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.
2012 July Newsletter
Pony Pointers for Pony Riders
Can you ride that pony? Maybe.
Except at the United States Pony Finals (scheduled for August 7-12, 2012, in Lexington, KY), anyone can ride a pony in the schooling areas and around the showgrounds without jeopardizing the pony's eligibility for rated pony classes.
At Pony Finals, ONLY the rider entered to compete the pony may ride the pony until the competition is concluded. 2012 Prizelist Rule 13. If a different rider is scheduled to compete in the USEF Pony Medal Finals, that equitation rider may NOT ride the pony until the completion of the Pony Hunter competition. 2012Prizelist Rule 14. Adults are prohibited from riding any ponies on the competition grounds from noon Monday, August 6, through the conclusion of the Pony Medal Championships on Sunday, August 12. Prizelist Rule 4.*
A rider at the Pony Finals may ride one animal of each size, restricted by rider age, in the Regular pony hunter classes and one animal of each size in the Green pony hunter classes, plus a different pony in the Pony Medal Finals (if qualified) and another pony in the Pony Jumper competition (i.e., a maximum of eight entries for a rider age 12 and under). Probably someone has done this, but we bet they were very, very tired.
Now, for the applicable rules during all other USEF Regular Competitions:
A rider age 12 and under** may ride a regular Small pony hunter. HU110.11
A rider age14 and under may ride a regular Medium pony hunter. HU110.2
A rider age 17 & under may ride a regular Large pony hunter. HU110.5
A rider age 17 & under may ride a Green pony hunter, regardless of pony size. HU 110.3
EXCEPT, a junior rider of any age may ride a regular pony of any size in an under saddle class if an age-appropriate rider has more than one entry in the under saddle class. HU 110.4
Except for under saddle classes, a rider in a rated pony hunter class may not compete in any class where fences may be set above 3'6" EXCEPT: USHJA International Derby, WIHS Equitation-Jumper Phase, Children's Jumper, Pony Jumper. HU110.10. A rider in Green pony hunter classes is NOT subject to this cross-entry restriction. HU 110.10. Along with divisions such as Junior Jumper or High Performance, this rule specifically disqualifies a rider from competing in the USEF Talent Search at the same show at which he/she competes in a rated pony hunter class.
A rider may ride up to three animals of each size in a Green pony hunter class. HU110.9.
A rider may ride up to three animals of the same size in a Regular pony hunter class and up to two animals of the same size in two other sizes of the Regulur pony hunter section. HU 110.9.
A rider may ride no more than two animals of the same size (Small, Medium or Large) in a Pony Hunter Classic. HU 144.13 The "classic" ponies must be declared before the first round, or the first two ponies ridden in the size will be eligible for a Classic score.
There is no restriction on a pony being shown by an adult in a Pony Hunter Breeding class and also being shown by a junior rider in a rated pony hunter class. HU110.6.
Adults may ride a pony in an unrated class where competition rules do not prohibit an adult riding. Unless prohibited by Zone Specifications, Adult Amateurs may ride a pony in an Adult Amateur Hunter Class. HU 108.1.c.
If an adult rides a pony in competition (rated or unrated classes), then the same pony may NOT compete in any rated pony hunter (regular, green, children's) or pony jumper class. HU110.11; JP 118.4.a.
A rider in the US/Equisport Pony Medal class may NOT compete in the US/Pessoa Hunt Seat Medal class at the same competition. EQ 113.10
The big challenge for pony jockeys is when they want to compete in Children's Pony Hunter and other rated divisions at the same competition. Qualification is determined by reference to the USHJA Zone Specifications. The inference for all the Zones is that riders in Children's Pony Hunter must be junior exhibitors and the age restrictions for pony size set forth in HU 110 are not applicable. Variations of the cross-entry rules are, for example:
If you want to compete in a Children's Pony Hunter class in NJ, NY, PA, the rider may NOT compete in the Regular Pony Hunter nor Green Pony hunter class at the same show. Even with a different rider, the Pony may NOT also be entered in a Regular Pony Hunter nor Green Pony Hunter class at the same competition. Furthermore, the Rider in a Children's Pony Hunter class may not compete in any class at the same competition where the fences exceed 3' EXCEPT: Children's Jumper, USHJA National Derby, and Equitation Classes where the fences do not exceed 3'6". Taking the rule at its word, that means a rider in the Children's Pony Hunter class CANNOT compete in most Pony Jumper classes nor in the WIHS Equitation-Jumper Phase.
If you want to compete in a Children's Pony Hunter class in DE,DC,MD,NC,VA,WV, the rider may NOT compete in any class where fences exceed 3'; the pony may NOT compete in any rated division.
If you compete in a Regular OR Green Pony hunter class in AL,FL,GA,MS,SC,TN, you may only ride ONE pony in a Children's Pony class (either size, but pick one). Riders not competing in Regular or Green Pony classes are not limited to the number of ponies they may ride in the Children's Pony Hunter section. A rider in a Children's Pony hunter class may not compete in any class where fences exceed 3'3 EXCEPT Pony Jumper. The pony, ridden by a different rider, MAY compete in any class where otherwise eligible.
If you want to compete in Children's Pony classes in AZ,CO, NM, UT; the rider may NOT compete the same pony/rider combination in the Regulur or Green Pony sections at the same competition. The rider or pony is able to compete in all other classes where otherwise eligible.
The applicable Zone specifications are for the Zone in which the competition is held; it does not matter if the state is a "contiguous" state for another Zone's point accumulation.
*for the 2012 Pony Finals Prizelist go to:
**rider age is determined as of December 1 of the current competition year. GR130. For those with a birthdate of December 1, our condolences.
So, can you ride that pony? Maybe. Carefully consider in what other classes you want to compete, in what other classes the pony wants to be entered, and who else will be competing in any class on the same pony. Or just go on a trail ride and forget about competing more than one animal in more than one division at the same competition. Not.