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Ask the Judge: adding strides, whinnying, good judges and more

The first jump is a single towards the ingate and the rider makes a circle prior to going to the first jump. What are your thoughts on this? Not good thoughts, but it is allowed. A rider may feel they need to circle in order to relax their horse, but the first jump towards the ingate really means get right to it! In an equitation class or a handy hunter class I would penalize it more. When a horse or pony wins over fences, does this give them an edge in the hack? No, it is a completely different class and they need to move well in order to place. One horse or pony adds a stride in a line. Another one does the correct number of strides, but then has a bad or dangerous jump. Who goes ahead? For me, safety is priority: a safely added stride beats a…

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