Jan 22, 2019

Charles Owen Technical Merit Will Reward Safe Cross-Country Riding in 2019

By Kate Lokey - USEA Staff
Kiersten Miller and Pierre, winners of the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award at Cobblestone Farms. Lumineer Photography Photo.

The Charles Owen Technical Merit (COTM) Award aims to reward juniors and adult amateurs that demonstrate safe and appropriate cross-country riding technique and educate riders and trainers as to what constitutes safe cross-country riding.

The COTM Award will be presented at one event in each of the 10 USEA Areas at the Training level to one junior and one adult amateur rider who have not competed at the Intermediate level or above. Every eligible rider at the Training level is automatically judged during their cross-country round on the five criteria listed below and receives a scoresheet with written comments, providing valuable feedback on their cross-country riding technique.

  1. Gallop: Appropriate speed for level, terrain, conditions, type of obstacle, and balance.
  2. Preparation Period: Demonstrates change in balance appropriate for type of obstacle. Choice of line of direction/approach, riders demonstrates proper aids, horse responsive to aids.
  3. Execution of Jump: Jumped in proper balance with no twisting or drifting. Safe negotiation by horse with no badly hanging legs, rider stays in balance.
  4. Rider Position: Secure, effective position, use of upper body, fitness.
  5. General Impressions: Horse appropriate for level, rider in control, partnership of horse and rider, confidence of horse and rider, competence and preparation for level.

The winners of the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award at each event during the year will receive a Charles Owen body protector and helmet bag, and then the overall highest scoring junior and adult amateur rider from all 10 events will receive a voucher for a Charles Owen helmet. The USEA will also provide ribbons through third place for each junior and adult amateur at every event that hosts the COTM award. The tentative 2019 COTM calendar can be found below.

Schoenborn and East of Omaha. Anthony Trollope for Shannon Brinkman Photo.

Pine Top Advanced H.T. | February 23-24, 2019 | Thomson, GA (Area III)

Golden Spike H.T. | June 15-16, 2019 | Ogden, UT (Area IX)

Coconino Summer I H.T. | July 5-7, 2019 | Flagstaff, AZ (Area X)

The Event At Rebecca Farm | July 24-28, 2019 | Kalispell, MT (Area VII)

Cobblestone Farms H.T. | August 2-4, 2019 | Dexter, MI (Area VIII)

Genesee Valley Riding & Driving Club H.T. | August 17-18, 2019 | Geneseo, NY (Area I)

Shepherd Ranch SYVPC H.T. II | August 24-26, 2019 | Santa Ynez, CA (Area VI)

Otter Creek Fall H.T. | September 13-15, 2019 | Wheeler, WI (Area IV)

Texas Rose Horse Park | November 9-10, 2019 | Tyler, TX (Area V)

Full Moon Farm H.T. | November 10, 2019 | Finksburg, MD (Area II)

About the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award

In 2009, the Professional Horseman’s Council in partnership with Charles Owen founded the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award to reward juniors and adult amateurs for demonstrating safe and appropriate cross-country riding technique and educate riders and trainers as to what constitutes safe cross-country riding.

The Charles Owen Technical Merit Award is presented at one event in each USEA Area each year at the Training level to one junior rider and one adult amateur rider who have not competed at the Intermediate level or above. Every eligible rider at the Training level is automatically judged during their cross-country round on the five criteria listed below and receives a score sheet with written comments, providing valuable feedback on their cross-country riding technique. Level III and IV ICP Instructors, USEF licensed eventing officials, and USET Senior Team riders are all qualified to judge the Award. Click here to learn more about the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award.

The USEA would like to thank Charles Owen for sponsoring the Technical Merit Award.

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"No matter how old you are, be open to all disciplines, learn how to ride a dressage horse, a gaited horse, a show jumper. Go fox hunting and point-to-pointing and horse showing. You’ll learn from all of them and when you do decide which discipline you want to do, you’ll be better at it anyway.”

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