The U.S. Hunter Jumper Association has announced that its Emerging Pro Division will now be tracked as one group rather than two. Previously, the groups were divided by height.
Like the other World Championship Hunter Rider divisions, riders will earn points on their highest-placed horse at a WCHR member event, regardless of whether those points were earned from the pre-green or rated sections.
The top 10 in the national standings after the divisions at the Capital Challenge Horse Show (Md.) plus the top six from each region will be invited to participate in the Emerging Pro Challenge at Capital Challenge. These class results will be added to the rider points after the divisions at Capital Challenge, and the national Emerging Pro Champion will be pinned following the class.
The revised specifications for the division are as follows:
- Points will be tracked regionally and nationally in one section: Emerging Pro Hunter Riders.
- Riders will declare themselves Emerging Pros on their WCHR membership application.
- The USHJA office will track points earned from the rated professional hunter divisions, pre-green 3′ and pre-green 3’3″divisions at all WCHR member events.
- Riders competing on more than one horse will accrue only points earned by their highest placing horse.
- Points from rider’s top four WCHR shows will be used to determine national ranking.
- The top 10 nationally ranked riders and the top six riders from each region will be invited to compete in the Emerging Pro Finals class at Capital Challenge.
- Riders may also accrue points in the Emerging Pro standings and the WCHR Professional standings during the same competition year.
The WCHR’s Emerging Pro program was introduced with the intent to identify new professionals, or those who have not won consistently at the upper levels. Riders must meet the following criteria in order to be eligible:
- Rider has never placed in the top 10 of the WCHR Professional National standings
- Rider has never been a WCHR Professional Regional Champion
- Rider has never won a Legacy Cup Restricted Pro Final
- Rider has never won the Emerging Pro Finals Class
- Rider has not been champion or reserve champion in a professional hunter division run at 3’6″ or higher at the following shows: Devon (Pa.), Capital Challenge, Pennsylvania National Horse Show, Washington International (D.C.) Horse Show, and/or The National Horse Show