For me, HOYs is just down the road and it’s a good job – the Conneamara class is among the first of the show.
This year I got a small lie in as they’d adjusted the timetable. The Connies were the 4th not 1st class of the day, which meant I’d a bacon butty in one hand a cup of coffee in the other when the class started.
I’d like to do some showing with Abbey so I watched this class with the objective of understanding the format and how to present a pony. I don’t have the knowledge or expertise to comment on the ‘judging’ or the ponies.
39 ponies came forward and after the walk/trot/canter round, the class was split into two. One half went off to be stripped and conformation judged while the other did their individual shows.
It always surprises me how short the individual show is. Competitors come out from the line, halt in front of the judge and when asked, start their show.
They walk away from the judge for a few strides and turn to the track to give themselves a little extra room. Within 5/6 strides they picked up trot and then right canter – all within half a 20m circle. They trotted somewhere along the diagnol and picked up left canter on the other half. They all galloped the long side but quickly came back to canter, trot, walk and a halt with salute, parallel (side on) to the judge on the short side.
When I went to a showing clinic the individual shows we practiced were a little longer (see this post ). I guess that there are just that many ponies to see and so many classes, that they really have to keep it all very concise.