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Could we have a frank discussion about Pony Jumpers?

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  • Could we have a frank discussion about Pony Jumpers?

    I'm trying to decide whether it's worth it for me to try to get my pony qualified for the finals. I'm doing my research and it looks to me like she'd need about 300 points to do so, if things go this year the same they did last year in terms of the average number of entries and shows previous qualified ponies encountered.

    The rules say the top four point-earners go. My concern is that, so far, it looks like those ponies--at least in my zone--are ones that not only travel widely, but show at places like WEF, Lake Placid and Devon, venues I simply cannot afford to trek to, much less compete at. However, even at those venues, the entries are very light. Down south, the top PJs mostly had 2-3 other competitors in their classes, especially after the Snowbirds went home (in April and May; qualifying is through June 1, IIRC). Up north, excluding Devon (where there were 20+), but including Southampton and Lake Placid, they were up against only 4-7 others. Points acrue regardless of entries, so getting a 3rd of 3 is worth just as many points as getting a 3rd of 8 or 20.

    So how is this game played? Can I get some insights so I can decide if I can get it done down here? I haven't yet looked into the shows available to me here--like whether JAX or Venice in addition to HITS would have the requisite level 2 classes. Atlanta's not too much of a trip either. How would you map this out? Again, I'm not sure I will, but I want to educate myself about it anyway. Thanks!
    Sportponies Unlimited
    Athletic Thoroughbred crosses for the highly motivated, smaller rider.

  • #2
    My trainer's kid got on the zone 4 team by joining Pony Club. They couldnt afford to show enough to be in the top 4 in the zone so joined pony club and tried that way. They actually ended up doing well enough to get on both- and they certainly never did WEF.. they may have done a week at Ocala (but even that I dont think so- atleast not with the PJs, but qualified at horse shows in SC. Another girl that rode with my trainer showed enough to get on the team and did it but she didnt show as much as you might think and didn't go to Devon or FL or any of those other places. I'd take a poll here about where in FL/GA PJs are going and then follow. I dont think its as hard as you think it is to qualify though.
    Teneriffe Enterprises- NW Indiana
    www.saradanielhaynes.com

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    • #3
      It's my understanding that the top four point earners from each zone qualify - you don't get zone points for showing outside of your zone (unless it's a contiguous state), so those people who travel a lot are getting national points toward HOTY awards, but not zone points, which you need for qualifying for PF.

      Do I understand this correctly?

      Comment


      • #4
        I went to PF's on my pony jumper in '07 and '08 and to be honest with you- we do not show my pony that often. She did show at Devon and Harrisburg (both are in our zone) but like I said, we picked and chose what shows we wanted to take her to and we qualified without even taking her south. You are welcome to go look at her record on USEF - her show name is Crum Creek, owned by Royal Crown Stables and see exactly how many and what shows we did. I am in Zone II, which i think is pretty competitive and we made the team 2 consecutive years.

        Best of Luck to you- let me know if you have any other questions!
        "Lucky you to have ridden Kildonan Tug- Luckier you to have loved him"
        "Carrying you to prelim was the jewel in Tug's crown."
        "Great horses find you. You don't find them."

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          That's interesting info, folks. I did look only at PJ Zone points (that's what USEF gives you anyway: http://www.usef.org/_IFrames/pointsA...4&section=9500). With 15 points for first place and three classes per show (on average), that's about 7 "perfect" (winning every time out) shows. The mathematical average of shows attended in my zone for the top 10 PJs was 10.7. The top five had more than 200 points, earned via an average of 11.2 shows, which is roughly consistent with a ten-show minimum, I think.

          Does that sound right to you? With a reasonably talented pony and rider, budget 10-12 shows? Is this the way folks go about it or is it really more a matter of just having the funds to do whatever it takes? (This is where I'd appreciate frankness. Thanks again.)

          RCT, I see Crum Creek earned @160 points in nine shows, but less than 100 when non-zone points are removed. Am I doing something wrong here in my figures? That's a heck of a lot less than Zone 4 PJs. Help! I don't get it!
          Sportponies Unlimited
          Athletic Thoroughbred crosses for the highly motivated, smaller rider.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by pwynnnorman View Post
            Does that sound right to you? With a reasonably talented pony and rider, budget 10-12 shows? Is this the way folks go about it or is it really more a matter of just having the funds to do whatever it takes? (This is where I'd appreciate frankness. Thanks again.)
            I think it really depends on what the owner/rider can afford and how many/what shows the trainer is going to. For some, they will stop at nothing to go to PF's, and or others, like me, I have many other horses that I needed to show and I did not always take my pony to the shows. I was moving back and forth between the 4th anf 5th spot on the Zone II list all spring and ended up actually in the 5th spot, but the girl in I want to say the 3rd spot did not want to go to PF's. I hoped and prayed that I would make the team, because I knew I would have an excellent chance of doing well both individually and team wise but I wasnt going to 'extra' shows in order to get more points- I took Cookie where I could.

            pwynn- I'm not quite sure what you are asking at the bottom of your post??
            "Lucky you to have ridden Kildonan Tug- Luckier you to have loved him"
            "Carrying you to prelim was the jewel in Tug's crown."
            "Great horses find you. You don't find them."

            Comment


            • #7
              Pony jumpers

              How do you get info by zone to see where you stand? How tough is it to get to go to Devon? My daughter only started showing pony jumpers in September but would really like to qualify for Devon which started acrruing points April 1st.
              Thanks!

              Comment


              • #8
                Unfortunately you reside in a zone where all winter long there are many, many PJ classes, maybe not so much in the summer or off season. This will require more points to qualify. Though I haven't seen the PJ's go many places in the last few years except at pony finals there is something that certainly used to be an issue for many kids. Many of the zone shows set courses that are not near the height and technicality that is set at Finals. Made for some crying kids for awhile. I hope that has been remedied.When they first started bringing Pony Jumpers back it was pretty popular, with (at least in Florida )between 15-20 per class. Not sure what happened but it has certainly lost some popularity in the last few years. I can think of several reasons this may have occurred, but will keep my opinions to myself because as I said, I haven't paid much attention to them lately.
                www.midatlanticeq.com
                Mid-Atlantic Equitation Festival,Scholarships and College Fair
                November 11-13, 2016

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by pwynnnorman View Post
                  Does that sound right to you? With a reasonably talented pony and rider, budget 10-12 shows? Is this the way folks go about it or is it really more a matter of just having the funds to do whatever it takes? (This is where I'd appreciate frankness. Thanks again.)
                  I can't speak of the pony jumpers, but whenever points are involved...it's better to have too many come the end than not enough. Time can't be rewinded. You kind of have to take every opportunity that comes along so at the end, you aren't going "man I wish I would have gone to that show after all". Because don't forget there will be others also tracking points & they are going to keep chasing until the very end if PF is their dream as well. My personal feeling is you are already dedicating a year to this so what's another show (or 2 or 3) if it means getting where you want otherwise you may be sitting at home wishing you could have been there.
                  "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Another thing to consider is what going to Pony Finals is going to do for your pony. It is my understanding that Pony Jumpers are not that expensive, so it is not clear whether you would recoup the value of your qualifying shows even if you went to pony finals and did well. Others more familiar with the current market may be able to give you better guidance -- I've been out of the loop for a few years.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by 2016 RoyalCrown KTug View Post
                      pwynn- I'm not quite sure what you are asking at the bottom of your post??
                      You mean the part about the numbers? I'm getting fuzzy headed about how many points it would likely take in Zone 4, but it looks to me -- from your experience -- like it "only" takes around 100 or so in the much more competitive Zone 2. That's in contrast to double or treble that in Zone 4. Since that doesn't make sense to me, I'm assuming I'm being stupid somewhere with the math (I have this, uh, mental block or something). Why would it take more points in a less competitive zone? I'm thinking maybe I misinterpreted the page and that the points posted there included non-qualifying results (outside the zone)?

                      Anyway, thanks again for the details.

                      gusbabe, if you get an answer (or find one somewhere) about Devon, let me know, too. I'm not keen on going there, but I'm curious about the process.

                      fordtraktor, you make a good point about value, but this particular pony wouldn't be for sale anyway--she's going to be a broodmare. I was just mulling over the best way to establish (while having some fun) that she's as awesome a jumper as her famous brother (so that I can later promote her babies with that).

                      However, I'm not sure I want to haul her all over the place. I can't really compete for points in that way. I'm a bit saddened to discover that it's not like the hunters. I guess they do that (take the top four, require a degree of "point chasing" rather than a certain number of or type of result) to keep the numbers of PJs at the finals down? Oh, well. I learned something, which was my goal after all. Thanks again.
                      Sportponies Unlimited
                      Athletic Thoroughbred crosses for the highly motivated, smaller rider.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by pwynnnorman View Post
                        You mean the part about the numbers? I'm getting fuzzy headed about how many points it would likely take in Zone 4, but it looks to me -- from your experience -- like it "only" takes around 100 or so in the much more competitive Zone 2. That's in contrast to double or treble that in Zone 4. Since that doesn't make sense to me, I'm assuming I'm being stupid somewhere with the math (I have this, uh, mental block or something). Why would it take more points in a less competitive zone? I'm thinking maybe I misinterpreted the page and that the points posted there included non-qualifying results (outside the zone)?
                        It's hard to back into the points required. If you are looking at the pony Jumper zone standings anything on the indvidual pony points on that page is 'good' zone points.
                        The 'year' for the zone standings is the normal horse show year though end of November. The qualifying period for Pony Jumper finals is 6/1 to 6/1.
                        It's possible for a class to be run at less than 3'3" and stll count for zones but those points won't count for pony finals qualification. And some zones give 1/2 points under some conditions.
                        The more ponies in a class the more points given. So in a large class a third place could be worth the same as a win in a class with 8 or less.
                        So because a zone zone runs a lot of pony jumper classes doesn't mean that the ponies that show there will have higher point values, could be small classes.
                        Fan of Sea Accounts

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          You're in Ocala--aren't you about to have a bunch of big shows right in your backyard? Why don't you find a rider, haul in just for the PJs, do as many shows in the HITS circuit as you can afford, and see where you stand? If you're out of it at that point, then forget it, but if not, that would be the time to consider travelling. However as one poster pointed out, if you are doing it to markedly increase your pony's value, it's not going to happen in the jumper division.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            if you are going to make a go of it & try for PF--why not also sign up for NAL & see if you qualify for the NAL pony jumper final too? just a thought.
                            "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Two posters mentioned price - - I know there have been a few very top PJ's that have sold almost in the 90's. Decent ponies that can win at the smaller A shows and do quite well at big A shows are selling for $30,000-$40,000 from what I have heard recently.

                              NAL is a good idea as well, although it is not until October, and it would be a trek for the OP, which maybe she would be willing to make for NAL finals. But unless you have an semi experienced pony and rider, it tends to catch many out (just look at this years results) I think because it is usually much more technical (in a small arena) than other PJ classes, and the other reason is that there is only one class.

                              And to whoever asked about qualifying for Devon-- I believe as of last year, they changed things around a bit and now anyone can ride in the PJ's at Devon. I think. Call or email Ryegate to double check. I would think/hope you would have to have some PJ experience, but you never know

                              pwynn- I was just thinking, after getting your PJ some experience, you could also try leasing him/her, becasue now a days kids are jumping around GP's at 13 and 14, so not everyone wants to buy a pony just for one season before their kid moves on to horses. Good Luck!
                              "Lucky you to have ridden Kildonan Tug- Luckier you to have loved him"
                              "Carrying you to prelim was the jewel in Tug's crown."
                              "Great horses find you. You don't find them."

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                What about bringing her up through regular jumper ranks a bit, with the plan of being able to advertise that she successfully competed/completed Level whatever courses? I haven't kept up with pony jumpers in the US, but they are still relatively low courses, aren't they? I would think with your program your ponies would be well suited to compete against horses - and a photo of an award presentation where she is clearly a foot shorter (or 9 inches, whatever ) than the other competitors would be a good visual...
                                http://wildwoodfarmnc.com

                                http://cantersgutenberg.wordpress.co...g-quiet-goose/

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                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  She is most definitely not for sale, folks, but that information is also good to be aware of (as a pony breeder, that is).

                                  Jeannette, she will be probably be doing some stuff with Karen at the Horse Park. We've talked about that. But I have a second to get into the ring (and possibly a third), so I was thinking about how to most effectively (and interestingly!) use my 2- or 3-horse trailers. I hate shipping just one and I do really enjoy watching Cat go.

                                  NAL sounds just as interesting, though. I'm definitely going to look into that (I know nothing about it except it really caught on, it seems). If it doesn't involve a lot of point chasing (I don't mean that in a derogatory manner--it's just that I can't afford to chase 'em!).

                                  Great responses. Useful education. Continuing appreciation.
                                  Sportponies Unlimited
                                  Athletic Thoroughbred crosses for the highly motivated, smaller rider.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by pwynnnorman View Post
                                    NAL sounds just as interesting, though. I'm definitely going to look into that (I know nothing about it except it really caught on, it seems). If it doesn't involve a lot of point chasing (I don't mean that in a derogatory manner--it's just that I can't afford to chase 'em!).
                                    If NAL pony jumper runs like the NAL adult jumper...the points are determined by how many are in the class & what placing you get I believe. The only downfall (I think) is there is only 1 NAL classic per show so it's not like every class counts. Check out ryegate for more info.
                                    "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      ok. to get qualified for pony finals in the pony jumpers, points run from june 1, 2008 to june 1, 2009.
                                      this isnt the same as pony jumper zone points, i dont believe these are up yet, but when you click on your zone and at the top, there is usually 4 things seperate from everything else. the only other one i remember up there is PRIX DE STATES. dont ask why i capitalized that, just felt like emphasizing it.
                                      now, at least in zone 2...only level 2 and three classes count. when the time period is over, the top 4 in each zone are chosen. only 1 rider may go, so if a rider has 2 ponies in top 4, they can take only 1 pony to finals and then number 5 is asked to join the team. i know that one year i was 7th and a friend was 8th, or 9th, maybe even farther behind me than that and we both got on the team.
                                      remember, this is NOT the same as zone points. but points can only be accumulated by one rider, so if a girl shows him somewhere and a different person somewhere else, that's 2 different points.
                                      pony finals is fun for the teams and advise you try to go. points are different every year, but start now!

                                      devon points are from april 2008 i believe and just follow with the horse. you dont need too many points or no points to qualify sometimes, depends how many people enter, they usually take 25.

                                      NAL also follows with the rider, and is one class and hburg. points are multiplied by number of people in class. points are sept 1 to sept 1 so you arent that far behind eevryone else!

                                      M&S was new last year and although only 9 pony jumpers showed up for finals last year, they ran it and everyone had fun. i do know the pony jumper M&S is catching on this year though & more people i know think they may go. you show in the LARGE grand prix ring, which is fun!!! but your pony has to be very fit for this! points are from sept 1-sept 1

                                      i think thats all the finals, theyre all fun. just try it!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by pwynnnorman View Post
                                        She is most definitely not for sale, folks, but that information is also good to be aware of (as a pony breeder, that is).

                                        Jeannette, she will be probably be doing some stuff with Karen at the Horse Park. We've talked about that. But I have a second to get into the ring (and possibly a third), so I was thinking about how to most effectively (and interestingly!) use my 2- or 3-horse trailers. I hate shipping just one and I do really enjoy watching Cat go.

                                        NAL sounds just as interesting, though. I'm definitely going to look into that (I know nothing about it except it really caught on, it seems). If it doesn't involve a lot of point chasing (I don't mean that in a derogatory manner--it's just that I can't afford to chase 'em!).

                                        Great responses. Useful education. Continuing appreciation.
                                        I can't make the choice for you but for me I wouldn't do it. I don't think that the division is highly respected by a huge group of h/j professionals. I wish that ponies here had the same tradition of show jumping that they do in Europe. I am disappointed that some of the original enthusiasts of the pony jumper classes GM himself, backed away from educating people about the value JUMPER ponies has for children. Not George bashing it just seemed to be a general sentiment that the ponies could airplane around skimming the 2'9"-3' jumps that were almost speed bumps, winning classes encouraged some recklessness. Understandable because that is not what was intended which was to introduce European style pony jumpers that were doing courses of minimally 3'6" and higher.
                                        My take on it is that our "industry" thought it was a bit risky for children more accustomed to sitting on their overly lunged ponies, memorising single,
                                        through the diagonal in four, outside six.....et al.
                                        Your ponies are talented enough on their own merit.If the mare has a great jump YOU know it and her foals will be born with that talent. Sell that, I would not waste any time or money on something that I don't think adds appreciable value. Sorry I sound so bitter, I think it is a shame.

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