2016 Miniature Horse WORLD Issues October/November 2016 Vol 32 No 5 - Page 24

judges speak Q. Disillusioned Driver asks: Why does it appear that the single pleasure horses get rewarded for being put in the wrong driving class of Country pleasure and Country pleasure get rewarded for being put in Classic pleasure? True Classic horses get the gate which is not fair. Pam Allen As an exhibitor I’m sure that many times it does seem that the most correct horse for that division wasn’t chosen. But there are so many aspects involved in judging each division that it could be some of the less obvious aspects are over looked. Did your horse perform the gaits as the judging standard dictates? Did the horse stand quietly, back readily? Did it have a quiet mouth? Was the tack clean and harnessed correctly? It’s a total presentation package. the various forms of the trot are also very influential. A horse’s obedience coupled with correct conformation and an attractive and complimentary turnout all add to the impact of the “big picture”. Karen Sholten Maas As both a judge and a competitor I feel your pain! Perhaps some qualified observations will help set your mind at ease. I do not speak to defend judges’ placings, but to elucidate how those placings are developed. I suggest that each exhibitor look to their own and their own horses’ performance, turnout, bridle compliance and ring position. Show your horse from the gate until the cards go in. When asked to back, bridle your horse before you ask for straight diagonal steps back. These are all things you have an element of control over. Get your horse shown well, position your horse so its fine qualities can be appreciated, and drive to win. While gaits are a large part of the judging criteria, a horse’s degree of bridle compliance, definite transitions and difference between Jan Decker In the Miniature horse rule book it is very specific as to the requirements for each of the driving classes offered for miniature horses. In fact there are drawings to depict the difference between the classic, country and single driving horse. Each ideal is specific to the drawing and to the description of expectations for each of the different divisions. The order of words signify the importance of the considerations in the description. Classic: ATTITUDE IS PARAMOUNT, MANNERS ARE PARAMOUNT, PERFORMANCE, QUALITY, CONFORMATION. Look for ouraging! New Pack Country: ATTITUDE AND MANNERS ARE PARAMOUNT; PERFORMANCE, QUALITY, CONFORMATION/ APPEARANCE. Lanolin Enriched Moisturizer For Healthy, Supple, Shiny Coats, Manes and Tails. Natural Formula Relieves Dry Skin, Flaking & Rubbing. The Brands You Know & Love Always at Your Favorite Tack & Feed Store 22 Miniature Horse World A driver’s ability to position a horse to be seen, and to display itself well can be a critical component, especially in large classes. Knowing when and how to ask for the horse’s best performance at the right time is important to the overall quality of the performance. O C TO B E R / N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6 Single: PERFORMANCE AND QUALITY ARE PARAMOUNT; MANNERS, ATTITUDE, CONFORMATION, and APPEARANCE. Let’s have a discussion on just what these words mean. The exhibitors and judges must understand the criteria each class is judged on. Attitude: Does this horse really like what he is doing and does that horse do it with ease? Is this horse happy with his job? Does the horse appear to look through the bridle with bright eyes and keen ears? Manners: Manners manifest in many ways. The ears and tail are usually indicators of the horse’s feelings about what is going on. Is this horse obedient and responsive to the driver? Is this horse quiet on the bit and not gnashing at his bit and trying to avoid the desires of the