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Susie Schoellkopf

April 2, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Here's How I'd Make Hunter Shows Even Better

This Between Rounds column first appeared in the Feb. 16, 2007 print issue of The Chronicle of the Horse. In a Letter To The Editor in the April 7, 2014 issue, Vince Dugan references this column and asks us to republish letters he and Patty Heuckeroth had written seven years ago in response to Susie's 2007 column. The more things change the more they stay the same?

March 14, 2014

How Do We Inject Excitement Into The Hunters?

Our columnist wants to see tougher courses, bigger fences and more people striving to do—and watch—the hunters at the highest levels.

October 4, 2013

Between Rounds: A Celebration Of Show Hunters

Championship week in Kentucky showcased a vision a long time in the making.

I just returned from an amazing week in Kentucky, and it was all about hunters! World-class horses and riders all came together for two championship classes, the USHJA International Hunter Derby Championships and the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Championship (see Sept. 2, pgs. 18 & 30).

November 7, 2011

Let’s Raise The Bar

In everything we do, we need to make sure we’re continuing to challenge our riders.

As the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association convention approaches in early December, several recent Chronicle articles have given all of us in the hunter/ jumper world something to think about.

Many people complain about the issues Shelley Campf, Leo Conroy, George Morris and Ron Danta have brought up in their articles.

September 14, 2011

Horse Show Trends: Good Or Bad?

Our columnist has noticed some things that seem to be in vogue in the horse show world—and explains why she likes some and hates others.

The first of the hot topics I’ve noticed lately in the hunter/equitation world involves money won in the professional divisions.

Many are saying there aren’t enough professional rated horses to fill the divisions such as the first year, second year, high performance and conformation divisions. I think there are some different factors that need to be figured into this concept.

April 18, 2011

Thoughts On The Indoor Show Season

Our columnist examines some changes to the fall show schedule.

As the winter show circuits were thriving, three of our major indoor shows experienced significant changes that could have a strong impact on the hunter industry. As people start packing to move back to their summer bases, they’re deciding which shows to attend based on criteria like distance to their home, quality of the show and footing, and costs. The managers of most top shows have learned that they must make improvements in order to attract exhibitors, and the indoor shows are no different.

January 21, 2011

How Do The Winter Circuits Attract Their Customers?

My most recent article, “We Need To Strive To Better Ourselves” drew a huge reaction. Most of the article was asking the question: Do we ask our riders to strive to go to the next level? It was by no means knocking the lower height divisions. All I was saying is that we should use all the divisions as steppingstones.

I’ve always thought that a good writer presents topics that can be discussed. I’ve never thought I had all the answers, but simply many of the questions.

October 8, 2010

The Hunter Derbies Are Raising The Bar

We’ve had an exciting year for hunters and jumpers in this country in 2010. We’re in the midst of an economic crisis—horse shows have all been hit by fewer entries—yet we keep going because of our love of our horses and ponies and our love of competition.

This year’s The Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA $100,000 International Hunter Derby Finals hit a home run. The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games limited the choices as to where this competition could be held, so this year it moved to the new indoor ring at The Kentucky Horse Park.

May 27, 2010

We’re All In This Together

Our columnist reflects on the World Cup controversy and what teamwork means to our sport.

This spring we witnessed one of the most controversial FEI World Cup Show Jumping Finals in the history of the sport. The U.S. riders had picked up where they left off at the 2008 Olympic Games and started out strongly, with Rich Fellers and Flexible winning the first leg of the World Cup. McLain Ward and Sapphire earned second-placed ribbons in the first two legs for the overall lead.

February 25, 2010

Increased Safety Is An Added Benefit To Trainer Certification

Our columnist sees great advantages to becoming certified, including valuable continuing education and improved safety for riders and horses.

I had an eye-opening experience when I took the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association Trainers Certification Level I test in early February. I realized that we trainers have indeed been skipping steps and using showing as a means to an end instead of stepping back and making sure the basics are followed.

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