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What the new USHJA Young jumper task force means for breeders?

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  • What the new USHJA Young jumper task force means for breeders?

    USHJA has recently put together a new task force for young jumpers in NA. I am on the committee and would like to have some input from breeders as to how this could possibly benefit you as a breeder or not?

    If we could create a better system for our young horses to develop in, would it inspire breeders in some way? If so, how?

    There is a lack of culture here that the Europeans have, but if our outlets for the horses we breed are better, could we build a stronger foundation for the sport?

    Would love to hear from you guys, so I can bring it to the task force.

    Cheers
    Hyperion Stud, LLC.
    Europe's Finest, Made in America
    WWW.HYPERIONSTUD.com
    Standing Elite and Approved Stallions

  • #2
    I was just talking about the task force with somebody the other day. Glad you started this, I'll be really curious to see what everyone brings to the table!

    The most glaring problems I'm seeing (in our area, but presumably in lots of places) are:

    Very few shows in the Northwest run the YJC classes, because they don't fill. I think there are plenty of age-appropriate jumpers who are capable of jumping SIMPLE tracks at height. We don't often get course designers that understand that, and the young ones can easily get over faced.

    If I were a breeder trying to campaign and promote young sport horses, I would need hope of winning some significant prize money. I would need a break from all the superfluous horse show fees. I would need more opportunity to haul in a Saturday at a time and not spend 6 days and $2,000 to show in one class.

    My *real* hope is that there can be a young horse circuit, organized separate from recognized shows. Something like Linda Allen's Benchmark program run as a Jumper Night... Some fairly officiated shows designed to give a young horse experience and confidence. Granted, there is no prize money involved in the Benchmark program, but I suppose that's part of what makes it affordable.

    Comment


    • #3
      The Young Jumper Championships will now be holding 4 and 5 year-old jumper classes in conjunction with the YHS shows as well as with other schooling shows throughout the country. These classes are a part of the newly instituted Young Jumper Development Program and are distinct from the Young Jumper Championship classes held at USEF-sanctioned shows, although the format and purpose are similar. The Young Jumpers pay a nominal fee to the Young Jumpers Championship and points will be tracked with a view towards competing in the Finals for these classes, which may be held in conjunction with the YHS Finals in Wellington and other YJC Finals.The class entry fees for these classes will be kept low in encourage broad participation among breeders and trainers of Young Jumpers. The first of these classes will be held at the WEF YHS shows in March and at all following YHSs.
      Last edited by Sakura Hill Farm; Jan. 20, 2013, 02:06 PM. Reason: clarity and completion
      Sakura Hill Farm
      Now on Facebook

      Young and developing horses for A-circuit jumper and hunter rings.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by HyperionStudLLC View Post
        USHJA has recently put together a new task force for young jumpers in NA. I am on the committee and would like to have some input from breeders as to how this could possibly benefit you as a breeder or not?

        If we could create a better system for our young horses to develop in, would it inspire breeders in some way? If so, how?

        There is a lack of culture here that the Europeans have, but if our outlets for the horses we breed are better, could we build a stronger foundation for the sport?

        Would love to hear from you guys, so I can bring it to the task force.

        Cheers
        With the new governance structure USHJA disbanded all the committees with the excepton of Zone Hunter/Jumper. There are now two committees, Hunter Working Committee and Jumper Working Committee. Is this 'Task Force' an offshoot of the Jumper group only?
        Fan of Sea Accounts

        Comment


        • #5
          1. Look at the USEA's program for Future Event Horses (FEH) for 3 and 4 year olds. Jumper people could learn from it and from the hunter futurity. One of the downsides of breeding jumpers is having to wait 6 years from conception to getting a horse into the ring. Anything you can do which provides jumper breeders with a way to show off their young stock will stir up interest in buying a young horse.

          2. Convince shows to hold a "Jumper Breeding Division". Look at the number of hunter weanlings - 3 year olds who enter these classes. Owning a hunter breeding horse has become a goal in itself.

          I am looking for a just turned 3 year old jumper/event horse. Two lovely young horses I have found are grandsons of Quidam du Revel; but with different body types. One stands over a lot of ground and the other is very short coupled with a huge butt. I do not know which body style might be more likely to advance farther up the levels, all else being equal. If "form follows function", it would help buyers to understand what a good looking 3 year old potential jumper should look like.

          PS: I looked at your web site and immediately determined that all your foals were above my budget, so I never contacted you. It would be helpful to buyers if sellers would post price ranges for the sale horses. Many hunter websites do that, but virtually no jumper sites do.
          "He lives in a cocoon of solipsism"

          Charles Krauthammer speaking about Trump

          Comment


          • #6
            that's great if you live near Ocala. But what if you live on the west coast or in Texas, or in the upper midwest?
            Discipline is the Bridge between Dreams and Accomplishments

            Comment


            • #7
              simply put, the young horses need simple straight forward courses where they can learn to just experience a show environment on a brief basis and just jump around somewhere other than at home. that is what Europe offers and we do not. that and the fact that there are lots of riders for young horses over there and very few who specialize in that here. the taskforce is a great idea, but unfortunately the USHJA is run by hunter people--best start would be to sever the jumpers from the hunters and have our own organization. you don't find the eventers combined in with the dressage folks do you?
              Discipline is the Bridge between Dreams and Accomplishments

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by feather river View Post
                that's great if you live near Ocala. But what if you live on the west coast or in Texas, or in the upper midwest?
                There are Young Jumper sanctioned classes held all over the country year round.
                Also, USEF has 5, 6 and 7/8 year old jumper classes that run at USEF rated shows. These are also held year round, country wide.

                I have some concerns about classes run at non USEF sanctioned shows. Usually I avoid those shows as much as possible. There are no rules, no drug testing and no recourse ( stewards) if you have a problem.

                Having said that, there are some Jumper only or jumper oriented shows on the East Coast that although there is no drug testing, follow USEF rules and only employ USEF licensed officials.
                Fan of Sea Accounts

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by feather river View Post
                  that's great if you live near Ocala. But what if you live on the west coast or in Texas, or in the upper midwest?
                  Please read my edited post which I amended for clarity and completion. TY!
                  Sakura Hill Farm
                  Now on Facebook

                  Young and developing horses for A-circuit jumper and hunter rings.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by PINE TREE FARM SC View Post
                    With the new governance structure USHJA disbanded all the committees with the excepton of Zone Hunter/Jumper. There are now two committees, Hunter Working Committee and Jumper Working Committee. Is this 'Task Force' an offshoot of the Jumper group only?

                    This committee is for jumpers only as I understand it thus far.
                    Hyperion Stud, LLC.
                    Europe's Finest, Made in America
                    WWW.HYPERIONSTUD.com
                    Standing Elite and Approved Stallions

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      You would be surprised perhaps on the prices of our foals. The reason I don't post them, is because I want to encourage people to take the time to look around.

                      Sometimes it's better to simply contact a seller and strike up conversation. Good things can usually come of that :0)

                      Thank you for your input as well.
                      Hyperion Stud, LLC.
                      Europe's Finest, Made in America
                      WWW.HYPERIONSTUD.com
                      Standing Elite and Approved Stallions

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Linda Allen has talked and written about this quite a bit.

                        Would it be possible to have fixed courses like the dressage tests that increase in difficulty over time and training? That way the goal of producing jumpers would be fostered instead of just the goal of a ribbon. I could see three or four courses for five year olds, and the same for the other ages. Within an age group, they could be designated by level of difficulty just as dressage tests are. All of the horses competing everywhere would face the same challenges and get the same education from the courses. Because the courses would be vetted before they are published, the educational value would have been determined before the courses are ever built. If fixed courses doesn't appeal, how about fixed elements that must included or excluded from the course designs which would differ by age?

                        This is not Linda Allen's idea; it's mine and might well be unworkable. But still, I think, worth consideration.


                        Originally posted by feather river View Post
                        simply put, the young horses need simple straight forward courses where they can learn to just experience a show environment on a brief basis and just jump around somewhere other than at home. that is what Europe offers and we do not. that and the fact that there are lots of riders for young horses over there and very few who specialize in that here. the taskforce is a great idea, but unfortunately the USHJA is run by hunter people--best start would be to sever the jumpers from the hunters and have our own organization. you don't find the eventers combined in with the dressage folks do you?
                        "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                        Thread killer Extraordinaire

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
                          Linda Allen has talked and written about this quite a bit.

                          Would it be possible to have fixed courses like the dressage tests that increase in difficulty over time and training? That way the goal of producing jumpers would be fostered instead of just the goal of a ribbon. I could see three or four courses for five year olds, and the same for the other ages. Within an age group, they could be designated by level of difficulty just as dressage tests are. All of the horses competing everywhere would face the same challenges and get the same education from the courses. Because the courses would be vetted before they are published, the educational value would have been determined before the courses are ever built. If fixed courses doesn't appeal, how about fixed elements that must included or excluded from the course designs which would differ by age?

                          This is not Linda Allen's idea; it's mine and might well be unworkable. But still, I think, worth consideration.
                          USEF already has rather strict requirements for course design for each age group.
                          At the regionals the course designer is likely to be an FEI rated designer. I've seen quite a few of the regionals and I don't think course design was the issue, rather it was insufficient preparation of the horse for the level of dfficulty.

                          Also, having a horse jump the same identical course week after week is a poor idea. It introduces a lot of other problems such as the horse anticipating the course.

                          A few years ago another group tried to have standard jump components for a specialized class. It became very expensive for show management to maintain just one set of 'standard' jumps. 4-5 sets would be prohibitive and at the least cause an increase in entry fees to meet special needs for these classes.

                          If the issue is a feeling that the age level criteria is too difficult at present then submit a USEF rule change proposal to modify the fence heights and course specs.

                          Is the purpose of the program a structured approach to making a GP jumper or is it meant to be a 'B' level league with lower standards and hopefully lower entry fees within the Young Jumper program but outside of USEF oversight?
                          Fan of Sea Accounts

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There is a post on Hunter/Jumper on this thread over there which points out one person's experience with the difference between Canadian Young jumper classes and what she experienced at a US rated show where the Young Jumpers didn't have their own course but simply went in the (I think) 1.0 meter course that had been built for the other classes at the show. If the course designers don't design especially for relatively untrained horses, the young horses might well be asked questions beyond their ability to answer at that point in time. A made AO horse can probably answer questions that a 4 or 5 year cannot.

                            The actual jumps themselves would not have to be special; after all there really aren't that many different kinds of jump and most use parts that are easily reused. It's the questions--the striding, shortening, lengthening, rating for each type of fence and line--that the young horses need to learn as much or more than the fences themselves. It looks to me as the USEF rules focus on the type of jump and not on the questions asked to get to the jump. YJC has more detailed specifications for each age group which address the technicality of the course; and, like the USEF, they allow for harder tracks as the year progresses. Horses can learn a lot at home, but putting it together in show environments is also part of their education.

                            Now if what you are saying is that it's too expensive for show managers to provide courses designed exclusively for young horses at certain levels of their training, that's something else.

                            How many young jumpers actually show week after week? Dressage riders usually don't train to the tests that much for exactly the reason you mention--anticipation. But they do train to the ELEMENTS of the tests.

                            Shouldn't trainers and riders know before they start what the level of difficulty would be? Dressage handles that with its tests that are rated for difficulty. All I'm saying is that there needs to be some consensus reached on what are appropriate questions for young horses at each stage so competitors can train to those questions before they show.

                            Originally posted by PINE TREE FARM SC View Post
                            USEF already has rather strict requirements for course design for each age group.
                            At the regionals the course designer is likely to be an FEI rated designer. I've seen quite a few of the regionals and I don't think course design was the issue, rather it was insufficient preparation of the horse for the level of dfficulty.

                            Also, having a horse jump the same identical course week after week is a poor idea. It introduces a lot of other problems such as the horse anticipating the course.

                            A few years ago another group tried to have standard jump components for a specialized class. It became very expensive for show management to maintain just one set of 'standard' jumps. 4-5 sets would be prohibitive and at the least cause an increase in entry fees to meet special needs for these classes.

                            If the issue is a feeling that the age level criteria is too difficult at present then submit a USEF rule change proposal to modify the fence heights and course specs.

                            Is the purpose of the program a structured approach to making a GP jumper or is it meant to be a 'B' level league with lower standards and hopefully lower entry fees within the Young Jumper program but outside of USEF oversight?
                            Last edited by vineyridge; Jan. 20, 2013, 10:53 PM.
                            "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                            Thread killer Extraordinaire

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I agree with above posters that the young jumper courses need to be suitable for young jumpers. We also need a system that gives a score for ability. The best young jumper isn't necessarily the one that goes around clean with the fastest time. We need a way to recognize and reward talented young horses while encouraging them to be developed appropriately. We also need to encourage that breeders, buyers, trainers, riders, etc. are registering horses and keeping the original papers with the horse. Providing pedigree documentation for entry into a young horse class is key.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
                                Would it be possible to have fixed courses like the dressage tests that increase in difficulty over time and training? ... I could see three or four courses for five year olds, and the same for the other ages.
                                Vineyridge - this is a great idea, but there is a flaw that may be unaddressable.....

                                Dressage horses are doing a pattern that requires no special set-up (meaning a pattern in an open arena) in an arena that is a pre-designated shape and size. Jumpers are jumping a course that does have to be set up a particular way, and each course is set differently each day, and set to the vastly different parameters of the different venues. If you have pre-set courses there's no way to tie them into the individual course designer's course for the day, and I see that being a potential problem because they would have to tear down and completely rebuild the course causing a major time/resources issue. I think the course designers need the flexibility to break down their own courses to build the "easy" baby classes as a simplified version of what they already have on a daily basis. And I think we have some amazing course designers all over the country who could absolutely do a good job at baby courses if given a reason to.

                                Perhaps the easier answer is to pull the YJC classes away from the matching height classes (i.e. no 5yo class run concurrently with the 1.10m Jumper class), which might give the course designer more thought to design a baby-appropriate course. Do it first thing in the morning, and the course designer could make the course more difficult with each age group eventually transitioning into the open classes.

                                I also want to comment on Darden19's idea about the separate circuit/shows for babies....that might work for breeders or show barns that are largely comprised of youngsters, but I don't see it working for the trainers and owners already on the A circuit. I personally don't have time to cart my show horses to one show and my babies to another show. My young horse did the Young Horse classes up in Canada this year, but because those were only one class per show, he also did all of the open classes at each height through 1.15m. If you pulled those classes out to a separate circuit I'd just stick to the open classes at the shows I'm already taking my other horses to, and I know a lot of trainers who would not be able to justify it either. If you don't need the regular owners and trainers that are on the A circuit, then it's a moot point. And I'm not saying that to be snarky....there very well may be a large enough number of breeders to support that type of a separate show system in many areas of the US.

                                So I'm not saying it's not a good idea, because it would absolutely address the issues about course difficulty and a learning environment. I just think you'd find it difficult to find a time that would work for trainers and owners and not conflict with the regular show circuit.
                                __________________________________
                                Flying F Sport Horses
                                Horses in the NW

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
                                  where the Young Jumpers didn't have their own course but simply went in the (I think) 1.0 meter course that had been built for the other classes at the show. If the course designers don't design especially for relatively untrained horses, the young horses might well be asked questions beyond their ability to answer at that point in time. A made AO horse can probably answer questions that a 4 or 5 year cannot.

                                  The actual jumps themselves would not have to be special; after all there really aren't that many different kinds of jump and most use parts that are easily reused. It's the questions--the striding, shortening, lengthening, rating for each type of fence and line--that the young horses need to learn as much or more than the fences themselves. It looks to me as the USEF rules focus on the type of jump and not on the questions asked to get to the jump. YJC has more detailed specifications for each age group which address the technicality of the course; and, like the USEF, they allow for harder tracks as the year progresses. Horses can learn a lot at home, but putting it together in show environments is also part of their education.

                                  Now if what you are saying is that it's too expensive for show managers to provide courses designed exclusively for young horses at certain levels of their training, that's something else.

                                  How many young jumpers actually show week after week? Dressage riders usually don't train to the tests that much for exactly the reason you mention--anticipation. But they do train to the ELEMENTS of the tests.

                                  Shouldn't trainers and riders know before they start what the level of difficulty would be? Dressage handles that with its tests that are rated for difficulty. All I'm saying is that there needs to be some consensus reached on what are appropriate questions for young horses at each stage so competitors can train to those questions before they show.
                                  Every competitor in a USEF Young Jumper class knows EXACTLY what the course conditions and level of difficulty will be at each show depending on season.
                                  If the conditions are considered to be too difficult then get USEF to change the rules.
                                  Below are the specs for 5 year old jumpers. If you compete in an open 1M ( 3') class then all bets are off, you'll get the 'normal' course for that fence height.

                                  b. Courses to be set at 1.00 m to 1.15 m. After June 1st courses may be set up to 1.20 m. For YJC qualifying classes, courses to be set at 1.15m until June 1st and after June 1st course to be set at 1.15m to 1.20m. Speed of 350 m/m.

                                  c. Additional course restrictions:
                                  1. Triple combinations may not be included before June 1st;
                                  2. only one spread obstacle may be included in any combination before June 1st;
                                  3. when using a vertical over any liverpool, the rails must be in the center;
                                  4. no liverpool may be used as part of a combination; and
                                  5. the first fence and the (a) portion of any combination must be set 5cm lower than the height specified for the class.


                                  On average, horses who are competitive in the 5 and 6 year old jumper division show 9-18 times a year. The 7-8 year old jumpers show more frequently, as much as 22 times a year. But that's just in young horse classes. Some of them show in low level classes early in the year so probably add 5-6 more shows.
                                  While not competing each week they do tend to show on average twice a month.

                                  If this offshoot of the YJC is meant to be a low level class but primarily to showcase young stock for breeders instead of producing GP horses then call it what it is.

                                  Another poster commented on going to two sets of shows. Many trainers provide clients with a list of shows they will be attending each year. If the client base is competitive at USEF rated divisions they want to maximize chances for clients to compete at those shows. Adding another circuit with no USEF points really is not feasible.
                                  Fan of Sea Accounts

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
                                    where the Young Jumpers didn't have their own course but simply went in the (I think) 1.0 meter course that had been built for the other classes at the show. If the course designers don't design especially for relatively untrained horses, the young horses might well be asked questions beyond their ability to answer at that point in time. A made AO horse can probably answer questions that a 4 or 5 year cannot.

                                    The actual jumps themselves would not have to be special; after all there really aren't that many different kinds of jump and most use parts that are easily reused. It's the questions--the striding, shortening, lengthening, rating for each type of fence and line--that the young horses need to learn as much or more than the fences themselves. It looks to me as the USEF rules focus on the type of jump and not on the questions asked to get to the jump. YJC has more detailed specifications for each age group which address the technicality of the course; and, like the USEF, they allow for harder tracks as the year progresses. Horses can learn a lot at home, but putting it together in show environments is also part of their education.

                                    Now if what you are saying is that it's too expensive for show managers to provide courses designed exclusively for young horses at certain levels of their training, that's something else.

                                    How many young jumpers actually show week after week? Dressage riders usually don't train to the tests that much for exactly the reason you mention--anticipation. But they do train to the ELEMENTS of the tests.

                                    Shouldn't trainers and riders know before they start what the level of difficulty would be? Dressage handles that with its tests that are rated for difficulty. All I'm saying is that there needs to be some consensus reached on what are appropriate questions for young horses at each stage so competitors can train to those questions before they show.
                                    Every competitor in a USEF Young Jumper class knows EXACTLY what the course conditions and level of difficulty will be at each show depending on season.
                                    If the conditions are considered to be too difficult then get USEF to change the rules.
                                    Below are the specs for 5 year old jumpers. If you compete in an open 1M ( 3') class then all bets are off, you'll get the 'normal' course for that fence height.

                                    b. Courses to be set at 1.00 m to 1.15 m. After June 1st courses may be set up to 1.20 m. For YJC qualifying classes, courses to be set at 1.15m until June 1st and after June 1st course to be set at 1.15m to 1.20m. Speed of 350 m/m.

                                    c. Additional course restrictions:
                                    1. Triple combinations may not be included before June 1st;
                                    2. only one spread obstacle may be included in any combination before June 1st;
                                    3. when using a vertical over any liverpool, the rails must be in the center;
                                    4. no liverpool may be used as part of a combination; and
                                    5. the first fence and the (a) portion of any combination must be set 5cm lower than the height specified for the class.


                                    On average, horses who are competitive in the 5 and 6 year old jumper division show 9-18 times a year. The 7-8 year old jumpers show more frequently, as much as 22 times a year. But that's just in young horse classes. Some of them show in low level classes early in the year so probably add 5-6 more shows.
                                    While not competing each week they do tend to show on average twice a month.

                                    If this offshoot of the YJC is meant to be a low level class but primarily to showcase young stock for breeders instead of producing GP horses then call it what it is.

                                    Another poster commented on going to two sets of shows. Many trainers provide clients with a list of shows they will be attending each year. If the client base is competitive at USEF rated divisions they want to maximize chances for clients to compete at those shows. Adding another circuit with no USEF points really is not feasible.
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                                    • #19
                                      If you will note from my previous post, I did look at the USEF rules. And pointed out that they are limited to the obstacles. There is nothing about distances between obstacles or rollbacks or the straightness of the lines. Those are also as much a part of the questions that courses ask as the jumps themselves. Those are the elements that also need to be considered where difficulty is concerned. The YJC talks about technicality and lack thereof and the need for "flowing" courses. Those principles are not addressed by the USEF. I'm sure that if the USHJA asked the USEF to change the rules to add them, it would be done.

                                      If there was a consensus on what elements (including the between fences ones) were appropriate for the different levels of young jumpers, the course designers would be able to incorporate them in the courses. It's really a question of whether there should be separate courses for the young jumpers.

                                      Originally posted by PINE TREE FARM SC View Post
                                      Every competitor in a USEF Young Jumper class knows EXACTLY what the course conditions and level of difficulty will be at each show depending on season.
                                      If the conditions are considered to be too difficult then get USEF to change the rules.
                                      Below are the specs for 5 year old jumpers. If you compete in an open 1M ( 3') class then all bets are off, you'll get the 'normal' course for that fence height.

                                      b. Courses to be set at 1.00 m to 1.15 m. After June 1st courses may be set up to 1.20 m. For YJC qualifying classes, courses to be set at 1.15m until June 1st and after June 1st course to be set at 1.15m to 1.20m. Speed of 350 m/m.

                                      c. Additional course restrictions:
                                      1. Triple combinations may not be included before June 1st;
                                      2. only one spread obstacle may be included in any combination before June 1st;
                                      3. when using a vertical over any liverpool, the rails must be in the center;
                                      4. no liverpool may be used as part of a combination; and
                                      5. the first fence and the (a) portion of any combination must be set 5cm lower than the height specified for the class.


                                      On average, horses who are competitive in the 5 and 6 year old jumper division show 9-18 times a year. The 7-8 year old jumpers show more frequently, as much as 22 times a year. But that's just in young horse classes. Some of them show in low level classes early in the year so probably add 5-6 more shows.
                                      While not competing each week they do tend to show on average twice a month.

                                      If this offshoot of the YJC is meant to be a low level class but primarily to showcase young stock for breeders instead of producing GP horses then call it what it is.

                                      Another poster commented on going to two sets of shows. Many trainers provide clients with a list of shows they will be attending each year. If the client base is competitive at USEF rated divisions they want to maximize chances for clients to compete at those shows. Adding another circuit with no USEF points really is not feasible.
                                      Last edited by vineyridge; Jan. 21, 2013, 11:21 AM.
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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
                                        It's really a question of whether there should be separate courses for the young jumpers.
                                        I also think the traks should be different for the different ages. The 7YO course should NOT be the 5YO course with the top rail raised, or vice versa.

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