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Frustrated with Arab shows


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#21 maryjo

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 07:27 AM

Extravagant gaits do have an advantage at Training and First levels. As you move up, training becomes much more important. Yes, an 8 mover is going to win over a 7 mover at PSG if the training DEMONSTRATED in the test is similar.

Arabians have been doing dressage very well for a whole lot longer than 10 years. The first dressage classes were at nationals in the late 70's. With some horses that had been competing open very successfully.

And just because a 'horse' is small does not mean they do not have excellent gaits. A judge like Melissa Creswick (who judged the lead in show at Region 7) is going to reward gaits and training no matter what type of hide is covering the horse/pony. If she gives a horse a 6 for gaits it is probably because it has '6' gaits. Likewise 7's and 8's. And if a rider gets 5's and 6's on their rider score, they earned it. Just like if she rewards the rider with all 7's or 8's.
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#22 siiamese

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 07:36 AM

I could be totally wrong here but, no matter the breed, if you choose the right horse for the discipline it seems like it would have to good conformation, the good movement, the good mind and disposition for traing......and that is what the judge would see and score. It was what I was used to with cutting horses and reining horses before I got into arabs. You had to buy or breed the right horses and then train them correclty if you wanted to be competitive. As these classes are scored and NOT the comparative events that MR classes are, it would seem to make the playing field fairly level - - you are competing against a standard with very definite rules on the scoring.

pure curiosity here - - which horse(s) in the photos of region 7 are you and yours?

#23 Gogetter

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 07:44 AM

So, you don't want to go to Arab shows anymore because you have to compete against half-warmbloods, so you'll instead go to open shows where you'll compete against full warmbloods?

While the movement and the warmblood's more natural abilities do give the crosses an edge over the purebred, you can't get around training. If that half warmblood is not trained properly, that is eventually going to show. Maybe not so much in training level, but as you move up. Those holes in training start showing up...if your horse is well trained the proper way and the cross is not, then YOU will have the edge.

PS...sorry if I'm not being very articulate. I'm tired!

That was my first thought, too. What I'm reading here is "my horse can't WIN against 'X' so I want show managers to add a class for me that I can win in." I thought, as others have pointed out, that dressage was about scoring and working toward better scores?

Want a purebred with a free-moving back? Get an Aulrab-bred horse :D

Ribbons are icing.

On that note, I saw on the R7 live feed that the PB hunter 55+ class had I think 3 entries. Time to combine those age divisions or at least go back to 18-39 and 40+.

Amy Johnson Proud owner of Carangi+/ (Versace X Giavanna)

2013 Region 2 UNANIMOUS Champ PB Hunter Pl AAOTR; Region 1 Champ PB Hunter Pl AAOTR; Youth National Top Ten PB Hunter Pleasure JTR 14-18
2012 U.S. National Top Ten PB Hunter Pleasure AAOTR 36-54; Region 2 Champ Hunter Pl. AATR 40+ and Hunter Pl. Open, Res Champ PB Hunter Pl. AAOTR; Region 1 Champion PB Hunter Pleasure AAOTR 40 and over, Reserve Champion PB Hunter Pleasure AATR 40 and over 2011 U.S. National Top Ten (third!) PB Hunter Pleasure AAOTR 36-54, Region 1 Champ PB Hunter AAOTR 40 and Over, Region 2 Reserve Champ PB Hunter AATR


#24 twnkltoz

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 08:08 AM

Want a purebred with a free-moving back? Get an Aulrab-bred horse :D



Or an Aurab bred one. :)
Jennifer Walker
Capt Han Solo+,Reserve National Champion training level dressage, Top Ten first level dresage, Regional Champion Sport Horse Stallion available for lease
Author of The Riders of Green Meadow Series--Arabian horse fiction for young teens and the young-at-heart

#25 BFF

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 08:20 AM

Dressage was added to Nationals in the Early 80's, prior to that to get a National award you submitted your scores from Open shows.

That meant all you did was compete against Warmbloods. Where I live that meant sometimes following riders like Hilda Guerney.
I will never forget at one show having to go in right after Tom Valter on the stallion Tudor. Tudor went across the diagonal in about three strides. Tudor became a superstar, I was thrilled to be competitive in a class with a horse like that on my Ay-rab.

There have been plenty of times over the last several decades where my Arabians would get better scores then the warmbloods at Open shows, the fact that they are in the same company and competitive is enough for me.

I do not doubt that if entries ever warrant a split one will be offered.

We should actually be grateful that we have dressage offered at all at the Arabian shows as it presents a substantial increase in cost to the show managment.

I have been breeding Arabian/Hanoverian crosses for 20 years, if I did not think my purebreds could be competitive with them there would be no point in using my Arabians in the program.

I feel like our industry is already geared to offering people awards just for entering the show.
A class for everyone with a million splits, age, sex, blood type..............
In fact at convention this year I am going to ask the Sport Horse Committee to add a class just for
Bay geldings with one left fore sock, a star, and a belly spot.
I come from an era where an AOTR class would have 30+ riders.
Where you had to campaign a horse to qualify for Nationals.
I really do not get this "class for every horse" mentality.


I prefer compeition it gives my award more value, and in the long run to me its the journey getting there that really counts.

Bonn-Fyre Farms/Training Center home to- Pure Polish- Elikzir (Ganges x Ularia) Three time U.S National Top Ten Stallion, 2014 Region II Champion Stallion SHIH, PACIFIC SLOPE TOP FIVE STALLION 2014, Region II Top Five Stallion 201,10 Time U.S. National Top Ten Stallion LA LegacyInBlack+++//,U;S. National Champion Stallion H/A SHIH- The Terminatorr+(Azh Naborr x L'argent- German Verband Hanoverian) <p>https://www.facebook...571022559602050


#26 mhtokay

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 09:17 AM

Well, if that was the case then reining classes would be combined too.

That's the problem with arabians, in a sense. They have been bred to be versatile and not a speciality horse. But, mark my words you are seeing discipline specialty breeding increase in arabians. Warmbloods have been breeding for dressage for many, many generations. Same as reiners in QH. It is pretty much given that a horse bred for the sport and has the correct conformation for that sport will excel at that sport.

Reining is a little different in that there are not different levels of training to show in. Only age or who the rider is. There are not different patterns for horses just starting out.

#27 mysticrch

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 10:57 AM

The Open Dressage world only divides classes by level and rider (Open, AA, JTR).

Sport Horse Nationals does split out the lower levels into Half versus Purebred.

The basic premise for competing in dressage is about the score. About how you and your horse's training is progressing. Not so much about the ribbons. Year end awards (nationally and regionally) are all based on SCORES. Not placings.

I am sure if an Arabian show has so many entries to warrant splitting a class it could be done based on Half Arabian versus Purebred if they wanted.

Perhaps if your local shows are so blessed to have that many entries, you can sponsor splits.

RE: Fair playing field. A few years back the highest scoring Training level horse in the country (USDF) was a purebred Arabian. Named Aurora MR.


Thanks MJ and she got those scores with a young rider showing in Open shows and also won the USDF All Breed Award showing Open and Ammy classes in Arabian Shows.
Karen Ernst
Owner & Breeder of:
ZEUS MR (JS Padronov x MSN Zamia by Ansata Shah Zam)
2012 SHN Top Ten Arabian Sport Horse In Hand Stallion ATH

#28 Aelfleah Farm

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 11:08 AM

Hmm.. yeah. Go show open USDF where you might very well be the ONLY Arabian in the division. That will teach those show managers for not having a class you could get a ribbon in! As an Arabian owner who ONLY shows open USEF - never AHA (though in show jumping rather than dressage) I can can count on one hand the times I got to compete against just purebreds withou those much taller, bigger gaited "generations of GP breeding" warmbloods hogging the ribbons... Let me see, that would be never. Biut oh wait, we somehow manage to get ribbons too!

Dressage is a competition against the scoresheet. Show jumping is a competition against the course. If a particular Arabian can't get a ribbon in a particular class, blame the horse/rider/trainer. Don't blame the show manager for not having a split class.

Tamara Woodcock, Scurry, Texas
BLUE STAR Arabians and Arabian-influenced Sportponies
Combined Training, Combined Driving, Dressage, Endurance, and Show Jumping

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#29 jrnaz1

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 12:04 PM

Points well taken ladies...thanks for listening. It is all about the journey and sometimes my competitive nature takes over. Like I said my horse is a USEF Region champion, nationally ranked, USDF All Breeds top 5, and competitive in the open shows. I shouldn't complain as I have so much to be grateful for : )

#30 dowedoit

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 12:52 PM

jrnaz1 - just wanted to say that I understand your point of view! Actually, I understand both sides but will speak to your frustration first.

My stallion is showing in the working western classes and I would HATE to have him have to compete against the Arab/QH crosses and, if that was my only option, I suspect I would become discouraged and throw in the towel. I love my Arabs and think they are superior to other horses, QHs included, in many ways. But the fact remains, QH have different muscling that allows them to be superior in the working western events - particularly with sliding stops and spins. Does that mean that an Arab couldn't beat a QH in a working western event? No. Ronteza already proved that. But I'm not going to spend my hard earned, scarce dollars trying to find that next superstar that only comes once or twice in a century. There will always be that superstar that comes along once in a lifetime that can beat the odds/genetics (whatever you want to call it) that make it competive in ways that the average horse (or even better than average) can. (Secretariat is another example.) But those horses are few and far between and if we all had to hang our hats on the hope of winning by waiting for that particular superstar to grace our pasture, it would be pretty discouraging. I guess that is a long winded way of me saying I understand your frustration. But I readily acknowledge that I have limited knowledge of dressage, especially in the competive sense, so I don't fully get all of the arguments/explanations that have been offered.

On the other side, I think that all of the splits are ridiculous. I just ventured into the show ring this year with my horse and am shocked by the number of classes that have 5 or fewer competitors. The classes are split by age, rider status, horse status (purebred vs half, junior vs. not, owner or not, etc., etc.) I understand open vs. amatuer, but what difference does it make if you are an amatuer owner vs amature adult riding a non-owned horse? Why don't we have the ten and under walk/trot, the junior riders, then 18-39, 40 and over, and the open for the trainers and anyone else who wishes to give it a go? Why is there a need for all of the additional splits? I see a need for the purebred vs. half (for the reasons I explained above, which I think are also true for many other classes, such as the SS classes). I also see the value in the junior horses not having to compete against the experienced ones. But in the end, there needs to be enough competitors to make it a good competition. I don't know if there are the same number of classes in other breed shows but it is mind boggling to me how many different classes are offered at the Arabian shows, including the number of hunter and western pleasure classes can be offered! The good thing about those is that there are usually plenty of competitors!

I don't know about years past but wonder if the best solution alltogether isn't just an improved economy where more people have the ability to participate and increase the numbers.

ETA: It is my understanding that the reined cow horse classes are relatively new to the Arabian shows so the only classes offered are purebred open and half/AA open. My horse was able to be very competive his first time out, in his first show, and won the purebred open class at Scottsdale. But, as a general rule, I don't think the junior horses should have to compete with the experienced show horses.
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