No Shoes, pads, or devices on the horses hooves.
Pleasure Driving - This event is judged primarily on the suitability of the horse to provide a pleasurable drive. To be shown both ways of the arena at a walk, slow trot and strong trot. Drivers will be asked to come into the center of the ring and line up. Each Driver will then be asked to reign back. Headers may enter the ring when the line up begins. Headers are required for youth 12 and under. A figure eight may be requested by the Judge.
Obstacle Driving - The course will be set with five obstacles. Driver is allotted 60 seconds per obstacle. After passing the starting line, the driver shall complete as many obstacles as possible before the five minutes is up or before reaching the Finish Line. Each obstacle is to be negotiated only once, but may be approached from either direction. Penalties will be deducted from the Drivers overall time: Knocking down or dislodging obstacles - 5 seconds, Driving through an obstacle again - 10 seconds, Missing an obstacle - elimination. Obstacles will include various designs using cones and an obstacle to which the horse is backed to touch, but not knock down the obstacle.
Roadster Driving - The roadster may be of any type; usually, a two-wheeled vehicle without a basket and stirrups in which to place the feet. The principal gait for the roadster vehicle is the trot, the slow jog trot, the faster road gait, and then a full extended drive on trot. If a horse that has demonstrated the three gaits should suddenly break the trot, the horse will not be penalized. Under no circumstances should a horse that has not demonstrated the various trot be placed under a horse that has not demonstrated the three distinctive gaits successfully. Headers may be used when roadsters are lined up. Headers are required for youths under 12. Drivers will not be asked to reign back. The Driver shall stay on the rail at all times unless passing. Drivers shall enter the ring clockwise and turn and reverse when asked by the Judge.
Racing - A two-wheeled vehicle, preferably a racing sulky shall be used to compete in this event. Roadsters, or modified roadsters are also acceptable. The racing procedure is simple - the fastest horse wins! There should be no break in the horses stride to successfully complete the race. Intentional interference with another horse by driver will be cause for disqualification. Under some circumstances, easy-entry carts may qualify for racing.
HEADERS ARE RECOMMENDED FOR ALL DRIVING CLASSES AND ARE REQUIRED FOR ALL YOUTH DRIVING CLASSES.
Safety is the foremost consideration in driving. All vehicles and equipment should be in excellent condition. The age and condition of the horse is also a safety factor for the horse, driver, or rider. Many miniature horse owners have begun training their two-year old horses to drive. Some two-year olds are muscular and have the appearance of a fully-mature miniature horse. Others may still be may not have the balance or control to begin any type of driving or performance training. It is recommended that one consult trained professionals (Veterinarians and Professional miniature horse driving trainers) to evaluate a young horse before any attempts are made to begin a driving training program.
TYPES OF DRIVING VEHICLES:
Pleasure Driving - Two wheeled with a basket.
Roadster - Two-wheeled with stirrups and without a basket (some carts are convertible and have a removable basket withich makes the vehicle suitable for roadster).
Wagon - Suitable for multiple or Draft Horse and antique or reproduction vehicles.
Carriages or Buggies - May be suitable for pleasure driving or antique or reproduction vehicles.
Multiple Hitch - Pairs, tandems, unicorns, four or more in hand. The horse enter the show ring at a trot counter-clockwise. Horses will be shown at a trot and at a natural walk at both way in the arena. Horses will line up in the center of the ring and stand quietly for the final judging. Reigning back may be required at certain shows. Harness should be appropriate for the vehicle. Headers are required when lining up. Braiding of mane and tail is permissible for this class. Judging is based upon overall presentation in demonstrating the two required gaits in unity and upon the appropriateness of the vehicle and attire.
Draft Harness - Entries may range from singles to eight in hand. Collar required. Full hames should also be part of the harness. Horses enter the ring counter-clockwise at a trot and are also shown at a natural walk both ways in the arena. Horses line up in the center and may be asked to reign back. Headers are required when lined up. Shoes, pads, or other appliances on the hoof may be worn for this class only in the miniature horse divisions. Because a number of vehicles of this sort are used commercially, it is permissible to display upon overall presentation in demonstrating the two required gaits and upon the appropriateness of the vehicle and attire.
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