Friday, May. 24, 2024

French Links Out, Saddle Pad Logos In Under USEF Dressage Rule Changes Starting Dec. 1



Several rule changes and presidential modifications to the dressage section of the USEF Rulebook will take place for the 2023 competition season, which begins on Dec. 1.

All updates can be found in the 2023 USEF Rulebook. Among the major updates that take effect Dec. 1 are the following:

DR120 Dress: Language has been added to clarify that coats and jackets with a discreet stretch/breathable panel in black or the same color as the garment are permitted.

DR121 Saddlery and Equipment: Brand marks or non-sponsor logos not exceeding 50 square centimeters are permitted on saddle pads.

DR121 Saddlery and Equipment: The center link in a double-jointed snaffle must be smooth and curved on all surfaces as in a lozenge-shaped link. Dr. Bristol and French link bits are not allowed.

The U.S. Equestrian Federation has extended several COVID-19 related rule modifications for the 2023 competition year. The modifications initially made because of COVID-19 have improved competition operations for management and competitors, the federation said. These presidential modifications, which will be in place from Dec. 1 until standard rule changes for the 2024 competition year can take effect, include:


DR121 Saddlery and Equipment: Language clarifies that equipment checks will be visual for Level 1-3 classes.

DR123 Scoring, Classification and Prize-Giving: Scores may be sent electronically (e.g. via text) to competitors or posted online. If scoresheets are only made available after the competition day by electronic methods, management must extend the deadline for reporting of mathematical errors to 24 hours from time of distribution. Scores will be corrected but class placements will not change.

DR126 Requirements for Dressage Competition Management: The time schedule must be posted in an electronic format or in an area where social distancing can be adhered to. The method to be utilized for posting the time schedule must be printed in the prize list.

The full list of presidential modifications can be found here.

Questions regarding rule changes or presidential modifications can be directed to Lauren Moore at




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