Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Pride and Prejudice

So I was at a show this last weekend with a student and her horse, both of which I've trained. Her horse, let me mention, is a purebred Arabian. This was the last of a series competitions and this horse and her owner were on POINT. No complaints everything is looking sharp. So far she and her horse are ranked 3rd overall in the series. So she begins her classes and the first few look good and she's placed decent, but then. THEN suddenly she starts to dip in the rankings.

Nothings changed, nothing is different, except that suddenly a couple of Paints and QH's and Appy's come in to the classes. No biggie right? WRONG-O. Now a couple of these horses were well deserving of their high places, but others were not. So why wasn't the Arab placing anymore? My student, obviously confused keeps asking what's going on and once I learn who the judge was it hits me. I've shown under this judge quite a few times with my Arabian and let me tell you. He will NOT hardly even LOOK toward an Arab... It was like we suddenly didn't exist. He'd glance over for a split second and that was it.

So my student asked me to take her horse in couple of classes so that she could sit back and watch. And sure enough the judge wouldn't look at us. I went into a bareback class and when the announcer called for 5 steps back, I was literally right behind the judge and he didn't even turn around. This was in a class of only like 5 or 6 horses! So for my next class I did many, many circles around the judge and put my self slightly to the inside of the rail staying near this one very nice Appy. Forcing the judge to have to look at me. To no avail... We did not place well. Even the spectators were commenting on why this mare wasn't placing when she had cleaned up so nicely at the other shows??? EVERYONE was baffled, so at the end of my last class, I dismounted and asked the judge for some advice on this mare. And his response was the biggest cop out response I've ever heard. He said "Keep her more steady..." Steady??? This mare is Steady Eddy!!!!! *Sigh* I'd rather he just told me that Stock horses rule and Arabs drool, because we all know that's what he was thinking...

In the end it was still another good experience for the mare and her owner. Although her owner was miffed, they still came out as 2nd overall in the show series, even with this slight little hitch... It was a great learning experience for them being greenies of how the system sometimes works. Plus they got to keep their Pride, despite the Prejudice...

13 comments:

jennybean79 said...

Oh do I know how that feels! I often showed my Morgan in the Stock Horse dominated open and 4-h shows. Even though I usually did very well, there were some judges who never gave my fancy Morgan a 2nd glance. It's very frustrating! Congrats to your rider on her 2nd place though, that's awesome!!

OneDandyHorse said...

See, this is why I don't show... My horses being of other breeds, I would never even get consideration for even being there. Kudos to you and your student for the 2nd place! Just to endure those ignorant judges deserved 1st place with honors!

Keep up the good work! If only we could change people's/judges' perception of certain shows and make them understand that the breed has nothing to do with it and that it's the abilities of the horse that count, we'd be off to a great future!

kestrel said...

We need to start hiring better judges in the first place! I've had it happen more than once, same reason, some judges will not place a horse that is not their breed preference. On the other hand, I've ridden classes and known that I did not deserve the ribbon, I simply was the one riding a breed the judge liked. It's infuriating.

Write letters to the organization that hired the judge, and we need more open shows with good judges, so if you find a judge who is fair and honest, also write to the organization to let them know. Shows are out there to make money, and a good judge will make a huge difference in the number of entrants.

倫音 said...

與人相處多微笑,個人獨處多沈思。......................................................

The Pale Horseman said...

I have the same problem when I show my haffie mare. The local show is about the only one we go to because we aren't serious enough about showing to travel and unfortunately every year in the in hand ring is the same judge. Up to now I've only been confident enough to show in hand but no matter how hard I try I have never recieved a ribbon above 3rd. I found out this winter from a friend that the judge is well known for disliking palominos and chestnuts. This year I think I'd rather take my chances showing ridden than under that judge again.

kestrel said...

Pale Horseman, have you contacted the show committee with this information? A judge is supposed to be fair and nonpartisan.

The Pale Horseman said...

Kestrel - there's no proof. My mare has a 3rd place from that judge (even if the class only had 4 people in it) so someone could easily say she's still putting the aforementioned colours in the top 3. She is also cousins to the people running the show who also conveniently employ my mum. I have a fairly good local reputation (nothing fancy but everyone still knows me) and I don't want to stir anything up. The best statement you can make sometimes is just to stop showing under a judge who has predjudices. Unfortunately, until their is a proper judging system for showing everyone has oppinions and oppinions differ.

kestrel said...

Hmmm, maybe think of running a separate small show circuit. If there's only one show in your area, there is room for some fun or training shows. The saddle club in our area started a weekly event that is well attended and a real moneymaker, to combat the poor judging at our local fair show. They have huge classes, and the fair show is down to nothing. They teamed up with the local 4H clubs, and the kids take turns being a judges panel. Great education and fun for all!

雯彬 said...

脾氣與嘴巴不好,就算心地再好,也不算好人~~~..................................................

AronArendt0418 said...

以簡單的行為愉悅他人的心靈,勝過千人低頭禱告。........................................

長卉LisetteC said...

與其爭取不可能得到的東西,不如善自珍惜運用自己所擁有的........................................

雯俊 said...

回應是最大的支持^^y~~~甘吧嗲........................................

涂HerthaSic said...

pleasure to find such a good artical! please keep update!!.............................................