Erin Kimmer is on a journey to obtain her USEF “r” Technical Delegate license and is taking us along with her through the Training Program for Eventing Officials. Click here to read her first installment, click here to read about her experience at the B&C Jumping/Course Design Training Program, click here to read about her apprenticeship, and click here to read about her final exam preparation.
I was very excited that the final exam for licensed officials would be held at the Kentucky Horse Park. Having never been to one of our sport's most important venues, I was eager to get on grounds and check everything out. The first morning we were required to go out and walk cross-country and give an evaluation of the Preliminary cross-country course. The courses were designed very smartly, taking into consideration that the courses needed to ask championship level questions per level.
After the course evaluations, we met at the National Pony Club Office to meet with our examiners and go through some case studies. We divided into groups and met with the examiners and talked through the case studies individually. Afterward, we went out on cross-country to discuses specific elements on the Preliminary course. We met with each of the examiners and they each asked us our thoughts and opinions about each element. Two out of the three elements were pretty straightforward Preliminary questions but one lead to a great discussion! We were very curious to see how that specific question rode so we stayed and watched several riders negotiate the question.
After our cross-country discussion, I had to give my Technical Delegate jump judge briefing. I had studied other’s briefings in my exam prep and made an outline for myself on what I planned to cover in my briefing. I also had some practice beforehand with jump judge briefings when I was the TD at the Carolina Horse Park. Their seasoned jump judges had given me great feedback and support during my briefings so I felt very confident!
The next morning we met early at the Rolex Stadium to walk the Intermediate show jumping course. When the competition started, we teamed up with large letter judges to live judge some of the rounds. Afterward, we watched and discussed the judging of some of the rounds. We then went back out on cross-country to discuss frangible technologies that were being used on some of the fences. We then met back at the Rolex Stadium to discuss and watch the Preliminary level show jumping. The examiners asked us show jumping related rule questions and our opinions about handling certain situations that arise during show jump rounds. We also discussed the appropriateness of the course per the level.
We then had a break before meeting with the examiners for our exit interview and to find out if we had passed our exam or not. Since I had never been to KHP before, I took a little time and explored the park. Being a very big Man O’ War fan, I had to go and see the great big red horse’s final resting place!
Finally, it was my turn to meet with the examiners and to my relief, they told me that I had passed my exam! I have so thoroughly enjoyed my journey to gain my license. This process has shaped my eventing knowledge and has helped with my riding immensely. I highly suggest the licensed official's program to anyone who is considering becoming a licensed official and even to riders as well. It really helps to understand what the judges are looking for and what is going to be expected during each phase and level. I am extremely grateful to all of the judges that have allowed me to work alongside them and share their priceless knowledge and experience with me! Thank you so much and can’t wait to see everyone out having fun at your next show!
The FEI has announced that the Swiss horse Jet Set, ridden by Robin Godel has had to be euthanized after pulling up extremely lame on the Sea Forest Cross Country Course during Equestrian Eventing at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on August 1, 2021.
In 2002, at the age of 15, I was at my Aunt and Uncle’s farm in Maine while Tremaine Cooper was there building some cross-country jumps. I helped him build a trakehner, not realizing that this day would set the course for my future. A few weeks later he called asking if I could help him at Millbrook Horse Trials. From there I helped Tremaine during most of my school vacations and throughout the summers. After graduating high school I kept at it never looking back. I lived the gypsy lifestyle for about six years going from coast to coast and event to event. In 2013 my wife Kathryn and I settled down in Lexington, Kentucky. These days I spend roughly 60-75 percent of my time on the road preparing events or building private schooling areas. I’ve had the privilege of being involved with some really great events around the states and have cultivated many friendships all over the country. In 2019 I was asked to be a part of Team Evans Olympic cross-country building crew. As I write this I am on my third trip to Tokyo. Here’s a day in Tokyo . . .
The British team cemented their gold medal position at the Tokyo Olympics with three magnificent cross-country performances, all clear inside the time. Added to that, their first rider, Oliver Townend, holds pole position individually after the dressage leader, Germany’s Michael Jung, picked up 11 penalties for triggering a frangible device.
The 2012 and 2016 individual Olympic champion, Germany’s Michael Jung, blazed into first place after dressage at the Tokyo 2020 Games with a superb test on Chipmunk.
Deservedly scoring 21.1 - a record for both rider and his country at an Olympics, according to EquiRatings - it was a joy to watch. From the first extended trot, the pair looked secure, positive, and harmonious. The test was as accurate and as well-delivered as that of long-time leaders Oliver Townend and Ballaghmor Class (GBR), but with more expression and ease. Jung and the Contendro 13-year-old demonstrated all this specially-written, short Olympic test asks for and each movement flowed into the next.