Mid-South Eventing & Dressage Association

MSEDA News

  • 02/02/2018 12:32 PM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman

    If you’re interested in running a local horse event, whether it’s a combined test, mini trial, dressage show, hunter pace, competitive trail ride or other endeavor, there are three key things you need: a deep volunteer list, a solid set of organizational skills and a good sense of humor.



    So, you’ve attended local horse shows, hunter paces or trail rides for years, and you truly understand what works in your area and what doesn’t. Why not try your hand at equine event management and host your own show, pace, mini trial or other equine endeavor? While there’s a lot of planning that goes into hosting an event, there are some very specific strategies and timelines that can make organizing an event less stressful.


    Don't Put the Cart Before the Horse

    But before you start dreaming of the awesome prizes you’ll offer, there are a few other things you’ll need to consider. The first, and most important, is choosing a date. Before you get your heart set on a specific weekend, think long and hard about the time of year in which you want to host your event. Early spring and late fall can be iffy weather-wise in many locales across the country. If you don’t have an indoor arena or other covered space to utilize, it can be worthwhile to rule out the very early and very late dates, especially if you’re not expecting to ask riders to pre-register. It’s helpful to plan your event as far in the future as possible—a year in advance is not unheard of. The more time you can have to prepare and get the word out about the event, the better.

    When deciding on an event date, also be sure to look at other local equine organization’s event calendars. Making sure you’re not running a hunter pace at the same time as an event or local jumper show can help make sure riders are not forced to choose between your new event and an already-established one.

    If you’re not hosting your event on property you own, it’s a good idea to have an additional one or two dates in mind as back-ups as well. Then, when you approach the hosting venue, you already have a back-up date in mind if your first choice is taken.  


    Checking Your List

    Once you have a date nailed down, it’s time to get to the nitty-gritty details. While you might be able to manage without checklists in many areas of your life, hosting an event is most likely not one of them. Most event organizers live and die by checklists. Here are some of the particulars you may need to have in place well in advance of the event:
    • medic
    • food
    • ribbons and/or prizes
    • secretary/check in location
    • signage
    • stall map (if neede)
    • show/event programs or maps
    • judges, announcers, ring crew, stewards (if needed)
    • photographer
    • course/track design (if needed)
    • jump/obstacle rental
    • portapotties
    • numbers or pinneys
    • vet/farrier or on-call vet or farrier


    Getting the Word Out

    So, the date is set, the venue is booked and you’re diligently working away at your checklists. What next? Getting the word out! The biggest key to having a well-attended event is making sure that as many people as possible know when and where your event is, AND how to contact you should they have any questions.

    If you don’t have a lot of money to spend on expensive show programs or color flyers, don’t fret! Social media is the least expensive way to get the word out about your event. Mock up some cute ads or silly social media posts, and start posting it in every equine group you can! Email all your horsey friends and ask them to share, as well. If you have any sponsors of classes, events or prizes, thank them as much as you can on social media and ask them to share their support of your event with their fans and followers.


    Making Sure You're Covered: Liability Insurance

    If the event you will be running will take place on your own farm, it’s important to contact your insurance agent to be sure you’re covered for the event on the farm. You will most likely be asked to provide details about what type of event it is, about how many people you expect and if medical personnel will be on site.

    If you will be hosting your event at a location other than one you own, the entity that owns the facility will likely ask for proof of insurance and ask to be named on your policy for the date of the event. The owner of the facility will also ask that the insurance cover exhibitors, competitors and spectators with a minimum policy limit (normally $1 million).  While this may sound like a lot of hassle and expense, it’s normally quite affordable to add on a one- or two-day event to an insurance policy that’s already in place. And, should anything happen, you’ll be glad you have insurance in place!


    Rallying the Troops

    So, you’ve laid the foundation for a successful event. You’ve chosen a good date with minimal conflicts, you’ve spread the word about what a great event this will be and you’ve gotten as many detail in place early as you can. Now you need more manpower.

    Even the most seasoned event host knows that an event cannot run smoothly with only one person at the helm. So, contact everyone you can think of who might have a few hours to spare or who may need community service hours. While you will want the majority of people to come and attend your event, a lot of local schools, community groups, scout troops, pony clubs and 4-H groups needs volunteer hours each year. Reach out to them as early as you can to see if you can round up some volunteers from their member.


    And Finally

    While you can have plan A, B, C and D in place, but some things will happen just before or the day of the event that you will be unable to control (like the weather!). Just remember: It will be OK. Many an event has been salvaged from a potentially harmful incident by the event manager being attentive, courteous and listening to those who are having issues. A little bit of kindness goes a long way, especially when stress levels run high. So don’t forget—the attendees have come to your event for a good time, so do your best to ensure that they want to come back next year!
  • 01/25/2018 11:45 AM | Anonymous
    DOOR PRIZES DONATED BY WON BY
    Miscellaneous
    1- Valley Vet T-Shirt, Green Candle Valley Vet Supply & Friend of MSEDA Laura Voll
    1- Vally Vet T - Shirt, Hooray For Horses Game Cards Valley Vet Supply & Friend of MSEDA John Crowell
    1- Vally Vet T-Shirt, Yankee Candle Valley Vet Supply & Friend of MSEDA Alison Zeitlin
    1 Valley Vet Blue Horse Halter Valley Vet Supply Robyn Munson
    1- Valley Vet Purple Horse Halter Valley Vet Supply Mary DeBarbadillo
    1-Grooming Tote Friend of MSEDA Elizabeth Pagan
    1- White Horse Framed Picture Friend of MSEDA Julie Congleton
    1-Leather Brown Horse Size Halter Dover Saddlery in Cincinnati, OH Steve Duncan
    1-Black Halter Luckett's Tack Shop Nikki Wahl Seto
    1- Light Blue Groom Caddy with Basic Brushes Luckett's Tack Shop Elaine Fern
    1- Day Churchill Downs/ 8 Seats Covered at Finish Line Peggy Bindner Angela Ariats
    1-EquiOtic Ice Pack Cooler and Pastes Doug Froh/EquiOtic Chris Hayner
    1-EquiOtic Ice Pack Cooler and Pastes Doug Froh/EquiOtic Pam Kimmel
    1- Equine Excel Hoof Supplement Equine Excel ?????
    1- Bucket KPP Supplement, Polo Shirt Misc. Kentucky Performance Products Cindy Kephart
    1- Bucket KPP Supplement, Polo Shirt Misc. Kentucky Performance Products Robyn Munson
    1- Bucket KPP Supplement, Polo Shirt Misc. Kentucky Performance Products Kathy Norman
    1- Bucket KPP Supplement, Polo Shirt Misc. Kentucky Performance Products Kayla Conrad
    1- Pomegranate Spice Bath Set Basket Friend of MSEDA Rachel Henson
    1- White Christmas Bath Set Friend of MSEDA Beverly Henson
    1- Small Brown Stuffed Horse Friend of MSEDA Jane Brack
    1- Stuffed Unicorn Horse Friend of MSEDA Emma Hilt
    1- Flower Pot Horse Pastrue Design Friend of MSEDA Ruth Rosendaul
    1- Animated Rocking Horse Friend of MSEDA Karen Isberg
    1- Horse Throw Blanket Friend of MSEDA Anita Bolen
    1- Thoroughbred Pillow Friend of MSEDA Erin Woodall
    1-French Chinese Pillow Friend of MSEDA Mandy Weissmann
    1- Horse NutCracker Friend of MSEDA Mary Fike
    1-Faithful Companion Tote Bag Friend of MSEDA Carol Scherbak
    1- Horsey Tote Bag Friend of MSEDA Mandy Weissmann
    1- Purple Por Porri & Black Horse Shot Glasses Friend of MSEDA Janice Holmes
    1- Horse Scarf & Black Horse Clothes Brush Friend of MSEDA Marian Zeitlin
    4 Hunter Scene Coffee Mugs Friend of MSEDA Kathy Baar
    1- Rita Mae Brown Book & Brass Horse Picture Frame Friend of MSEDA Kristin Posner
    1- Mahongy Horses Running Décor Friend of MSEDA Chelsea Smith
    1- Horse Wreath Hanger & Silver Horseshoe Candy Dish Friend of MSEDA Chris Hayner
    1-Black Leather Halter and Leash Chain TwohorseTack.com Jeanna Hutchinson
    1-Light Brown Leather Halter and Leash Chain TwohorseTack.com Nicole Maynara
    1-Dark Brown Leather Halter and Leash Chain TwohorseTack.com Gracelyn Kephart
    1-Bucket of Dimples Horse Treats Dimples Horse Treats Vanessa Coleman
    1-Bucket of Dimples Horse Treats Dimples Horse Treats Gracelyn Kephart
    1-Bucket of Dimples Horse Treats Dimples Horse Treats Tiffany Smith
    1-Bucket of Dimples Horse Treats Dimples Horse Treats Kristen Brennan
    1-Bucket of Dimples Horse Treats Dimples Horse Treats Elisse Gibbs
    Gift Cards and Certificates DONATED BY WON BY
    1- Certificate Upgrade from 2 to 4 Passenger for 3 days Cunningham Golf & Utility Vehicles Margaret Miller
    1 Hr Full Massage Janet Grisco Erin Murphy
    1-Gift Certificate $25.00 The Tack Shop of Lexington Lauren Buhrmann
    1-Gift Certificate $25.00 The Tack Shop of Lexington Nicole Maynard
    1-Gift Certificate $25.00 The Tack Shop of Lexington Janice Holmes
    1-Gift Certificate $25.00 The Tack Shop of Lexington Cindy Kephart
    1- 2018 X/C Shooling Session at the KHP KHP Foundation/ Laura Klumb Cathy Wieschhoff
    1- 2018 X/C Shooling Session at the KHP KHP Foundation/ Laura Klumb Marianne DeBarbadillo
    1- 4-Day General Admission to the RK3DE Vanessa Coleman Lauren Buhrmann
    1- 4-Day General Admission to the RK3DE Vanessa Coleman Bev Henson
    1- Red State BQ $15.00 Gift Certificate Red State BQ Kitty Wieschhoff
    1- Red State BQ $15.00 Gift Certificate Red State BQ Gail Jackson
    1- Red State BQ $15.00 Gift Certificate Red State BQ Susan Posner
    1- $100.00 Gift Certificate Fabulous Frames and Art/ Kenwood Store Julie Congleton
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Sarah Andres
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Judi Tudor
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Elissa Gibbs
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Robyn Munson
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Pam Kimmel
    1-$20.00 Coupon Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Buckeye Nutrition Equine Feed Nikki Kowalski
    1-$25.00 Gift Certificate and Note Cards Kentucky Tack Ex./Consignment Boutique Anastasia Curwood
    1-$50.00 Gift Certificate and Note Cards Kentucky Tack Ex./Consignment Boutique Susie Duncan
    Horse Show and Clinic Entries DONATED BY WON BY
    1- Horse Trial Entry Fee Spring Bay Horse Trial Kelly Rover
    1- Horse Trial Entry Fee Kentucky Classic Horse Trial Victoria Schumacher
    1-MET Hunter/Jumper Entry Fee Masterson Equestrian Trust (MET) Julie Congleton
    1-MET Hunter/Jumper Entry Fee Masterson Equestrian Trust (MET) Nancy Kowalski
    1-Hunter Pace Entry Masterson Equestrian Trust (MET) Lauren Gehtile
    1-Mid South Pony Club Horse Trial Entry Fee Midsouth Pony Club/ Erin Woodall Pam Kimmel
    1-Entry for Stone Place Stables Hunter/Jumper Show Stone Place Stables, Prospect, Ky Jill Pritchard
    1-Entry for Stone Place Stables Hunter/Jumper Show Stone Place Stables, Prospect, Ky Erin Woodall
    1- Entry Fee Stone Place Stables Mini Horse Trial Stone Place Stables, Prospect, Ky William Robertson
    1 Entry Fee either Combined Test or Dressage Class Sayre School Combined Tests and Dressage Show Tess Utterback
    1-Dressage Class Entry Snowbird Dressage Show March 2018 Tiffany Smith
    1- Entry 2018 Camargo Hunter Trials Camargo Hunt Mary Fike
    1- Entry 2018 Camargo Hunter Trials Camargo Hunt Mary Fike
    1- Entry Camargo Hunter Pace 2018 Camargo Hunt Sara Hubbard
    1- Entry Antbellum 2018 Nancy Newton Memorial Show Antebellum Farm Deanna Craychee
    1-Entry Fee Spring Run Farm Fall Dressage Show Spring Run Farm/Susan Harris Carol Scherbak
    Sunday Door Prizes Packages Valley View Farm
    Louisville Package DONATED BY WON BY
    1-Spring Run Farm Spring Dressage Show Entry Spring Run Farm/ Susan Harris Erin Woodall
    1-Covered Bridge Pony Club Combined Test Entry Peggy Bindner Erin Woodall
    1-Flying Cross Big HT Entry Only Mary Lowry Erin Woodall
    Lexington Package DONATED BY WON BY
    1- Paul Frazier Dressage Show Entry Fee Paul Frazier Pat Kline Nikki Kowalski
    1 -Snowbird Dressage Feb Show Entry Fee Julie Congleton/ Trudi Tudor Nikki Kowalski
    1-Jumpstart HT Entry Fee Sally Lockhart Nikki Kowalski


  • 01/16/2018 10:28 AM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman


    Photo by JJ Sillman

    Courtney Calnan was a 2017 $500 MSEDA Educational Grant recipient. The proud owner of CC Little Black Dress, otherwise known as “Harper,” Courtney plans to split the money two ways: “I am headed to Aiken, South Carolina, for a week in February to work with four-star eventer Lillian Heard,” Courtney says. “Half of the money will go toward my lessons while in Aiken. [This] will allow me to take a full week of lessons while in Aiken instead of just a couple, [which will] provide us with a great head start to accomplish our 2018 goals.

    The other half will be used to offer a discount to MSEDA members at a clinic taught by Lillian in Lexington later this year, Courtney says. This grant “will help me to fulfill a passion I have for organizing clinics and giving back to the local equine community.”

    Harper

    Courtney has a passion for the horse world and it’s not just humans who benefit. Her horse, Harper, is a 7-year-old Arabian/Andalusian cross that was one of 50 horses rescued by the Arabian Rescue Mission (ARM) a few years ago. Based in Leitchfield, KY, the 501c3 seeks to rescue, rehabilitate and place horses, specifically Arabians, who have been neglected, abused or are unwanted, or where life situations change drastically, in permanent, loving, responsible forever homes. They also seek to educate people in the care, nutrition and responsibility of horse ownership and  the commitment that relationship requires. You can learn more about the good work ARM does at www.arabianrescuemission.org.

    Harper is currently competing at First Level in dressage and Novice Level in eventing, says Courtney. “I started riding with Lillian Heard last March. It has been a game changer for Harper and me. As a busy adult who makes her living outside of riding, I needed someone who could give me the correct foundation for a young horse and the right homework for between lessons,” She explains. “I travel for work, so my schedule can be quite sporadic and weekly lessons just don’t fit into that lifestyle. Lillian is based out of Boyd and Silva Martin’s farm in Pennsylvania during the summer, and out of Bridle Creek Farm in South Carolina during the winter. During 2017, she came to Lexington once a month from May through November.”

    So what are Courtney and Harper working on right now? “Fitness!” She says. “Without an arena at home and with a hectic work schedule, our winter is full of hacking, trailering out and the occasional jump school with friends. Since Harper is half Arabian, it’s very easy to maintain her cardiovascular fitness, but we spend many hours walking hills during the winter to slowly condition her topline, tendons and ligaments.”

    Courtney’s goals for 2018 include moving Harper up to Second Level and, if all goes well, to qualify for USDF Regionals. “I also have my eyes set on the Novice Long Format Three Day at Kentucky Classique in August,” she says.

    Long-term, Courtney has set even loftier goals. “I purchased Harper with the hope that she might be my CCI 1* horse,” she explains. “I had no intentions of ever doing recognized dressage, but she has opened my eyes to how fun it can be. Short-term I would like to complete my Bronze Medal and long-term I hope to get her to the FEI levels in either dressage or eventing--or maybe both!”
  • 01/15/2018 10:17 AM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman

    While the eventing and dressage rules are tweaked every year to ensure more-fair competition and horse and rider safety, there are some significant changes that have taken place for the 2018 competition year. While the items listed below are not exhaustive, they are important to note. For additional information, please visit usef.org and useventing.com.


    The Young Horse Program Changes

    In addition to the changes noted below, the USEA Young Event Horse Program will also have some significant changes, including new (shortened) dressage tests, new scoring and judging systems, and a conformation section that is only held at championships. The competition will now consist solely of a dressage section and a jumping/galloping section, which has new standards.

    You can find the score sheets here: http://useventing.com/sites/default/files/YEH%20Scoresheet%20Qualifying%20Competition.pdf

    For 2018, a mare must compete in her appropriate age group (the bye-year has been removed).

    Additional information on the Young Event Horse Program can be found here: http://useventing.com/competitions/yeh.


    Eventing Rule Changes

    The following changes, noted in red, have been approved by USEF.

    EV115 Saddlery
    2. Dressage Test
    c. a rounded snaffle bit made of metal, leather, rubber or plastic material is permitted for all tests.
    f. Martingales, bit guards, any kind of gadgets (such as bearing, side, running or balancing reins, etc.), reins with any loops or hand attachments, any kind of boots or leg bandages and any form of blinkers, including earmuffs, earplugs, hoods, and seat covers are, under penalty of elimination, strictly forbidden. Ear hoods are permitted for all Tests and may also provide noise reduction. However, ear hoods must not cover the horse’s eyes and ear plugs are not permitted. The ear hoods should be discreet in color and design. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    EV131 Cross-Country Scoring
    1. FAULTS AT OBSTACLES:
    a. Disobediences -
    5. Fourth penalized disobedience on the entire course at Beginner Novice, Novice, Training or Modified Elimination. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    EV142 Cross Country – Definitions of Faults
    2. Disobediences (Refusals and Runouts)
    b. Runouts. A horse is considered to be disobedient if it runs-out, avoids the obstacle or element to be jumped in such a way that it has to be represented. A rider is permitted to change his mind as to where he jumps an obstacle or element at any time without penalty for a run-out, including as a result of a mistake at a previous obstacle or element. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    SUBCHAPTER EV-6 RULES FOR OFFICIALS
    EV171 Ground Jury
    2. DUTIES: a. The Ground Jury is ultimately responsible for the judging of the event and for settling all problems that may arise during its jurisdiction. Together with the Technical Delegate, Course Designer and Organizing Committee, it shall endeavor to ensure that all arrangements for the event, including the arenas, courses and obstacles including deformable Cross-Country Jumps, are appropriate. If, after consultation with the Technical Delegate, the Ground Jury is not satisfied with the arrangements or courses, it is authorized to modify them. BOD 1/14/17 Effective 12/1/17

    EV172 Additional Judges
    5. Guest Cards (see GR1011.16) BOD 1/14/17 Effective 12/1/17

    EV174 Course Advisors
    a. A Cross Country Course Advisor shall be appointed by the Federation for certain Horse Trials and Three-Day Events as designated by the Federation Eventing Sport Committee. The Cross Country Course Advisor will approve the design of the proposed course, including: the distance covered, the terrain and the condition and quality of the track; and the number of obstacles, their construction and variety and marking or flagging, the number of combinations, and the appropriateness of the level to the competition. The Cross Country Course Advisor will provide the course designer (CD) and technical delegate (TD) with a report which indicates any changes, either recommended, priority, or essential, to be made to each fence on the course. After inspection of the Cross Country course and prior to the event, the TD will complete the Cross Country Course Advisor Report for return to the Federation with the TD report. All essential changes must be made or the fence shall be removed from the course for the competition. All priority changes must be addressed prior to use at the next event or removed from the course.
    b. Eventing Show Jumping Course Advisor please refer to program details at www.usef.org/compete/disciplines/ eventing. For Show Jumping courses, the TD shall include a copy of the Show Jumping Courses, as posted at the competition, with the TD report. All essential Show Jumping changes must be made. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    APPENDIX 4 - EVENTING - PREMITTED SADDLERY FOR DRESSAGE
    See Annex 1 for Approved Bits for National Competitions
    ** noseband rules have changed, for additional information, visit https://www.usef.org/forms-pubs/KlV5P9prkmM/ev-eventing-division


    Dressage Rule Changes

    The following changes, noted in red, have been approved by USEF.

    DR117 The Position of and  Aids of the Rider
    4. Riding with both hands is obligatory at all national and International Dressage Events. However, riding with one hand is permitted in the Freestyle Tests and when leaving the arena. Individuals holding a Federation Dispensation Certificate may use bridged or special adaptive reins for use with one or no hand(s), if their physical limitations require such and the equipment is listed on the Dispensation Certificate.
    Apart from the halt and salute, where the athlete must take the reins in one hand, riding with the reins in both hands is obligatory at FEI Dressage Events, but a discreet ‘pat on the neck’ for a well performed exercise, or for reassurance, is perfectly acceptable (as is the situation of an athlete needing to wipe a fly from their eye, or other situations such as adjusting clothing, saddle pads etc). However, if the rider intentionally takes the reins into one hand in order to use either the reins or the other hand to produce more impulsion from the horse, or to promote applause from the spectators during the test, it will be considered a fault and will be reflected in the mark for both the movement and the collective mark for ‘Rider’.

    6. The use of the voice in any way whatsoever or clicking the tongue once or repeatedly is a fault involving the deduction of at least 2 marks from those that would otherwise have been awarded for the movement where this occurred. Use of voice should also be considered in the collective mark for the rider. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    DR119 Participation in Dressage Competitions

    2. Horses may compete in no more than one Licensed Competition on the same day and are limited to a maximum of three Dressage rides per day at Fourth Level and below (including Rider Tests) or two Dressage rides per day above Fourth Level. Horses competing at both Fourth Level and Prix St. Georges, or their equivalents, are limited to two Dressage rides per day. Horses competing in FEI Para-Equestrian tests are limited to a maximum of two Dressage rides per day including equivalent USEF or USDF tests. FEI Para-Equestrian tests may be ridden at non-consecutive levels to USDF, USEF, and other FEI tests. Horses may enter no more than two consecutive levels, Freestyle levels included, at any one competition (refer to the following chart). Dressage Seat Equitation, Quadrille, Pas de Deux and Materiale classes are excluded from the maximum limit of rides per day and horses in these classes may compete at any level for which they are otherwise eligible during the same competition.

    Except for Young Horse tests, all dressage tests listed above shall be considered equivalent to the highest test of the level (e.g. the FEI Pony Rider Team Test is considered equivalent to Second Level Test 3). BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    DR120 Dress

    2. For all tests above Fourth Level, and FEI Junior Tests, and FEI Dressage Tests for 5, 6, and 7 year old horses, the dress code is: a dark tailcoat or a dark jacket with protective headgear, as defined in DR120.6 and in compliance with GR801, and white or light colored breeches, stock or tie or integrated stand-up collar, gloves, and black riding boots. Spurs are mandatory for FEI tests (except as noted above under DR120.1). (See DR120.8) BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18
    3. At all test levels, riders may wear jackets in other colors within the international HSV color scale, as described in FEI Dressage Regulations, Art. 427.1. Contrast coloring and piping is allowed. Protective headgear, stocks, ties, gloves and riding boots may be the same color as the coat. For Grand Prix Freestyle only: any single color tailcoat or jacket will be allowed; striped or multi-colored coats are not permitted, and tasteful and discreet accents, such as a collar of a different hue or modest piping or crystal decorations, are acceptable. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    DR121 Saddlery and Equipment

    2. For Training, First and Second Level tests, FEI Tests for Children, and FEI Pony tests, a plain snaffle bridle is required with a regular cavesson, a dropped noseband, a flash noseband (a combination of a cavesson noseband and a dropped noseband attachment) or a crossed noseband. Except for the buckles and a small disk of sheepskin, which may be used in the intersection of the two leather straps of a crossed noseband, the headstall and cavesson/noseband of the bridle must be made entirely of leather or leather-like material. However, wear tabs on cheek pieces and reins may be made of non-leather or other material. A padded cavesson/noseband and crownpiece are allowed. Nylon or other non-metal material may be used to reinforce leather in the headstall but must not come in direct contact with the horse. Elastic inserts are permitted in the crownpiece and cheekpieces only. A browband is required, and except for the parts that attach to the crownpiece or headstall, is not required to be made of leather or leather-like material. The crownpiece of the bridle must lie immediately behind the poll and may extend forward onto the poll, but it may not be fitted to lie behind the skull (see diagram). Bridles are not permitted in which the noseband is connected to the bit or cheekpiece below the level of the browband. A throatlatch is required except when the combined noseband or Micklem bridle are used. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    4. For FEI tests ridden at national competitions, a plain snaffle bridle or simple double bridle may be used, as described above in DR121.2-.3. However, for USEF High Performance qualifying and championship classes, USEF Young Adult qualifying and championship classes, USEF Junior championship classes, and USEF Young Rider championship classes, a double bridle is mandatory. Snaffle bridles are permitted for NAJYRC qualifying classes, USEF Junior qualifying classes and USEF Young Rider qualifying classes. Double bridles are mandatory for NAJYRC and USEF Junior and Young Rider championships. Only snaffles, curbs and bridoons pictured under Figure 1-B and in Annex A are permitted in FEI tests. For the FEI Dressage Tests for 4, 5, and 6-year-old horses and the USEF Dressage Test for 4-year old horses, a plain snaffle bridle is required, as above (DR121.2). Either a snaffle or double bridle may be used in the FEI tests for 7-year old horses. However, when a snaffle is used in FEI tests, a snaffle is required as described in Figure I and as pictured in Figure 1B and Annex A. The crossed (figure-8, Mexican) noseband is not permitted for the FEI Dressage Tests for 4, 5, 6, and 7-year-old horses and the USEF test for 4-year old horses. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    7. Martingales, bit guards, any kind of gadgets (such as bearing, side, running, balancing reins, neck straps, nasal strips, tongue tied down, etc.), any kind of boots (including “easy-boots”) or bandages (including tail bandages) and any form of blinkers, earmuffs or plugs, nose covers, seat covers, hoods are, under penalty of elimination, strictly forbidden. One small identification tag, no larger than 1.5” diameter, such as the Ver Tag, may be attached to the horse’s mane. The use of equine body tape or bands (equi-taping, Kinesio tape) is prohibited. Shoes (with or without cuffs) that are attached with nails or glue, or wraps that do not extend past the hair line of the hoof are permitted. Fly hoods (ear covers) are permitted for all classes in order to protect horses from insects. The fly hoods should be discreet in color and design and should not cover the horse’s eyes. After completion of the test, the rider 519 DR - DRESSAGE DIVISION © USEF 2018 or his representative is responsible for removing the fly hood to present to the designated ring steward for inspection to ensure that nothing prohibited has been added (for example, ear plugs). Logos in complaince with DR121.1 and manufacturer’s logos are permitted. However, per DR121.9, ring stewards are only required to inspect fly hoods and other equipment in one-third of the horses in a class. When an inspection is conducted, all equipment including including fly hoods, whips, etc. must be inspected. In championship classes, saddlery inspections are required for each horse. Leg bandages are allowed in Pas de Deux and Quadrille classes. A breastplate and/or crupper may be used, except that a breastplate is not permitted in USEF High Performance Championships, USEF High Performance Qualifying and Selection Trials. A rein is a continuous, uninterrupted strap or line from the bridle bit to the hand. Rein additions or attachments are not permitted. Each bit must be attached to a separate rein and reins may only be attached to bits. Any decoration of the horse with extravagant items, such as ribbons or flowers, etc. in the mane, tail, etc., is strictly forbidden. (Exception: A red ribbon in a horse’s tail is permitted to identify a horse that kicks). Braiding of the horse’s mane and tail, however, is permitted. False tails are permitted and if used may not contain any metal parts. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    Figure 3 PERMITTED NOSEBANDS AND BRIDLES (nosebands are compulsory) BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18 (Refer also to Annex A posted on the USEF website for additional information on permitted and prohibited nosebands and bridles)

    DR122 Execution and Judging of Tests

    k. Other Errors. For USEF High Performance qualifying and selection trials, all of the following are considered errors (faults), and two (2) points will be deducted per error (fault), but they are not cumulative and will not result in elimination (including for Freestyle tests):

    6. If the Freestyle test is longer or shorter than stipulated on the test sheet, zero point five percentage points (0.5%) will be deducted from the total artistic score;
    7. Using voice or clicking the tongue repeatedly;
    8. Athletes not taking the reins in one (1) hand at the salute. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    13. For FEI Tests for 4, 5 and 6-year old horses, and the USEF test for 4-year old horses, the judges must sit together at “C”. Individual movements are not judged. The judges must fill out one Marking Sheet with general comments and marks at the end of the test. For Young Horse qualifying classes, competition management is encouraged to provide a microphone for the judges so that a short summary may be given to the audience after each ride. FEI guidelines for judging shall be followed. Tests must be ridden from memory.

    For FEI Dressage Tests for Seven Year old Horses: Each of the two FEI Tests for 7 Year Old Horses has two marking sheets, a technical test (titled Test and Technical Marking Sheet) and a young horse evaluation (titled Quality Marking Sheet). The FEI Tests for 7 Year Old Horses must be judged by Senior ‘S’ or FEI judges.

    Placement of Judges: One Judge – Judge at C uses only the Quality Marking Sheet OR the Technical Marking Sheet; Two Judges – Judge at C uses only the Technical Marking Sheet; Judge at B or E uses only the Quality Marking Sheet; or Three Judges - Judge at C uses only the Technical Marking Sheet; two judges at B or E use only the Quality Marking Sheet. To include this test in Young Horse Test of Choice (TOC) class, ONLY the Quality Marking Sheet can be offered and one judge must preside. If two or three judges are used, the test must be offered in a separate class that is limited to FEI Tests for 7 Year Old Horses. The technical score and the quality score shall be weighted each with 50% towards the final score.

    Competition Management is encouraged to provide a microphone only for judges responsible for the Quality Test so that he/they may give a short summary after each ride. Tests must be ridden from memory. Please note that if only one judge presides, Competition Management must clearly state in the Prize List if the class(es) will be judged using the Quality Marking Sheet OR the Technical Marking Sheet. BOD 1/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    DR123 Scoring, Classification and Prize-Giving

    2. The total score for the classification is obtained by adding the total points and determining the percentage score. With more than one judge, the percentage score is determined by adding the sum total points earned from all judges and dividing by the total available points. If there are two or more judges, the points awarded by each judge will be published separately in addition to the total score. Total final results and scores (to include artistic and technical % scores for freestyles) must be published in marks as well as in percentages with numbers to three places after the decimal point. Scores must be posted on a public scoreboard as soon as possible after each ride. The public scoreboard may be in either paper or electronic format. The name of each judge must be posted along with the position where he/she is sitting. When multiple judges officiate from different positions, scores must be posted in the following order: E, H, C, M, B. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    3. Individual Classification. In all competitions the winner is the competitor having the highest percentage, the second placed competitor is the one with the next highest percentage, and so on. In case of equality of points the competitor with the highest marks received under General Impressions shall be declared the winner. When the scores for General Impressions are equal after coefficients have been applied, the horses must remain tied. Errors on a test may not be used to break ties. When the final score in Rider Tests are equal, the competitors must remain tied. Final results for each class must be posted as soon as possible after the class is completed and all results must include total points and percentages with numbers to three places after the decimal point, eliminated horses, and the placing of each horse that receives an award. If a competitor withdraws (scratches) prior to a class or is excused, eliminated or a “no show” prior to or during the performance of a test, the words “scratched”, “excused”, “eliminated”, or “no show” or abbreviations of each, must appear after the competitor’s name in the result sheet. Competitors may not “withdraw” or “scratch” after the final salute of a test. Only the judge at “C” may give permission to withdraw during a test. Competition Management has no authority to grant permission for a rider to withdraw or scratch during or after a test. The published final results may be in paper or electronic format and must remain posted throughout the entire competition. The name of each judge must be posted along with the position where he/she is sitting. When multiple judges officiate from different positions, scores must be posted in the following order: E, H, C, M, B. BOD 11/13/17 Effective 12/1/17

    DR126 Requirements for Dressage Competition Management

    7. The jury for the FEI Dressage Tests for 4, 5, and 6-year-old horses and USEF Dressage Test for 4-year old horses, and Rider Tests, must be seated together at “C” and may comprise a maximum of three judges. (Exception: See Selection Procedures for the USEF National Championships for Young Horses for the number and placement of judges in the Young Horse championship competition.) The number and placement of judges in classes and championships for FEI 7-year-old horses must be as described in DR122.13 or, if applicable, the Selection Procedures for the World Breeding Championships for 7-year-old horses. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18

    DR129 Musical Freestyle Ride

    e. Under penalty of elimination at the discretion of the judge at “C”, a rider must enter the arena within 30 seconds of the music starting. Exception: For USEF High Performance qualifying and selection trials, see DR122.5. The music must cease at the final salute. BOD 12/11/17 Effective 1/1/18
    f. See DR126.3 (Dressage Levels Chart) for requirements on sound systems to play music for freestyles. Competition Levels 3-5 must have a sound system to play music. Level 2 competitions must have a sound system to play music if freestyle classes are offered. There are no minimum requirements for Level 1 competitions. BOD 1/14/17 Effective 12/1/17

    By no means an exhaustive list, there are additional breeding and competition details at usef.org 



  • 01/10/2018 10:37 AM | Anonymous

    If you’re looking to brush up on your competition knowledge before the 2018 show season gets into full swing, be sure to check out “Dazed and Confused? Bits, Bridles and Equipment: How Not to Get Eliminated,” which will be held on January 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Central Kentucky Riding for Hope at the Kentucky Horse Park.

    By Sarah E. Coleman


    Presented by Susan Moran, Karen Winn and Janice Holmes, all speakers in this must-attend educations forum are uniquely qualified to talk the ins-and-outs of legal tack. Susan is a USEF Technical Delegate in Dressage, and an FEI Steward in Eventing; Karen Winn is a USEF Dressage, Eventing and Western Dressage Judge, an Eventing TD, and an FEI Eventing Judge, TD and Chief Steward. Janie Holmes is a MSEDA member and eventing judge.

    The cost of the forum is $50 for MSEDA officials and $25 for auditors; included in that fee is a tasty lunch, as well as coffee throughout the day.

    Attendees are encouraged to ask questions, as well as bring in any tack or equipment about which they have questions. Tack will also be brought in by Karen and Susan to discuss.

    • An in-depth PowerPoint presentation will include:
    • Images of legal and illegal equipment
    • What a TD needs to know, including setting rings and judges booths
    • Western dressage
    • 2018 eventing dressage tests
    • New rule DR123.3, which details withdrawal from a class with or without judge’s permission (withdrawal without permission from the judge could result in a yellow card warning!)
    • Are “comfort bridles” legal?
    • The differences between legal dressage and eventing tack
    • How to apply the rules when officiating a mixed competition (i.e., a schooling show with a combined test as well as dressage and western dressage classes
    • Logos on saddlepads and fly veils
    • Boots and other leg protection
    • Ring steward duties
    • Bit checks

    Covering information that is essential to those who show, this seminar will be invaluable for learning how not getting eliminated from competition for something minor like illegal tack. “As a TD, I find that there are a lot of questions on equipment now … the new comfort bridles are causing quite a stir as they must have throat latches for National shows and they must have clips instead of buckles,” explains Susan. “Eventing and dressage have [an overlap of equipment] that is not agreed upon,” with regards to legality, so it’s imperative that all competitors truly understand that rules that govern their discipline to alleviate fear of disqualification.

    Register Online

  • 01/02/2018 10:13 AM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman



    Shelley Ryan is the 2017 recipient of the Christine Brown Memorial Grant, given each year in honor of avid eventer Christine Brown to a deserving MSEDA member to further their equine education.

     “I have worked many years as an organizer and volunteer at area horse trials and combined tests​,” says Shelley. “I am a big proponent of schooling shows and became a MSEDA Technical Delegate for their sanctioned events,” she explains. Sanctioning of equine events is important to Shelley. “I would like to increase that support in promoting sanctioning of schooling shows that are not currently sanctioned, but [that] are interested in becoming sanctioned with MSEDA. 

    “We also need more officials for the MSEDA schooling shows. Besides being educational, the officials program allows us to help newcomers to the sport learn the rules at the schooling shows so they might not find themselves overwhelmed at the recognized events,” she notes.

    In what she will use the $1,500 grant money for, Shelley says that she “has spent the past 18 months apprenticing to become an USEF ‘r’ TD. The experience I gained by being a MSEDA TD fueled my interest in going to the next level,” Shelley says. “Most certainly, working the schooling shows provided me with opportunities to learn about conflict resolution, using the rule book to interpret and answer questions, and [how to] provide a fair and safe playing field for horses and competitors.

    Shelley would like to offer that she would be more than happy to help anyone thinking of hosting a schooling show, wishing to sanction with MSEDA or becoming a MSEDA TD. You can email her at shelleywryan@gmail.com for more information on how she can assist you.

    “I wish to thank the MSEDA Board and all the officials I have mentored with for facilitating this opportunity to give back to our Eventing and Dressage community,” says Shelley.

  • 01/02/2018 10:00 AM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman

    New Year’s resolutions generally fall into general categories: those that help us feel better (eat better/work out more/meet new people), those that make us a better person to others (volunteer more/spend more time with friends/let go of stress) or those that fulfill person goals (travel more/ don’t spend as much time on social media/read more).

    The good news is, life with the horses can help us in almost every aspect of our lives, from being more active (ride more!) to expanding our social circle to reading more. Horse showing and even lessoning or trail riding exposes us to many people we wouldn’t normally get a chance to meet and engage with; reading books and blogs on everything from equine ailments to training and conditioning expands our base of equine knowledge and keeps us constantly learning.

    What were some of your resolutions this year? No matter the area of the country or the discipline, many of the equestrian community’s goals remain the same:

    To not grimace and make my horrible “concentrations face,” as I really am having fun! –Dr. Jill Stowe, Nicholasville, KY, dressage

    Literally to just ride my horse. Simple as that! – Leah Alessandroni, Midway, KY, eventing

    Megan Hephner

    Listen to what my trainer says! – Meghan Hephner, Fort Worth, TX, reining

    Try not to pull on my left rein. – Lexi Pejnovic, Panama City, FL, hunters

    Chelsea Smith

    Schedule horse time every day. All through 2017 I pushed my horses to the back burner so I could work more. I need more horse time. – Chelsea Smith, Paris, KY, eventing

    To have fun with all my students! -- Heather James, Lexington, KY, eventing

    To compete more than just schooling shows – Ashley Jamison, Lexington, KY, eventing

    Remember how far we’ve come instead of worrying about how far I think we have to go – Natalie Nevills, Georgetown, KY, eventing

    Be braver (I have literally no idea how to do this, but it’s my goal!) -- Leslie Potter, Lexington, KY, eventing

    Get back into work after time off due to an injury (him) and busy semester (me); prove the long-ear sceptics wong; keep riding fun and training versatile. – Holly Jeanne, Iowa, Dressage

    Outside rein! – Jenni Gelatt, MA, hunter

    Enjoy the ride and just spending time with the horse. If we improve along the way, that’s just gravy. – Holly Caccamise, CA, eventer

    Get my confidence back up and jump a nice, solid 2’6” course. – Chelsea Magee, Lexington, KY, jumper

    Lauren Pontoppidan

    Do more work without stirrups to improve my leg and improve my automatic release. – Lauren Pontoppidan, New Orleans, LA, hunter

    Sarah Coleman

    Ride more. Worry less. – Sarah Coleman, Lexington, KY, hunter

  • 12/18/2017 10:35 AM | Anonymous

    By Sarah E. Coleman

    The MidSouth Eventing and Dressage Association’s Annual Awards Banquet was held on Saturday, Dec. 2, at the Lexington Hilton Downtown.

    MSEDA members, friends and family members were able to dance to local Lexington favorite The Fever, eat a fantastic meal and mingle outside the usual confines of a horse show or event.

    It was a wonderful venue to celebrate all the hard work that went into a terrific 2017 competition year! MSEDA would like to recognize the following winners:

    Volunteer Julep Cups

    Given to recognize the effort of outstanding volunteers.  The cups are awarded to the 12 individuals with the most volunteer hours worked at MSEDA sanctioned shows. We had two ties this year for hours!

    Daphne Mervin

    84 hours (tie)

    Marjorie Hines

    84 hours (tie)

    Bev Henson

    84 hours (tie)

    Mary Ann Andres

    88 hours

    Cheryl Steele

    89 hours

    Megan Carr

    90 hours

    Carol Lee

    105 hours (tie)

    Marian Zeitlin

    105 hours (tie)

    Spencer Millard

    118 hours

    Shelley Ryan

    122 hours

    Vicki Baumgardner

    122.5 hours

    Ron McGinley

    133.5 hours

    Mary Fike

    143.5 hours

    Debbie Hinkle

    155 hours

    Kob Ryen Memorial Trophy Winner: Mandy Weissmann
    Named for Kob Ryen, who brought eventing to the Bluegrass and was a founding member and first President of MSEDA. Voted on at the Annual Meeting by the general membership and awarded to the individual who has done the most to further the purpose of MSEDA during the year.

    FEI Certificate of Achievement: Julie Congleton and Madison Deaton Awarded to any rider who has achieved a minimum score of 57% at the FEI Level at a USEF/USDF recognized competition. 

    Dressage Show of the Year: MSEDA Dressage at the Park
    This award is given to the Dressage Show that was best run, and most desirable to attend in 2017.

    Outstanding Horse Trial or Event: Hagyard Midsouth Three-Day Event & Team Challenge
    This award is given to the Horse Trial or Event that was best run, and most desirable to attend in 2017.

    DRESSAGE YEAR-END AWARDS

    Dressage High Point Junior Rider: Blake Park
    This award is awarded to the rider under 18 who has amassed the greatest number of points competing in dressage during the competition year.

    Dressage High Point Young Rider: Madison Deaton
    This award is awarded to the rider 18-21 who has amassed the highest number of points in dressage during the competition year.

    Dressage High Point Senior Rider: Joan Gariboldi
    This award is awarded to the rider between 22-49 who has amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year.

    Dressage High Point Master Rider: Susan Harris  
    This award is awarded to the rider 50 and over who has amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year.

    Dressage High Point Adult Amateur Rider(s): Tracy Scott and Amelia Jean Foster
    This award is awarded to the amateur rider over 21 who has submitted a copy of his/her USEF amateur card to the Points Chair and amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year.

    The Spy Games Memorial Trophy:  Dressage High Point Award: Joan Gariboldi and Bravo
    This award goes to the horse AND rider who have amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year.  The perpetual trophy was donated in 2009 by Julie Moses in memory of her horse "Spy Games" whose strength, kindness and perseverance touched all who knew him. 

    The Tundra Memorial Trophy:  Dressage High Point Mare:  Joan Gariboldi and Cantata
    This award is awarded in memory of Susan Posner’s mare Tundra. Awarded to the activated mare who has amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year. 

    Dressage Company's Musical Kur Award: Alison Otter and Sing a Song LC
    This award is given to the activated horse and rider who have amassed the greatest number of points in dressage during the competition year.

    YEAR END AWARDS: EVENTING

    The Craig Bryant Memorial Trophy - Eventing High Point Junior Rider: Gracie Elliott
    Named for the son of Don and Martha Bryant, organizers of the Mumford Horse Trials, and awarded to the rider under the age of 18 who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.

    Eventing High Point Young Rider: Anne Czerwonka
    This award is given to the rider between 18-21 who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.

    The Bennett Trophy - Eventing High Point Senior Rider: Megan Moore Named for the son of Joy Bennett, Joy has long been associated with the Covered Bridge Pony Club in Louisville.  This trophy is awarded to the rider between 22 and 49 who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.

    The Helmut Graetz Trophy - Eventing High Point Master Rider: Anna Kjellstrom
    Named for Helmut Graetz, long-time MSEDA member, coach and volunteer. This trophy is awarded to the rider age 50 and over who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.

    Midnight Sam Memorial Trophy - Eventing High Point Award: Mooney McGuire
    Named in memory of Irene Roechel's horse, Midnight Sam, this trophy is awarded to the activated horse who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.  Irene was a founding member of MSEDA.

    The Pony Club Award: Winner: Madison Deaton, H-B HM, C-2 Traditional, C-3 Dressage member of Covered Bridge Pony Club in the Midsouth Region
    Given to the MSEDA member in good standing who accumulates the highest number of points and is also a member of a recognized Pony Club. 

    The Tessie’s Brite Star Trophy and Eventing High Point Adult Amateur Award: Kelly Rover
    This award is given to the rider over age 21 who has amassed the greatest number of points competing in eventing during the competition year.

    The Philosopher Trophy - Eventing High Point Mare: Carlie McClearin
    Named in memory of Bryn Wilborn's eventing mare, Philosopher, this trophy is awarded to the activated mare who has amassed the highest number of points in eventing during the competition year.

    The Grasshopper Trophy - High Point MSEDA Off the Track Thoroughbred: Promisethemoon
    Named in honor of Megan Moore’s Off the Track Thoroughbred, The Grasshopper, this trophy is awarded to the high point Thoroughbred in the Eventing Division.  The horse must be tattooed or have a TIP number and be nominated for eligibility.

    Hall of Distinction Awards: Julie Congleton with Utopia; Madison Deaton with Rasputin in Dressage; Megan Lynn with The Natural E in Eventing
    Awarded to any MSEDA member in good standing who has completed an FEI competition. 

  • 12/18/2017 10:30 AM | Anonymous

    MSEDA offers multiple grants to its members to apply toward continuing their equestrian education. Winners for 2017 included:

    • The Christine Brown Grant: Shelley Ryan
    • Educational grant: Courtney Calnan and Samantha Kline

    MSEDA will feature each of these winners in upcoming e-news. 

    By Sarah E. Coleman


    Featured Grant Winner: Samantha Kline, $500 MSEDA Educational Grant 


    Samantha Kline is a MSEDA member who competes her two off-the-track Thoroughbreds, Praetorian (“Prae”) and Venture World (“V”) in MSEDA-sanctioned events. V is preparing to go Training Level this season and Prae has shown Training in the past, but is looking to make a switch to the hunter ring.

    Sam plans to use the grant to “help with Dressage lesson costs with V,” she explains. “It’s not always easy to stay on a regular lesson schedule due to budgeting, so I’m excited to get a nice push to get us to the next level.”

    Sam rides with Dani Ritter, and says that V is moving along very well for only having a year back in work from what was thought to be a career ending-diagnosis of stringhalt. “We’re working on being consistent in the bridle and on the bit, also moving off of the leg so we can put out a solid Training-level ride,” she says.

    On using the generous MSEDA grant money to reach her goals, Sam explains: “My entire life, I have grown up breaking babies or riding young horses that I never owned. When they got to a certain point, they would move along and I would have to start all over. While Prae has told me that Dressage isn’t his thing, … V has shown the potential to go much higher. Being able to have a nice stretch of consistent lessons with my trainer will really help us get to the next level and on our way to earning our Bronze Medal,” she says. “It’s only a 20-some-year goal in the making, give or take when I figured out I really liked Dressage!”  

  • 12/14/2017 8:06 AM | Anonymous
    For Immediate Release
    Contact:
    Mary Fike
    MSEDA Organizer
    hmf@iglou.com
    859 621 2479

    December 10, 2017 – Lexington, KY – The MidSouth Eventing and Dressage Association (MSEDA) hosted eventing great David O’Connor as part of their year-end awards banquet and educational forum on December 2 and 3, 2017. An international rider and coach, O’Connor’s overarching theme through both the classroom and demonstration settings was that all training, whether dressage, showjumping or cross-country, should be done with the horse’s perspective in mind.

    Beginning at the Lexington Hilton Downtown, O’Connor offered insight into the sport of eventing and its evolution, as well as explaining his thoughts on where the discipline is now and where it is poised to go. Saturday’s afternoon session walked attendees through the general theory behind how he develops horses and riders, and the basic skills he feels are essential for eventing success.

    Photo by Smith Equine Media, LLC

    Lexington-based MSEDA member Kristen Brennan attended the educational sessions on Saturday and was thankful to hear O’Connor emphasize the importance of the “lower level” rider in eventing. “I really appreciate that,” she explained. “At the end of the day, the working amateurs and juniors, and parents of juniors, who are riding at Prelim and below are who are supporting the majority of our events. Just because you don’t have Olympic aspirations doesn’t mean you aren’t important to the sport.”

    Sunday brought seminar attendees to the beautiful Valley View Farm in Midway, Ky. Riders in Beginner Novice, Novice, Training and Preliminary rode under David’s watchful eye as he kept the audience engaged and learning throughout the day.

    Chelsea Smith of Paris, Ky., appreciated that David focused on the greener horses and how to get them going properly in the Beginner Novice group. “The Training group had more-experienced riders and he focused more on the horses, which was neat. So often clinic focus solely on the rider, so it was great to focus on the horse and discuss what makes a horse better-suited for the job,” she explained.


    Photo by Smith Equine Media, LLC

    Chelsea’s favorite takeaways from Sunday included that “O’Connor stated several times that riders need to work more in forward seat—even in dressage. With each group, he commented on rider position and he wanted to be sure that the rider’s shoulders are parallel to the horse’s shoulders and that the rider’s hips are parallel to the horse’s hips--it’s the rider’s job is to become part of the horse’s motion.”

    MSEDA is thankful for the ongoing support of O’Connor, who focuses on bettering both horse and rider athletes through safe, systematic training.

    Learn more about MSEDA, how to become a member, upcoming shows and events and more at mseda.org

    ####

    The MidSouth Eventing and Dressage Association promotes and preserves the sports of eventing and dressage in the Mid-South area by providing leadership and education to its members and to the community at large. To further these goals, MSEDA will provide educational opportunities, host and sanction fair and safe competitions, promote the welfare of the horse and rider, and reward the pursuit of excellence from the grassroots to the FEI level. Mseda.org

Midsouth Eventing & Dressage Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

MSEDA’s mission is to promote and preserve the sports of Eventing and Dressage in the Mid-South area, by providing leadership and education to its members and the community at large. To further these goals, MSEDA will provide educational opportunities, fair and safe competitions, promote the welfare of the horse and rider and reward the pursuit of excellence from the grass roots to the FEI level.

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