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Part of a series of emails to our exhibitors in an effort to provide helpful information about their interaction with the show office and other staff at the show.  If you have a particular question you would like addressed, please feel free to make a suggestion.   Please note that every effort is made to ensure that all rule citations are current and correct as of the publishing date, however, USEF and other organizations continuously make rule changes throughout the year and with each new year. 

January 2011 Newsletter
 Time Out/Loss of Points? - Equitation Challenged


Effective December 1, 2010, USEF EQ 112.12 "In any two-phase equitation class, i.e., WIHS, Maclay, and the USEF Talent Search, a rider must complete both phases to be eligible for a ribbon in the overall standings.  Exception USEF Medal, see EQ 112.9" 

EQ 112.9 . . . Any exhibitor who does not participate in the testing is placed last of those exhibitors called back to test. . . .

EQ 110  The following will result in elimination . . . three cumulative refusals (exceptions . . .   USEF Talent Search class and WIHS Equitation Jumper phase will be eliminated after two cumulative refusals) . . . If elimination occurs during a ride-off, the competitor is placed last of all those chosen for [testing].

EQ 110.5 The number of competitors who complete the course will be used to determine the number of entrants for the increment system.

 So what does this mean to the Equitation riders?  Prior to December 1, if you chose not to come back in the second (testing) phase of a class, you were still eligible for a ribbon and qualifying points but knew you would be placed last among those eligible for overall placing.   That is still the result for the Hunt Seat Medal and other unspecified (e.g., association medals, open equitation) classes.  But that is not the case for the enumerated "Big Eq" classes; if you do not complete both phases, then you do not get a ribbon.  For example, your horse pulls a shoe and cannot compete in the flat phase of the Maclay.  Even if you were one of only six to get around, you could not get a ribbon.  The class would still count for points to be awarded to the other five, so your jumping effort was of value to your fellow competitors.

 This new rule has its greatest impact on the WIHS Equitation class.  If a show offers a two-phase class, with the possibility of more points, only the riders completing both phases will be placed in the Overall results and only those riders will receive any WIHS points.  Prior to December 1, if you placed in either section, you still received points, just a different scale than those who completed both sections.  If a show offers a two-phase class but only one phase fills, then the riders in that phase will receive points on the one-class scale.  If a show offers only one phase, then likewise the riders placed in the one phase will receive points on the one-class scale.  So at a show offering a Two-Phase WIHS Equitation, you may win either WIHS Hunter or WIHS Jumper phase with thirty entrants in a section, but unless you get a score in the Overall Placing, then your effort will have been only for the glory.  Surprise!

 On the positive side, the Equitation rules now clearly state that WIHS Jumper phase and the USEF Talent Search are to be judged consistent with the jumper rules in that two refusals are grounds for elimination.  This has been an ongoing (and inconsistent) debate among trainers and judges for the last two years.  Of course, when you have to jump a water obstacle in the USEF Talent Search class, that extra refusal might have come in handy.

EQ112.14.g At "AA" rated outdoor competitions, a water-filled obstacle with a 10' to 12' spread (with an option) must be included.  At all other rated competitions a liverpool is recommended.

Ruling on the field upheld.  Or at least until the Equitation Committee takes time to further consider the implications of the new rules.