Happening at the Germantown Charity Horse Show
Hunter Classes dominate the daytime hours, where you’ll see the region’s top riders and horses competing for ribbons, trophies, and cash prizes. Classes range from Performance Working Hunters to Conformation and Green Working Hunters to Amateur Owner Working Hunter. The Large and Small Junior Hunters provide opportunities for the talented teenage riders to show their stuff. Snazzy ponies will be on hand, too, in Small, Medium, and Large Pony Hunter Classes, and Green Pony Hunter.
This year’s Specialty Performance Classes include: the $2,500 Pony Hunter Classic, the $5,000 Germantown Hunter Classic, the$15,000 Open Jumper Welcome Stake – 1.40m, the $4,000 Gambler’s Choice – 1.10m-1.25m and the $5,000 WIHS/NAL Children’s/Adult Amateur Jumper Classic – 1.15m. The highlight of the show will be the $25,000 Grand Prix of Germantown sponsored by Conway Services.
The “Charity Show” features some fun classes that you won’t see anywhere else! An all-time favorite for both exhibitors and the audience is the Rachael Smith Memorial Costume Class. Come see the creative, and sometimes comical, costumes on Tuesday night. Non-riding horse-loving children may opt for the Stick Horse Class. They’re usually a difficult bunch for parents to herd around the arena! The youngsters who have just started riding can be seen in the Lead Line Class. Adjust your Cute Meters for this one!
Nightly shows include exhibitions by a variety of equestrian disciplines as well as competition classes. In addition to the Costume Class, Tuesday night’s performance will feature the Versatility jumping class and Southern Blues Equestrian Center’s drill team.
New for the carriage classes this year on Thursday is barrel racing. Barrel racing with carriages? That’s something you won’t want to miss. Saturday night will be the championship classes for the carriage exhibitors as well as the crowd favorite – Carriage Dog Class.
The show organizers pride themselves on ambiance and hospitality, as do the box holders with their elaborately furnished box seats with gourmet food and drink. The official hospitality events include: Exhibitors Welcome Reception on Tuesday June 4, 6-8 pm in the Tanner Pavilion and the Sponsor’s Party on Wednesday June 5.
The “Big Lick” padded Tennessee Walking Horses will be absent from this year’s Charity Horse Show. The reason is simple: the Charity Show is a USEF recognized show, and the United States Equestrian Federation has enacted a new rule to prohibit soring and the use of action devices in gaited horses competing at recognized competitions.
USEF Rule GR839n, under Welfare of the Horse states:
Soreing and/or the use of an action device on any limb of a Tennessee Walking Horse, Racking Horse, or Spotted Saddle Horse (each a breed not recognized by the Federation) in any class at a Federation Licensed Competition is prohibited.
*An action device is defined by the USDA as any boot, collar, chain, roller, or other device that encircles or is placed upon the lower extremity of the leg of a horse in such a manner that it can rotate around the leg or slide up and down the leg so as to cause friction or strike the hoof, coronet band, fetlock joint or pastern of the horse. (Protective bell boots or heel boots are specifically excluded from this definition).
The use of a weighted shoe, pad, wedge, in conjunction with a hoof band or other device or material (commonly referred to as a performance package) placed on, inserted in, or attached to any limb of a Tennessee Walking Horse, a Racking Horse, or Spotted Saddle Horse (each a breed not recognized by the Federation) in any class at a Federation Licensed Competition is prohibited. EC 12/17/12 Effective Immediately.
But there will still be plenty of Walking Horse classes, including Classic Park Pleasure, Country Pleasure, Lite Shod, Park Pleasure, Trail Pleasure, and Flat Shod Racking Horse. There will also be Pleasure Driving and a Trail Obstacle Course for these talented gaited horses. A crowd favorite, the Speed Racking Horses will have two classes this year and a championship on Saturday. Root for your favorite “speed demon” and Rack On!
The American Saddlebreds will be shown in Three-Gaited and Five-Gaited classes, plus Show Pleasure Driving, Country Pleasure Driving, and Western Country Pleasure.
Back this year are the ever-popular, prancing Hackney Ponies. The Roadster Ponies are the speedsters of the Hackney breed, shown at the jog, the road gait, and at speed.
New to this year’s show are the Paso Finos – the horses with the fine step! The breed’s Spanish heritage can be seen in their proud attitude, style, and elegance. Paso Fino horses are known for being calm at hand, but full of energy, drive, and stamina under saddle. Their gait is unique, quick, extremely smooth, and totally natural!
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