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How would you place a crossrail class?

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  • How would you place a crossrail class?

    While at a show I was watching a cross rail class. Now bear in mind I show western and trail but enjoy watching the hunter classes. Heres what I saw and how I would have placed them but apperantly I was wrong. First horse came in and went straight to the fences and had a refusal at the second fence. I put that horse third. Second horse came in at a canter on the wrong lead and went straight to the fences. I place this horse second. The last horse came in made a pretty circle before starting her fences and continued on at the trot the whole round at the end of her course she finished with a circle and walked out the ring. I think to myself she has won the class. It was really pretty and soft and correct. However the cantering horse won and my pick got secomd and of course the refusal got third. Was I incorrect in thinking that crossrails were to be trotted and that the circle to begin and end was much needed?
    I'm so busy.....I don't know if I found a rope or lost my horse.

    Alright put your big girl panties on and deal with it!

  • #2
    I suppose it depends on what the directives for the class were. I've seen classes for beginner riders and/or horses were it says specifically "trotting on course not penalized".

    It may have also had something to do with what happened over the fences and between them. Was the judge's winner rider on the wrong lead the entire time? How was that riders form compared to the one who trotted the entire course?

    There are so many variables it is hard to say. The judge could have been correct. Then again, I've also heard complaints about judging too, so who knows.


    • #3
      I judge this type of class at least 6-8 times each year. It is very hard so I have developed some guidlelines. A very good judge once said "we jump at the canter". so keeping that in mind, the horse that canters the entire course albeit on the wrong lead, as long as it doesn't cross-canter and maintains a smooth pace is the winner. However, once that horse breakspace by trotting, it drops down, as it should. Then the decision is if the horse that maintains the same pace (trot) in a smooth manner is going to go ahead. Lots of factors here and since I didn't personally see the class it is impossible to say. Of course the refusal goes last. These classes are hard to judge but if the same criteria are used the outcome is fair for all.


      • Original Poster

        This helps alot. The little one how trottted the whole round was told to by her coach and she was fantastic and a great pony. The cantering horse was on the wrong lead the whole time and was at speed that could have been in a jump off. But we all have opinions so I suppose the judge felt that the horse cantering was the best. Thanks for all the help. I couldnt imagine judging a horse show, I have judged dogs and boy can people get upset.
        I'm so busy.....I don't know if I found a rope or lost my horse.

        Alright put your big girl panties on and deal with it!


        • #5
          My friend who is a judge has always said if you are in a class that states that trotting is allowed, if you start at the trot, the whole course should be at the trot, same if you canter the first fence you canter the whole course. I personally, in my non professional opinion would rather see a nice trot course than a break neck, wrong lead course assuming that the class allowed trotting. My pony's first show she went into a cross rail class and since we weren't consistent on leads yet we did the whole course at the trot and the other people either trotted or cantered or did both and there was some of that kind of scary pace/rides in there. We had the smoothest most consistent round and that is why we won the class. Sometimes you might end up at a show also with someone that doesn't necessarily do much o/f judging and don't really know how to place those kinds of classes.


          • #6
            The OP did not state the canter was at speed. That would definitely be a factor because no judge wants to place an unsafe round. It is always nice to watch a correctly started and finished round with courtesy circles because that tells me the rider has a trainer with good basics. It is important to know the class specs so if trotting is allowed it is not penalized. However, remember that two gaits (trotting, then cantering) is not a consistent pace, which is what every judge ultimately wants to see.


            • #7
              Yes, that is exactly what I was saying. If they started and had a nice consistent trotting all the way through round that in my book beats a wrong lead, somewhat scary paced round. She did actually say in her second post that the cantering horse was at a more jump off speed. I think I would still prefer a horse that was a consistent trot round over a consistent wrong lead canter class. The rider should be able to get the horse onto the correct lead (especially when it first comes into the ring!)and if that is a question (maybe rider doesn't know how to do changes or horse won't/can't) then they should probably keep the horse at a trot. If they are unable to do that also they may not want to be jumping quite yet in competition. Obviously small schooling shows are learning experiences and such so I'm not saying no one should go out and play around and stuff, but going by the three rounds and what I've always been taught the trot round would have been first if trotting was allowed.


              • #8
                All of those classes that I have ever judged are "trot xs". So cantering the jumps would not be preferred. I don't really deduct for adding down the lines either because at that height I prefer too slow over too fast any time.

                Personally I don't think Xs are enough of a jump to be cantering a course of them, if you can do that move up to mini stirrup.


                • #9
                  If it is a 'cantering" division, ie the flat classes inthe division ask for the canter, then the trot round has to be penalized.
                  Save a life...be an organ donor! Visit www.Transplantbuddies.org


                  • Original Poster

                    Wow Im learning a bunch. The show list called the class beginner crossrails. So I guess I assumed that they should trot and it was tiny crossrails. My western pleasure horse could have walked over. Again thanks for allthe help.
                    I'm so busy.....I don't know if I found a rope or lost my horse.

                    Alright put your big girl panties on and deal with it!


                    • #11
                      On a side note, I've never heard that a circle was all the great before a hunter round unless the jumps are really close and you need the space to set the rhythm. At a bunch of clinics given by judges I was told by many that they have so many rounds to get through, only take a circle if you need it, don't waste their time


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Silk View Post
                        If it is a 'cantering" division, ie the flat classes inthe division ask for the canter, then the trot round has to be penalized.
                        Actually, no. It depends on how the management has defined the rules for the classes. I have a crossrails division at my show (2 o/f, and an u/s). We ask the judge not to penalize trotting in anyway (trotting in/cantering out, trotting the whole course, doing simple changes or even trotting parts and cantering parts). We do require cantering in the flat class...and breaks of gait are penalized there.

                        There is no hard and fast rule on this...it's up to the show management.
                        Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                        Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SSacky View Post
                          On a side note, I've never heard that a circle was all the great before a hunter round unless the jumps are really close and you need the space to set the rhythm. At a bunch of clinics given by judges I was told by many that they have so many rounds to get through, only take a circle if you need it, don't waste their time
                          It's your round, you're paying for it. If it's not a handy and you think the courtesy circle will set you up better- do it. Your round, your entry fee.
                          "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"


                          • #14
                            It should be specified in the prize list and said prize list with the pertinent parts highlighted should be on top of the packet of papers that the judge gets with their clipboard.

                            When I ran shows, we had two divisions that allowed trotting. In one you were allowed trot changes only. The other specified that "any amount of trotting was permitted." In my book any amount means you could do a medley of trotting and cantering; for example, some people would trot in to and canter out of the lines. In the division that allowed trot changes only we had judges that would pin a horse that did the trot changes over one that stayed at the canter but counter cantered.
                            The Evil Chem Prof


                            • #15
                              I assume the class was judged on the rider. If so, it is possible that the rider who placed 2nd had an equitation fault that moved her down in the placing, like lost stirrup, getting left a little behind or jumping up the neck etc.
                              Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                              Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.


                              • #16
                                Depends on so many things. Was it judged on horse or rider? Did showbill specifically indicate whether it should be done at a trot or canter? I was at a schooling show recently and it seemed to me the judge was mostly a "western" judge. When it came to the OF classes it seemed like she tried to spread the ribbons around a bit which was nice for a very beginner show. Horses that had obvious issues like refusals and wrong leads were penalized but overall seemed like the judge just was looking for safe, consistent rounds. As for the circle, it really depends, the course I was watching was a straight forward 4 jumps, go around twice and the gate was right in front of fence 1 so would make sense to make a circle to get into position for that first fence, especially for an inexperienced horse and/rider.


                                • #17
                                  It should specify in the prize list, and if not, then from when I've sat with judges the nicer, safer, ridden correctly round would place ahead.

                                  A nice trotted xrail course, going into the corners, keeping a nice even rythmn on the correct diagnal should place ahead of a round that is cantered but missing leads......all riders (even beginners) can be taught that they need to have the right diagnol/canter lead and should be doing them thru a simple change. I know at the novice circuit around here, missed leads are penalized and overly fast rounds similarly penalized.

                                  As one judge said "if you scare me, you're not going to place well".
                                  Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!


                                  • #18
                                    Not enough information on specs of the class or quality of performance to make a call on the placing.
                                    Mid-Atlantic Equitation Festival,Scholarships and College Fair
                                    November 11-13, 2016


                                    • #19
                                      I was at a show a few weeks ago watching the xrails and was perplexed by the trotting in and trotting out of jumps. Basically the little xrails were being used more as trot poles. It started to irritate me.

                                      I mean, I get it. And our barn had a few kids in the xrails. But I guess I thought that they'd trot into a line and canter out, and then come back to a trot and trot into the next line and canter out. I thought horses naturally landed off fences at a canter? I'd never seen this before, in my many years of horse showing.

                                      Bless those judges, though. And entire day of it would have driven me completely off the edge.
                                      Adversity is the stone on which I sharpen my blade.


                                      • #20
                                        Crossrails is traditionally for little kiddies and the absolute beginner levels so safety is going to trump all IF the judge is qualified. At that level, trotting/coming back to the trot is no sin and many organizations who track points on the local levels specify trotting is not to be penalized or considered a deduction. Its also usually an equitation class as "hunters" are judged on jumping style and these are not jumps so lost iron would take one out of contention. I do apologize for the punctuation and lack of paragraphs here...had a browser blow up and something in the new one is causing all sports of links to pop up despite the pop up blocker and it has forgotten how to punctuate. Good times.
                                        When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                        The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.