Being a coloured, it was obvious I could show Baz in coloured classes. In my first year of owning Baz, I affiliated him to the Coloured Horse and Pony Society. I was new to this as I had always shown native ponies and it was clear from the off Baz wasn’t suited to this affiliation. Being a heavier type he didn’t quite fit into the coloured non-native class (plaited and trimmed) and he wasn’t anywhere near heavy or hairy enough for the traditional and coloured cob classes. So we admitted defeat and decided to continue unaffiliated. We stuck to coloured classes, as often at this level the classes will be mixed between plaited & trimmed, cobs and traditional. I also decided to try some show hunter classes, which proved successful as the judge’s love how much ground Baz covers, a true hunter.
How to get the 'showing look'
Showing is a lot of hard work, but if you’re keen and interested then stick at it. Don’t worry if you don’t have all the gear to begin with. As you get more experienced you’ll pick up tips on what to wear and how to turn out your horse. Everyone starts somewhere. A tweed jacket with a shirt and tie is always correct, though black or navy with a stock will be accepted if you do not own a tweed. Beige or cream breeches or smart riding leggings, never white! And always wear gloves, if wearing a tweed jacket then brown gloves, if a black or navy jacket then get gloves to match. A hair net will also go a long way – flowing hair may look majestic but it is not accepted in the show ring. Clean tack and a clean horse is also a must. If your horse is a native breed then there’s no plaiting required – and if you own a cob it’s preferred to have them fully clipped out and hogged. For anything else you can’t go wrong with being plaited and trimmed.
The last thing to finish the picture is a smile. This will go a long way; if you look miserable then the judge will assume you’re having a bad ride. Smile regardless if your horse is pulling your arms out or spooking at anything and everything. And finally remember to have fun, as at the end of the day, that's why we do it.
Team Splash Eventing, @jade_payne93