Intro is for schooling -- so far as I know, there are no "year end" awards for Intro. Thank God for that. Can't think of anything sillier than being the Intro HOY!

I say get over it.

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:32 AM
Did I miss the part where this trainer was "campaigning" the horse at intro?

Yup.



Nevertheless, at the past few local schooling shows I saw this happening and I couldn’t help but think it was inappropriate. It is not just one instance…the person in question is “campaigning” a clients horse on the local circuit at Intro.




I haven't done an Intro class since my mare was a greener than green and a very wallflowerish horse. One show, one class at Intro, then on to training level. We just wanted to see how she'd react at shows. We scored a 72% -- yep, she was fine and ready to move up.

I'm an AA (for me, that means Ancient Ammie) and I showed in Intro once. At a schooling show. My very first dressage show. We got a 64.2% and moved up to TL, where we've been ever since. :lol:

Seriously, any pro who "campaigns" a horse at Intro -- as in shows repeatedly and scores in the 70s -- is a dork. If I were in that area, I wouldn't say anything to my GMO because nothing needs to be said. The actions speak so loudly, and they say DORK.

Benito21
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:41 AM
Good for you MP!

Shouldn't your horse have good basics before you venture off the farm to ANY event? Last I knew cantering was a basic. I don't feel any professional worth his salt would take a horse off the farm regardless of how young and show a walk trot test. If you can't canter a 20 meter circle then you have a serious problem.
No wonder they laugh at us in Europe.

ThreeFigs
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:45 AM
Whoops! That's what I get for skimming through a thread!

Well, "campaigning" any horse at Intro IS silly!

Oh, that show I took my mare to for Intro WAS a schooling show -- no rating even local. A schooling show is exactly that -- a SCHOOLING show.

White Lie
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:45 AM
Seriously, any pro who "campaigns" a horse at Intro -- as in shows repeatedly and scores in the 70s -- is a dork. If I were in that area, I wouldn't say anything to my GMO because nothing needs to be said. The actions speak so loudly, and they say DORK.

This I agree with, I totally a get SHOWING a green/problem/retraining etc... horse at Intro so that it can get some good experience. Campaigning said horse at intro is - actually a little funny, and the pro should frankly be ashamed. Get a little good milage on the horse and move it up, horses learn so much faster then humans they do not (generally) need a year to learn to canter in the show ring. Seriously.
I undestand that there may be extenuating circumstances behind this particular horse (and then that is OK), but if this is the pro's training schedule - LOL.

Tiki
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:49 AM
But you just don't understand. Some of these horses can do it all (well, canter anyway) at home but have a meltdown when they have to leave the other horses and go into the ring by themselves. Somebody mentioned ONE trainer who "campaigns" horses at Into. That's not my trainer. It's just one or 2 classes to get them through it. They don't have to be perfect to go on to Training Level or above, some of them just have to go through it once or twice. This is called "Show Training". It is not something you can do at home. The whole atmosphere is different at a show and it is pretty impossible to duplicate it at home. Plenty of these greenies - yes, with Pros - get beat in these classes by ammies who no longer belong in Intro but are chasing blue ribbons. For the pro, it's not about the score or the ribbons, it's about show training for the young horse. Remember, Intro classes are for NOVICE horses OR riders. I would say it's a rare situation - except as ONE person reports where it happens with ONE trainer. Get over it.

Ibex
Jun. 14, 2011, 11:57 AM
Until this year one of the big shows locally had Intro classes... not uncommon for Pro's to enter very green horses that were really just there to sight-see in one w/t class because it was significantly cheaper than paying the "schooling horse" fee. Standard practice tho was to review the entry list, and if there were a lot of kids on ponies etc to either scratch or excuse yourself before the test was complete and be "eliminated"...

Benito21
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:00 PM
Sorry, I realized my post sounded really harsh, but that's just my opinion.

Maybe I'm dating myself but it seems like not very long ago, there was no such thing as Intro level. You had to be able to canter in the showring, and if you didn't, you just didn't show yet.

I think the creation of Intro was a great idea, because it expanded participation for young riders and ammies. I just personally don't feel that green horses under professional trainers belong there. I don't feel that is very sportsmanlike. I am not a pro but I would not enter Intro myself, even with a young green horse, because I do not want to compete against the kids and amateurs and take away a ribbon from them. I wi
ll take my greenbean to a couple of shows without entering a class if I'm that worried about his composure.



This quote is fantastic.

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:01 PM
But you just don't understand. Some of these horses can do it all (well, canter anyway) at home but have a meltdown when they have to leave the other horses and go into the ring by themselves.

No kidding, sherlock. That's why I'm still at TL. The horse melts down and I'm learning how NOT to melt with him and get past it.

Even *I* would embarrassed to ride all year long at Intro. And I'm 58 years old and didn't start learning dressage until 3 years go.

AppendixQHLover
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:08 PM
My trainer will take my extremely green Irish horse into Intro A local shows. She wants to see what he does before putting me the formerly weenie adult ammy weenie on him at a show. He has a great forward momentum and doesn't always mean to lose his marbles. He just got broke last year and wants to please his rider. He is kind of lazy at times but sometimes that horse eating monster will come out and eat him. His reaction is to scoot forward and use his hind end. We are teaching him to use that motion for good and not evil. SO it would not be a good idea to let me doing that first experiment on him at a show.

The next show I will take him and just go for the experience. For me the local shows the ribbon really means nothing. I have boxes of ribbons just collection dust. The bigger recognized shows is what I care about more.

magnolia73
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:20 PM
I think part of the thing with schooling shows- some people are there to get a horse exposed to the world and some are there because they want to show and compete. I think you have to find satisfaction in showing outside the ribbons. It's hard- at my horses first show I was elated, she was foot perfect. I'm not gonna lie- the blues and the tricolor made me all proud mama. I probably would have been disappointed not to receive any ribbons for her efforts. And I feel universally sad for the kid out trying their hand at showing for the first time who comes home without a ribbon. Been there, done that and it hurts knowing your best was not enough.

However, part of the appeal of dressage is that feedback. You know, I don't remember any ribbons every one related to dressage and what place they might have been. I remember comments- that 8 on a trot circle, a 9 on a centerline.... the 4 on the canter I thought was so perfect. And as some people have suggested- now you have a very high standard to beat and that can be a motivator. What can you do to catch up? Can you be more accurate? Rounder circles? Crisper transitions? Sometimes a high bar is good!

fur ball
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:25 PM
I never thought that this thread would get so many responses...

I appreciate everyone's input, ya'll have made me think about my initial reaction. That being said, I still feel as though it is inappropriate for this particular pair to continue to show in the intro classes. I also feel that it is inappropriate when someone shows a GP horse in training level...but that is my opinion, which isn't worth much.

The show circuit my OP refers to is a small and locally based. It is not uncommon to show against the same faces week after week. The pro I have complained about has won both intro A&B, by a decent margin, at each of the biweekly shows since early May.

I will continue to show intro A&B on my green bean until I can consistently score in the upper 60s, even if it takes all season. My horse and I have improved with each show, the first we scored a 51% in intro B, with an error, It completely blew his mind that people were actually in the judges booth so our turn off centerline took some encouragement. The nice judge actually stepped out of the booth so that he could see there were no monsters. I won't even mention the patio chairs that were at E for the spectators. :lol:

I will not complain to the GMO or anyone else, (outside of this message board) because the good volunteers that run the show series shouldn't have to listen to me B!#@&. I am aware of how the world works and am not looking to have my competition eliminated because they are better then I. But it would be nice to have a level playing field.

Thanks all.

cmdrcltr
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:40 PM
My GMO offers three intro divisions: junior/young rider, amateur adult, and open. Intro scores do not count toward overall HOY awards, although there are year end awards for those divisions.

While I appreciate the idea that one shouldn't campaign at intro, I will be riding my new, green horse (I'm an ammy.) at intro all summer (probably), in part because my GMO's bronze medal requirement is two scores above 60% at intro level with at least one of those scores in intro c. Of course, if I earn those scores the first time out I will probably move to Training level :cool:, but I'm thinking it will take at least until our second show (ever) to get them. I fully expect a looky ride lacking forwardness at our first one!

Heinz 57
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:49 PM
But it would be nice to have a level playing field.

Thanks all.

One more time, and then I'll quit beating the horse. This is why we are all judged against the same standard. Maybe the pro campaigning the horse at Intro has a good reason - lateral canter? Bucks into the transitions at shows? Rears? Who knows. Maybe it's just the owner's wish. Maybe its gaited. Maybe you should ask? Politely, of course, when the pair's training level debut will be since they've done SOOO well at Intro?

As for the reply to my comment about being prouder of the 72%/3rd place vs the 60%/1st - that was my own real life example. Exact same judge, different horses, different tests. The 72% was a worthy ride and there was a gap between my 72 and the remainder of the class; scores dropped to mid-60's after that. The 60% ride was just that - an adequate performance on a green horse that, frankly, I was just trying to get around the arena without exploding. Same horse scored a 75% on the same test on a different day, different show, different judge.

Some days, you're the one that is 5%+ above everyone else. Some days you're not. And since it doesn't sound like they are going to start separating the pros from the ammy's, just do the best you can and know that the proof is in the score - not the ribbon! :)

downen
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:52 PM
OK, I'm not anything near a trainer but I had a fair amount of success in the late 80s/early 90s eventing at novice and training levels. Then life took over... I had two kids, was diagnosed first with MS, then with Addison's disease. I'm now 50, arthritic, weak muscled, and a serious fall could kill me. So I have purchased a fat little QH, quiet but green. I just started showing, and have ridden two intro tests and one training now that he's figured out what leads are.

I'm really posting to assuage my guilt... last weekend we entered our first Starter CT, you know, with the intro test and then cross rails. It was me and four young girls... we had a decent test and trotted our stadium to win the division. I felt a little like a cherry picker. On one hand, schooling shows are probably all I'm going to be able to do, and I was really proud of his dressage score (about 63% - not bad for a fat little cowpony!). And part of me wants him to accumulate a show record in case something happens to me and he needs to be sold. But I also remember what it was like to be one of those kids hoping for a blue ribbon... so am I bad for not showing HC? I can count on COTHers for an honest response.

PaulaM
Jun. 14, 2011, 12:54 PM
I am an Amateur Rider and back in 2008, I did the Walk/Trot tests in a recognized show.

This is my post:
http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=160525

Were we capable of doing Training Level for the whole show?? Most likely, but there were a variety of factors for why I did the Walk/Trot (Intro) Level.

1) This was my first recognized show in 8 years
2) in June 2008, I had a serious riding accident that ended up cracking the helmet I was wearing and severely eroding what little confidence I did have
3) I had just started working with a new trainer after getting severely burned by a previous one to the point I almost gave up riding completely.

The pictures don't work in the initial post any more as I changed service providers

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:05 PM
But it would be nice to have a level playing field.



No such thing, dear. But you can be thankful you're not a dork. ;)

fur ball
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:08 PM
... so am I bad for not showing HC? I can count on COTHers for an honest response.

I dont think so, not at all actually. The CT was new ground for you, you are on a new (to you), green horse and you are just getting your feet wet again when it comes to showing.

Congratulations on your 63%!!! You should feel good about it, it is well deserved after your hard work.

sanctuaryfarm
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:09 PM
In my little world our club requires that pros showing Intro are required to ride HC

SillyHorse
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:12 PM
I am an Amateur Rider and back in 2008, I did the Walk/Trot tests in a recognized show.

This is my post:
http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=160525

Were we capable of doing Training Level for the whole show?? Most likely, but there were a variety of factors for why I did the Walk/Trot (Intro) Level.

1) This was my first recognized show in 8 years
2) in June 2008, I had a serious riding accident that ended up cracking the helmet I was wearing and severely eroding what little confidence I did have
3) I had just started working with a new trainer after getting severely burned by a previous one to the point I almost gave up riding completely.

The pictures don't work in the initial post any more as I changed service providers
I don't understand your point. No one is questioning AAs entering Intro classes. (Although some may feel that Intro classes don't belong at recognized shows.)

PaulaM
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:14 PM
I guess my point was is that sometimes there are reasons, maybe the horse is coming back from an injury or maybe the owner might want the horse to only be shown at that level at this time. Maybe there might have be an issue with the canter.. you just never know

To my knowledge there is nothing in the rule books to prevent a Pro or anyone from entering Intro level...

White Lie
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:17 PM
To everyone wondering if Intro is not the right level for
1) your first time out (at least in many years)
2) your horses first time out (at least after retraining etc..)

I say that is what the division is for - an introduction to the show ring, for those that need to reduce the stress level of the test. If you feel that it is the correct level for you - it probably is. If no one showed it - it wouldn't exist, and no one wants that.

For a PRO to CAMPAIGN a horse (who is pulling 70% +) it is absurd. I may admit there might be a few exceptions, but frankly if I were the pro described originally, when I started to blow the competition out of the water (as described by the OP), I would move up or switch to H/C.

downen
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:18 PM
I dont think so, not at all actually. The CT was new ground for you, you are on a new (to you), green horse and you are just getting your feet wet again when it comes to showing.

Congratulations on your 63%!!! You should feel good about it, it is well deserved after your hard work.

Thank you so much! :)

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:30 PM
For a PRO to CAMPAIGN a horse (who is pulling 70% +) it is absurd. I may admit there might be a few exceptions, but frankly if I were the pro described originally, when I started to blow the competition out of the water (as described by the OP), I would move up or switch to H/C.

:yes:

Lateral canter, bucking, rearing, gaited. Who knows and who cares. Show HC or deal with the issue(s) some other way.

PaulaM
Jun. 14, 2011, 01:54 PM
Taken from the top of the Introductory Test A

"PURPOSE: To introduce the rider and/or horse to the sport of dressage. To show understanding of riding the horse forward with a steady tempo into an elastic contact with independentsteady hands and a correctly balanced seat. To show proper geometry of figures in the arena with correct bend (corners and circles)."

maybe shows need to be approached to hold "Introductory - Rider" and "Introductory - Horse" classes...

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:23 PM
For a PRO to CAMPAIGN a horse (who is pulling 70% +) it is absurd. I may admit there might be a few exceptions, but frankly if I were the pro described originally, when I started to blow the competition out of the water (as described by the OP), I would move up or switch to H/C.

Huh. So if the "pro" is in an open class at a schooling show and wins all their classes they're being greedy, and it's just massively wrong. If a novice is complaining about not having a chance for a ribbon and being thwarted in their own attempt at being greedy (wanting/craving the ribbon) it's okay? :no:

Got to watch it. Riding is riding. You need to ride your own test and get your own scores and work on what needs to be worked on. This whole idea (as I've said before) that everyone needs to get a ribbon is ridiculous. It's the watering down of competition that has made dressage in this country so sub-par (as someone else pointed out).

If it's about lining your tack room with ribbons, go buy some. I mean, what are they REALLY worth if they don't properly reflect that you have accomplished something really great? Like beating a pro and all the other horses and riders in the class?

I'm so tired of ribbon hunting and tiny classes where everyone can get one. It needs to be hard to mean something--to me. (With that said, I'd go HC unless the owner was paying for the class and wanted the ribbon. It's their option at that point. Not mine. I'm the hired help.)

atlatl
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:27 PM
What about the AA with a bronze medal showing intro on a new horse? What about the AA with any medal showing intro ever?

If the point is who gets the ribbon or the year end award, just go and buy one. It's much much cheaper and there's no competition.

Yes, a trainer "campaigning" at intro is dorkish. I can't remember the last I only saw one dork at a horse show, they usually travel in packs. :confused:

Tiki
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:28 PM
Many do, but many of these posters will still whine if a pro shows a really green horse agains their really green horse when they are a really green rider. Some people need to remember the old thing about how green should never be matched with green.

FatDinah
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:33 PM
If the trainer is doing it for some specific training need for the horse, they will generally not go for a ribbon in the class but will ride hors de concours.)


Totally off course, but one of my funniest memories is my husband's face when a friend announced at a show she was riding "hors de concurs."
He thought she meant doing a Lady Godiva routine or something!

We were all laying on the ground we were laughing so hard.

HenryisBlaisin'
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:34 PM
I'm a definite adult ammy. I show my horse at training level with hopes of maybe getting him to first (16 YO 14.3h QH, downhill built, was a working ranch horse most of his life, then SS hunter, never saw a dressage arena before his first show; me experienced rider but fairly new to dressage). I showed him intro at his first couple of shows last year (1st one Intro A/B, 2nd show Intro B/Training 1).

While I think it would be pretty cheesy of a pro to show their own horse at Intro for the sole purpose of a year-end award, (and I do think it's cheesy of a pro to "camapign" any horse at Intro!) what about the OWNER here? I think some of the blame has to lie there. (If horse really is a complete fruitcake, or if owner is hurt/pregnant or something, maybe they get a break.) But if the owner is having the trainer campaign the horse just so the horse can get lots of top ribbons or a year-end award and owner feels trainer has a better shot of winning than he/she does? Shame on the owner! If that's what the owner is paying the trainer to do, at last most of the blame lies with the owner; the trainer is just doing what they're paid to do.

Frankly, I don't get it, though. I do lesson with a trainer, but she doesn't show my horse. She doesn't warm him up ot "prep" him-I do. Heck, half the time she's not even at the show. Would he place higher if she rode him? Probably, but I would also get zero sense of accomplishment if I didn't ride him. Unless I was totally in over my head with a horse or I was unable to ride for some reason, I can't think of a situation where I'd have a trainer show my horse for me. I KNOW my trainer can get great scores. I want to know if I can, too. I've done all the work with my horse, and I'm PROUD of that, even if it does mean we might peak at a lower level!

NCRider
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:35 PM
If people followed the spirit of the intent behind the creation of the class, then under most circumstances pro's would not be showing a nice dressage horse multiple times in an intro class.

I would guess that the people who are disappointed by seeing the pro's in their class are not directing their disappointment at the adult reRider on the QH scoring in the low 60's or the pro who brings a series of OTTB retraining projects out at Intro level. They're talking about the pro who shows up on a client's $$$ WB and scores in the mid to high 70's. That person belongs at Training level or showing HC. For that person to show intro for a score is unsportsmanlike.

I see Intro as a level for people and horses who for whatever reason are not ready to show Training at all. I don't think it's appropriate for people who would likely score 65+ at training level but don't want to move up until they're likely to score in the 70's.

If it's "not about the ribbons" then those people need to be sportsmen and show HC instead of collecting the intro blue ribbon and directing a snide "it's not about the ribbons" to those kids and adults riding whatever horse they can get their hands on.

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:39 PM
Huh. So if the "pro" is in an open class at a schooling show and wins all their classes they're being greedy, and it's just massively wrong. If a novice is complaining about not having a chance for a ribbon and being thwarted in their own attempt at being greedy (wanting/craving the ribbon) it's okay? :no:

Got to watch it. Riding is riding. You need to ride your own test and get your own scores and work on what needs to be worked on. This whole idea (as I've said before) that everyone needs to get a ribbon is ridiculous. It's the watering down of competition that has made dressage in this country so sub-par (as someone else pointed out).

If it's about lining your tack room with ribbons, go buy some. I mean, what are they REALLY worth if they don't properly reflect that you have accomplished something really great? Like beating a pro and all the other horses and riders in the class?

I'm so tired of ribbon hunting and tiny classes where everyone can get one. It needs to be hard to mean something--to me. (With that said, I'd go HC unless the owner was paying for the class and wanted the ribbon. It's their option at that point. Not mine. I'm the hired help.)

Good post and I'll add to it... When the horse goes well for the pro and wins then the trainer is a greedy, ribbon snatcher. However, when the horse has a green moment (bucks, bolts, spooks, etc) the trainer sucks and shouldn't be a pro. I think some people just hate competing against professionals for whatever reason.

The way I see it, if it is legal in the rules then it is fair game.

atlatl
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:45 PM
I think some people just hate competing against professionals for whatever reason.

It's not just competing against professionals. In some cases, it's "competing" period.

I had a nice AQHA horse that I did the all around with on the AQHA circuit. He was "nice" but we were routinely beat by better horses and riders. After some time off, I took him to a local club show. It turns out we were the better horse and rider in that venue. If only the ladies on the rail had known that they were standing next to my husband when they made their comments about how I had no business being there!! He didn't say anything to them, but we got a laugh out of it later.

White Lie
Jun. 14, 2011, 02:50 PM
Huh. So if the "pro" is in an open class at a schooling show and wins all their classes they're being greedy, and it's just massively wrong. If a novice is complaining about not having a chance for a ribbon and being thwarted in their own attempt at being greedy (wanting/craving the ribbon) it's okay? :no:

Got to watch it. Riding is riding. You need to ride your own test and get your own scores and work on what needs to be worked on. This whole idea (as I've said before) that everyone needs to get a ribbon is ridiculous. It's the watering down of competition that has made dressage in this country so sub-par (as someone else pointed out).

If it's about lining your tack room with ribbons, go buy some. I mean, what are they REALLY worth if they don't properly reflect that you have accomplished something really great? Like beating a pro and all the other horses and riders in the class?

I'm so tired of ribbon hunting and tiny classes where everyone can get one. It needs to be hard to mean something--to me. (With that said, I'd go HC unless the owner was paying for the class and wanted the ribbon. It's their option at that point. Not mine. I'm the hired help.)

See this is where we will have to agree to disagree... while campaigning at intro may not be illegal, I do feel that it shows bad judgement on the Pro's part. Oh and for what it is worth I do show as a PRO (not because I ride well, but because I break young horses, and train beginner riders, and have become a pro by default). When I have a young horse that needs miles in the show ring I show H/C... like you said about ribbons "what are they REALLY worth if they don't properly reflect that you have accomplished something really great?" and to me to beat a school kid on a 15h appy school pony with my warmblood (after 30 years of riding), isn't worth that much, but for the kid that ribbon could be priceless.

fur ball
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:18 PM
"They're talking about the pro who shows up on a client's $$$ WB and scores in the mid to high 70's. That person belongs at Training level or showing HC."

This is what I have been trying to say, thanks NC Rider.

I have no ill will towards professionals on green horses. Nor do I have ill will towards starting a horse out at intro for a good experience. I will say it again, my issue is with this pair as I feel they are "over-qualified" and should compete at a level where they are competitive. Not at a level where they are proven, more than once, that they can win by a landslide. If not training, maybe they should do intro at a recognized show But, whatever, as someone said "if it is legal, it is fair."

In my small corner of the world local schooling shows are a big deal and I like my fancy ribbons just as much as the owner in my OP. They give me somethign to bring home and show my husband that the day wasn't a total waste and the money I spend on my horse is producing results. :lol: Have you ever tried to give a non-horsey husband a scored dressage test?? I can imagine his face if I said "dont worry honey, I am competing against myself, it is all about the score." Haha!!

I would actually like to see the owner up on that horse...maybe then it would be a real competition. :eek:

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:24 PM
See this is where we will have to agree to disagree... while campaigning at intro may not be illegal, I do feel that it shows bad judgement on the Pro's part. Oh and for what it is worth I do show as a PRO (not because I ride well, but because I break young horses, and train beginner riders, and have become a pro by default). When I have a young horse that needs miles in the show ring I show H/C... like you said about ribbons "what are they REALLY worth if they don't properly reflect that you have accomplished something really great?" and to me to beat a school kid on a 15h appy school pony with my warmblood (after 30 years of riding), isn't worth that much, but for the kid that ribbon could be priceless.

And I said I would and do go HC if it's me. If I'm riding a client's horse and they're paying for the class, they can decide if they want the ribbon. They can decide what shows we go to (as long as I'm available) and I can only tell them what classes I would suggest and which ones I would refuse to ride in based on the horse's level of training--meaning I wouldn't go for Second Level if the horse was barely First Level in it's training. If they say they want (for some reason) to have me show W/T and they're paying me a lot of money for training and for showing the horse, I'd go. I don't care. It's the way you survive in the horse world and build good will with clients (who might have a lot of money).

You know, there's something else going on here that no one is talking about. Know what that is? It's the fact that the owner might just want this horse sold and knows that the higher the scores are and the better the placings (in multiple shows) the better it looks in the sales add for those green riders looking for a green horse they think will do well for them at the schooling shows and possibly take them further.

With that thought...who's really to blame here? :winkgrin:

Oh, and you can't tell me that people at the lower levels are NOT impressed with a pro getting scores at the lower levels. Those same people that are complaining on the side will want to know how to win like that pro, and many will run to them to find out how.

It's a very unhealthy little circle rider's create in the world of showing at the lower levels--when they live at those levels for years.

fur ball
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:29 PM
"the better it looks in the sales add for those green riders looking for a green horse they think will do well for them at the schooling shows and possibly take them further."

Never thought of that actually. I have to admit It would like nice in a sales ad to be able to say 2011 1st place horse in XX show series.

White Lie
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:30 PM
You know, there's something else going on here that no one is talking about. Know what that is? It's the fact that the owner might just want this horse sold and knows that the higher the scores are and the better the placings (in multiple shows) the better it looks in the sales add for those green riders looking for a green horse they think will do well for them at the schooling shows and possibly take them further.

This arguement I will give you. Like I said, I am more a pro by default, and only show my own horses.

horsefaerie
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:35 PM
For the record intro tests have been around awhile.

THere used to be 4 of them. C and D had canter. They were much better tests than the training level tests at the time. More movements and transitions and places for comments.

I have entered intro classes with horses new to showing. I can train a horse but I am not a bronc rider. I don't take unnecessary risks to impress people. Walk trot lowers the risk much of the time. You never know what a horse will think of the show grounds.

If you want to also lower your financial expense and show that a sale horse is capable at WT for a timid rider I see no problem with it.

I have been doing this so long that seeing a pro on a clients 100,000 dollar horse at intro is just fine. If they stay there for three years it would go against the horse and the sale price of the horse so don't sweat it.

johnnysauntie
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:41 PM
With respect to pros riding Intro, it's totally reasonable for them to do so, in my mind, to get mileage on a horse or deal with some other issue. But I'd sure prefer that they ride HC. Why? Because one reason intro exists is to introduce people to dressage - and hopefully get them hooked. Let the ammy on the downhill QH or greenie OTTB have a chance at primary colors. A pro riding intro? That's like shooting fish in a barrel. It's not sportsmanlike. You get beginners who aren't even ready to canter at a show, and then have them lose to pro that scores 25 points more? THat could be demoralizing to some. They may take their pony home and never come back, and that's not good for the game.

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 03:54 PM
You know, there's something else going on here that no one is talking about. Know what that is? It's the fact that the owner might just want this horse sold and knows that the higher the scores are and the better the placings (in multiple shows) the better it looks in the sales add for those green riders looking for a green horse they think will do well for them at the schooling shows and possibly take them further.



Then the "pro" should tell the owner as gently as possible that what you want me to do is unlikely to accomplish your goal. Green rider does not necessarily mean "stupid person." Only an idiot would look at high Intro scores with a pro rider and think -- hey, that must be one really nice green horse. He can w/t with a pro! I'll pay a bundle for THAT one.

And yes, the owner is paying the bills and if he/she insists, then I suppose the trainer is between a rock and a hard place. But if I'd asked any of the trainers I've worked with to repeatedly show my horses in w/t classes, they would have told ME how stupid it would make us BOTH look.

FYI -- No ribbon hound here. I just found three boxes of ribbons that I worked really hard for at breed shows. I wish I could think of something to do with the damned things. I just think riding over and over again @ Intro makes the pro look like an idiot. If I participated in this show series, I'd be laughing my ass off at both owner and trainer.

ETA


If you want to also lower your financial expense and show that a sale horse is capable at WT for a timid rider I see no problem with it.

This really doesn't make much sense. 78% at Intro only shows what a pro can do with the horse at w/t. Not a timid rider.

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:08 PM
Then the "pro" should tell the owner as gently as possible that what you want me to do is unlikely to accomplish your goal. Green rider does not necessarily mean "stupid person." Only an idiot would look at high Intro scores with a pro rider and think -- hey, that must be one really nice green horse. He can w/t with a pro! I'll pay a bundle for THAT one.

Um, well, I'm now going to challenge you to go out and take a look around at what's for sale, how it is packaged in the ad, and then ask people at barns (people with more money than sense, I'd guess) what they bought and why.

I've seen this quite a few times. :no: It fits the old PT Barnum quote about a fool being born every minute.

Then again, if people at the schooling show see the horse, see the scores and fall in love...the horse can be sold that way too. I've seen many decent schooling show horses go for decent money because people just see ribbons--and they think that if they buy that horse they can go get some for their wall. Doesn't matter to them if it's a schooling show--their friends aren't horse back riders (and definitely not dressage riders) and will never know the difference. :rolleyes:

amm2cd
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:12 PM
So.. There's a Pro on a nicer horse in intro at a schooling show. So what?

It's a schooling show for petes sake! The whole point is to school your horse in a Faux Show environment. I'll be taking two of my young horses to a schooling show this weekend, one showing in Intro and one showing intro/training. Both are four and this will be their first show. So what if some pro on a greenie beats me or some old lady on her BTDT horse has a more consistant test than me? The whole point of a schooling show is to prepare for the recognzed shows. Schooling shows are only for practice.

The best advice I ever got from my trainer on showing was after I was whining about the unfairness of riding my stock horse against the warmbloods....
"Ride better or take up knitting"

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:15 PM
Um, well, I'm now going to challenge you to go out and take a look around at what's for sale, how it is packaged in the ad, and then ask people at barns (people with more money than sense, I'd guess) what they bought and why.

What's for sale and what gets sold for the asking price are two different things. There are a lot of people with more money than sense at my barn. Even they're not that stupid.

GingerJumper
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:17 PM
I personally see no problem with it. Obviously, I'd be annoyed a little if I'd placed below them (what can I say, I like my blues just fine), but I see no problem with it.

Who knows, maybe the horse is a firecracker of a greenie with a buck that could've gotten it into the PBR circuit, had it possessed the horns everyone swore were hiding behind that adorable baby face. Or, perhaps it's lower level horse coming off of an injury but the pro or owner is absolutely dying to get out and show again without overfacing the horse's present level of fitness/ability at the level.

I've seen all of the above reasons, and a multitude more as well, and haven't really been bothered much by it.

I'd also like to point out that it is highly possible to beat said pros if you show the better ride. I've done it before, on horses that were by no means fancy.

CHT
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:18 PM
"Horsey has schooled to 2nd level and has shown with scores in the 70's". I think that type of ad is Velvets point. The ad implies the horse has shown at a decent level, but it could be a true statement even if the horse has only shown intro.

Out of curiousity, does an Hors Concours test get judges and just not placed? I could see doing that, but I always thought it meant unjudged, and it seems silly to go to a dressage show and not take advantage of the judges insights.

I like Walk/trot A as the horse gets to walk towards the judges booth rather than have to trot. The old training tests seemed more young horse friendly than the new ones, with transitions coming up faster.

mickeydoodle
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:22 PM
Did I miss the part where this trainer was "campaigning" the horse at intro?

I haven't done an Intro class since my mare was a greener than green and a very wallflowerish horse. One show, one class at Intro, then on to training level. We just wanted to see how she'd react at shows. We scored a 72% -- yep, she was fine and ready to move up. Handled the show nicely. Mission accomplished.

I'm also a "small p" pro. Intro is for schooling -- so far as I know, there are no "year end" awards for Intro. Thank God for that. Can't think of anything sillier than being the Intro HOY!

I say get over it.


that's funny, we have a local pro who has won intro HOY for our GMO countless years

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:33 PM
What's for sale and what gets sold for the asking price are two different things. There are a lot of people with more money than sense at my barn. Even they're not that stupid.

You actually think people don't lie about their financial mistakes?? :lol:

Velvet
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:34 PM
Out of curiousity, does an Hors Concours test get judges and just not placed?

Yep, you are riding without "honors"--or in this case ribbons. You still get the test sheet and comments. It's what you're paying for when you ride hors de concours.

mp
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:42 PM
You actually think people don't lie about their financial mistakes?? :lol:

The people who actually MAKE the mistakes might not tell the truth. But their husbands and friends sure as hell like to.

Heinz 57
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:48 PM
Maybe we should instigate a handicap system? :lol:

Rhiannonjk
Jun. 14, 2011, 04:54 PM
Pshaw. I'm currrently riding at Intro (young horse, awkward growth this spring, BAD canter transitions) and the only competition that I've had problems with is a 6 year old human on 10 hand pony. If you win over that, how can you be proud? If you lose (horribly, and legitimately), how can you be proud? I can't wait to move up and get away from this upsetting competition!

Sandy M
Jun. 14, 2011, 05:23 PM
I think a "pro CAMPAIGNING" a horse at Intro is the key here. I don't think that is right. I have no issue with a pro showing a young/green/problem horse at Intro, though I would think he/she should have the skills to move the horse on to Training Level after one or two exposures at Intro unless the horse has major issues. But a pro campaigning a horse at Intro for circuit/year end awards does seem a little tacky. No rule against it, though.

I'm a "strictly ammy" and my horse has been/can be explosive, though we seem down to "just" spooks and some tension now. I showed him Intro a total of three times between ages 4 and 5, and the third time, I also showed TL, Test 1. From then on, I've shown him Training Level.

For myself, I concentrate on my scores and hopefully, their improvement. Sure, the ribbons are nice, but I try to take a long view, and if I'm thinking about awards, it's # of scores over 60% for the season (GMO gives "placques" for scores over 60%), or USDF All Breeds. My guy is erratic in his - what, attention span? So at one show, we got a 64.286% from Hilda Gurney on TL/2 for a 3rd place ribbon, and then yahoo!! OMG blowing decorative grass!! and a 60.4% on Test 3 and no ribbon. Of course, he probably could have (and has) gotten a 68% at Intro...hmm......(No, i wouldn't do that now). LOL

Trevelyan96
Jun. 14, 2011, 05:50 PM
Personally I don't have a problem with it, but I'm also ultra conservative when it comes to my horse's training regimen. I want my horses to do Intro for a season. For the average AA recreational horse/rider combination, I think it takes that long to build the horse's muscles and balance properly.

If I were incapable of riding myself, I would ask my trainer to show my horse at Intro for a season because I want to know he's solid before moving on to the next level. If he's cleaning up, then I know he's ready to move up to TL next season. If he's marginal (low 60's) then I fell he needs more time/training.

I think one of the reasons we have so many horses that need injections, etc., is because we don't take the time to develop them properly before moving them up. Just because the horse CAN does not always mean it SHOULD.

TrakHack
Jun. 14, 2011, 06:03 PM
Meh. I decided long ago that I can't control what people do, but I can control how I react to it. I think a pro campaigning at Intro is embarrassing for that pro, but not something worth my energy to get upset about.

I'm a show secretary for our local hunter/jumper schooling show series, and the pros do enter classes, but never the very lowest level classes. They may ride green beans, but I can't recall any pro going in a class lower than 2'6", which I would roughly equate to Training Level in dressage. If the horse is an idiot when cantering during warm-up, they scratch. The pros usually don't campaign in divisions for year end awards, either; the horse either moves up or it gets sold.

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 14, 2011, 06:08 PM
So it sounds like to me that most people feel that there should maybe be an "expiration date" of sorts on intro. Like ANYONE who gets three scores of 70% or higher should move on to training level? That would seem pretty fair to me, because honestly, a pro campaigning at intro is no worse than a good ammie or jr campaigning. If we are worried about discouraging new riders, then maybe it would be nicer for everyone to move up after a certain point to ensure that the new kids have a chance to win some ribbons. Or have a "maiden" class where you get kicked out after you win a blue ribbon.

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 14, 2011, 06:14 PM
Meh. I decided long ago that I can't control what people do, but I can control how I react to it. I think a pro campaigning at Intro is embarrassing for that pro, but not something worth my energy to get upset about.

I'm a show secretary for our local hunter/jumper schooling show series, and the pros do enter classes, but never the very lowest level classes. They may ride green beans, but I can't recall any pro going in a class lower than 2'6", which I would roughly equate to Training Level in dressage. If the horse is an idiot when cantering during warm-up, they scratch. The pros usually don't campaign in divisions for year end awards, either; the horse either moves up or it gets sold.

The reason I do dressage (and why some other H/J pros do it) is so that I can get easy mileage for my youngsters- of course I don't do any "campaigning" in dressage regardless. You will rarely see me jumping less than 3' at a H/J show, but that is likely due to the fact that I use low level dressage divisions to start the young horses.

Some horses were born with a brain that enables them to be confident in new situations and be able to start off at 3'. Other horses need easy mileage to develop a brain that enables them to be confident.

MyssMyst
Jun. 14, 2011, 06:28 PM
Pshaw. I'm currrently riding at Intro (young horse, awkward growth this spring, BAD canter transitions) and the only competition that I've had problems with is a 6 year old human on 10 hand pony. If you win over that, how can you be proud? If you lose (horribly, and legitimately), how can you be proud? I can't wait to move up and get away from this upsetting competition!

Win!

dkcbr
Jun. 14, 2011, 06:50 PM
To everyone wondering if Intro is not the right level for
1) your first time out (at least in many years)
2) your horses first time out (at least after retraining etc..)

I say that is what the division is for - an introduction to the show ring, for those that need to reduce the stress level of the test. If you feel that it is the correct level for you - it probably is. If no one showed it - it wouldn't exist, and no one wants that.

For a PRO to CAMPAIGN a horse (who is pulling 70% +) it is absurd. I may admit there might be a few exceptions, but frankly if I were the pro described originally, when I started to blow the competition out of the water (as described by the OP), I would move up or switch to H/C.

:yes::yes::yes:

asb_own_me
Jun. 14, 2011, 07:20 PM
It's a schooling show for petes sake! The whole point is to school your horse in a Faux Show environment.

You'll have to excuse me.....I'm halfway into a bottle of sauvignon blanc after a stressful afternoon, and all I saw of your post was

"Fo SHO!"

:lol::lol::lol:

KrazyTBMare
Jun. 14, 2011, 10:55 PM
You'll have to excuse me.....I'm halfway into a bottle of sauvignon blanc after a stressful afternoon, and all I saw of your post was

"Fo SHO!"

:lol::lol::lol:

ROFL




Our GMO seperates the classes by junior, AA, and open. We also run our series awards, championships, and year end awards with the same seperation. No worries. I have scribed for many a test with a pro showing intro on a horse and they did not always "walk away with the blue". As stated for the last 4+ pages, they are probably riding the horse in the show for a reason.


--says KTBM who will have HER trainer riding Sexy Rexy at his first show (or two) at *gasp* INTRO! :lol:

Tiki
Jun. 15, 2011, 07:28 AM
You get beginners who aren't even ready to canter at a show, and then have them lose to pro that scores 25 points more?Soooo, you're saying that the Pro got a 70% and the beginner got a 45%, but the beginner would have won if the Pro wasn't there????? Gimme a break!

fur ball
Jun. 15, 2011, 08:22 AM
Soooo, you're saying that the Pro got a 70% and the beginner got a 45%, but the beginner would have won if the Pro wasn't there????? Gimme a break!

"Eye Roll"

KrazyTBMare and Tiki,

Might I suggest a short course in reading for comprehension?

No one is saying that the beginner who scored a 45% should be expected to win any class. Nor is anyone saying that it is inappropriate for a pro to enter a green horse in intro. Lastly, no one wants US dressage to be "dumbed down" any further.

This thread, if you had bothered to read it from the beginning, was based on a discussion of whether it is sportsmanlike for the same professional to enter a intro level class and win by a wide margin, week after week, at the local schooling show level. No one is questioning whether it is legal, no one is questioning that they shouldn't have won, no one is looking for them to be eliminated from the competition pool.

Really, I was just whining. *gasp*

Oh well, it is back to intro A&B for me this weekend, I am hoping for a 2% improvement on my B test. I worked on circles at a nice forward trot last night...

SillyHorse
Jun. 15, 2011, 09:21 AM
In its schooling sow series, our GMO separates Intro into two divisions, Intro Novice and Intro Open, and there are strict requirements for entering either of these classes.

Introductory Novice classes are open only to junior and amateurs with limited riding experience. The rider may not have won four blue ribbons with a score of 60% or better at Intro Level, and may not have shown Training Level or above at any competition.

Introductory Open classes are open to any rider showing a horse that has not shown Training Level or above at any competition OR any rider that has not shown Training Level or above at any competition. Four blue ribbons with a score of 60% or better will make the rider ineligible for any further Novice Introductory classes with the exception of the Championship Show.

This is working very well to solve the Intro problem.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 09:41 AM
I still think it's a non-issue if the rules allow it. As for a point being made about a 45% score winning a class, this is where I wish we would all go back to the old Dutch scoring system. You had to have a score over a certain percentage to get the blue--even if you were the only one in the class. Under a certain percentage, you wouldn't even get a ribbon.

I liked those rules. We need to put them back in place. That way even if you have a tiny class, placings will be decided on whether or not you actually earned them as well.

Still on the pro discussion, if you don't like the way it is, then start your own schooling show and set up your own rules. Then you can also ride in the show and make sure you're the only one in the class and you can take home blue ribbons. :rolleyes:

People really need to just learn the definition of the word competition.

NCRider
Jun. 15, 2011, 09:55 AM
And some people need to learn the meaning of the word competition. It's not competition if you're trolling among beginners and kids on school horses.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 10:15 AM
And some people need to learn the meaning of the word competition. It's not competition if you're trolling among beginners and kids on school horses.

Wow, do you even realize how petty that sounds? It sounds like someone pouting and saying life is unfair. And in this case, they actually KNOW the rules are weighted against them. :no:

I just do not understand why people are all about not being beaten in a class. What? Does it threaten your sense of security and self-worth? Seriously, what is a competition about? You compete against other people doing the SAME test and you need to do your best. If your best is not good enough, then buck up, learn, and come back to see if you can beat those people later.

IF you feel that what is going on is akin to having an Olympic swimmer up against a begginer, you might want to look at the Barcelona Olympics. I seem to recall a swimmer from an impoverished country going to the Olympics who could barely swim finishing against the best in the world. You know what? People admired him for trying! They did not look down upon him. He chose to go to the Olympics and compete against those people.

I am all for separating Jr and Sr riders, I just think the Ammie and Pro distinction no longer really fits anymore. There are ammies who used to be pros, ammies who basically are pros but buy and train their own horses only. There are also pros who should be ammies (based on how people feel ammies should ride and score in competition).

If you don't like the rules, avoid that show. Stop kvetching about it.

HenryisBlaisin'
Jun. 15, 2011, 10:26 AM
I still think the real question is, if the horse is "campaigning" at Intro (presumably for high ribbons/year-end awards) why isn't the OWNER riding the horse? The pro is only doing what the owner is paying him/her to do. I find the complete dependence on the pro the bigger issue here.

If the horse is completely green and owner isn't confident, okay, have the trainer do a show or two just to get some miles, evaluate how it will behave for the owner, then have owner take over, especially at W-T level. Really, if a 6-year-old on a 10-hand pony can do it...

If the horse is such a complete fruitcake that owner will never be able to handle it at a show, why even bother owning a horse so far over your head? If it's that bad at shows, how much fun can it be to ride at home? If owner only bought horse for trainer to show so they can rake in ribbons and attention with zero intention of actually riding it themself, then owner and trainer should be working toward showing at a much higher level.

If the owner does plan to ride the horse but is really not skilled enough to ride a W-T test away from home, perhaps the money would be better spent on lessons?

If the owner is capable of riding the horse at a schooling show in a W-T test but has the pro do so anyway to get higher scores/ribbons, shame on the owner! That's truly poor sportsmanship! Ditto if horse is capable of doing Training but owner is keeping it at Intro for better ribbons.

Of course there are exceptions. High ribbons at Intro aren't going to be the decising factore in whether I buy a horse or pass, but for some (especailly those who want the glory without any of the work, and there are lots of those!) it might be, and if the owner wants to sell the horse and trainer's showing it to get those higher scores/ribbons? Still tacky, but with the market so poor, any edge in in selling might be worth looking like a boob.

If there is a reason that the owner is incapable of riding due to illness, injury, pregnancy, etc., that's different, too, IMO, especially if owner will be limited to Intro for a while upon their return due either to their previous level (i.e. were a beginner before) or to the effects of the condition. Kepping the horse trained and tuned in those instances is different than going after ribbons.

If the pro is telling the owner the horse needs to stay at intro when it doesn't, because the pro is enjoying being the big fish in the small pond, or because when the horse moves up it will be taken from full training and trainer wants to milk the owner, then that's just plain unethical and the owner needs a new trainer.

But really, this is more of an owner problem than a trainer problem IMHO. Unless the trainer is unethical to the owner, he or she is only doing what the client is paying for in order to make a living.

At our locals, pros and ammies compete together but high point awards go to the highest placing amateur at the end of the day.

Sandy M
Jun. 15, 2011, 10:27 AM
Guess I'm lucky, in that in my area, I haven't seen anything like that. Most of those I see pretty much are showing at a level appropriate to their skill/the horse's level of training. The only exception I can think of is one gal who has shown Grand Prix, who kept showing a horse schooled to a much higher level at 2nd level (and consistently scoring high and winning most of her classes). But....I also knew she was terrified of the horse. She was a wealthy ammy who was a pro in every way except officially, but if she was scared of the horse, who am I to say you MUST show at a higher level? My horse's score was going to be what it was regardless of what SHE did. Still, I have to agree that a pro acing Intro tests and campaigning for year-end awards is tacky, though not at all illegal.

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 10:38 AM
What Rhiannonjk said:


Pshaw. I'm currrently riding at Intro (young horse, awkward growth this spring, BAD canter transitions) and the only competition that I've had problems with is a 6 year old human on 10 hand pony. If you win over that, how can you be proud? If you lose (horribly, and legitimately), how can you be proud? I can't wait to move up and get away from this upsetting competition!


Giggle.

I just showed Intro B & C at a schooling show 10 days ago, and was only spared your embarrassment, Rhiannonjk, because they separated the intro divisions into kid & adult classes. Otherwise I would have been taking my middle aged self on a TB against the 11 hand ponies.

I agree that a pro campaigning at Intro is tacky. One cannot legislate sportsmanship, one can only model the behavior that we respect, and ignore and avoid the behavior that we don't, if it's not technically breaking any rules.

Why was I showing Intro? Because my mare hadn't done any showing for 2.5 years and is coming back from a long layup. But because Intro went fine, we will be working on Training tests next, it seems like the right thing to do for horse's fitness and development.

PaulaM
Jun. 15, 2011, 12:32 PM
I liked those rules. We need to put them back in place. That way even if you have a tiny class, placings will be decided on whether or not you actually earned them as well.



this is why I like the system here in Canada.
7. Any horse receiving less than 50% of the total points obtainable in a test shall not be eligible for awards, ribbons or prizes.
8.Any horse receiving less than 40% of the total points obtainable in atest will be eliminated from that class.
9.Championship Competitions see 7.23, 7.24 and 7.25.
10. When there is only one horse in a class, ribbons and prizes shallbe awarded in accordance with the following chart of percentages:
1. 1st 60% or higher
2. 2nd 57% to 59.9%
3. 3rd 54% to 56.9%
4. 4th 51% 5o 53.9%
No ribbons or prizes shall be awarded below 4"

Heinz 57
Jun. 15, 2011, 12:37 PM
I just do not understand why people are all about not being beaten in a class. What? Does it threaten your sense of security and self-worth? Seriously, what is a competition about? You compete against other people doing the SAME test and you need to do your best. If your best is not good enough, then buck up, learn, and come back to see if you can beat those people later.


Because they want ribbons and they want them NOW? That's the only thing I can figure.

Maybe we should have a separate class for folks that don't want to compete with others. Isn't 4H like that, where everyone gets a blue ribbon? Or one of those 'finisher' medals they give out for runners?

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 12:42 PM
this is why I like the system here in Canada.
7. Any horse receiving less than 50% of the total points obtainable in a test shall not be eligible for awards, ribbons or prizes.
8.Any horse receiving less than 40% of the total points obtainable in atest will be eliminated from that class.
9.Championship Competitions see 7.23, 7.24 and 7.25.
10. When there is only one horse in a class, ribbons and prizes shallbe awarded in accordance with the following chart of percentages:
1. 1st 60% or higher
2. 2nd 57% to 59.9%
3. 3rd 54% to 56.9%
4. 4th 51% 5o 53.9%
No ribbons or prizes shall be awarded below 4"

Is number 10 for the championships? Otherwise, I'm missing some of the rules.

But I really do like those. Here in the USA, where everyone feels they must have a ribbon even if no one else is in the class, this no longer works. It USED to be that way at most competitions. Then people whined and wouldn't go to shows that had that scoring system in place and the rule went away.

I'm just so disappointed with the fact that people would rather complain and cry for a ribbon rather than just buckle down and work harder to become better. No wonder our country is in trouble these days. :no: It's everywhere.

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 12:44 PM
Those of you who are lampooning the OP for criticizing the trainer for running Intro over and over are 1) seemingly challenged in your reading abilities, and 2) being kinda snotty (talking to you, Velvet), and 3) putting words in her mouth. She didn't say she expected a ribbon in all instances, she didn't say no one should ever ride Intro twice, she said, it was poor sportsmanship for a professional rider to show it over and over and effing over again in a local show with ammies who are themselves properly showing at that level.

How you find this very mild and reasonable point debatable is totally beyond me.

She didn't say this trainer should be locked in jail, or that it was technically against the rules, she said it was poor sportsmanship. Under what circumstances could this practice be described as GOOD sportsmanship? I can't think of any.

Piaffe11
Jun. 15, 2011, 01:01 PM
Is number 10 for the championships? Otherwise, I'm missing some of the rules.

Number 9 is stating there's another set of percentages that are specific for Championships (in the sections of the rule book stated).
Number 10 is stating that if there is only 1 horse competing in that class, the placing is handed out based on those percentage cutoffs.

Heinz 57
Jun. 15, 2011, 01:04 PM
Those of you who are lampooning the OP for criticizing the trainer for running Intro over and over are 1) seemingly challenged in your reading abilities, and 2) being kinda snotty (talking to you, Velvet), and 3) putting words in her mouth. She didn't say she expected a ribbon in all instances, she didn't say no one should ever ride Intro twice, she said, it was poor sportsmanship for a professional rider to show it over and over and effing over again in a local show with ammies who are themselves properly showing at that level.


From what I've read, she DID make it sound like it was all about the ribbons, and a professional ruining her 'chances' at a ribbon and/or year end award. She only wants to compete against people of her same level of training.


I am an AA with that is working very hard to bring my new horse along on a budget. I take lessons and have great help, but I am his primary rider and it is taking us a long time to get things together. I feel like competing against professionals in a dinky W/T class takes away any hope of placing well and/or obtaining a decent average for year-end awards.



I am more then happy to compete against people at my own level of training. I take issue with this individual because they have continuously entered the lowest level of competition available and continue to blow everyone else out of the water. To me, it isn't sportsmanlike.

...

Maybe I am being petty and selfish to think that it would have been nice to come in one place higher. So what if I am? :lol:



OP, for what it's worth - I am confident that you are at home right now really working hard to get ready for the next show against this combination, and that you will be better for it! Give 'em hell. :yes:

PFMJ
Jun. 15, 2011, 01:21 PM
I understand that the point of all of this is that the Pro in this case is showing Intro; however, without further information, as in the WHY in the matter, it is all supposition. And it is just an opinion that the Pro is being unsportsmanlike without the knowledge of what is actually going on.

It was said multiple times that the Pro possibly has other reasons for continuing to ride in the Intro classes--and possibly none of these has anything to do with racking up ribbons or scores. Honestly, get on your local GMO board and propose a rule change for year ends if this a problem. Many years ago,I recall our GMO had an issue with a rider doing Intro year after year, and somone got irked, proposed a rule change, it passed.

Personally, I'm an AA and I fall into the camp of not worrying about where I place, but it really being about the score and the ride--how well it went and how I can improve it. Quite often I find that at Recognized shows classes are not split, so unless you work hard at riding the very best you can it really doesn't matter. You just don't get hung up on riding against pros, because if you do, you'll be screwed. I know for me, part of that is a carry over to my old eventing days when you never had a division split.

I can understand how hard it can be for someone who is perhaps newer to showing, though. The thing is, you really free yourself if you don't worry about what other people do or don't do, even if it is a small community. I also know this is very hard to do. You only have control over yourself and your reactions. Being upset over the Pro and her actions for whatever her reasons, is time you take away from mental focus you can spend on your training, reviewing your test, etc. Just to me, the situation is not worth the trouble, because I would imagine it causes some internal aprehension when you go to the show, and perhaps even when you are there. I hope not though. Good luck this weekend.

NCRider
Jun. 15, 2011, 01:36 PM
The only thing I can think of is that Velvet and her ilk (or their trainers) are the pro's trolling for ribbons in the intro schooling shows and that's why they're so defensive. And no, I'm not the crappy ammy that you're constantly beating in local schooling shows as I trudge along trying to get better dreaming of the day that I can be all about the ribbons.

I'm the crappy ammy standing on the sidelines judging you for being a crappy sportsman while watching you beat the snot out of kids and other crappy ammy's who are just getting into the sport while waiting to watch my trainer go on her horse in the classes where she belongs by virtue of being a professional horseman on a talented horse. She would be embarrassed to be you and I'd be embarrassed to train with you.

And no, it's not like Michael Phelps competing in the Olympics against a terrible swimmer from some other country. Nice try. It's like Michael Phelps showing up at your YMCA and entering the beginner swimmers 50 meter freestyle, all summer long.

Tiki
Jun. 15, 2011, 02:05 PM
All this because of one documented pro apparently going for year end awards at Intro in one teeny tiny area has everyone riding at Intro's panties all in a twist. Wow! So what, should pros not every enter any class below PSG? Would that make you all happy? I doubt it.

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 02:15 PM
Read for meaning, Tiki. Once again, no one said what you are blathering about.

Big_Grey_hunter
Jun. 15, 2011, 02:30 PM
And no, it's not like Michael Phelps competing in the Olympics against a terrible swimmer from some other country. Nice try. It's like Michael Phelps showing up at your YMCA and entering the beginner swimmers 50 meter freestyle, all summer long.

Except MP isn't riding a living animal. MP just has to deal with himself, not the mental, physical, and training abilities of a horse. Obviously the pro's aren't doing intro for themselves, they are doing it for the good of the horse

And you can't compare your average pro with MP. That's like comparing your local pro to Edward Gal.

fur ball
Jun. 15, 2011, 02:32 PM
"Wow! So what, should pros not every enter any class below PSG? Would that make you all happy?"

Again, I can reccommend that short course on reading for comprehension. There has been no attempt to speak for "everyone that rides at Intro."

I wouldnt even go as far to say that my panty's are in a twist over this as I know there is nothing I can do to change it. I opened this thread looking for some other opinions on my observations and experiences. I never expected it would get this many responses.

You are correct when you say it is a teeny tiny show series. But we all have to do the best we can with what we have to work with, no? Year end awards in a dinky little GMO may not seem like much to you... But as they say, it is all relative.

I recognize now, that I need to adjust my thinking a bit and try to be satisfied with our improvement throughout the season, as evidenced by higher scores. As I said earlier, this weekend I would be ecstatic with a 2% increase on my Intro B score.

I won't respond again as this thread has gotten to the point where we are "beating the horse." But, I appreciate everyone's input, thanks for taking the time. :winkgrin:

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 02:56 PM
2) being kinda snotty (talking to you, Velvet)...

How you find this very mild and reasonable point debatable is totally beyond me.

She didn't say this trainer should be locked in jail, or that it was technically against the rules, she said it was poor sportsmanship. Under what circumstances could this practice be described as GOOD sportsmanship? I can't think of any.

Okay, first, I was not going after the OP directly in this, but rather going after all of the whining that happens in this country when people are following the rules of the sport. It's people wanting things their way, when it goes their way. If you look at my replies, I'm going after anyone who whines when rules are not broken, and who whines only because they don't get a cheap piece of fake satin to hang on a wall. It's all truly pathetic and not good for the sport to keep watering it down.

I was on board with the fact that most trainers would, in good conscience, ride HC if it was their own horse. If it's a client's horse, you need to pay the bills and trust me, in this economy being a pro trainer/instructor in dressage is living hand-to-mouth. You take the money and keep your mouth shut because you are NOT hurting anyone. You are simply competing in the class that is at the show and the owner is paying for you to ride. It's that simple. Campaigning for the owner or not, it's still that simple. Poor sportsmanship is whining about the competition in an open class and the fact that you don't get a ribbon. Think about it...

I do think as one of that larger group of people who are taking issue with this, the OP does need to step back and stop even worrying about someone cleaning her clock at a show and rather focus on her riding and improving it. We are talking about remedial classes for both horse and rider here.

I also made a very strong point about the fact that I think it's better for many of the classes to just be open and for the ammies to work harder to take those ribbons away from the so-called pros. It CAN be done. It has been done, and those ribbons actually mean something. The ribbons where you compete in a tiny group of people who ride once a week and don't work to improve themselves means what? You're the best of the worst? (Okay, so maybe that's a tad harsh, but what is it really and why would you want that ribbon? And I was NOT pointing a finger at ammies as a whole here, so keep that twist out of your knickers.)

I'm hearing some really reasonable discussion and then some really "bang your head on the wall a little harder why dontcha" type whining. In this country, we seem to be always having a hand out for an accolade or ataboy and never want anyone to tell us we're wrong or correct us. The judging in the show ring should set us all straight on what we need to fix so we CAN beat those who are currently better than us. It should also push us to go back to our coach and re-evaluate our riding, goals and maybe even our coaches ability to teach us what we need if we want to compete and win.

I'm just getting tired of whining and awards that don't mean much of anything anymore. :yes:

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:11 PM
Because they want ribbons and they want them NOW? That's the only thing I can figure.

Maybe we should have a separate class for folks that don't want to compete with others. Isn't 4H like that, where everyone gets a blue ribbon? Or one of those 'finisher' medals they give out for runners?

No, everyone does NOT get a blue ribbon in 4-H. Your annual project is graded and you will get a blue, red, or white ribbon depending on how well you have met your project requirements -- at least that is how my county did it, no matter if you we showing livestock or baking cakes. In Equine, you also had the opportunity to compete at traditional horse shows and get traditional
ribbons (or cheap pieces of satin, every one full of memories good and bad and usually much cherished by those who received them).

Back to the topic: I think everyone wants to compete, preferably on a reasonably fair playing field. A pro and/or owner who is
CAMPAIGNING at Intro show after show after show is probably not contributing to a reasonably fair playing field, IMHO, and may need to ask themselves if the SPORTING thing to do is to and move up, having proven themselves at Intro. Flame away....

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:18 PM
Velvet, the OP didn't post as a representative of your own political bugaboos, she posted as HERSELF.

And I will turn it around to you and say, if a pro can only make a living by beating lumpy middle-aged ammies at Intro, he or she doesn't deserve to make a living, and who are we to limit the Darwinian weeding out of such weak stock as them?

Not persuaded that your points are germane. I don't think the OP sounds like she thinks anyone owes her anything.

I get so annoyed on this board when instead of addressing the question posed by an OP, commenters decide to instead minutely pick apart the poster's motivations, character, taste in footwear, etc. You turn her question about sportsmanship into a rant about What is Wrong With America and Dressage. <eyeroll> Whatever.

Edited to add: The reason that sportsmanship and a basic perception of fairness matters is that at the end of the day, the best way to feed your starving dressage trainers is to welcome, encourage, and educate those who, for some benighted reason, are interested in this sport. And having an encouraging and fair experience when showing at the lower levels is key to the cultivation of what will be your pool of future customers who want to buy nicer horses, take clinics, and show higher up. Of course riders should expect to work hard, and will not always get rainbows and kittens, but in the big picture, a trainer doing this isn't doing dressage as a sport any favors.

mickeydoodle
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:22 PM
All this because of one documented pro apparently going for year end awards at Intro in one teeny tiny area has everyone riding at Intro's panties all in a twist. Wow! So what, should pros not every enter any class below PSG? Would that make you all happy? I doubt it.


Actually that is the system in much of Europe. You have to qualify to go up the levels (points for each score/ribbon/level of show etc) and then once you get to PSG, etc, you cannot go back to show the lower levels.

We have a local trainer who has shown thru I-11 who makes a career of winning HOY at intro, and training

mp
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:23 PM
I'm just getting tired of whining

Then why don't you stop? :D

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:29 PM
Those of you who are lampooning the OP for criticizing the trainer for running Intro over and over are 1) seemingly challenged in your reading abilities, and 2) being kinda snotty (talking to you, Velvet), and 3) putting words in her mouth. She didn't say she expected a ribbon in all instances, she didn't say no one should ever ride Intro twice, she said, it was poor sportsmanship for a professional rider to show it over and over and effing over again in a local show with ammies who are themselves properly showing at that level.

How you find this very mild and reasonable point debatable is totally beyond me.

She didn't say this trainer should be locked in jail, or that it was technically against the rules, she said it was poor sportsmanship. Under what circumstances could this practice be
described as GOOD sportsmanship? I can't think of
any.

Well put, Lori B. It isn't about ribbons or a lack or ribbons, or who should get ribbons, if anyone -- it's about determining the playing field you should be playing in.

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:47 PM
The ribbons where you compete in a tiny group of people who ride once a week and don't work to improve themselves means what? You're the best of the worst? (Okay, so maybe that's a tad harsh, but what is it really and why would you want that ribbon?)
:yes:

Funny, I have one of those ribbons hanging in my foyer right now. It was my first H/J schooling show after not riding for a decade and I busted my ass for months to ensure my cranky schoolie would canter on cue and halt square when the time came. (He did.) So, yes, I want to keep that ribbon -- it may be a worthless rag to you but it has a lot of positive memories for me.

mvp
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:50 PM
Again stopping into your pre-lapsarian paradise from the post-industrial wasteland that is HunterWorld.

Velvet is right about one thing. As it stands now, the pros stealing candy from cellulite-covered middle-aged babies in Intro classes are playing by the rules.

When the paying ammies whine enough about "the rules" they will get pros moved off to another division.

Witness the creation of the A/O division a half-century ago in the hunters. Witness, too, the whining about "shamateurs" (those are usually sorted by income bracket) and the baroque set of rules about amateurs vs. pros.

Then check out the proliferation of divisions for people who want to jump 2'6" or less.... at AA shows for $1.5K a week.

Seriously! Be careful what you wish for.

Heinz 57
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:52 PM
Well put, Lori B. It isn't about ribbons or a lack or ribbons, or who should get ribbons, if anyone -- it's about determining the playing field you should be playing in.

Then petition for separate open and amateur classes with your local GMO, with USEF, or whatever schooling show you wish to attend. We can hem and haw all day about what people SHOULD do, but as long as the rules allow it, there is no way to prevent it.

That way, everyone is happy. At least until management reserves the right to combine classes when entries are low, and you get shoved into a class with the pro's anyway. :)

webmistress32
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:52 PM
I think the big problem is the big empty chasm in some people where their sense of fairness and sportsmanship should be.

to me, a professional riding Intro non-HC at a local schooling show illustrates this problem very nicely.

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 03:57 PM
there is no way to prevent it.


I don't want to legislate this problem away. I think a little judiciously applied peer pressure works well in cases like this.

OP, please out this trainer. DO IT! You know you want to!

I get that the participation of the trainer in Intro, over and over again, is not against any rules. I didn't propose a rule change. I propose a tiny smidge of carefully applied public shaming.

There are a plethora of actions that while not against any law or rule, are kinda shitty, and one should not do them. This is a sport, we do it for fun (or because the meds haven't kicked in yet). But that doesn't mean we shouldn't hold ourselves to as high a standard of hominid good behaviour as we can manage.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:01 PM
Well put, Lori B. It isn't about ribbons or a lack or ribbons, or who should get ribbons, if anyone -- it's about determining the playing field you should be playing in.

And THAT has been the basis of the discussion out here. You might want to go back and reread the thread. Seems you missed a LOT.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:01 PM
Then why don't you stop? :D

:rolleyes:

Heinz 57
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:09 PM
I don't want to legislate this problem away. I think a little judiciously applied peer pressure works well in cases like this.

OP, please out this trainer. DO IT! You know you want to!

I get that the participation of the trainer in Intro, over and over again, is not against any rules. I didn't propose a rule change. I propose a tiny smidge of carefully applied public shaming.



While I appreciate your intentions... outing the trainer on COTH for (GASP) not showing HC at Intro probably isn't going to bring her to her knees. And a random stranger or two at an itty bitty schooling show marching up to her with comments smacking of sour grapes likely won't either. The COTH lynch mob will take on almost any cause, worthy or not. IMO.

Maybe you should find out who the trainer's trainer is, infiltrate the compound and see if you can plant the seed of your idea of sportsmanship that way, from the teacher on down. :winkgrin:

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:15 PM
No, Velvet, but I can't think that such behavior would endear this trainer to prospective clients.

If this trainer's competition choices are so very praiseworthy as you think they are, surely they should be trumpeted to the heavens.

And what's with the apocalyptic language? I'm not for lynching anyone. I'm just sayin', if what the trainer does is really so wonderful, I would hate for everyone not to know who they are, so they can admire them, from near and far.....

luvmydutch
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:26 PM
The level one enters in a show is more strongly linked to the level of the horse being ridden than to the level of the rider riding said horse. If a trainer is riding a barely broke 3 or 4 year old in Intro classes for experience for the horse, I have no problem with that.

I am confident in my riding though and take responsibility for my poor scores by doing my best to improve MY riding. It doesn't matter to me if a trainer is "beating" me...I just need to learn to ride better so that the trainer and I are evenly matched competition at whatever level i'm showing.

Heinz 57
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:28 PM
And what's with the apocalyptic language? I'm not for lynching anyone. I'm just sayin', if what the trainer does is really so wonderful, I would hate for everyone not to know who they are, so they can admire them, from near and far.....

A COTH naming typically results in lynch mob-type behavior, everyone gathers round and feeds off each other, resulting in a 20 page thread about whether or not the offender really should've been named or not. Followed by the OP deleting the whole mess, including the naming.

Honestly, I don't care who this 'professional' is. Go ahead, if it pleases you so. :sleepy:

Camstock
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:41 PM
And I said I would and do go HC if it's me. If I'm riding a client's horse and they're paying for the class, they can decide if they want the ribbon. They can decide what shows we go to (as long as I'm available) and I can only tell them what classes I would suggest and which ones I would refuse to ride in based on the horse's level of training--meaning I wouldn't go for Second Level if the horse was barely First Level in it's training. If they say they want (for some reason) to have me show W/T and they're paying me a lot of money for training and for showing the horse, I'd go. I don't care. It's the way you survive in the horse world and build good will with clients (who might have a lot of money).

You had me, then you lost me. I, too, would refuse to show a horse above its level of training, as you say above. Got that. But I also would politely refuse to actually compete in Intro level on a client's horse. I would privately educate the client that, if the horse's training or state of experience suggests that he needs mileage at low levels, ethics requires professionals to ride HC at low levels. No client I have ever had this conversation with has ever batted an eye at it. We ride HC at Intro, and probably even Training level. I have entered recognized Horse Trials HC at BN level even with a green horse. We won handily and I was delighted to see the kid who got the second-highest score lead the victory gallop, blue ribbon flying with a big fat grin on her face, and her off track horse getting ecstatic rubs and being proud of himself, on his first time out. I doubt that would have been quite as memorable a moment if she had been following me around on the victory gallop. To see that joy and know that I was a contributing factor of it was actually better than doing it myself. My mission for the day was accomplished: my horse was happy and relaxed and my owner saw their horse do well. Everybody who looked at the scoreboard knew the "real" result, if that is important.

Regarding year end awards, meh. Scores are the thing for both dressage and eventing.

So, yes, I do think that a seasoned pro should not compete for a ribbon at low levels. I'm ok with other pros deciding to not go HC, but the high road beats being a Dork.

Edited to add: Yes, it takes a little faith and tact to choose to educate rather than cave to the perceived wishes of "money". Most people with or without money appreciate working with professionals with ethics. If a client would leave me over something like this, I would be inclined to consider it a favor.

fur ball
Jun. 15, 2011, 04:49 PM
OK - you convinced me to respond one more time. :lol:

As much as I would like her to stop showing at this level and leave Intro to us "cellulite-covered middle-aged babies." Outing her on the internet or even at the local schooling show level was never my intention. I was simply telling a story on a public message board in order to see what others thought.

Making a public stink about this would make me no better then the whiney, crappy ammy that Velvet, et al. have accused me of being. Yes, it would be nice to come in one place higher but not at someone else's expense. Again, it isn't sportsmanlike.

I have not made any assumptions as to why the owner/trainer has entered the classes they have. I simply stated my opinion that they do not belong there.

Velvet et al., your statements smack of hubris. I will not pick them apart because I do not feel that it is worth the effort. Except to say whiney, fat, crappy ammies like me deserve to ride and show as much as the next person. If you feel that my desire for ribbons and year end awards is pathetic, that is your problem. If you truly feel that our presence is watering-down US dressage to the point that you are too elite to participate, maybe you should consider taking up saddle seat, as we aren't going anywhere.

Thanks again all!

Lori B
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:00 PM
Yes, but if this trainer is such a genius, I don't want to hire him or her accidentally. Educating consumers is one of the fabulous things about the internet. If the actions of this person are truthfully presented, you are not whining.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:10 PM
No, Velvet, but I can't think that such behavior would endear this trainer to prospective clients.

If this trainer's competition choices are so very praiseworthy as you think they are, surely they should be trumpeted to the heavens.

And what's with the apocalyptic language? I'm not for lynching anyone. I'm just sayin', if what the trainer does is really so wonderful, I would hate for everyone not to know who they are, so they can admire them, from near and far.....

Praiseworthy? Um, please take a readingi comprehension class. You REALLY need it. I never praised them, I said (and I quote), "It depends. It depends. It depends." :rolleyes:

Apocalyptic language??? My you must have just learned that word today. I'm assuming it's too new to you for you to fully comprehend the meaning. :lol:

Who talked about lynching? Not me. If you're directing that at someone else, please feel free to run off and chase them down and generate somemore poo stirring. Heaven knows there's not enough of that on this board. :lol:

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:11 PM
The level one enters in a show is more strongly linked to the level of the horse being ridden than to the level of the rider riding said horse. If a trainer is riding a barely broke 3 or 4 year old in Intro classes for experience for the horse, I have no problem with that.

I am confident in my riding though and take responsibility for my poor scores by doing my best to improve MY riding. It doesn't matter to me if a trainer is "beating" me...I just need to learn to ride better so that the trainer and I are evenly matched competition at whatever level i'm showing.

And THIS^ is how all competitors should think and ride. :yes: Good for you! Anyone who does think this way will actually become a good (and possibly GREAT) rider. :yes:

grayarabpony
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:12 PM
Maybe we should instigate a handicap system? :lol:

Like! :)

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:15 PM
You had me, then you lost me. I, too, would refuse to show a horse above its level of training, as you say above. Got that. But I also would politely refuse to actually compete in Intro level on a client's horse. I would privately educate the client that, if the horse's training or state of experience suggests that he needs mileage at low levels, ethics requires professionals to ride HC at low levels. No client I have ever had this conversation with has ever batted an eye at it. We ride HC at Intro, and probably even Training level.

I'm with you on this, as long as you have reasonable clients. I'm not saying I've done this. I'm saying I understand the behavior for the reason stated (person paying wants the ribbons and will pay for the trainer to show and get those ribbons and the horse gets certain, albeit not great, accolades). If it meant going to the show and competing this way or going to the food shelf...I'd opt for the show. Pride be da**ed at that point.

Yep, I can understand it when it's a matter of survival. That really was my point.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 05:19 PM
Making a public stink about this would make me no better then the whiney, crappy ammy that Velvet, et al. have accused me of being.

I have not made any assumptions as to why the owner/trainer has entered the classes they have. I simply stated my opinion that they do not belong there.

Velvet et al., your statements smack of hubris. I will not pick them apart because I do not feel that it is worth the effort. Except to say whiney, fat, crappy ammies like me deserve to ride and show as much as the next person. If you feel that my desire for ribbons and year end awards is pathetic, that is your problem.



Talk about reading into posts and putting your own negative spin on things. :sigh: Never called you anything. Never said you shouldn't be in the ring.

I said that people that go into an open class at a show need to be willing to accept that might compete against pros and to not whine about it when a pro shows up. That is what I said. If you choose to read more into this, I guess I can see that happening. It appears you read something more into the pro riding in your class, too.

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 06:45 PM
And THAT has been the basis of the discussion out here. You might want to go back and reread the thread. Seems you missed a LOT.

No, the BASIS of this discussion has been the OP's original post, which asks if is it proper for a pro to show at Intro, and if so, when? Have you read the OP, or just hijacked the thread to vent about the failure of the competitive spirit in America?

Please, let's not make this personal.

Velvet
Jun. 15, 2011, 06:49 PM
Please, let's not make this personal.

Physician, heal thyself. :lol: :lol:

jenm
Jun. 15, 2011, 06:56 PM
I have entered recognized Horse Trials HC at BN level even with a green horse. We won handily and I was delighted to see the kid who got the second-highest score lead the victory gallop, blue ribbon flying with a big fat grin on her face, and her off track horse getting ecstatic rubs and being proud of himself, on his first time out. I doubt that would have been quite as memorable a moment if she had been following me around on the victory gallop. To see that joy and know that I was a contributing factor of it was actually better than doing it myself. My mission for the day was accomplished: my horse was happy and relaxed and my owner saw their horse do well. Everybody who looked at the scoreboard knew the "real" result, if that is important.


This is so very cool!! :yes:

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 06:57 PM
Physician, heal thyself. :lol: :lol:

I didn't criticize your -- or anyone's -- reading comprehension skills until you criticized mine. Can you say the same?

Must run now -- There's enough drama in my own life and at my own barn to engage in the pissing battle this thread has become.

PS: OP, good luck to you and your horse; I think you asked a very valid question.

KrazyTBMare
Jun. 15, 2011, 07:14 PM
"Eye Roll"

KrazyTBMare and Tiki,

Might I suggest a short course in reading for comprehension?

No one is saying that the beginner who scored a 45% should be expected to win any class. Nor is anyone saying that it is inappropriate for a pro to enter a green horse in intro. Lastly, no one wants US dressage to be "dumbed down" any further.

This thread, if you had bothered to read it from the beginning, was based on a discussion of whether it is sportsmanlike for the same professional to enter a intro level class and win by a wide margin, week after week, at the local schooling show level. No one is questioning whether it is legal, no one is questioning that they shouldn't have won, no one is looking for them to be eliminated from the competition pool.

Really, I was just whining. *gasp*

Oh well, it is back to intro A&B for me this weekend, I am hoping for a 2% improvement on my B test. I worked on circles at a nice forward trot last night...

Not sure why you are lumping me into this reply but I never addressed anything you said directly. :confused: All I replied with was my personal experiences with my GMO. Just like most everyone else.

BTW - I do read for comprehension - your OP states:


But, does anyone else think it is inappropriate for a professional to enter Intro A and B at a local schooling show?

And I answered no. You didnt ask if it was ok to enter week after week, winning by a large margin. I prefer to reply with my own opinion before reading others posts and being swayed.

asb_own_me
Jun. 15, 2011, 09:57 PM
May I suggest that everyone do what I did last night?

Drink a half bottle of wine, stumble upon this thread, read the words "FAUX SHOW" out loud, and laugh until you pee yourself?

I think it would do many of you a world of good!

KrazyTBMare
Jun. 15, 2011, 10:17 PM
I thought the faux show was AWESOME! :lol:

MyssMyst
Jun. 15, 2011, 11:07 PM
So, dumb question here. But if we're going to argue that it's inappropriate for a trainer to show a beginner horse more than once at intro level, shouldn't it be inappropriate for a beginner rider to show more than once at intro? I mean, you should already have all the skills of the next level up if you dare to go to a show right? Why should ANYONE be campaigning at intro?

But really, people, a trainer has their reasons. As someone who will be getting back into this, and starting at intro, I fully realize and accept that I will be going against pros. My job is to ride as well as I can. The pro has the same job. Whichever one of us is better that day takes home the blue. She has the experience, I have the experienced horse. I have nerves, so does her horse. Watching a well-ridden pattern will show me the deficiencies of my own pattern, so I can go out and fix them. If I don't win, it isn't the end of the world. I am out there for the score, and that's all that matters. A ribbon is a bonus, and it's something I damn well want to have earned. Not something I want handed to me because someone's whining forced the better riders out of my division. Either you're good enough to stack up, or you're not. At this point, I know I'm not. That's my issue, not the trainer's. I don't give a flying duck if they kick my butt time after time. It means I didn't give my horse the ride I should have. The only person to blame is me. End of story.

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 15, 2011, 11:09 PM
May I suggest that everyone do what I did last night?

Drink a half bottle of wine, stumble upon this thread, read the words "FAUX SHOW" out loud, and laugh until you pee yourself?

I think it would do many of you a world of good!

Next time I go to a Faux Show, I am sending in Faux Money with my entry. ;)

cnm161
Jun. 15, 2011, 11:17 PM
Faux realz.

Tiki
Jun. 16, 2011, 08:13 AM
posted by mickydoodle Actually that is the system in much of Europe. You have to qualify to go up the levels (points for each score/ribbon/level of show etc) and then once you get to PSG, etc, you cannot go back to show the lower levels. Oh, yes, I know that quite well. But, do you remember - was it last year - all the flack and the what, 100 page thread complaining bitterly that "You (the USEF) can't DO that to me. Poor little me, I'm an American, you can't MAKE me qualify to ride at a higher level. I can take my horse in ANY class I want". And the whole thing about qualifying to ride at a higher level fell apart. So you still see people riding at PSG who can't sit the trot, can't keep off the poor horse's mouth for trying to balance themselves, riding upside down horses in parodies of the movements. There's really no difference in an ammie riding in a class waaaayyyyyyy above their ability - just because they can and it's an OPEN class from a Pro riding a really green horse in an OPEN Intro class. I completely agree that a Pro CAMPAIGNING a horse at Intro for ribbons and year end awards is wrong and I never said otherwise. Some of YOU should learn to read for comprehension. I'm outa here.

Velvet
Jun. 16, 2011, 09:41 AM
A ribbon is a bonus, and it's something I damn well want to have earned. Not something I want handed to me because someone's whining forced the better riders out of my division. Either you're good enough to stack up, or you're not. At this point, I know I'm not. That's my issue, not the trainer's. I don't give a flying duck if they kick my butt time after time. It means I didn't give my horse the ride I should have. The only person to blame is me. End of story.

^ :yes: ^

Velvet
Jun. 16, 2011, 09:43 AM
I didn't criticize your -- or anyone's -- reading comprehension skills until you criticized mine. Can you say the same?

Must run now -- There's enough drama in my own life and at my own barn to engage in the pissing battle this thread has become.



So, na-na na-na boo-boo to you, too! :lol: :lol:

Ah, one of my personal stalkers. It's so nice to know you're needed for something. :lol: :lol:

CatPS
Jun. 16, 2011, 09:53 AM
Making a public stink about this would make me no better then the whiney, crappy ammy that Velvet, et al. have accused me of being.

Don't sweat it too much, apparently I'm the poster child for everything that is wrong with dressage today, according to the illustrious Velvet. Maybe we should start a club? Judgmental snobs need not apply ;)

Velvet
Jun. 16, 2011, 02:21 PM
I still find it really warped that people out here like calling themselves names and then saying other people used it on them first. It truly is bizarre. :eek:

Bogey2
Jun. 16, 2011, 02:22 PM
There are many different levels of "pro's". I ride "open" because I teach and train dressage at the lower levels. Our rated shows do not have intro tests but our schooling shows do. I have not ridden a walk/trot test since I started making a living with horses. I did way back when I had a greenie and was not an instructor. I have seen trainers ride intro at the schooling shows but again, it's usually the trainers who are new to dressage or taking out a horse that has not shown dressage or not well balanced or young.
I can't say that I have ever seen any of our FEI trainers in a walk/trot test...even on a young horse.

Camstock
Jun. 16, 2011, 03:44 PM
I'm with you on this, as long as you have reasonable clients. I'm not saying I've done this. I'm saying I understand the behavior for the reason stated (person paying wants the ribbons and will pay for the trainer to show and get those ribbons and the horse gets certain, albeit not great, accolades). If it meant going to the show and competing this way or going to the food shelf...I'd opt for the show. Pride be da**ed at that point.

Yep, I can understand it when it's a matter of survival. That really was my point.

I have reasonable clients because that is what I expect them to be, and the standard I have for my own behaviour.

Financial might does not make right. Ethics and thoughtful action make right. Take a breath. Strictly statistically speaking, I'd put 10-1 odds you could miss a meal quite handily.

Highflyer
Jun. 16, 2011, 04:58 PM
Sorry, I can't see how it is "unethical" to ride the horse that qualifies in an open division. It might be silly, but it isn't stealing.

DutchDressageQueen
Jun. 16, 2011, 07:17 PM
In the end you shouldn't worry about other people, they're gonna do what they want either way. Work on improving your scores!

Velvet
Jun. 17, 2011, 09:27 AM
Strictly statistically speaking, I'd put 10-1 odds you could miss a meal quite handily.

Um, maybe ONE, but I'm not sure I'd do well if I missed too many in a row--and had to actually ride and work hard. :D

carolprudm
Jun. 21, 2011, 08:13 AM
interesting comments
http://www.chronofhorse.com/article/who%E2%80%99s-responsible-our-sport-everyone

Velvet
Jun. 21, 2011, 09:33 AM
I still think the problem is with the beginners. It's NOT about the frelling ribbons!!!! If that's all people make it about all the time, then that's where we need to address the problem. We need to stop making so many so accessible (dumbing things down). We need to make it hard. Make it a lot of work to get one. Set the expectations up front. It works in eventing. Why can't it work in dressage? We need to stop public schools from handing out ribbons and trophies to non-contenders just so everyone can "feel good."

We need to teach people actually REACH FOR THE STARS. If it isn't a challenge, and everyone wins, then why bother with 1-6 place ribbons at all? Why not hand out ribbons for everyone who competes and never offer scores. Just make everyone feel good. We could offer classes like that. :rolleyes:

That article really doesn't fit the way the world is today. Not the way we've let it go. We've decided that everyone needs to be equal and all people deserve an award whether or not they've worked hard enough to really achieve one. We're settling for mediocrity in this country and it's ruining us in more areas than just the show ring. :no:

carolprudm
Jun. 21, 2011, 09:43 AM
I still think the problem is with the beginners. It's NOT about the frelling ribbons!!!! If that's all people make it about all the time, then that's where we need to address the problem. We need to stop making so many so accessible (dumbing things down). We need to make it hard. Make it a lot of work to get one. Set the expectations up front. It works in eventing. Why can't it work in dressage? We need to stop public schools from handing out ribbons and trophies to non-contenders just so everyone can "feel good."

We need to teach people actually REACH FOR THE STARS. If it isn't a challenge, and everyone wins, then why bother with 1-6 place ribbons at all? Why not hand out ribbons for everyone who competes and never offer scores. Just make everyone feel good. We could offer classes like that. :rolleyes:

That article really doesn't fit the way the world is today. Not the way we've let it go. We've decided that everyone needs to be equal and all people deserve an award whether or not they've worked hard enough to really achieve one. We're settling for mediocrity in this country and it's ruining us in more areas than just the show ring. :no:

Not sure it's the beginners, or the lowly AA. It's the high level PRO who is going after the ribbons after all. She could elect to go HC if it's just to school the horse.

I think most people just want a level playing field. Golf and horse racing have handicaps or claiming races as well as open competition and no one seems to see a problem there. Why not horse shows?

Janet
Jun. 21, 2011, 09:49 AM
Don't sweat it too much, apparently I'm the poster child for everything that is wrong with dressage today, according to the illustrious Velvet. Maybe we should start a club? Judgmental snobs need not apply ;)
Wait a minute. The OP seemed pretty judgemental to me.

Velvet
Jun. 21, 2011, 09:52 AM
Not sure it's the beginners, or the lowly AA. It's the high level PRO who is going after the ribbons after all. She could elect to go HC if it's just to school the horse.

I think most people just want a level playing field. Golf and horse racing have handicaps or claiming races as well as open competition and no one seems to see a problem there. Why not horse shows?

I am not disagreeing with that. I was all for qualifying scores and then forcing people up the ladder. It's funny that it's the AAs and lower riders who are hoping that some day they'll buy a nice expensive horse and will then be able to just jump into a 3rd or 4th level class with little training are the ones who complained and didn't want qualifying. Seems to me that these are the same people who are kvetching about trainers showing in lower level open classes. You just can't have it both ways IF you want a level playing field.

InWhyCee Redux
Jun. 21, 2011, 10:45 AM
I'm going to post the first page of the COTH column by Geoff Teall.... the emphasis is mine.

Our columnist believes we can’t fix everything with rules—we just have to do the right thing.

When asked to begin writing occasional columns for Between Rounds I was struck by the title of the column and what it means. As active horse show participants we’re all part of the constant discussions that are held while waiting in and around the in-gate.

I’m active in the governance of this sport, so I’m often approached by people who want to discuss things that we need to “fix.” More often than not these problems aren’t things that can possibly be corrected with rule changes, but instead require each of us to regulate the behavior of ourselves and the people around us. At some point I believe all of us as professionals, amateurs, owners, exhibitors and parents have to take responsibility for our own actions and do what is right, not just for ourselves at that moment, but for our sport over the long term. This is a great sport, and we have to protect it for the future. We’re all obliged to make this responsibility our own.

One topic I’m hearing a lot about at the moment is “poaching.” This is when top riders show in divisions for which they are technically eligible but that are created for competitors who don’t have the skill or experience of these same riders. Often they’re entered in these divisions on horses that are also eligible to compete in the division according to the rules, but who have the ability and quality to compete at much higher levels. This appears to be happening more often across the country and at all levels of show. The most disturbing aspect of this practice is that it most often affects the lower level divisions such as ponies, children’s and adults. It also reaches down into the low children’s, adults, short stirrup and other true entry-level divisions.

This practice is discouraging people away from our sport just as they are starting to get involved. Imagine that you’re one of the riders of the appropriate age and experience for the class. You have the round of your life, and you’re anxiously awaiting the results in hopes that you will get a nice ribbon or perhaps even win the class. The class is on hold for one more rider who is on her way from another ring.

When she arrives, you realize this person is late because she’s just finished up the jog in another ring, where she ended up first, second and fourth in a division that you know in your heart you will never be able to participate in. When she arrives, you also realize that this rider has not only one horse in your division, but in fact she has three horses waiting for her to show in your class. Your heart sinks when you realize that you’re probably not going to win the class. While you’re fine with the idea that you did your best, and you realize that ending up with any ribbon in this type of competition is a good thing, it’s still discouraging to get beaten once again by someone who not only has the skill, experience and horse flesh to be winning in the higher end divisions, but who is in fact doing just that at this very show.

If we want to encourage people into our sport then we’re going to have to police ourselves and not keep taking ribbons and success from the people who belong in these divisions with riders and horses that are far past this level. This short-term success for us, our horses and our owners is not in the best long-term interest of our sport.

Lori B
Jun. 21, 2011, 11:00 AM
Thank you, InWhyCee, I agree x10.

Probably because I said pretty much the same thing here:


The reason that sportsmanship and a basic perception of fairness matters is that at the end of the day, the best way to feed your starving dressage trainers is to welcome, encourage, and educate those who, for some benighted reason, are interested in this sport. And having an encouraging and fair experience when showing at the lower levels is key to the cultivation of what will be your pool of future customers who want to buy nicer horses, take clinics, and show higher up. Of course riders should expect to work hard, and will not always get rainbows and kittens, but in the big picture, a trainer doing this isn't doing dressage as a sport any favors.

horsefaerie
Jun. 21, 2011, 11:35 AM
If you want to train with competitive riders instead of trainers that is how it will be.

You want to train with competition credentials but then you don't want people who want to train in the ring with you. You cannot have it both ways.

Start training with trainers and good instructors instead of competitors and things will change.

Lori B
Jun. 21, 2011, 12:00 PM
Uh, that assumes that 'competitive rider == bad sportsmanship rider' -- I don't think I'm willing to accept that. Being a competitive rider doesn't require one to be a ribbon-grubbing bad sport, does it? I certainly hope not.

hntrjmprpro45
Jun. 21, 2011, 12:54 PM
I'm going to post the first page of the COTH column by Geoff Teall.... the emphasis is mine.

Our columnist believes we can’t fix everything with rules—we just have to do the right thing.

[/B]

I would somewhat agree with this statement- obviously you can't spell EVERY.SINGLE.THING out in the rules BUT you should be able to clearly state the intent of the division in the rules. If the prize list says that the division is "open to all riders and all horses/ponies" then it should be fair game for any pro or rider on any horse to show in it. However, if their intent is for that division (whichever division that may be) to be ONLY for the truly green, then add restrictions like a maiden, novice or "limit" class.

I will say that probably what irks me about that article written by Geoff (which is speaking towards H/J shows) is that I am fairly certain he was aiming at some of the open schooling divisions. Sure you may have a horse that is AA circuit quality, but that doesn't mean you have the $$$ to show it in those divisions. I'm all for fair, appropriate divisions, but the rules need to dictate that.

TrotTrotPumpkn
Jun. 21, 2011, 01:16 PM
Oh come on, admit it. There have to be more people who would wonder what the heck was going on if a pro was *consistently* showing and dominating in both the intro classes.

I mean it is one thing to take a greenie out for some mileage before moving up, there is nothing like seperation anxiety to bring out the bronco in a hot horse, but going for local horse of the year awards at intro? As a pro?

I think it is odd, OP. I also agree with those who have said that it does nothing to encourage new people to get into dressage.

So I agree with your vent, but personally, I would use it as motivation to move up and out of that division! Good luck!

carolprudm
Jun. 21, 2011, 01:40 PM
I am not disagreeing with that. I was all for qualifying scores and then forcing people up the ladder. It's funny that it's the AAs and lower riders who are hoping that some day they'll buy a nice expensive horse and will then be able to just jump into a 3rd or 4th level class with little training are the ones who complained and didn't want qualifying. Seems to me that these are the same people who are kvetching about trainers showing in lower level open classes. You just can't have it both ways IF you want a level playing field.
Personally I am more than happy with Sophie and am not looking for an upgrade.

I fail to see the connection between keeping way overqualified pros out of intro classes and requiring people to qualify to move up unless qualifying to move up prevented them from dropping down a division or 4

Velvet
Jun. 21, 2011, 02:01 PM
Personally I am more than happy with Sophie and am not looking for an upgrade.

I fail to see the connection between keeping way overqualified pros out of intro classes and requiring people to qualify to move up unless qualifying to move up prevented them from dropping down a division or 4

We honestly do not know if the person the OP is talking about is way over qualified. They actually could be considered a "pro" because they teach up down lessons and know how to put a horse together for Intro-First Level.