HOYS - Showing the world that a lame and obese pony can be a champion

MyBoyChe

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Not in a million years would I have said Dartmoor, I was trying to decide between exmoor, welsh and new forest. That neck, ffs, poor little pony. I havent read through all the comments but in that particular class, is the pony judged against breed standard or for its suitability to do the job?
 

Elf On A Shelf

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Not in a million years would I have said Dartmoor, I was trying to decide between exmoor, welsh and new forest. That neck, ffs, poor little pony. I havent read through all the comments but in that particular class, is the pony judged against breed standard or for its suitability to do the job?
Both but Ride score take precedence over conformation in a performance class.

It is very obviously a dartmoor. Too Dainty to be an Exmoor plus no mealy markings. Too heavy for Welsh and the wrong shape, New Forests aren't allowed to compete in that class as they are a Large Breed not a Small. Stupid neck on it though.
 

honetpot

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BYEH and NEXGEN etc. Do not take into account breed type. These horses can be of any breed but they may not be true to type. A large Welsh Sec D who has no Welsh movement and is very much a horse not a pony would do well here but not in a traditional showing class no matter how well schooled it is because it is not of BREED TYPE. This is where showing differs and the futurity stuff for sport horses is completely and utterly different as they are meant to be. To compare them is utterly ridiculous! A horse does not need good conformation to win at these events. Hell it can even throw its legs out sideways but so long as it performs it wins. Same as I racing. In traditional showing movement, breed type and conformation is the main aspect.
I had a well bred Connemara, lovely but I will not show them fat, and it wasn't grey, so I was never going to be placed, local show last in the M&M, 1st in Open young stock, so I showed as a sports pony, where at county level it was always in the top two. Another Connemara, third in Area Connemara show, judged by an Irish stud judge, who could see past the fact it wasn't fat and it wasn't grey, but would only be in the top two in sports pony classes.
I worked on Connemara stud, one of the first thing I was taught was you can cover faults with fat, the frame of a good pony is always there, showing teaches you to cover faults, it's a skill but to hide them. The judge has to have the knowledge to see through that, and breed type they like could be the type they breed and sell,
Back to the Dartmoor. I have a cut and shut pony, amazing front, loaded with weight it looks great, bought for lead rein, the back end is rubbish, but I knew it would stand out in a line up. Its been in the top five at the RW, was destined to be a stallion, but its a poorly conformed pony and long term it's got physical problems. As they say, you can not polish a ****, so its fit for nothing.
 

Elf On A Shelf

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I had a well bred Connemara, lovely but I will not show them fat, and it wasn't grey, so I was never going to be placed, local show last in the M&M, 1st in Open young stock, so I showed as a sports pony, where at county level it was always in the top two. Another Connemara, third in Area Connemara show, judged by an Irish stud judge, who could see past the fact it wasn't fat and it wasn't grey, but would only be in the top two in sports pony classes.
I worked on Connemara stud, one of the first thing I was taught was you can cover faults with fat, the frame of a good pony is always there, showing teaches you to cover faults, it's a skill but to hide them. The judge has to have the knowledge to see through that, and breed type they like could be the type they breed and sell,
Back to the Dartmoor. I have a cut and shut pony, amazing front, loaded with weight it looks great, bought for lead rein, the back end is rubbish, but I knew it would stand out in a line up. Its been in the top five at the RW, was destined to be a stallion, but its a poorly conformed pony and long term it's got physical problems. As they say, you can not polish a ****, so its fit for nothing.
It's not just connemara judges that can be blinded by colour. Shetlands are bad for it too. More so in standards than minis and especially in Scotland where 'Black is best'. Its a shame because a good pony is never a bad colour. I have seen some cracking dun Connie's over the years and at one point they were the favoured colour in these parts.
 

Elf On A Shelf

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i wasnt really impressed with any of them except the grey with his tail that swept the floor, i thought him and the tiny rider looked the most natural in their way of going. the others looked like they had been in draw reins!! what a surprise!!
The Shetland? He was an Open Ridden pony at the start of his career as a stallion so was ridden properly. I don't like the kids pony club kicks to keep him going, it is incredibly unsightly to be honest, especially in canter. He has won a lot in his career to be fair though that tail must weigh an absolute tonne!
 

Winters100

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It is interesting to see some of these ponies. I am not at all into showing, but back in the 80s I was (or at least I was because it was a family interest, I just wanted to go showjumping really). We were certainly not top level, but I did get to HOYS one year with a 14.2 show pony. I just found an old photo of him, he was not hard fit, how I like my ponies now, but was certainly not obese like some of the photos I see today. During the season we had him with a well known producer, but during winter he came home to be a regular pony and did a bit of everything, including hunting. He also had a lot more bone than the ponies of today. I suppose with the amount of money in showing now no one would have a successful pony used for other things, but he was certainly not wrapped in cotton wool.
 

Equi

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It's not just connemara judges that can be blinded by colour. Shetlands are bad for it too. More so in standards than minis and especially in Scotland where 'Black is best'. Its a shame because a good pony is never a bad colour. I have seen some cracking dun Connie's over the years and at one point they were the favoured colour in these parts.
My biggest win came after I beat a black Shetland show stallion with my little buckskin mini for supreme champion. There was audible silence cause such a thing had never happened before. judge was a Connemara judge 😂
 

RachelFerd

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BYEH and NEXGEN etc. Do not take into account breed type. These horses can be of any breed but they may not be true to type. A large Welsh Sec D who has no Welsh movement and is very much a horse not a pony would do well here but not in a traditional showing class no matter how well schooled it is because it is not of BREED TYPE. This is where showing differs and the futurity stuff for sport horses is completely and utterly different as they are meant to be. To compare them is utterly ridiculous! A horse does not need good conformation to win at these events. Hell it can even throw its legs out sideways but so long as it performs it wins. Same as I racing. In traditional showing movement, breed type and conformation is the main aspect.
The BYEH and Nexgen horses have marks for confirmation, quality of each pace, gallop (for the eventers) and those are balanced against marks for performance in the Dr/jumping phases - so not purely performance based like racing.

Now I get the breed type thing, particularly with natives. I am however entirely befuddled by the point of RoR showing, as no-one is breeding racehorses to be of specifically the right 'type' for the show ring - so what are we judging them for?!
 

Elf On A Shelf

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My biggest win came after I beat a black Shetland show stallion with my little buckskin mini for supreme champion. There was audible silence cause such a thing had never happened before. judge was a Connemara judge 😂
Yeah it was the same when my Skewbald standard Stallion beat the blacks. It made a lot of people very unhappy on many occasions! I had one person, who stood reserve champion to me, say "I don't like you pony because I don't like his colour" Said Skewbald stallion is now gelded and is in the ring at HOYS tomorrow in the Junior ridden class!
 

Elf On A Shelf

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The BYEH and Nexgen horses have marks for confirmation, quality of each pace, gallop (for the eventers) and those are balanced against marks for performance in the Dr/jumping phases - so not purely performance based like racing.

Now I get the breed type thing, particularly with natives. I am however entirely befuddled by the point of RoR showing, as no-one is breeding racehorses to be of specifically the right 'type' for the show ring - so what are we judging them for?!
For their suitability for the show ring including conformation. A correctly put together horse that moves well, is well schooled and impeccably behaved will do well. Racehorses aren't bred specifically for good conformation but many do still have it and some of these horses go on to do well in other showing classes. More often than not the Riding Horse section, very few are small enough for Hacks these days and not heavy enough for Hunters.
 

ester

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Of the M+Ms showing it's the connies that really surprise me, I think because none of the ones I know in real life are ever that fat, but showing most are pretty weighty with fat pads.
 

RachelFerd

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For their suitability for the show ring including conformation. A correctly put together horse that moves well, is well schooled and impeccably behaved will do well. Racehorses aren't bred specifically for good conformation but many do still have it and some of these horses go on to do well in other showing classes. More often than not the Riding Horse section, very few are small enough for Hacks these days and not heavy enough for Hunters.
I'm sorry - I just don't think that's actually a purpose. (Never mind hacks and hunters being hilarious old school non-categories)
 

SO1

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Thanks for sharing the video. They are all very fat and the judge can only place what he has before him.

The dartmoor looks like it may have been the least fat out of the four of them.

Showing was originally a breeders show case they showed off their best breeding stock to encourage people to buy their youngstock or use their stallions. People were not back then then buying ponies and horses for the show ring they might buy from the breeder horses and ponies for other activities.

Now it's completely different it is not breeders mainly showing off stock or putting then with producers for commercial reasons to promote their stud it is people buying for the show ring and doing it as a competition for themselves.

I show my new forest in breed classes and veteran mainly because it is fairly easy compared to dressage, SJ and eventing in terms of not needing to be an amazing rider to do well. An average rider with a decent horse or pony true to type can do relatively well and get placed at county level. I do also like Le Trec but there is not much of that around my area and I am rubbish at the orienteering section.

I am hoping to learn sidesaddle next year I think it looks really elegant and again can do it with an older pony without the stress on legs that jumping and dressage has.

I do think HOYS is one place where if you are wealthy you can buy your qualification as you can buy a horse already qualified and ride there yourself or you can get a pro to qualify and then you ride on the day. I don't think you can do that with other competitions such as SJ or dressage?


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millikins

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I'm sorry - I just don't think that's actually a purpose. (Never mind hacks and hunters being hilarious old school non-categories)
I'm going to take issue with you on this. The terms Hack and Hunter may no longer have relevance in today's equine job description but they were designed to show off animals which had the conformation and quality to be ridden for many hours and retain their manners and soundness, I think that is still very relevant.
 

Cheeky Chestnut

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I am trying to argue a pointlessly nuanced position here (and i'm not even sure why... boredom?) which is that we can't continue to angry about showing doing x,y,z wrong, given that it isn't a sport and doesn't operate like one. And therefore can't be held to the same levels of accountability for consistent results that we would expect of a sporting discipline. (AKA 'why are you all so shocked'?)

Unfortunately, that lack of accountability in results then does seem to lead to a bunch of welfare concerns, which are documented here and in a million other threads on this forum and elsewhere.

What i'm not saying is sport = good, not sport = bad. It's just about expectations of how an event is run and managed. When we all sound shocked about a result being wrong, it's usually because we're trying to apply sporting logic, rather than accepting that this discipline is not a meritocracy in the same way that (generic) 'sport' should be.

The whole thing is broadly out of date anyway, because the real 'showing' classes to showcase good breeding, movement, jump, trainability etc. etc. take place in BYEH and NEXGEN etc.
no they actually don’t in response to that last bit. I’ve seen some horrendous looking horses competing in what you have mentioned above and so well and they aren’t exactly put together well.

Showing is a sport by the definition. End of. Just because you don’t agree with it doesn’t make it so. I wouldn’t have placed it that high but I’m not the judge. There is a lot to be said for armchair judging and not all of it very nice. I’ve had ponies placed above me that I’ve looked at and went really?? But hey that’s showing. I’ve competed dressage (bores the s£!t out of me ) and thought wow that was a really nice test we did and the judge clearly wasn’t watching what I thought I was feeling 🤣 so hey what can you do. Doesn’t mean I don’t think of it as sport.

Do you agree with the placing?, no, do you think the pony is a good example of breed? Clearly you don’t, did you think it was lame? Yes you did, what I’d be interested in is if it was really lame or was it bridle lame, but I wasn’t there and I haven’t watched the footage so I cannot comment on that. At the end of the day it’s your opinion and the judge just gave theirs, not everyone is going to agree with it. The money, time and effort that the owners have spent to get there and recognise their dream is to be respected even if you don’t agree with the placing. I’d love to one day ride in that arena on my home produced boy but I have neither the time, inclination nor persistence to chase down qualifiers many of which are over the border. So the dream will probably always be that 😅
 

Elf On A Shelf

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I'm sorry - I just don't think that's actually a purpose. (Never mind hacks and hunters being hilarious old school non-categories)
We get it. You don't like showing. You don't get why people like it and won't hear anything good said about the sport. I personally don't like eventing, find dressage incredibly boring and can't be bothered with show jumping. It doesn't interest me. Neither does making foals, yearlings etc loose jump for a score sheet that says they should be able to do something in the future.
 

RachelFerd

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We get it. You don't like showing. You don't get why people like it and won't hear anything good said about the sport. I personally don't like eventing, find dressage incredibly boring and can't be bothered with show jumping. It doesn't interest me. Neither does making foals, yearlings etc loose jump for a score sheet that says they should be able to do something in the future.
I am stabled next to a lovely lady and her daughter that show to a high level with natives. Lovely people who do a classy job with their horses... But as I stand there watching them use hair straighteners to straighten their native pony's mane in order to make it straight enough to fit the breed ideal, I just can't take any of this nonsense seriously. Over and out - enjoy your horses 👍
 
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millikins

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I am stabled next to a lovely lady and her daughter that show to a high level with natives. Lovely people who do a classy job with their horses... But as I stand there watching them use hair straighteners to straighten their fell pony's mane in order to make it straight enough to fit the breed ideal, I just can't take any of this nonsense seriously. Over and out - enjoy your horses 👍
One could also question why horses can no longer jump a cross country course without wearing half a flock of sheep.
 

Cheeky Chestnut

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I am stabled next to a lovely lady and her daughter that show to a high level with natives. Lovely people who do a classy job with their horses... But as I stand there watching them use hair straighteners to straighten their fell pony's mane in order to make it straight enough to fit the breed ideal, I just can't take any of this nonsense seriously. Over and out - enjoy your horses 👍
So what? How does that affect you in any way? Away and grow up and take your head out of your bum (or maybe that stick 🤔), broaden your mind a little and perhaps maybe just let people take a little joy in what they like to do.
 

Lucky Snowball

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Just watched the video clip and I'm surprised at the length of whip those tiny jockeys are carrying. Surely a pony at that level should move off the leg? The man leading the Dartmoor did give it a pat at the salute - several didn't.
 

Cheeky Chestnut

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DressageCob

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I'm not a showing bod, since I was told my cob moved too well and was too fit 😄

I enjoy watching the working hunter, and everyone likes a pretty horse. But there are many things I don't like.

I'm not into the lead rein classes. The kid just sits there on a pony that has been trained into a false outline (with side reins being the tamer methods used). And the pony is almost invariably in a Wilkie "snaffle" too. And you hear of ponies having steroids like little body builders to boost the crests etc (I've seen evidence of the after effects myself).

Certainly for natives, cobs and hunters they promote obesity. The pony that was the subject of this thread is a good example. I don't find it attractive and I don't think it benefits the pony in any way. And when you see them so fat that after a short walk/trot/canter on each rein they are puffing like a steam train, you know it is detrimental to that pony's wellbeing so be that size.
To that end, I think it is just as harmful as the modern pentathlon that everyone was up in arms about.

I also hate the disproportionate gangly riders on the little ponies. I am sure the ponies are capable of carrying them, but I just hate the look of those long yellow chicken legs dangling below the belly of the pony. Like the shetland that won the smallest WH this year. Gorgeous pony, and I'm sure the rider is excellent but she was tall enough that if she dropped her stirrups she'd need roller skates.

I think the pony in this thread was horribly out of proportion and looked like a bad caricature. And in the lap of honour video it didn't look comfy. I'm not sure what the cause of that was but it's a worry.

I think showing has a place, but until steps are taken to stop rewarding unhealthy obese animals as the pinnacle of the breed/type, I'm not going to be one of its major supporters.
 

TwinkleT

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I am stabled next to a lovely lady and her daughter that show to a high level with natives. Lovely people who do a classy job with their horses... But as I stand there watching them use hair straighteners to straighten their fell pony's mane in order to make it straight enough to fit the breed ideal, I just can't take any of this nonsense seriously. Over and out - enjoy your horses 👍
But really you could say all equine sports are nonsense! If you think about it there’s no actual point to any of it, especially as an amateur, and from an outsiders point of view it’s all ridiculous. We just do what we enjoy and there’s no need to be so judgmental about people enjoying some different to you.
 
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