Classic Pleasure

Can anyone tell me why Classic Pleasure is only open to amateurs? Since Amateur and AOTS classes are available in all other divisions, why don’t they just do the same for Classic? Or eliminate this division. It seems kind of silly that there are 3 “levels” of saddle seat riding and only one for hunter and western.

46 Responses to Classic Pleasure

  1. Vintage_Rider says:

    I can’t tell you the history as to why, but I do know there is a history. I CAN tell you that although of late the lines have blurred some, there is a distinct difference between Classic, EP, and Park in their way of go.

  2. Chris Nerland says:

    Classic Pleasure was supposed to be kept for amateurs as the professionals dominated Park and english pleasure classes, either as riders or basically handing the horse off to the amateur rider just before they went in the ring.
    It has not worked as well as hoped. We see the same thing at work in Hunter Pleasure now. I am not condemning it, I just make an observation. People want to win and a professional helps them do that.

  3. smccullo says:

    I’ll see your question and raise you another…there doesn’t seem to be a clear definition of the park or eng pl or classic pl horse in the specs.

    For some reason, I guess my former Arabian ties were muddling up my morgan brain. I thought in the morgan rules there was a distinct definition of Park, eng and classic, in particular height of motion, and presence/appearance (firey vs calm/collected). At least in the Arabs there was a definition of above level (no pun intended) as park, at level (eng pl), and below level (country pleas). I was shocked to see no such designation in the morgan rules. What I found was length of toe, weight of shoe, rim pad or full pad, and walking and backing being paramount in classic, not so much in english and not asked for at all in park.

    So, if I had a horse that was ridden by an ama, was mannerly but trotted way above level, walked and backed, he could be a classic horse and should not be penalized for his “natural motion”. For some reason I think there is something missing from the spec. or am I missing from the spec? ;-) Maybe specifying height of motion could we increase the class sizes in pl and park? Just a thought…

    Sue

  4. morgansrule says:

    An intersting note is type. It seems that a great classic horse has to have type, where the others don’t. I have always thought of classic pleasure as a horse that has manners with a capital M. It is also interesting that you find two types of horses in the class. Necky horses with no motion or non-necky with motion. It’s seems like it has become a division where the non-hunters but non-english pleasure horses fit in. I personally like the division and am glad to see deep competition in it. I don’t mind that I can’t step foot in the ring, except for pictures. The only thing I wish is that there was a spot for obvious classic horses to show under a pro, like a 3 and under class. If that is what the owner has, wants the horse shown, but may not have the skills or guts to show an youngster, there should be a place for that horse….rather than out of the ribbons in EP until next year. I think about farms like UVM that produce a high number of GREAT classic pleasure horses, but can do very little with them, due to the set up of the farm. Just keeps class numbers down.

    As for the rules, they can make them all day…the judges are going to do what they want.

  5. StacyGRS says:

    I beg to differ, Sue:) While the actual height of motion is not mentioned (btw…it’s not how high they trot, but how they trot high:) The park horse is to be brilliant and animated and the pleasure horse is to be “just as much show horse as the park horse” but can have less brilliance, high motion, and animation than the pleasure horse. The Classic horse should be calm, mild mannered, safe, a using horse that is light in the bridle. These are very different descriptions. I don’t know how you could use motion height as a criteria. If it’s an exciting class and your horses trots “too high” for it’s division, do they punish you? To me, it’s the step they take, not just the height of their motion. OC trotted high enough to be a park horse, but he took a ground covering, round step and he had 2 very specific speeds that he could do well. His trot was less “crisp” and more smooth, IMO. I am not a fan of an up and down pleasure horse, nor classic horse. A pleasure horse should have 2 trots, they should lengthen their stride for the road trot, not just take faster steps. They shouldn’t be crammed up in the bridle. To me, some just “look” like a pleasure horse and some just “look” like a park horse. Some are harder to determine, but it’s not all about the motion, IMO.
    The Classic division was to give the amateurs a spot where they’d never come up against professionals in the show ring and a place that many of them could work their own horses and be competitive. The shoeing rules, the emphasis on manners, the backing in the line-up are all a part of the specs to keep it from wandering too far off course as a division. I find it to be a very useful division as alot of amateurs like it and that’s a great thing. However, it has had a trickle effect on our EP and Park divisions, IMO and the top of the trickle has suffered the most with numbers scary low.
    Stacy

  6. smccullo says:

    Well, yes – the rules for Country english pleasure for Arabians specifically states that high action must be penalized. Each gait has a specific description in the rule book and thus describes what the gait is supposed to be for the class. The gait descriptions are different for park, pl and country. I find this helpful that is is under the division in which the gaits are used. We morgans have the description but it is elsewhere in the docs.

    I think there is an implied rule on classic that is enforced or attempted to be enforced by shoeing, in that you won’t see a lot of motion in that division. However IMHO, there are some english pleasure horses that could be park, if perhaps there were more definition written down as to what classifies a horse in one division or another, and perhaps height of motion or way of going could help.

    The description you gave for classic is almost verbatim what a jr exhibitor english pleasure horse is. So does that mean I could cross enter that horse (provided the shoeing req are met) at the same show? I know in Arabs that is verboten, but I think for morgans the answer is yes? I am still struggling trying to understand this.

    Good topic.

    Sue

  7. Vintage_Rider says:

    I’m old as dirt and probably losing my marbles, but at one point, it was verboten, but it was written within a given show’s rules. I may have to go back in my dusty archives and see if I can find an old prize list. I don’t recall seeing that in recent years. Don’t know if any of our show managers are on this blog, but they might know better.

  8. smskelly says:

    Cross entry between English Pleasure and Classic Pleasure is allowed if the shoeing requirements are met and it is stated in the prize list. Many shows allow it. GN does not.

    In my mind, a good Classic horse is one that has round motion, that is, the foot doesn’t just come up and go down, but travels in an arc forward. A Classic horse must be very responsive to the bridle. It MUST walk. Quietly. No nervous or tense “I’m going to break at any moment” walks. Transitions should be smooth, effortless and quiet.

    I think that all show horses, regardless of division, should be happy in their job. That said, I think that a pleasant, happy horse is absolutely critical to the pleasure, especially classic pleasure, division. If a horse is cranky and has its ears pinned, it does not look like “a pleasure to ride.”

    I am one of those people that really likes the Classic division. I think it takes a good horse, and a fair bit of work, to have a successful Classic horse. In this part of the country at least (northeast) the division is very competitive. While it was originally intended as a division for the amateur/owned/trained horse, I really don’t think it is that much of an issue that many are professionally trained – it is still all amateurs riding in the show ring. Of course, even as a jr exhibitor, I never shied away from showing against pros, so I may have a different viewpoint in that regard! :-)

  9. Beth says:

    I feel like i need to weigh in here. I have a pretty good classic horse (6th in OKC ladies last year). I am in agreement with most of the distinctions described above. It was explained to me that a classic horse has an oval foot flight path, versus the round flightpath of an EP horse.
    My issue is with horses being moved down from EP to classic, So they can win I assume. There are many horse in the northeast who seem to me to be EP horses, that win because of their motion. I have seen one stand up in the line up, still get a good ribbon. How does that happen? Now Gotti is showing classic! any thoughts???

  10. Vintage_Rider says:

    I think that is what Stacy eluded to when she said that Park and EP classes are getting fairly light… they are moving them to Classic and Hunt.

  11. smskelly says:

    Beth – the foot flight description you were given is excellent. Some horses can do that while still moving high, but not all. I think it is less about high trotting than it is about properly trotting. If a horse does both (oval flight/forward trot and moves high), then I have no problem with it winning in Classic. Misbehavior….not good, in any division.

    And yes, as V_R says, there are many Park and EP horses that are moving into Classic and Hunter. Actually, I think the progression is Park to EP, then the EP horses move to Classic or Hunter….and some even to western.

  12. RaeOfLight says:

    Aside from the EP horses typically being more “bold” and potentially having a slightly different flight pattern to their stride I’m not sure there’s that much difference between an EP horse and a Classic horse. Not enough distinction to qualify having a unique division in my mind. Particularly if it encourages horses being dropped down through the divisions. While it might not be the best solution, I like smccullo’s suggestion of defining trot height as a quantitative way to determine what division a horse gets placed in.

  13. smskelly says:

    It can be hard to see in still photos, but if you watch classes, there are definite differences.

    And hey, we still have way fewer divisions than Saddlebreds! :-)
    They not only have open and amateur for 3- and 5-gaited, they have park, park pleasure, show pleasure and country pleasure, all of which are variations on the saddleseat theme, with some of those divisions restricted to amateurs.

  14. RaeOfLight says:

    Sure, but to me a Saddlebred is a saddle seat horse. I know they have western (and probably hunt) classes. But the Morgan is supposed to be a “do it all” horse, so we shouldn’t be as focused on saddle seat classes.

    I realize there are differences, but it seems that today’s Classic classes are the EP classes of yester-year and today’s EP are what used to be Park and Park is now, as Stacy pointed out, really dwindling. So has having the Classic division really made any difference aside from just shuffling the labels around? The long-term effect seems to not have accomplished it’s original purpose. And when results to match up with expectations, maybe it’s time to reevaluate.

  15. StacyGRS says:

    I’m not sure you can “unring the bell”. Classic has certainly had an impact on the numbers in the other divisions, but I just don’t know that you could take it away at this point as it is one of the most successful divisions. Yes, that is at the detriment of the other divisions, but I’m not thinking you’re going to get that division done away with.
    My question with the height of motion stipulation is simply that I find it hard to enforce. Unless you’re going to look at class pics, etc, it’s certainly a subjective thing when they are in motion. Who makes the call? The judge? The steward? What if your horse likes certain shows better than others. Some trot their highest at Oklahoma simply due to the environment. I can show you pictures of OC from the same year at 2 different shows and he could do classic in one and park in the other. Or, does a horse get a card? It gets determined somewhere and then that horse stays in that division for the year? Do they eliminate the horse or simply penalize it? If it is the latter, are we going to be back to the situation we have so often now where the first place horse if 4 places above the second and it makes a mistake and gets penalized and now it’s only 2 above the second place horse, but it still wins? Yikes…I like the idea because I agree that the divisions’ specs can get trampled over, and I disagree with it, but I’d have to see this system work before I thought I’d like to implement it.
    Stacy…I agree with the complaint, just don’t have an answer…

  16. smccullo says:

    Oh we most definitely need Classic. I think it is a great class, and do like the ama stipulation. I was thinking that if we did use height of motion (hear me out a sec’) as a qualification, and lightened up on the pad rule (some horses need pads just to stay sound!) we might get more into the division, and limit those coming down a level when they probably should not.

    Yes, height of motion is subjective, but a lot of showing is subjective. It would limit the extremes, but not the close calls. That’s where other qualifiers count, like manners, calmness, etc. It also takes the pressure off folks who think their horse needs to trot high if the class spec states at or below level. Just some ideas…

    Sue

  17. RaeOfLight says:

    Yeah, I don’t necessarily think the division should be ditched. I mostly toss that out to get people thinking and talking. But some reevaluation might be beneficial to address some of the sticky points that have been brought up here.

  18. Vintage_Rider says:

    Just Lord, don’t let me live long enough to see them going over level in western. :-)

  19. DVFMorgan says:

    Classic verses English Pleasure, softer mover, and softer in the bridle for a classic horse, although the Open classic horses at OKC are pretty bold.

    I don’t see the height of movement working, the classes need to be judged on thier cadence, soft to the ground & even cadence as apposed to stomping down the rail like a freight train.

  20. Carley says:

    I am 100% behind the idea of having one or two classic classes open to professionals. Maybe a jr. horse and a novice horse? Or even a 3 or 4 year class. I have a gelding that will be a fantastic classic horse. But the problem is that I can’t show him as one. In order to campaign him I have to either 1. push him into the pleasure division which he is not completely suited for, or 2. find an amatuer or jr. ex. to ride and show a green 3 year old. Doesn’t make a ton of sense to me…

  21. StacyGRS says:

    No, No, No…:):) no professionals in Classic please. it’s a can of worms…and if you think people “drop” horses now, wait til they don’t have to find an ama that can ride/drive it! Anything that isn’t a guaranteed winner pleasure will be in the classic division.
    We just show our “future classic horses” pleasure. We don’t push them to be something they aren’t, they may not set the world on fire but they get good miles and simply being solid, broke, and steady (generally the qualities we have in one we think wants to be a classic horse) will get you ahead of most of the crowd in a 2 or 3 yr old class. I recently showed one for 2 years 4 yr old and ladies to get her organized and ready to be a stellar classic horse. It was worth it…she’s worldly and happy in the show ring, and she held her own and was top 10 in the world both years. We don’t train our’s any differently, really…park, pleasure,classic we ask them to do the best they can, but not to do what they can’t. I don’t ask less of my classic horses physically. Go to smaller shows if you’d like to keep them from having to go against the top of the line horses. The concern of not showing pleasure for this reason is part of why we’re in this spot today.
    Stacy

  22. akehlert says:

    Well said Stacy!

  23. jj4osu says:

    Does it bother anyone else that we talk of horses “moving down” when going from Park to EP to Classic or Hunter? Should these not be distinct disciplines that require enough of a different way of going where a horse that moves like a Park horse but just isn’t at the top of that division cannot move to EP or Hunt and compete with the top horses there. Its almost like Park is Major League, EP is Triple A, Classic is Double A, Hunt and Western are Double A or lower. Or maybe I’m just tired of seeing horses with big up and down movement that don’t cover any ground and have no distinct lengthening of gaits winning in Hunter because they are more eye catching, even though they don’t come close to the description of a Hunter. Similar seeing a horse win Classic when he can’t even walk 2 steps. Just seems park action is seen by too many as the pinnacle of the Morgan world and the horse closest to that ideal can win a class even if not appropriate.

    Haven’t seen enough this year after the scathing letter from Harry Sebring about judging standards to know if the trend is continuing or not…

  24. Vintage_Rider says:

    I guess when I thought of “moving down”, I thought, perhaps naively, that we were referring to amount of desired action, not a caste system. There have been horses in all divisions that have taken my breath away. If anyone saw Grand Cru Beaujolais the year he won World’s Western Pleasure took my breath away. Graycliff Miss Liberty in Hunt at World’s, to name just two.

    And while we have been talking about the front end, doesn’t the rear end motion matter? I always thought the park horses should be high all the way around, EP less, and Classic, not so much at all. Am I wrong here?

  25. RaeOfLight says:

    Honestly jj, I had the same thought when using that term. But I think that’s just a symptom of how overly “PC” we are these days, but that’s another rant for another blog. When I say it I have the way of going in mind. As V_R pointed out (a few posts up), the idea of a WP horse trotting over level is just absurd. So, saying “moving down” is the only way I can think of that makes sense.

    V_R, you’ve hit on a hot spot for me, balanced motion. The Masterclass ad I have running right now… every time Joanne sends me a picture of him my heart skips a beat. He has beautiful movement in front AND behind. If I ever get around to shopping for a saddle seat show horse that criteria is going to be paramount. Unfortunately, that also disqualifies quite a number of candidates. It just seems to be lacking in a lot of today’s Morgans. I’m no trainer, but my aunt used to train ASBs and she would always look for good hocks and say it was much easier to enhance motion in front than behind.

  26. rubygirl82 says:

    I think this is a great topic and maybe my comment doesn’t quite fit exactly well here, but I want to mention it. Morgans used to be versatile. I remember when I was a kid (granted we only showed at small A-shows-nothing grand) we brought horses who went in western, classic pleasure, hunter, and driving, same horse, same show and could win all classes….I wish we were living in that time where there was no “drop down” phrase, if a horse can win and be happy in classic, english, western and stone boat, thats what a Morgan is all about. Why can’t we do that anymore? That was part of the fun–needing to hold a class for a tack change from western to saddle seat and win both classes back to back, how fun that used to be!

  27. morgansrule says:

    I lived on a well known but small breeding farm for quite some time. They had a “cull” mare that was a superb hunter candidate that I ended up training for a friend. The breeder’s dream was to breed a WC Park horse. The husband felt that if a horse won a hunter class, something was really accomplished. He said “there’s two maybe three horses in a park class, but to beat 20 in a hunter class, you really have to be incredible” More people should think that way when thinking about the divisions. I love saddleseat and a great park horse is intoxicating. But, victory passes in hunter are pretty darned addicting!

    One last comment on pro’s in the classic division…this industry is fueled entirely by competitor’s dollars. Many people entry level into the breed by buying a youngster…it is easier to pay $5k to $7k and swing monthly training payments than it is to fork over $15k….and pay monthly training payments. (the cheapest thing about a horse is, in fact, the purchase price!) One thing that gets people hooked and more invested is the thought of winning and seeing thier horse with the ribbon. As a trainer, we understand that the pleasure class is a means to an end, but the person footing the bill (no matter what they say) generally doesn’t. They still hold thier breath when the winners is about to be announced. Coming out of the ring on a less than 1st mount means question and answer period is coming. “because he’s classic and there’s no division, so pay for 3 more shows and we’ll talk next year” just isn’t healthy for the industry. People “in the business” can make those strategic choices but the one horsers, they are a harder sell. It is not the winning that hooks people, it’s the chance to win. Who here would buy a lottery ticket if you know one of the numbers on your card isn’t on one of those little white balls in the machine? There is a lot of complaining about the lack of participation in
    the show world, and I think it stems from the entry level and what happens to people on that level.

  28. StacyGRS says:

    Most classic horses, if shown pleasure earlier in their careers, can and do win some…just maybe not at OKC. Mine won at several shows as a pleasure horse. We have another one that won the 3 yr old classic driving at OKC…won a pleasure class earlier that year. Was she an OKC pleasure horse? No. But there are very few area of the country these days that a well trained, well presented, decent quality classic horse can’t find a novice pleasure, first year green pleasure, 3 yr old or 4 yr old english pleasure that they can’t go in and have a shot at winning. There was a time when a pleasure class had 20 in it and, yes, they would have struggled. But today, not the case. I think allowing professionals in Classic would be a mistake. For many reasons, a few of which I mentioned, but there are plenty more.
    Stacy

  29. StacyGRS says:

    Rubygirl,
    there is no reason you can’t show your horse in multiple divisions still today. Most people don’t for several reasons. First, an awful lot of people have come to like the specializing because it allows them to concentrate on one seat and excel at it. There was a time, way back when, that most exhibitors started riding when they were kids, Morgans or not, well or not, and so they had a real back round with horses. They had an understanding of them, their behavior, their momentum, they had to help with them at home from a very young age and how to sit smoothly and not fall off while galloping bareback:) These people start way ahead of the average person that is not around large animals and lives in a condo or a development. So many riders today had no base knowledge and started riding in a lesson program (great option, but there’s no better way to get a good seat than bombing around on a horse in your back yard) once or twice a week as kids or, are middle aged and are living out their dream of learning to ride. Again, great, but these people are really going to struggle to learn 3 seats! They’re doing their best to master one because it’s alot of knowledge to take it and apply. Then you have the cost factor of buying the clothes and equipment for all seats. Again, there was a time some family member had it all sitting around because everyone rode, not the case for most people these days. Lastly, you have a world where people aspire to do their very best and no matter how much some people say it isn’t about the ribbon, when they get beat by the horse that specializes they decide they would rather specialize and have the chance at the better ribbon than continue to go in 20 classes. There’s no reason one can’t go in those 20 classes today, but people for the most part, choose not to for the sake of being more competitive in the classes they do go in, or for one of the prior 2 reasons mentioned. However, limitations of rider ability, finances, or desire to specialize do not mean the horse could not do these things, just that they aren’t asked to.
    Stacy

  30. eseybold21 says:

    Here is my question on classic…… Why one earth do they strip? It is a STRICTLY AMATEUR ONLY division, yet they strip…… We don’t strip amateur classes, but we strip these classes in say the junior horse classic….. Why? It makes no sense to me

  31. Vintage_Rider says:

    I have not been to a show in the last 3 years that stripped classic

  32. smskelly says:

    V_R – Really? Because it is required that the Jr Horse and Open Classic Championships strip.

  33. Vintage_Rider says:

    Hey, I’m old and with Alzheimers

  34. smskelly says:

    V_R – LOL

    I don’t recall the exact reasoning, but although Classic is amateur only, as a division, it strips with the same criteria (jr and open) as the other divisions.

    My two cents worth – I was sorry to see stripping eliminated from all the championships. But then, I’m old and set in my ways…. :-)

  35. Vintage_Rider says:

    I agree. It was one of the things that drew me to the breed… seemed the Morgan folks cared about correct confirmation, and not just performance, and visa verse.

  36. StacyGRS says:

    I kno9w it’s weird, but the classes aren’t “amateur classes within a division”…it is just a requirement of the division that they be shown by an ama. For instance, the Ladies Classic is not judged as an ama class…it’s judged as a ladies class that only ama’s are allowed to enter. So, the Jr Horse class is judged as a Jr horse class that just happens to only allow ama’s as part of the specs and the open is judged as an open class. SO…it strips. It causes much confusion…at most shows. Most shows out here simple state that they will not strip it in the prize list and then they don’t have to.
    Sorry Sharon, but, the stripping in kids and ladies classes had to go:) what happens in your horse with good manners had bad conformation under the saddle, but your non-walking one was a world champion gelding? Do you tie them as an in hand class? It made it so rail work could be excused or the judge had to overlook the strip too often in those classes. I think those are performance based classes due to the stricter requirements of manners and way of going. :):)
    Stacy

  37. RaeOfLight says:

    I just want to say I really appreciate your comment Stacy about backyard riders. I’ve always considered myself to be at a disadvantage when it comes to showing because growing up I never had lessons and rarely showed. The whole first summer I had my first pony I didn’t even own a saddle. And after that I never saw the point of using a saddle unless I was going out of site of the house. There’s so much I just don’t know in the way of proper equitation, training methods/queues and even equipment. But maybe I have a stronger base to build that knowledge on than I thought :)

  38. smskelly says:

    I know I’m in the minority Stacy. :-) And I do understand that reasoning, really. And I know it was a heckuva time sink, especially for larger shows.

  39. Chris Nerland says:

    If you all will step back and consider what “Classic” was originally conceived as, you will also see the reason they were supposed to strip. When Classic was instituted, we all knew there was outside blood coming into the breed (we just didn’t know where it was coming from) and the Classic Morgan type and way-of-going was disappearing from the show ring. Classic Morgan was supposed to be just that-”Classic”. You know, like it used to be, where amateurs showed horses and placing wasn’t determined by what trainer was at the end of the lead or in the saddle.
    Well, it hasn’t worked out quite like that, but what is interesting is the migration from park to EP and then to Classic. Some see this as a bad thing, and in a sense, it is. However, it is also the natural progression of the breed type and performance finding a “mean”. Once the DNA testing got some of the clinkers out of the coal pile, as the generations pass the lizard-headed, snake-necked, cat-hammed, tip-crouped extremity will migrate back to a mean and Classic is just about where that will be. There will, of course, always be exceptions as people breed within certain blood lines, and “extreme” will always be there if you look hard enough. Anyway, I for one consider those midnight, back-of-the-barn breedings to have had an overall positive effect on the breed. We needed some outside blood. Our size is bigger, our necks set up better. We may be losing some hock action with the flatter croups and I think the legs are getting too fine but there are definitely positive things as well.

  40. alpmorgans says:

    seriously, what is the difference between a classic horse and a pleasure horse anymore but shoeing? In the show ring, the flashiest, high stepping classic horse will win, even if it will not walk a step. Some judges even come to the point to look AWAY at the walk from the winner to make sure they dont see them not walk. Winning pleasure horses are dropped down to classic because maybe they are only top 5 in pleasure now. For example, at Mid A, Cherrydale Accapella, a Jr Ex Classic Horse winner? No No. OR even Gotti being dropped to classic, or Lookaway’s Hot Ticket, to name a few.

    And professionals have no business in the classic division, even for jr horses. If you want your trainer on your jr horse, show it in the pleasure division for a few years. It will get good miles on it, even tho it doesnt win everytime. And if you do want to show it in the classic division, there are plenty of amas, even jr. exs, that can ride just a well, if not better, than some trainers. :]

    Just my opinion :]

  41. rubygirl82 says:

    Stacy–I completely agree with your statement about why people are starting to specialize in certain areas, and you make total and complete sense! Just another reason (besides watching you and OC) I think you are an incredible horsewoman!

  42. StacyGRS says:

    well, thank you so much for the kind words!
    Stacy

  43. morgansrule says:

    I will float this out there and see where it lands on the strip conversation. In other breeds (horse and otherwise) an animal is given essentially a confirmation score, that it maintains thru a show season or for life. This is done by a group of several judges, generally. In classes that depend on type being a factor, it would be interesting if the judge had a number assigned to each horse on his card, say a 82 out of 100 or something. When having a hard time placing two horses who have put in similar performances, he can look at the score and push more towards the higher scored horse. That way, “type” is defined by a written standard that more than one “judge” looks at and discusses about the individual before a score is given….rather than one judge’s opinion of what the “right” type is on any given day.

  44. Beth says:

    AlpMorgans…You echo my sentiments exactly. I feel I have what would be a true “classic” horse, in style, motion, conformation, and way of going. He actually does quite well but it discourages me to no end to see some of the EP hoses “dropped” to classic because they will win. not because they are classic in the true sense, but because they trot the highest. Even Coeur et Ame, is that a classic horse? what about when Boogie nights stood up in his championship at OKC? I am going to be in alot of trouble here, and I know it sounds like sour grapes, maybe it is. But to me it seems there is inconsistency in specs and judging.

  45. itbeotch says:

    Seems I’m a little late to the conversation, but was just surprised to see that someone else saw Boogie Nights stand up. Figured I was the only one, what with the unanimous decision – even though i saw him get ‘seen’. Call it sour grapes if you want, but dude reared at the walk, was seen doing it, and still won.

    Anyway, yes, add this into the heartburn I have over the bastardization of the Classic Division.

    Specs not being followed – tying horses that don’t walk/back or have egregious behaviour issues.

    Completely unsuitable horses being ‘dropped’ from EP divisions looking for that ‘easy’ win.

    How do these sort of things encourage the Amateur to get involved in showing? Wasn’t that the purpose of this division? A haven for the amateur and her suitable mount?

  46. alpmorgans says:

    i watched boogie nights stand up in his championship as well. actually, funny this is mentioned, because i was just watching the video i took of him during that class, and caught that moment on film. i can even here myself in the background go “uhoh, there goes his repeat” and 2 of the 3 judges WATCHED it.

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