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LEADLINE MOMS - talk to me!

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  • LEADLINE MOMS - talk to me!

    I am trying to get more info on the whole leadline class at these nice rated shows (Devon - Upperville - etc.)

    Can you tell me what the class is like, what they ask the little ones to do (trot), how old is the youngest rider, is it judged on the pony as well (suitability for the rider?) do they ask each child any questions?

    Clearly they need to be dressed to the nines - paddock boots, jodhpurs, garters, show shirt, show jacket, helmet, gloves? anything specific for the little boys?

    Anything you can add for the extra aww factor? I can't do pigtails as my son would be so upset with me one day for that one - LOL!

    Do they go all out with braiding in the extra hair for the tail? I know they braid the mane, so tail is braided too?

    And then for me, I saw big hats, pretty summer dress, but I couldnt see shoes, you would usually wear open toe shoes with dresses, but what about in the show ring, would that look inappropriate? HAHA - paddock boots and sun dress....is that how its done?

    You see what I need.....a lot of info!!! I didn't do leadline when I was a youngster, so this will be my first experience with it. Any little minor or major advise would be greatly appreciated! THANK YOU

    Here's my son's pony
    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...1&id=839108492
    C. Brooke Cowan
    Over Rabbit Farm

    Lapinwood Ponies

  • #2
    Not a mom, but I'm a leadline watcher ...

    Leadline runs differently at different shows --

    At Devon, the classes are huge -- It's been 2 classes for as long as I can remember -- Used to be broken up into under 5-year old 5 & 6-year old classes -- In recent years, it's been under 4-year old and 4&5-year old -- I think they lowered the age because the classes were just tooooooo big -- Even now, I'd estimate they get 75 entries in the older class --

    At Devon they only walk -- The announcer is usually warning the handlers not to trot because some will try to trot to show off their rider/pony --

    Leadline is an eq class, but I think most judges consider suitability very important for young riders too -- It's got to be tough to judge such a large group, especially since they just walk -- So, turnout is VERY important at Devon in order to pin well -- Every tail is braided neatly -- It's not enough to braid, it has to be a professional job -- A thin spot in the mane better be touched up with extra yarn so that it's not noticeable --

    People say you need a BNT leading your child to win, but IME this is not the case -- You need to get noticed -- To do that, you need a nice pony without a hair out of place, a spotless, happy child who's looks comfortable carrying the reins while sitting up with heals down, and 'something' else -- That 'something' can be the handler's outfit -- It can be a BNT handler -- It can be getting into the ring first (you would be shocked by the jockeying for position at the ingate) -- It can be having a little girl riding sidesaddle correctly -- There was a time when it could be a nice trot before the class started, but they threaten to kick you out for trotting now -- Hanging on the rail in a pale dress, even if the child is doing their part, will go unnoticed --

    If you watch the class carefully, you can knock out half of the ponies after looking at them once ... less than perfect braids, tense pony, or an unhappy kid -- Make sure the pony's ok in crowds -- Hate to see a pony get jittery at something like their first sight of a ferris wheel -- That can end scaring the child, and what was supposed to be a fun day documented in cute photographs turns into an bad day with a tearful child --

    I watched once a long time ago at the Hampton Classic where they broke it down into much smaller groups -- It might have been a a half dozen sections of 10 kids -- That judge did ask the kids questions --

    Never watched at Upperville --

    There's a big 'local' show, Ludwig's Corner, near Devon where the leadline class is huge too -- They do ask the kids to trot there ... one at a time down the long side -- I think that class is judged mostly on the trot --

    ETA -- Most of the women handlers try to find sensible, flat, pretty shoes -- Some find a dress that will work with paddock boots, but that's not the norm -- There's always one or 2 who wear fancy shoes -- I guess they're ok with trashing them, which is fine with me, but I've never seen someone handle the pony well when they're struggling with their shoes --
    "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM

    Comment


    • #3
      wait...so they actually JUDGE the leadline classes?

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        THIS IS GREAT INFO! Thank you so much. My husband and I were reading this (well I was reading it to my husband) and we were giggling about how ridiculous this is, BUT how I am so looking forward to doing it! It will be so fun to be in the show ring in a pretty dress! Thanks for the information, its been just what I was looking for! Cheers
        C. Brooke Cowan
        Over Rabbit Farm

        Lapinwood Ponies

        Comment


        • #5
          Can't see your picture (you need to make it public) but it goes without saying that anything you can do at these big shows to set your little guy apart is key. Many of the ponies used in the leadline are ponies who are showing in the pony hunter divisions as well so they are going to all be adorable and of course all the kids are adorable.

          A unique color will set you apart (roan, appy, pinto) or a little girl showing sidesaddle etc. With a little boy, make sure he's dressed to the nines, super polish the boots and maybe get a smart tie that stands out a little.

          And yes they do actually judge and it is madness

          PS if you google Leadline Devon, you'll find lots of pictures and some videos, to give you an idea of what it looks like...adorable!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Aerial View Post
            wait...so they actually JUDGE the leadline classes?
            In our area they judge the leadline. I am in the Devon/Ludwig's Corner area.

            For Devon I think they pin through 8th and everybody else gets a light blue ribbon. (Although I haven't seen Devon in a few years)
            The rest of the local shows pin LL. There is normally a w, w/t and sometimes an off lead. The off lead one the handler is right there but not actually attached to the pony.
            Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)

            Comment


            • #7
              dab gave you a lot of good advice for Leadline at Devon!
              And YES, they actually do judge it!

              The biggest keys at Devon are:

              - everyone looking absolutely perfect - kid, leader, pony - Absolutely braid mane and tail and if you have a fakie, go for it!

              - having that little something extra to get noticed - colour of handler's outfit, giant hat, colour of pony, size of pony, sidesaddle/western/jumper, etc

              - having a kid that actually rides "well" - not that they are really riding, but they should be in correct position. Granted, some kids with BNT handlers/parents will sneak in even if they look like a bump-on-a-log, generally the ones who ribbon look nice.

              As for shoes, that is the bane of my existence as a handler at Devon. Thankfully cute flats are back in style so this year it should be easier. I've worn everything from paddock boots with slacks to sandals to small thick heels that you could actually walk in.

              Here is a picture of my kid who was 4th out of 51 two years ago. We went with the sexy pony, adorable kid that could actually ride, "off" coloured jacket (I knew grey was a risk, but it paid off), and blingy helmet - though my outfit was a bit more subdued. It seemed to work. You can thumb through the album to see more pics.

              http://pets.webshots.com/photo/28038...53076870VEFxKR
              Last edited by GreystoneKC; Feb. 4, 2011, 09:31 AM. Reason: forgot link. duh.
              ...for there are wings on these hooves, the speed and power of foam-capped waves...
              *~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*
              Proud member of the artists clique

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by GreystoneKC View Post
                dab gave you a lot of good advice for Leadline at Devon!
                And YES, they actually do judge it!

                The biggest keys at Devon are:

                - everyone looking absolutely perfect - kid, leader, pony - Absolutely braid mane and tail and if you have a fakie, go for it!

                - having that little something extra to get noticed - colour of handler's outfit, giant hat, colour of pony, size of pony, sidesaddle/western/jumper, etc

                - having a kid that actually rides "well" - not that they are really riding, but they should be in correct position. Granted, some kids with BNT handlers/parents will sneak in even if they look like a bump-on-a-log, generally the ones who ribbon look nice.

                As for shoes, that is the bane of my existence as a handler at Devon. Thankfully cute flats are back in style so this year it should be easier. I've worn everything from paddock boots with slacks to sandals to small thick heels that you could actually walk in.

                Here is a picture of my kid who was 4th out of 51 two years ago. We went with the sexy pony, adorable kid that could actually ride, "off" coloured jacket (I knew grey was a risk, but it paid off), and blingy helmet - though my outfit was a bit more subdued. It seemed to work. You can thumb through the album to see more pics.

                http://pets.webshots.com/photo/28038...53076870VEFxKR
                Oh, I LOVE your sandals! Your child has a wonderful position, and that pony is just darling.

                As far as I am concerned, leadline is a legitimate reason to have children.
                The journey is the destination.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by The Centaurian View Post
                  As far as I am concerned, leadline is a legitimate reason to have children.
                  Or borrow them for the day at an hourly rate.
                  "Dressage" is just a fancy word for flatwork

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So what is the going lease rate for a good leadline kid? Is it like horses -- one third of the purchase price?
                    According to the Mayan calendar, the world will not end this week. Please plan your life accordingly.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by The Centaurian View Post
                      Oh, I LOVE your sandals! Your child has a wonderful position, and that pony is just darling.

                      As far as I am concerned, leadline is a legitimate reason to have children.
                      Thanks! Those shoes were great because they were strapped on well, flat, and kept me up out of the footing! Just a little wobbly here and there since I walk funny on the outside of my feet, lol.

                      I cannot wait to have my own children for the sole purpose of Leadline at Devon! The adorable little girl in the pics was one of my students.

                      I am totally looking for a kid to take this year since I don't currently have one! We barely use that pony except for Devon LL, lol! When we bought her years ago, my mother just wanted "a gorgeous pony that would do LL at Devon"... perfect!
                      ...for there are wings on these hooves, the speed and power of foam-capped waves...
                      *~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*
                      Proud member of the artists clique

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Greystone KC, adorable photo and that child had such a solid position. Your mom sounds delightful.


                        My daughters only did leadline at one of our C shows but I will treasure those photos forever. The leadline years fly by!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Over Rabbit, make sure you appoint someone to take photos! Lots of them!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by The Centaurian View Post
                            As far as I am concerned, leadline is a legitimate reason to have children.
                            I totally agree. Even my non-horsey husband is just smitten by leadline and after watching it for the first time at Upperville a few years ago, he was pretty much ready to buy a pony for our future kids right then and there.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Do the kids have to dress up as the hunter part? Hunter jacket, fitted pad? Or can they dress as "jumpers"- polo shirt, leather belt, a square pad, and open front boots on pony?

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Crown Royal View Post
                                Do the kids have to dress up as the hunter part? Hunter jacket, fitted pad? Or can they dress as "jumpers"- polo shirt, leather belt, a square pad, and open front boots on pony?
                                Definitely dressed as hunters, with an exception for sidesaddle. It's supposed to be an eq class so traditional is the way to go.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  We did Devon Leadline for the first time last year. . . and will bring 3 kids this year! It's so much fun, just for the experience. . . last year the little girl didn't place, but hey, maybe this year will be a different story

                                  Let me know if you have any questions! Some things we were panicked about last year. . .

                                  Trailering/Parking: All relatively easy. . . no parking charge where we were. Some people beforehand had us very nervous, saying we would have to get there MANY HOURS early, we got there about 2 hours early and worked out just fine!

                                  Our little leadline girl still continues to say . . .this was the biggest horse show ever! She comes from a family who is financially unable to afford a show like that . . . luckily we were able to lease out our other pony to be used and the rental fee for that pony afforded out little leadliner to go! Will have to post pics because she looked darn good if I do say so myself

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Limerick View Post
                                    Greystone KC, adorable photo and that child had such a solid position. Your mom sounds delightful.
                                    Thanks! I was SOOOO sad when that little girl's parents divorced and she and her mom had to move up north. They were trying to make the 1+ drive to keep her riding, but single mom with two little kids, it just didn't happen. As far as I know, she doesn't ride anymore; I haven't talked to them in over a year. I LOVED her and her mom so much, it's one of my saddest things that's happened as a trainer. She was going to be my little pony hunter kid. She could post trot beautifully too and was still riding as 4yo at Devon I think!

                                    Originally posted by Crown Royal View Post
                                    Do the kids have to dress up as the hunter part? Hunter jacket, fitted pad? Or can they dress as "jumpers"- polo shirt, leather belt, a square pad, and open front boots on pony?
                                    I have seen some BN jumper people do the jumper leadline thing with their little guys before, but I am not sure I'd rock that one. If you do, be good because you WILL get noticed. If doing that look, GO FOR IT and make sure it all matches! Although if I was going to go for the jumper look I would do it with a white shirt and navy or black jacket as "formal attire". I mean, it *IS* DEVON!
                                    ...for there are wings on these hooves, the speed and power of foam-capped waves...
                                    *~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*~v~*
                                    Proud member of the artists clique

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Our leadline pics from last year. . . .the little grey pony is the one we leased out to a little girl from NY and her trainer.

                                      Our little student who showed is on the choc palomino pony. She is a precious kid! So mature! and so so smart! She loved every second of the experience, even though she got a little nervous once in the ring! My mom sang to her, to keep her from being nervous and all the pics from the pro photographers she has the biggest smile on her face! A little too late we realized something got messed up on Charlotte's Bridle, and was a bit too loose on her! Oh well!

                                      http://good-times.webshots.com/album/579704858jyGsWA
                                      Last edited by dbeers2618; Feb. 4, 2011, 10:23 PM. Reason: Photo link didn't work

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Aerial View Post
                                        wait...so they actually JUDGE the leadline classes?


                                        This.

                                        You mean it's more than an older, horsier version of "Toddlers and Tiaras" too?!
                                        Tru : April 14, 1996 - March 14, 2011
                                        Thank you for everything boy.


                                        Better View.

                                        Comment

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