USA Young Horse Program Revamped to Provide More Chances to be Selected for World Championships

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Vitalis ridden by Charlotte Jorst as the sole United States entry in the World Young Horse Championships in Germany this year. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Vitalis ridden by Charlotte Jorst as the sole United States entry in the World Young Horse Championships in Germany this year. © 2013 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

The United States has totally revamped selection procedures for young horses seeking to compete at the World Young Horse Championships by naming seven CDIs across the country as selection events.

Under the new procedures, propsective combinations can earn scores at any of the well over 100 competitions across the country–the full list is available here http://usef.org/documents/disciplines/dressage/2014QualifyingCompetition.pdf–to be able to compete at the selection events.

Combinations can seek to fulfill criteria–see 2014YHNationalSelectionProcedures–at the following events:

Feb. 27-Mar. 2 — Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W/Y/J/P/U25/YH – Loxahatchee, Florida

Mar. 26-30 — Global Dressage Festival  CDI5*/3*/1*/Y/J/P/YH – Wellington, Florida

April 24-27 — Del Mar National CDI3*/1*/Y/J/U25/YH – Del Mar, California

May 22-24 — ESDCTA Memorial Weekend Dressage CDI3*/Y/J/YH – Allentown, New Jersey

May 22-25 — Paragon Dressage CDI3*/Y/J/P/U25/YH – Estes Park, Colorado

May 22-25 — KDA Annual Dressage CDI3*/Y/J/P/U5/YH – Lexington, Kentucky

May 22-25 — Dressage at Flintridge CDI1*/Y/J/YH – La Cañada-Flintridge, California

The U.S. is typically allocated two places for both the five-year-old and six-year-old world finals at Verden.

The new selection process for what is officially called the FEI World Breeding Championships for Dressage Young Horses at Verden, Germany scheduled for Aug. 6-10, 2014 replaced the procedure followed this year of two selection competitions–one each on the East and West Coasts.

The new procedures were created by the U.S. Equestrian Federation’s Dressage Committee young horse sub committee to provide more chances for more combinations to seek to compete at the world and championships.

By using CDIs, said Scott Hassler, the U.S. Young Horse Coach, an “international flair” was being added by non-American judges as well as more opportunities with seven selection events across the country scheduled for 2014 instead of the two on the calendar for 2013.

“By providing more opporunities and with the international flair of CDIs,” Scott said, “we hope to provide an environment that is closer to the experience of Verden.”

The possiility of some combinations performing well early in the year would also provide more opportunity to work with the rider and their trainer ahead of Verden, he said.