Tell me about this eventing thing :)

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Tell me about this eventing thing :)

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    01-31-2011, 04:48 PM
Tell me about this eventing thing :)

Because it really looks like a blast! I know it is based/judged on the horse's performance, which is awesome because you don't have to spend $900,000 on a horse with a gorgeous tuck :)

I'd like the levels to be explained to me, I'm not sure what all goes on there.
I just want to know what goes on!

Are all "events" 3 days long? I know how dressage is judged, but is it as strict as any other dressage competition? Cross Country & stadium are both judged on speed/accuracy throughout the course, correct?

I think I want to look into eventing in my area.
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    01-31-2011, 06:21 PM
Yay! Another possible convert! Well if your location listed is correct (Tulsa, OK) then you're in Area V in the US. Area V has a lot of fun events, though I think most will be a drive for you (pretty much everything in Area V is a good drive away).

For the most current info on the goings-on in eventing check out USEA - United States Eventing Association (Eventing, Combined Training, Three Day Event, Horse Triathlon, Equestrian Sport)!

Basically, you've got 6 standard levels in the US : Beginner Novice, Novice, Training, Preliminary, and Advanced. Some shows have baby levels that are called various things like Amoeba, Entry, Green as Grass, etc. Not all shows are 3 days. The 3 day events are either Training Level 3-Days, Preliminary Level 3-days, or are FEI reconigzed events are are "starred", for example CCI/CIC*, CCI/CIC**, CCI/CIC***, or CCI/CIC****, each of which corresponds to a US level (* - Prelim, ** - Intermediate, ***/**** - Advanced). Beginner Novice max height is 2'6" or 2'9" (I believe), Novice is 2'11", Training 3'3", Prelim 3'6", Intermediate 3'9", and Advanced 4'3", this does not include spreads, which can be quite a good deal larger than the height.

Beginner Novice and Novice are basically entry, welcoming levels. The main difference between them is height, and then you'll start to see things like 2 or 3 stride combinations at novice, maybe a jump 2 strides after going through water, etc. You'll also see some down banks as opposed to just up banks.

My suggestion to you would be to find an eventing trainer in your area that's competing higher than the level you can see yourself competing in to begin with. Now depending on your dressage and jumping experience already, that could be beginner novice or novice. I wouldn't suggest doing training to start off, regardless of your other experiences, simply because adding in cross country is a whole different ball game. What you may find beneficial (if it is in your budget) is to find a separate dressage trainer and then go to the eventing trainer for show jumping and cross country schooling.

Above all, though, is to find a good trainer that can help you safely get started so you can really enjoy yourself! After all, eventing is supposed to be fun! I've found that I prefer eventing people over those in other disciplines sometimes. Don't really know why, but I think it's because everyone goes out to a show and really wants to see everyone else do well! I've never had as many people come up and say "Good luck" or "have a good ride" as I have at an eventing show.

EDIT: Forgot to answer your other questions, lol. Most horse trials are 2-days long, not three. You'll do dressage and usually show jumping on the first day, then cross country the second day. Some places switch the jumping around so it's more traditional and you do cross country then show jump the last day. Dressage is scored the same as "regular" dressage. The score sheets even look exactly the same, the tests themselves are very similar to USDF dressage tests. Cross country is time-based. You're given an optimum time and you want to get as close to it without going over. At the lower levels there's also a speed fault time, so if you go too fast you get penalized. A refusal on course is 20 faults, a fall is elimination, and after 4 (I believe?) refusals you are eliminated. There are also, more technical faults that give you faults, but at the lower levels it's never really something you see. Stadium is judged the same as a show jumping course. You're given an optimum time, but basically you just don't want to go too slow or pull rails (or have refusals, for that matter. Rails are 4 faults, refusals are 4 faults, 3 refusals is elimination, and a fall is elimination.
    01-31-2011, 06:30 PM
I love eventing. My first show season was last year and its a blast. As for the levels.

In Canada you have a slight differance from the US. We start at Pre-Entry, Entry, Pre-Training, Training, Preliminary, Intermediate, Advanced and then onto the 1,2,3 and 4*'s. Pre-Entry is a max height of 2'6" and is the easiest.

To me eventing is a blast. No they're not all 3-Day Events. The only fully 3-Day Events are in July an August. In May, June and September all the events are 2 days. Dressage and jumping together than crss-country. I'm guessing its for the teenagers or even adults who still are in school or have 5 day weeks. There are also these things called Derby's. 1 day event where you do a course of jumps then go straight out on to the cross-country field. It has no dressage and as far as I understand no stop between the jumper course and cross-country course.

From what I understand dressage is as strict as any dressage competition but its not as important. And yes, Cross-country and jumping are based on speed and accuracy. Although in corss-country you get penalties for being to slow you can also get penalties for being to fast, its hard to do but is possible.
    01-31-2011, 10:28 PM
One more thing i'd like to add (since the above posters are completely correct in all they sai, and gave good information) is that although dressage is judged the exact same, in an eventing dressage test, the lower your score the better, rather than the higher the better. If that makes sense? A lotof combined shows that i've been to (dressage and show jumping) use eventing dressage tests (when I say eventing dressage tests, I simply mean they score it that way, they're the same exact patterns and everything). Combined shows are good to intoduce you and your horse to eventing if you're new to it. Judging from your post, you are. :] Also, if you could find a hunters pace***, or a schooling XC show, that will be good for introducing XC, especially because it's a more relaxed setting, you can take it slower than you would at a serious show, and it's generally a LOT cheaper than a mini trial***.

***Hunters pace- if you didn't know- is almost like school XC, but you are with a group of people. If your horse and you are new to XC then it might be the boost you need for someone to jump in front of you. Preferrably someone whose horse is a bold jumper, and doesn't run out.

****Mini trails- this is what people in my area (I say my area, because I don't know if everyone does or not. That's also why I'm giving you the definition. It's not because I think you're an idiot lol :]) call thre day events that aren't actually three days. I've not much experience in eventing shows, but it seems to me- from what I can see- that you won't actually be spending three days at the show until much higher levels.
    01-31-2011, 10:37 PM
Green Broke
I have nothing to add lol just wanted to say yay
This is going to be my first year eventing and I can't wait my first one is on the 26/27th Feb
Sent in my entry today
In Australia we have grade like E grade, D grade, C grade all the way up to A
I'm doing E grade lol, around 45 cm jumps and the 1A dressage test which conisist of walk trot canter not to difficult :P
    02-01-2011, 03:40 PM
Thanks for all the info! I'm really excited about looking into eventing.

Actually, I just started jumping at a barn that is mostly hunter/jumper (I'm not sure if they do any cross country, I know they do a little of dressage). So I did some research and found a barn in my area that does eventing, I may look into that after a while.

I will continue to post questions as I have them, naturally ;)
    02-01-2011, 08:54 PM
Whoo! Awesome! Which barn did you find, if I may ask? I'd love to see who the trainer is! Mainly because I may or may not know them, and I can guarantee I probably know someone who does know them.
    02-01-2011, 10:36 PM
I am looking at Lily Pond Estates... The trainer's name is Suzy Smith. Here is the link to the page telling about her:
Lily Pond Estate - Kellyville, Oklahoma

If you do know anything about her, that'd be great to hear!
    02-03-2011, 01:24 AM
So are there lots of breeds that compete?
What do you look for in an eventing horse?
    02-03-2011, 11:30 AM
Breed isn't really an issue in eventing.
You see a lot of Thoroughbreds, for the most part, but at the lower levels most any type of horse can do well. I generally look for a horse that is sound and built well, regardless of the level I plan to compete with it, then I look for something that is reasonably level headed (basically something that won't totally lose it when I ask it to go over something it's never seen before). Something that is willing and has a good work ethic.

If you're looking to go higher than beginner novice/novice/training then something with a lot of scope in its jump is pretty much necessary, along with the other criteria above. But, like I said, breed is pretty much all over the map. Heck, there are ponies that have competed through the upper levels of the sport successfully. It's very individual to each animal.

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