Guidelines for Judging and Scoring a YEH Competition

The aim of the YEH classes is to encourage breeders and trainers to produce and present the correct type of young horse which is considered to be the best material to make a top international 4-star or 5-star event horse. The judges must be chosen from the YEH Judges list or for the dressage phase, they may be a USEF Licensed Dressage or Eventing Judge.

Method of Judging

The Judges should bear in mind they are looking for potential for the future. Judges are looking for an athletic, elastic moving horse with a promising jumping technique that, with correct training, will develop physically and mentally into a strong upper level mount.

In the dressage phase, unlike a normal dressage test, marks are not given for individual movements. Three correct, elastic and regular gaits through a swinging back are the qualities that judges will be seeking. Young horses should not be marked down for displaying a little exuberance. The judge will have to weigh the influence of the rider; a good rider may present a well balanced, smooth test from perhaps a moderate horse while a novice rider may even hinder a good horse from showing its true worth. It is the horse's, and not the rider's, real potential we are looking for. Likewise in the jumping we are looking for a bold, athletic horse with good technique and a horse with these qualities. Four-year-old horses will not be penalized for jumping out of the trot.

At Championships only, conformation will be judged on its own scoresheet. His conformation and movement should enable him to withstand the demands of the sport in terms of soundness, speed and stamina. Lack of quality and other defects which may prevent him being fast enough should be penalized, even though he may make a nice dressage or show jumping horse. However, a lack of size or color of the horse should not be held against him. Equally one should not allow a possible prejudice against mares to affect any judgment. It is essential to encourage riders to give mares more of a chance if we are to establish a better breeding policy using proven mares.

Scoring and Use of Marks

Careful thought must be given to how the marks are used. In order to have enough of a gap between the lower and higher quality horses it is necessary to use the full range of marks. Similar to dressage judging, the first horse in sets the standard and therefore one must leave enough room to put better horses above and weaker horses below. If the first horse is marked low then all scores will likely be low and worthy horses will not achieve qualifying scores. In conclusion we could sum up by asking the question "Which horse would I buy to make the best international eventer?" We are not buying the rider - only the horse.

Dressage and conformation will be scored on a 1-10 mark basis, as well for the gallop and general impression sections.

  • 1 = very bad
  • 2 =bad
  • 3= fairly bad
  • 4= insufficient
  • 5 = marginal
  • 6= satisfactory
  • 7= fairly good
  • 8= good
  • 9= very good
  • 10 = excellent

For the jumping phase, horses will be scored 0.0-5.0 with 0.5 decimal points allowed. Each individual fence will receive a score with the following system:

  • 0 - Refusal
  • 1 - Very Bad
  • 2 - Bad
  • 3 - Satisfactory
  • 4 - Good
  • 5 - Excellent

Rail Down - no higher score than 2

YEH Qualifying Competitions

Dressage is worth 30% of your score
Jumping Test/Gallop is worth 70% of your score

YEH Championships

Conformation and Type is worth 10% of your score
Dressage is worth 20% of your score
Jumping Test/Gallop is worth 70% of your score

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