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Bad form or being conservative?

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  • Original Poster

    Originally posted by Edgewood View Post

    But you do have to be careful, as there are some really fabulous young horses these days that can easily go out and pull in huge scores, even though they are green. So if you put rules in place, you have to make sure that they are not going to unfairly target some of these really nice young horses that need mileage. I personally know of a gelding who is 4 years old and has a median score of almost 75% at Training. He is showing the age appropriate class, and doing very well.
    My thought is that talent alone does not automatically propel a horse to upper level. Yes, a very nice young horse can get 75% at Training, but that is mostly due to the quality of the horse, not the "training" of the horse. To move up to higher levels, some kind of training will still need to be installed and that takes time. Otherwise, all very nice talented young horses will automatically be Grand Prix horses at five. So yes, a horse can get very high score and yet be at the appropriate level.

    The level in many ways is reflection of the training of the horse, not just the quality of the horse.

    As to petition for rule changes, nay, I'm not interested in banning anybody from showing at the level they want to show. They can show whatever they want. I myself believe to purposely show at a much lower level just to win is sort of, taking the glory and challenge out of equation of competition but that is just my belief.


    • #22
      Originally posted by Gloria View Post
      I myself believe to purposely show at a much lower level just to win is sort of, taking the glory and challenge out of equation of competition but that is just my belief.
      Agreed! It also speaks volumes about the character and lack of sportsmanship the rider demonstrates. Their win is also robbing someone of an honest victory; and to feel okay with that is really pathetic.


      • #23
        Originally posted by goodpony View Post
        Im afraid I see it happening all to often--becomes even more noticeable at Championships. Ive also seen quite a number of
        fresh 'imports' competing at the lower levels who are quite obviously not in an appropriate frame for competing at Training-First but who win with scores exceeding 70%....sigh. If you are scoring 70% plus---don't ya think its time to move up?
        fwiw, my comments above were in response to the above.....

        i personally think that jumping down levels just to win is not cool - but that is not the same as having a horse that scores very well at the appropriate level and i gave a couple examples of a recent show... 2 horses that scored in the high 70s - both T level horses as they were youngsters at their first shows.........


        • #24
          I agree that dropping multiple levels just to win a championship rosette doesn't smell like the highest standard of sportsmanship. But what about the ammie's trainer that encourages (allows/supports) this behavior? That trainer isn't doing our sport any good either but I wonder if this situation would attract other clients because they're a winning trainer.


          • #25
            When you consider that 80% = Good and 70% = Fairly Good, I really don't see the problem with people competing at levels where they are consistently getting marks somewhere between fairly good and good.
            Donald Trump - proven liar, cheat, traitor and sexual predator! Hillary Clinton won in 2016, but we have all lost.


            • #26
              There are no guarantees that a horse trained to a higher level will win at a lower level.

              A talented, great moving, well balanced young horse often places above a steadier, "trained above the level" horse. I have seen that more often than the higher level horse winning.

              At a high pressure show, like a National championship or USDF Regionals, it is understandable that both the horse and rider would want to show at a level where they are very comfortable with the test.


              • Original Poster

                Originally posted by mbm View Post
                fwiw, my comments above were in response to the above.....

                i personally think that jumping down levels just to win is not cool - but that is not the same as having a horse that scores very well at the appropriate level and i gave a couple examples of a recent show... 2 horses that scored in the high 70s - both T level horses as they were youngsters at their first shows.........
                Oops got you, and sorry for the misunderstanding...


                • #28
                  Overseas it is bad form to ride W/T if you have developed your canter and so I would consider it bad form to ride posting trot/training level if you have developed collected gaits and sitting trot being that that is two levels above.

                  What is there to gain by riding wtc on a 20 meter where you are expected to not even have a horse on the aids? It is not even really dressage at that level if you consider ON the bit dressage.

                  I can see doing this to get miles on a horse if they have not been shown, but a championship/national with plenty of finishing is simply ribbon chasing and so much for actually pushing yourself.
                  ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~


                  • #29
                    I happen to know of a young horse who can score (and has) at greater than 70% in training level type test (actually BNovice eventing) but he is in NO way ready to show at first level. He's working in it... It takes time to develop the right balance, push, etc.... great scores do not necessarily equal ready to move up!


                    • #30
                      I think much of it could be to do with bang for your buck. To look at it from another perspective, if I'm an ammie and am spending a lot of money and time to go to a really big show, I want to ride in as many classes as I can. If I'm only qualified at Training and 1st, those are the classes that I would want to compete in. If I only compete in 1st out of principle, then I'm spending almost as much money while only getting my horse in the ring once. So maybe it's not so much that this person wants to get a ribbon, but more that they want to make as much of their showing experience worth while as possible. Not saying it's right or it's what I would do, but it would make it more worth while for this person to attend the show and get the miles in a big atmosphere.


                      • Original Poster

                        Umm interesting, Sonoma City. That certainly is one plausible reason, to want to show as much as possible at the big atmosphere after trailering the horse for thousands of miles. I still think they should have shown 1st and 2nd, if they don't mind the $85 per class entry fee, but maybe she didn't think her horse was competitive at 2nd level. Interesting to see what she will do next year.


                        • #32
                          My retired horse and I started at intro because we both knew nothing. Also our canter was a mess! After a few shows he could pull over 70 in intro because of his very nice trot work and halts. Getting 9s down centerline at some shows and lots of 8s on trot work but in training level it was hard to break 60 because of the canter and anticipation on his and my part that it was coming. So when we moved up we for a little bit did show at the time intro b, there was no intro c, and then 2 training level test just to get his mind in the right place. He had never shown nor been on a trailer for 13 years before I got him. It was the right thing for my horse and myself IMO. Now for being confirmed 2nd and dropping 2 levels down IMO is a little shady but Sonoma has a point that I could understand at getting the most for your money.

                          Not to hijack but question. What if a advanced beg buys a confirmed prix st George etc. Horse and shows it at training level and blows the socks off everyone? Do you think that appropriate?
                          Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole


                          • Original Poster

                            Originally posted by rabicon View Post
                            What if a advanced beg buys a confirmed prix st George etc. Horse and shows it at training level and blows the socks off everyone? Do you think that appropriate?
                            My belief is that a pair should show at a level at which "both" are competent at, but not "an easy walk at the park". For an advanced beginner, Training level can be hard to ride correctly, so he/she is right to stay at Training level, regardless the level of the horse. Once the rider progresses and Training Level is no longer a challenge for him/her, they should move up to 1st level, and the cycle begins again. This pair should be able to move up more quickly than say, most of us, who have to train both the horses and the riders at the same time.


                            • #34
                              For straight dressage, I would not feel comfortable showing at Training level after being successful at Second in that combination.

                              For a breed show situation, the calculus is a little different, based on the titles you can get as a member of that breed. I can see a scenario where competing for a national breed title would make it sensible to drop down.

                              I would point out that in general, that the Training Level championship is probably more competitive than the 2nd level, especially in a breed show. I've won a lot of 2nd level blue ribbons by being the only amateur with the guts to show up and ride the test.
                              If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


                              • #35
                                I would say bad sportsmanship unless there are other factors of which we are not aware. If it really bothers you, work with the breed association to ammend the rules to disallow such. I know a "world champion" AQHA youth who showed in Novice Appy (as a youth) shows and won a national title (years ago)- this happened enough that folks changed the rules to disallow what one would think is bad form in the first place...
                                Appy Trails,
                                Kathy, Cadet & CCS Silinde
                                member VADANoVA www.vadanova.org


                                • #36
                                  That's how I feel Gloria, just wondering.
                                  Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole


                                  • #37
                                    As long as what someone is doing is not against the rules, what do you care? You protest too much??


                                    • #38
                                      Didn't the OP say that the horse/rider in question were scoring @ 63% in second level ?

                                      That is not very competitive. If that was me, and I was shipping hundreds of miles to a big show, I would show first and training..

                                      if the horse was scoring 73% in second level, there would be reason to complain.


                                      • #39
                                        If your purpose is to get ribbons and high scores, yes.
                                        If it is to get mileage, show hors concours.
                                        I personally wouldn't. 63% may not be competitive but it's an acceptable score. I could understand doing First Level under those circumstances but not Training.


                                        • Original Poster

                                          Complaint? Protests? Where did you get that idea from, Pely and Rebecca? Can't a girl be curious and want to know why someone would do such and such? As far as I know, this is still a free country where an open discussion is encouraged. By the way, do you compete at rated shows at all? Again, curious mind wants to know.

                                          Like I said, that pair was showing 1st level "last year" and winning in their own country back then. The second level score (63%) was found in the beginning of this year, but that does not mean that was the only second level score. Remember they are from a complete different country and it is not as easy to find scores of any given pair. To score 63% at second, they have to have been schooling third and above in the beginning of this show season, and then drop to training? Yeah, I personally feel for those Training level amateurs who work hard to compete at their appropriate level. I understand the allure of National titles. I have won World Champion and Reserve World Champion but darn, I would feel embarassed if I bring my very solid 1st level horse to Training to beat those up. We are talking about Training Level, the very beginning of show level, not some upper level for god's sake.