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Ask the Judge: requests for advice, outside assistance, unsoundness and more

At the end of a ride-off test, do you ask the riders to walk, sit trot, post trot, or canter back to the line? I won't ask riders to return to the line at a walk, as it takes too long and it's not enough of a test of their skills. Many judges tend to ask for sitting trot, but I find it is usually poorly done. Posting trot is smoother and more workmanlike. Cantering right to the line is prompt and direct, and demonstrates skill with a smooth and efficient transition to the walk, so it is my preferred way to have riders end their test. Have you ever been asked to comment on a round and provide advice directed at offering improvement? I get this quite often and I am always careful to comment on the performance of the round only, without providing advice. When a judge provides…

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