Dec 20, 2017

Working with Young Horses This Year? Sign Up for the Educational Symposium!

By Kate Lokey - USEA Staff
USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

As previously announced, in February of 2018 the USEA will once again combine three of its educational programs – the Instructors’ Certification Program (ICP), the Young Event Horse (YEH) Program, and the Future Event Horse (FEH) Program, for a full week of fun and education. The Educational Symposium will take place February 19-22 in Ocala, Florida at both the Ocala Jockey Club and Longwood Farm South.

The multiplicity of these USEA offerings creates an opportunity for riders, instructors, judges, horse owners, horse breeders, and friends of the sport to witness, discuss, ask questions, and receive feedback related to informed breeding, high-quality handling, and ridden training of young horses.

Monday-Tuesday, February 19-20: ICP Symposium:

The ICP Symposium this year will focus on the new ICP Young Horse Certification program and these first two days will include principles and practices of flat and jumping ridden training for 4-/5-year-olds and 6-/7-year-olds, held at Longwood Farm South. Monday’s evaluations will take place in the sand arena, focusing on young event horse flatwork. Tuesday will focus on young horse jumping and cross-country and will begin in the grass jumping field near the dressage arena before moving into the front cross-country field during the afternoon. The clinicians will be Leslie Law, an Olympic gold medalist for Great Britain now living in Florida, and Kai-Steffen Meier, a top German rider and Bundeschampionat Champion now living in Belgium.

Wednesday, February 21: YEH

The first day of the FEH/YEH Symposium will focus on the Young Event Horse Program (YEH), which aims to evaluate and identify young horses (4- and 5-year-olds) under saddle with CCI three-star and/or four-star potential. The morning classroom session will be held at the Ocala Jockey Club, and led by clinician Kai-Steffen Meier. That afternoon, the symposium will move to Longwood Farm South, where Meier will be joined by clinician Leslie Law to ride and evaluate young demo horses and focus on the training and judging system for the YEH program. In 2018, a new YEH scoring system will be implemented. YEH Co-Chair Marilyn Payne will present and will introduce the new YEH scoring and judging system to all riders, judges, owners, breeders, and everyone else involved and participating in the symposium. YEH judges are all being asked to participate in the symposium to learn the new scoring system.

Thursday, February 22: FEH

The last day of the symposium will focus on the Future Event Horse Program (FEH), which addresses the breeding, conformation, and in-hand development of the young event horses from yearlings through 4-year-old youngsters. The legendary Irish horseman Chris Ryan will return to lead a morning classroom discussion at the Ocala Jockey Club about breeding, in particular studying the broodmares in equestrian sport and eventing. He will then be joined by FEH Co-Chair Robin Walker to analyze videos from the 3- and 4-year-old jump chute portion of the 2017 FEH Championships. That afternoon, the session will move to Longwood Farm South’s covered arena, and will focus on judges’ education with the procedures and evaluation of young horses in-hand. 

Register for the Symposium

Attendees must register for the ICP Symposium and the FEH/YEH Symposium separately.

To register for the FEH/YEH Symposium, click here. Competitors, judges, organizers, breeders, owners, or anyone interested in the development of young horses may attend the symposium. The fee, whether you choose to attend for one or both days, is $45 for USEA members and $50 for non-USEA members.

To register for the ICP Symposium, click here. The Symposium is open for auditing to the general public for $90 for both days or $50 for one day. ICP Certified Instructors, FEH/YEH Symposium Participants, and USEF Licensed Officials will be able to pay a smaller fee of $60 for both days or just $35 for one day. There is also a reduced price for children.

Request for Demo Horses

If you have a young horse that you would like to be used in the FEH/YEH Symposium as a demo horse, please contact [email protected] to be put on the wait list. The USEA is compiling a list of demo horses and the Committees will select them off the wait list two weeks prior to the symposium. There will be no fee for the FEH demo horses, but there will be a $75 demo horse fee to have your horse ridden and evaluated by Kai-Steffen Meier or Leslie Law for the YEH day of the Symposium.

Additional Information

For more information on the ICP Symposium taking place Monday and Tuesday, February 19-20, 2018, contact Nancy Knight at [email protected] or (703) 669-9997. Contact Kate Lokey for more information about the FEH and YEH symposium at [email protected] or (703) 779-9897.

A hotel room block has been set up for Symposium attendees at the Marriott Courtyard Ocala for February 18-24, 2018. Please email [email protected] or [email protected] for more information.

The USEA would like to thank ICP, FEH and YEH Sponsors, who make these programs possible: Retired Racehorse Project, Standlee Hay, Merck Animal Health, SmartPak, and Professional’s Choice.

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