Saturday, May. 25, 2024

Between Rounds – John Madden



Our columnist believes the medals the U.S. team earned in Mexico had a lot to do with a new feeling of unity.

My wife Beezie Madden and I have just returned from Guadalajara, and as I reflect back on the week at the Pan American Games, I think I am most pleased with our team spirit. Team spirit is such an intangible thing and hard to create or define, but I think the net effect shows clearly in our team’s results.

Our columnist explains how he goes about the process of picking out the next international show jumping champion.

Selecting a young horse as a prospective international jumper is a topic that I never tire of talking about, learning about or doing.

John Madden describes what each rider had to think about before getting a leg up onto the others’ horses.

The author believes that success in these competitions is integral to the entire U.S. horse industry.

At the time of writing, the United States has just earned second place in the Meydan FEI Nations Cup series, also known as the Super League.

Each of these eight shows ranks among the best in part because they have maintained their character. Each is a bit different, each a reflection of their national identity, and each truly excellent.


Our columnist hopes to help improve, rank and rate competitions from grassroots to international.

In 2008, I was asked by the Fédération Equestre Internationale Jumping Committee to lead a working group to limit the number and improve the quality of the FEI World Cup qualifiers in North America.

At the start, we were instructed to decrease the number of qualifiers in North America, which we considered a huge challenge. How does one decide which events stay and which ones go?

Our columnist sees the Winter Equestrian Festival, in particular, as the future springboard to top international championships.

Wow! I just finished watching the first round of the Rolex FEI World Cup Show Jumping Finals on my computer on FEI TV, and the quality and convenience of the live stream was fantastic.

Our columnist spent a week with George Morris helping to educate young riders and sees the future top tier strengthening.

I was honored to spend a week being part of the fourth annual George H. Morris Horsemastership Training Session in Wellington, Fla., Jan. 5-10. I’m extremely proud of what George’s idea has grown into in the past few years, and I feel it fills a void in our country that we’ve ignored for many years and perhaps even fostered.

Our columnist asks Dr. Tim Ober to provide more background about what this contentious change could mean for our horses.

It seems to me that our primary concern as horsemen must be the horse.

Dismay is the only word that comes to mind when I witness many of the goings on in our sport. The politicizing by many factions in the process of the Fédération Equestre Internationale’s recent adoption of the Progressive List of therapeutic drugs, to say the least, makes me incredibly sad. Honest, informed disagreement is fine and even important.



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