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  1. #1
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    Default Triangle Format in Hunter Breeding...What did you think?

    There is a lot of talk about the triangle format for the Sallie B Wheeler Hunter Breeding this year. What is everyone's thoughts on that?

    I do agree with a few that it made the class VERY long, so some tweaking needs to be done. You only trotted one side of the triangle...maybe trot 2 sides and walk back to judges?

    I personally LOVED the format, each horse was judged individually and as an individual. The major differences in judging between Warrenton Hunter Breeding and SBW was very interesting.


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  2. #2
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    Here's another question: Why the triangle format for SBW?



  3. #3
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    I liked it. It gave the judges two opportunities to see the horse stood up and also the ability to see the walk from all angles, though the trot seen only from the side and no opportunity to watch trot from front or back (so paddling could be missed). But I liked it overall very much. It doesn't make the class that much longer and most people that I spoke with felt that their horse really had a good chance to be evaluated. I think the format might be improved by also trotting the side coming home which would make the class move a little quicker and also provide a chance to see the trot from the front, rather than ONLY from the side.


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  4. #4
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    Bays, apparently the judges took it upon themselves to do it in CA, much to the surprise of everyone, and so it had to be duplicated out here.
    Laurie
    Finding, preparing, showing and training young hunters, in hand and performance.
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  5. #5
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    As someone who comes from DSHB, and attending my first hunter breeding show as a competitor, the SBW format yesterday made much more sense to me. In the morning regular HB classes, the horses showed MAYBE 4 steps of walk, being towed along like a steamship by a tug, before breaking into a jog. At no point was it really possible for the judge to assess either the quality of the walk, or the correctness of either gait. And, as has been noted by others, in the SBW the judges' eyes spent MUCH more time on your horse.

    It did make a a long, hot wait in the ring for the horses (and handlers) in the classes. I was privately surprised there weren't more melt-downs.

    Basically, I'm somewhat mystified as to why the walk seems to be ignored in HB. I can't be the only one who likes a good, pure, marching walk.
    "No matter how cynical I get its just not enough to keep up." Lily Tomlin



  6. #6
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    Triangles are the best way to evaluate gaits. That's why they're used.
    Kudos to the judges for raising the standards for judging HB.

    If it was set up correctly, the base of the triangle- "the long side"- is the farthest away from the judges. The judges are supposed to be at the opposing point - top of the triangle - where the horses start and finish. That way they can see the horses moving away, then from the side, and coming towards them.
    -Amor vincit omnia-


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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahf View Post
    In the morning regular HB classes, the horses showed MAYBE 4 steps of walk, being towed along like a steamship by a tug, before breaking into a jog. At no point was it really possible for the judge to assess either the quality of the walk, or the correctness of either gait. .
    It was the same on the west coast in the regular HB...the dragging of horses in to a trot, which lasted just a few yards. It looked lethargic (both person and horse !) Only one handler did it right...stayed shoulder to shoulder with the horse, moved off promptly into the trot, and off they went together. The horse was forward and looking ahead, ears up. A very nice presentation.
    -Amor vincit omnia-



  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mardi View Post
    Triangles are the best way to evaluate gaits. That's why they're used.
    Kudos to the judges for raising the standards for judging HB.

    If it was set up correctly, the base of the triangle- "the long side"- is the farthest away from the judges. The judges are supposed to be at the opposing point - top of the triangle - where the horses start and finish. That way they can see the horses moving away, then from the side, and coming towards them.
    I disagree on the "triangle being the best way to evaluate gaits". If you want to get down to brass tacks, the best way to evaluate gaits may be to turn them loose. No one is advocating that. Just because inspections and dressage/sporthorse breeding shows do it doesn't mean that it "raises the standards for judging hunter breeding" one iota. But that's a different topic.

    The judges were at the apex of the triangle, but at least on the East Coast, the horses only trotted the long side directly across from the judges, so there was no way for them to see the trot from any other angle. In the usual "down and back" arrangement, many judges will move around to be able to see the angles they want.

    If I wanted to have my horse shown on the triangle I would have skipped Warrenton and sent him to Raleigh for Labor of Love, a fine dressage/sporthorse breeding show. (Please don't assume that because we choose to be hunter breeding exhibitors, we are ignorant of the other disciplines!)


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dianehalpin View Post
    I liked it. It gave the judges two opportunities to see the horse stood up and also the ability to see the walk from all angles, though the trot seen only from the side and no opportunity to watch trot from front or back (so paddling could be missed). But I liked it overall very much. It doesn't make the class that much longer and most people that I spoke with felt that their horse really had a good chance to be evaluated. I think the format might be improved by also trotting the side coming home which would make the class move a little quicker and also provide a chance to see the trot from the front, rather than ONLY from the side.
    I agree. I actually liked it. I show cased each horse during it turn to be judged. I Like the idea of them walking the first third of the triangle, trot the long side and back up the third side.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anne View Post
    I disagree on the "triangle being the best way to evaluate gaits". If you want to get down to brass tacks, the best way to evaluate gaits may be to turn them loose. No one is advocating that. Just because inspections and dressage/sporthorse breeding shows do it doesn't mean that it "raises the standards for judging hunter breeding" one iota. But that's a different topic.

    The judges were at the apex of the triangle, but at least on the East Coast, the horses only trotted the long side directly across from the judges, so there was no way for them to see the trot from any other angle. In the usual "down and back" arrangement, many judges will move around to be able to see the angles they want.

    If I wanted to have my horse shown on the triangle I would have skipped Warrenton and sent him to Raleigh for Labor of Love, a fine dressage/sporthorse breeding show. (Please don't assume that because we choose to be hunter breeding exhibitors, we are ignorant of the other disciplines!)
    I fully agree with Anne, just because the triangle is used in Dressage Sport Horse breeding and Future Event Horse Breed Shows, it really does NOT raise the bar for Hunter Breeding! I really prefer continuing the classic style of hunter breed judging that has been sucessful, classic and historic.
    http://www.herselffarm.com
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  11. #11
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    Come on now. Who here truly believes that trotting a horse only few steps while being just a few feet in front of the judge is a better way to observe and evaluate gaits than by watching a horse from a distance as he trots by in a straight line ?

    At FEI events, horses must "pass the jog." The judges stand at a distance as the horses are trotted out on a long path. No one trots just a few feet and then walks. The FEI ground jury is checking for soundness, like HB judges do. But unlike HB judges, the FEI isn't judging movement, yet they have their horses trot farther than HB horses !

    When I said the SBW judges raised the standard of HB, I was referring to their decision to be more pro-active when observing the horses, and giving themselves the best vantage point allowed. It was a brilliant idea and benefitted all exhibitors.

    Right now, as HB is run, it doesn't have the respect of big show management, nor of hunter riders, who will someday (hopefully) buy one of these young horses. They laugh at the HB division because NOTHING is being shown that would even give a hint of the horse's athletic potential. Trust me ...I've heard them. HB is not on the radar of big show management....they have told me so. And so prize lists aren't updated with HB rule changes (years go by with the same old rules), and questions to show office staff are replied to with "We don't know what happens over there. Ask someone at the ring." REALLY ? If I asked a question about the jumper grand prix, of course they'd have the answer.

    Everyone says they want more interest in HB and breeding programs in the USA. Well here are two judges who are working on it, and stepped up and took an interest in improving how these young horses are presented, observed and evaluated.
    -Amor vincit omnia-


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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BaysofourLives
    Here's another question: Why the triangle format for SBW?
    Because apparently in the original specs for the competition, the triangle was indicated. It was done on the west coast and you have to duplicate the same on the east coast.
    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist


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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by BaysofourLives
    The major differences in judging between Warrenton Hunter Breeding and SBW was very interesting.
    There were distinct differences for sure, format excluded.

    One thing about the triangle, you get to actually see the horse. Too many people put emphasis on the trot. It's definitely about the walk, in my opinion and the triangle lends itself to that.
    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist


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  14. #14
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    This format is only being remarked upon because of the use of the word "triangle", in that at every major hunter breeding show, whether Devon or the Sallie B. Wheeler USEF Hunter Breeding Championships, the judges come with their own format and patterns that THEY, the judges, want to use. The fact that this particular pattern was a triangle-shape made most of us immediately think DSHB or FEH. Plenty of other formats have been used in past years at different venues without stirring a lot of remark. I remember seeing "walk to here, then trot, turn then trot at a right angle, then walk back", etc. I liked the pattern at the SBW this year, but didn't see the use of it as either breaktakingly innovative or derivative. It did give each entry allocated time to be evaluated, including walk and trot. In my opinion, the best horses placed where they usually place; in front of some other horses. I enjoyed watching it more than the usual HB class and it didn't seem to be much longer if any longer than any other big HB class at an important venue. I also don't think it's perfectly awful for young horses to learn to be patient standing in a ring for longish periods. If they are show hunters, most of their show time will be spent the same way during their performance careers.


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  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by dianehalpin View Post
    This format is only being remarked upon because of the use of the word "triangle", in that at every major hunter breeding show, whether Devon or the Sallie B. Wheeler USEF Hunter Breeding Championships, the judges come with their own format and patterns that THEY, the judges, want to use. The fact that this particular pattern was a triangle-shape made most of us immediately think DSHB or FEH. Plenty of other formats have been used in past years at different venues without stirring a lot of remark. I remember seeing "walk to here, then trot, turn then trot at a right angle, then walk back", etc. I liked the pattern at the SBW this year, but didn't see the use of it as either breaktakingly innovative or derivative. It did give each entry allocated time to be evaluated, including walk and trot. In my opinion, the best horses placed where they usually place; in front of some other horses. I enjoyed watching it more than the usual HB class and it didn't seem to be much longer if any longer than any other big HB class at an important venue. I also don't think it's perfectly awful for young horses to learn to be patient standing in a ring for longish periods. If they are show hunters, most of their show time will be spent the same way during their performance careers.
    Diane I thank you for taking the time to articulate this in a simple and detailed way. It is true that the judges wanted to evaluate the horses in a different manner on the West Coast and we had to remain consistent through completion of the competition. The specs are: Horses are to be judged for conformation before being walked and trotted

    I thought it was great, and let us remember this is a National Championship that should be special, innovative, and comprehensive. This particular format allowed each horse to be judged in the same manner as a stand alone. Each horse got the same time in front of the judges and each horse was seen equally. This does not always happen in the current HB judging format as we all know.

    We also have to take into consideration that Registries are now taking part in this competition offering high score awards to their respective registrants. There will be 8 registries offering additional incentives next year.
    I am not saying it was perfect, but the concept is worth reviewing. I personally think some "tweeking" will make this an amazing event! I can tell you 99% of the owners loved it, and 89% of the handlers were in favor of it.

    I, as well as the entire SBW sub-committee, want to thank all the sponsors, owners, handlers, trainers, and exhibitors for making this year's event a success! Sometimes change is what is needed to give a shot in the arm to many concepts. What's that quote.... "Change is a process, not an event"

    I got goosebumps watching all of the classes and marveled at the quality in that show ring. It made it all worthwhile.

    Hope to see all of you again, and we hope others will give it a whirl. Either way 2014 promises to be awesome.... just look at the horses being bred in this country!

    Bill Rube
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverBalls
    This particular format allowed each horse to be judged in the same manner as a stand alone. Each horse got the same time in front of the judges and each horse was seen equally. This does not always happen in the current HB judging format as we all know.
    ^^^THIS^^^
    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist


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  17. #17
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    Kudos for the triangle - and Mardi ! and Diane and anyone else articulating that
    standing a young horse up
    then walking a few strides
    then trotting a few strides more - sometimes not even actually trotting (no offense meant to our slower moving handlers)

    Is not way to judge movement which really needs to be tied to what is "considered" good conformation -
    sorry but because "that's the way it has been" isn't accurate - but then, would need to be a really old fart like I am

    Sadly, seen some quite "lame" horses pinned in HB - a little more movement evaluation most likely would have taken care of that oversight

    Think there is a lot of rationale in how "dressage" horses are judged - after all, they want qualities that indicate athleticism to be presented - movement different but go watch the hunter derby horses and tell me that most of them would have placed in a HB class??
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  18. #18
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    I am BY NO MEANS an old fart, nor do I cling longingly to the way we have always done things.

    However, anyone who truly believes that hunter breeding horses only "walk and jog a few steps" obviously doesn't follow the division.

    I'm also not overwhelmingly convinced that dressage/sporthorse breeding classes are better predictors or future success in the dressage ring than hunter breeding classes are.



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anne View Post
    However, anyone who truly believes that hunter breeding horses only "walk and jog a few steps" obviously doesn't follow the division.
    In the classes I have watched, many horses are presented this way.
    -Amor vincit omnia-


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  20. #20
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    I'd consider the triangle an improvement and would add to the credibility of HB classes.


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