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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whittyd34 View Post
    This just seems like a horsemanship issue to me...which seemed to be lacking in the top three seeing as most of them had their grooms tack up their horses.
    I can't speak for Elizabeth and Sarah, but Demi (the reserve champion) is a trainer's kid who works her butt off. Her horsemanship is in no way lacking. In fact, she's brought along that horse since he was very, very young and even showed him in the Pre-Greens, against the pros, when she herself was just a young teen.



  2. #22
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    It is very possible that the judges had the grooms swap the horses' tack so as to get the test going a little more quickly...

    Also, Elizabeth Benson has a broken wrist - I imagine that switching tack around would probably be pretty painful for her right now.



  3. #23
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    All I can say is that the one time I was in a class where we were asked to switch horses, the other girl and I agreed to leave our saddles on our respective horses as they were both tough fits and no one wanted to end the course sitting on the horse's tail.

    As an abnormally leggy rider who has trouble riding in a short-flapped saddle, though, I can definitely understand both sides.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tha Ridge View Post
    I can't speak for Elizabeth and Sarah, but Demi (the reserve champion) is a trainer's kid who works her butt off. Her horsemanship is in no way lacking. In fact, she's brought along that horse since he was very, very young and even showed him in the Pre-Greens, against the pros, when she herself was just a young teen.
    Elizabeth is also the daughter of a trainer, Katie Benson, and from knowing Katie for forever, I definitely believe that she taught her daughter how to be a good horsewoman first and foremost.

    Besides, as Rel said, I too would be shaking way too hard to even tighten my girth haha!

    And on a serious note as Emily said, perhaps they wanted to move the class along more quickly. Perhaps before they went in the ring the judges radioed to the ingate to have the grooms come to change saddles. WHO KNOWS?

    Just because we saw ONE instance of a groom changing someone's saddle does not make them a bad horseperson. We have no idea what they do outside of the show ring, how hard they work at the barn, etc. I think it is ridiculous to judge horsemanship based on a two minute clip. It's not like they were specifically told to do it by themselves and one person clearly couldn't even do it.
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  5. #25
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    Perhaps the judges asking for the grooms to come out was also a concession to the rider with the broken wrist. Whatever the reason, very hard to decree lack of horsemanship from this one tiny bit of time with many factors we're not in the loop on.



  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLBGP View Post
    Perhaps the judges asking for the grooms to come out was also a concession to the rider with the broken wrist. Whatever the reason, very hard to decree lack of horsemanship from this one tiny bit of time with many factors we're not in the loop on.
    Ooooh, you might be right! It's very, very hard to girth up a saddle with a broken wrist.



  7. #27
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    Whooooooaaa. I'm sure the grooms were asked to switch saddles for many reasons. I guess I worded what I said wrong. I'm not trying to blame the riders...I feel this is more of a judging fault. First of all I dont think the saddles should have been switched at all. But because they were I think the judges should have had the grooms hold the horses and the riders switch the tack. I did not call any of them "bad horsewomen" I'm just simply saying that it would just emphasize on their horsemanship skills. "I can change my own tack without a groom." As I'm sure they all can. This is more of a judging flaw in my eyes, however I'm sure they had many reasons as to why they had the grooms do it.



  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whittyd34 View Post
    This is more of a judging flaw in my eyes, however I'm sure they had many reasons as to why they had the grooms do it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Whittyd34 View Post
    This just seems like a horsemanship issue to me...which seemed to be lacking in the top three seeing as most of them had their grooms tack up their horses.
    So which is it?



  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tha Ridge View Post
    So which is it?

    Relax I said I worded it wrong.



  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tha Ridge View Post
    I can't speak for Elizabeth and Sarah, but Demi (the reserve champion) is a trainer's kid who works her butt off. Her horsemanship is in no way lacking. In fact, she's brought along that horse since he was very, very young and even showed him in the Pre-Greens, against the pros, when she herself was just a young teen.
    I can assure you that EB is more than capable of tacking her own horses. Her parents run a huge farm here in NJ and I can assure you that she did not always have the luxury of a groom to take care of her animals.

    Quote Originally Posted by supershorty628 View Post
    It is very possible that the judges had the grooms swap the horses' tack so as to get the test going a little more quickly...

    Also, Elizabeth Benson has a broken wrist - I imagine that switching tack around would probably be pretty painful for her right now.
    Yeah, I wasn't going to mention her injury online, but I have been super impressed with her riding the last 2 weeks (she was 3rd in WIHS). She broke it a couple days after medal finals.
    Quote Originally Posted by bascher View Post
    Elizabeth is also the daughter of a trainer, Katie Benson, and from knowing Katie for forever, I definitely believe that she taught her daughter how to be a good horsewoman first and foremost.

    Besides, as Rel said, I too would be shaking way too hard to even tighten my girth haha!

    And on a serious note as Emily said, perhaps they wanted to move the class along more quickly. Perhaps before they went in the ring the judges radioed to the ingate to have the grooms come to change saddles. WHO KNOWS?

    Just because we saw ONE instance of a groom changing someone's saddle does not make them a bad horseperson. We have no idea what they do outside of the show ring, how hard they work at the barn, etc. I think it is ridiculous to judge horsemanship based on a two minute clip. It's not like they were specifically told to do it by themselves and one person clearly couldn't even do it.
    As someone who started riding with the Bensons almost 20 years ago, I can say with confidence that the very core of their program is good horsemanship. It doesn't matter if you are a summer camp kid, Big Eq kid, or re-rider at that barn.
    Quote Originally Posted by BLBGP View Post
    Perhaps the judges asking for the grooms to come out was also a concession to the rider with the broken wrist. Whatever the reason, very hard to decree lack of horsemanship from this one tiny bit of time with many factors we're not in the loop on.
    As someone that has broken my wrists multiple times, I can also tell you that tacking would be very difficult, especially with an unfamiliar horse and nerves in the biggest class of your life.



  11. #31
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    I was at the finals in person. Anyone who has ever had a groom tack up for them knows those guys move FAST! So fast, that if you try to help you just feel like you are getting in their way. Tacking and untacking horses is like walking for those guys and I assure you they do not go unthanked and most of them love their jobs and would bend over backwards to help a young girl out (please hold your offensive remarks)
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  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by holaamigoalter View Post
    I was at the finals in person. Anyone who has ever had a groom tack up for them knows those guys move FAST! So fast, that if you try to help you just feel like you are getting in their way. Tacking and untacking horses is like walking for those guys and I assure you they do not go unthanked and most of them love their jobs and would bend over backwards to help a young girl out (please hold your offensive remarks)
    This.
    (offensive remarks held)



  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whittyd34 View Post
    First of all I dont think the saddles should have been switched at all. But because they were I think the judges should have had the grooms hold the horses and the riders switch the tack.
    This isn't the grooming finals, it's the Maclay finals. Judged on riding, not the ability to swap tack while terribly nervous and trying to remember how your competitor's horse which you are now riding went in the previous round, all with a broken wrist.

    As for not switching saddles, a friend and I traded horses this morning. I'm 5'9 with long thighs. She's 5'3 and weighs 80 lbs soaking wet. She swam in my saddle. My knees hung way over the front of hers and my butt was practically behind the cantle because of how long my thighs are. It was very obvious to both of our horses that we were not properly balanced, and they reacted accordingly. I am quite sure they would have been happier to have us in our own tack for those 10 minutes, even if it didn't fit perfectly.



  14. #34
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    Most likely if these riders are showing at this level they have name brand saddles, Devoucoux, Antares, CWD, etc. and anyone that has fitted these saddles to multiple horses as opposed to lesser quality saddles will know that these brands tend to fit a far wider range of horses than the latter. They just have a better universal fit. And however said a 2 minute rode is not going to kill the horse is exactly right.

    Saddle fit is different with riders because different saddles ride differently to every rider. I can put two different saddles on the same horse and the balance and feel will be a little bit different. And at the Maclay, you dont have room for a "little bit different."

    And obviously none of these horses are the princess and the pea type because none of the riders got bucked off. And I am sure if there was a horse like this, someone will bring this to attention.



  15. #35
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    We should also point out that MANY of these horses are leased just for these events, so the likelihood of any of them wearing something custom fit to their back is slim to none.



  16. #36
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    The only time I've ever seen the riders change the tack themselves was last(?) year when that was specifically requested by the judges. No grooms. The girls had to swap tack and on to the horses.

    My trainer had two of us try it during a lesson which was fairly interesting even in a low-pressure situation. Somehow I ended up holding both horses and my saddle while the other person put her saddle on my original horse. Seems like it would have been easier for us to swap horses with both of us holding our saddles, but something went wrong.



  17. #37
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    I am quite sure the grooms came in according to the instructions from the judges. They did not just wander in there on their own. Whether it was to accommodate the one rider's injury, or to move things along faster, or to allow the riders to concentrate on the upcoming test, it was not a random occurrence.

    Remember that at the Medal finals, the riders and horses came in the ring without grooms. The judges radio to the ingate and announcer, and give their instructions, which are then relayed by the ingate person to the riders and trainers.



  18. #38
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    Seriously....why is everyone trying to find fault in these kids?

    They all three rode wonderfully well. Their horses were amazing.

    How in the world prior to custom saddles did anyone ever ride anything? About 20 years ago, the go to saddle was the flat as a pancake Crosby (or Hermes if you were really lucky). No custom flaps for the riders or saddles for the horses and somehow everyone seemed to be OK.

    I'm sure that these kids ride more than one horse and while they may have more than one saddle, they certainly don't have a saddle for every horse.

    If that was necessary, Victoria Colvin would have to have a separate tack room for her tack



  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by searching12321 View Post
    How in the world prior to custom saddles did anyone ever ride anything? About 20 years ago, the go to saddle was the flat as a pancake Crosby (or Hermes if you were really lucky). No custom flaps for the riders or saddles for the horses and somehow everyone seemed to be OK.

    I'm sure that these kids ride more than one horse and while they may have more than one saddle, they certainly don't have a saddle for every horse.

    If that was necessary, Victoria Colvin would have to have a separate tack room for her tack
    As I mentioned previously, I learned to ride in England, almost 50 years ago - gulp! Even at the local riding school, each horse had its own saddle, and we often had to switch horses during the lessons.

    I currently own Devoucoux, Antares and Childeric jumping saddles. One of my four horses is concentrating on dressage so, yes, I do have a saddle for each horse, because that is what it takes to make sure they are all comfortable, and I know firsthand what happens when that is not the case.



  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    All I can say is that the one time I was in a class where we were asked to switch horses, the other girl and I agreed to leave our saddles on our respective horses as they were both tough fits and no one wanted to end the course sitting on the horse's tail.
    That's good to hear. In my case, you would likely have ended up on my mare's neck within a few strides, lol.



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