In a jump chute, much can be seen on how a horse uses himself while jumping. Their natural jumping ability, instincts, scope, power, stride, adjustability, and reaction time all come into play. When done right, the jump chute helps teach horses how to jump properly but when done wrong, the jump chute can cause more harm than good.
Martin Douzant of The Frame Sport Horses advises to always err on the side of caution when raising the height of jumps in the jump chute. “If the horse jumps through the chute well twice in a row, give them a pat and call it a day,” said Douzant. “The goal is to teach the horse how to jump safely and with a good technique.” Douzant, who is the designated jump chute handler for the 2019 USEA Future Event Horse (FEH) Championships, gives his top 10 tips for a safe and successful jump chute.
Martin Douzant’s 10 Jump Chute Tips
The USEA Future Event Horse Program utilizes a jump chute at FEH Championships. The horses in the 3-year-old and 4-year-old age groups are given the opportunity to perform the jump chute up to six times, building to maximum height as they go, while keeping safety of paramount importance. If a horse is ever over-faced, the judges will make the call to either let the horse be finished or have the fences lowered for a final, confidence-boosting jump line. For 3-year-olds, the maximum height of the first fence is 2’7”, the second is 2’9”, and the last fence is 3’3” in the front and 3’7” in back. For 4-year-olds, the maximum height increases by a couple of inches with the first fence at 2’9”, the second fence at 3’ 3”, and the last fence is 3’7” in front and 3’9” in the back. The USEA strongly recommends that a horse has experience in a jump chute prior to championships. Jump chute clinics are great opportunities for horses of any age to practice free jumping. Find a jump chute clinic on www.eventclinics.com.
The FEH Championship entries are open and you can enter through Xentry! The FEH West Coast Championships will be at Twin Rivers Ranch on September 19, 2019. The FEH Central Championships will be at Snowdonia Farms on September 26, 2019. The FEH East Coast Championship will be at Loch Moy Farm on September 28-29, 2019. Click here for FEH qualified horses.
The USEA introduced the Future Event Horse Program in 2007 in response to the popularity of the already established USEA Young Event Horse Program. Where the YEH program assesses 4- and 5-year-old prospective event horses based on their performance, the FEH program evaluates yearlings, 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, and 4-year-olds for their potential for the sport based on conformation and type. Yearlings, 2-year-olds, and 3-year-olds are presented in-hand while 4-year-olds are presented under saddle at the walk, trot, and canter before being stripped of their tack and evaluated on their conformation. Divisions are separated by year and gender. At the Championships, 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds are also required to demonstrate their potential over fences in an additional free-jump division. Click here to learn more about the Future Event Horse Program.
"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.”
The University of Findlay’s Three-Day Eventing Team was established in 2013, the same year USEA voted and approved the USEA intercollegiate program. The UF team has over 30 members encompassing a variety of majors at the university. The team has access to two indoor arenas, a large outdoor arena, and 70 acres of on-site cross-country fences.
Bellamy, an Oldenburg/Thoroughbred gelding of unknown breeding, came to Tamra Smith’s farm in Southern California with his mane half-way down his neck and filled with burrs. Bellamy had been sitting in a field for a little over a year after unseating several riders in a row and Smith, known for being good with tricky horses, agreed to take him on.