Watch – What Are Hunter Judges Looking For?

by | Judging, Videos

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“R” Rated Judge, R. Scot Evans Discusses Judging
At The $50,000 USHJA International Derby

C atie Staszak speaks with R. Scot Evans about the Deeridge venue, what he looks for as a judge in classic vs. handy rounds, point scoring, interactions in the judges’ booth, and how he differentiates between top competitors with similarly brilliant rounds.

Some highlights from the interview include:

  • Go Forward
  • Stay On Pace
  • Jump In Beautiful Form

A little expression like a shake of the horse’s head or a play on the back end of a jump is not going to cause serious penalty.

We are cheering for the horses and riders much more than people realize.

Showing Expression from the horse’s point of view as far as the jump is concerned

At the end of the day, it’s a jumping contest.

Judges want the best out of the class. They want the class to judge itself. Their job is to put it in order.

During the Handy Round, with a well-designed course, you’ll see similarities to a jump-off.

Riders should find places to show off the horse’s stride. If you can find that inside turn and do it in a neat way… do it!

Scot is looking for:

  • Neat Turns
  • Forward Pace
  • Consistent, quality jumps.

About the Palm Beach Masters Series and Deeridge Farms

The series is hosted at Deeridge Farms — a stunning location at the heart of equestrian sport in Wellington, Florida — and offers riders, spectators, and sponsors unforgettable hospitality, unrivaled facilities, and world-class show grounds.

Deeridge Farms owners Jerry and Peggy Jacobs have a lifelong love of equestrian sport. Their determination to ensure that Longines FEI World CupTM qualifying competition remain in Wellington was the catalyst for the Palm Beach Masters Series. They worked with preeminent course designers to build stunning and challenging show grounds on their 300-acre, picturesque property. With just two rings, the Jacobses pay homage to the natural beauty and raw competition of the sport. The signature event of the series, the Palm Beach Masters, is one of one of only seven North American, east coast qualifiers for the Longines FEI World CupTM.

The 2018 Palm Beach Masters Series kicked off with the third annual CP Palm Beach Masters CSI3*-W Presented by Sovaro®, held February 1-4, which featured the prestigious $220,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Wellington, one of the final two East Coast qualifiers in the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League. The elite entry list included multiple Olympic and World Cup veterans who were seeking valuable points to qualify for the 2018 Longines FEI World Cup™ Final in Paris, France in April. Ireland’s Daniel Coyle claimed victory with U.S. Olympic veterans Laura Kraut and Margie Engle taking second and third places respectively.

The second annual Deeridge Derby, February 28-March 4, is a USEF premier-rated show where the nation’s most elegant hunter horses and ponies take center stage to compete in prestigious classes including the $5,000 USHJA National Open Hunter Derby, $5,000 USHJA Junior/Amateur Hunter Derby, $2,500 USHJA Pony Derby and the highly competitive $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby as well as the Classic Champions Tour series of classes for young horses.

The 2018 Palm Beach Open, March 22-25, is a USEF rated Jumper 2 show that offers classes at a wide range of course heights ranging from .95 to 1.40 meters as well as the Classic Champions Inc. young horse classes and offers just under $100,000 in total prize money.

All events are hosted at the spectacular Deeridge Farms, situated in the heart of North American equestrian sport in Wellington, Florida. Award-winning landscaping surrounds the custom-built show grounds and the facilities that host the Palm Beach Masters Series. There is perhaps no location more intimate or stunning to host the highest levels of equestrian competition.

Further information on the Palm Beach Masters Series is available on line.

Photos courtesy Kathy Russell Photography