About TSR


Societies and other useful links

At a glance


Showing in Hand



Turnout Tips

Horse of the Month Archive

Show Ring Camp

Gone but not Forgotten

Famous Faces

Horse of the Year Show

Royal International

Overseas Showing

Wise Advice









Wise Advice


Please remember that without judges, sponsors, stewards and organisers, we would have no shows. So please try and be polite at all times. A please and thank you costs nothing and goes along way to making someone's day.

If you have a complaint, by all means take it further, but don't stand ringside moaning loudly so the world can hear, after all, the next judge you go under could be standing in earshot.

If you are not happy with your result do NOT leave the ring before the class has ended. If you feel the need to throw away your rosette in disgust, wait until you get back to the lorry. And never take it out on your pony.

There is a huge difference between rider/handler error and pony being naughty. Of course there are times when the pony needs a reprimand, but be sure this is the case before acting. When your pony is in the ring it is not the time to be shouting instructions at the rider/handler.

It is a bit late in the day, unproductive and the height of bad manners.

Yes the judge does get it wrong sometimes. We have all had a pony that has strangely devoloped a fault that has only ever been seen by that one judge. Mark it down to experience and if really bothered, don't go under them again.


Try and follow the orders the car park attendants no matter how stupid the orders sound. Though asking politely if you could park elsewhere usually works, shouting does not.


To sum up:

By all means argue with the judge, steward and everyone else on the showground, but remember you will leave a lasting impression and with the invention of forums a great many more people will remember you. THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK!


We show our horses and ponies to have fun - it is always good to remind ourselves of this from time to time and check that we are still doing it for the right reasons!


Judges are human, they make mistakes and as in every walk of life some are good, some are bad and some are just downright crooked. But the majority do their job to the best of their ability and are not influnced by other parties. If you don't like the judge don't compete under them.

Just maybe the reason you have not done well under them is because your pony:

A. Did not go well
B. Has conformation faults that the judge is very much against
C. Did not show himself off well
D. Was not the best pony in the class
E. Napped, bucked reared etc
F. Is lame
G. Is in bad condition
H. Is not true to type
I. Bad turnout
J. Was not moving well

Or your Jockey let the pony down because they:

A. Can't ride
B. Ignored the judge and did their own thing
C. Lacks ringcraft and spent most of the class covered up by other riders
D. Didn't stand the pony up correctly thus not showing off the ponys good points
E. Let the pony slop along not in an outline or workman like

And that is all before taking into account the judges personal preferences. Remember do your homework. Find out what the judge's likes and dislikes are. For example It is a waste of money putting your pony under a judge who likes a good walk if your pony can't walk. You then don't do well and spend ages moaning about the judging. It is also worth remembering that judges can only judge want is in front of them and therefore it may well end up that the pony that wins though is the best on the day is fairly mediocre.

Take time out to watch classes that you are thinking of competing in and see if your pony meets the critiea, and what points need working on. Though the perfect pony has yet to be born if your pony has more than a few obviously bad conformation faults everything else has to be almost perfect for you to be able to compete in the classes with any chance of success. Above all do not be afraid to ask for help, but a word of warning, the truth sometimes hurts



When you are next showing bear a thought for the unsung heroes of the showing world. The steward without whom showing could not keep going. They are the people who keep the classes going by carrying out the judges requests. A good steward is worth their weight in gold and will be able to move the class along without prompting from the judge. For example sending the next combination out to the judge for the inhand section without the need for the judge to ask.

They are responsible for:
A The smooth runing of the class
B. The orders to change place, direction
C. Where to line up
D. When to come out of line
E. The correct stirrup length if there is a ride judge
F. Legging up the judge
F. Ensuring the stirrups are large/small enough
G. Helping riders who fall off
H. Helping catch loose ponies
I. Getting the class into the ring

J. Making sure the rosettes are where they should be
K. Keeping the judge happy
L. Warning the judge of an impending problem

Please be nice to your steward and remember to say please and thank you.


Buying Your Pony

Buying a ridden pony can be fun, but a little thought is needed.

A. Set a limit to your spending.
B. Make a list of what you want, ie Height, Sex, Age, Type, Colour.

But perhaps most important, what do you want to do with your new pony - as that will have a great bearing on the attributes needed.

For example:

Good conformation
Correct height for class
No anti social tendancies - kicking, rearing, bucking etc
Good to box/travel

Traffic Proof

Childs pony:
Will not kill said child no matter how annoying it is
Good to catch
Good in stable
Does not kick bite etc
Good to tie up

Likes to jump is a good start
Photographic proof at the very least that the pony will jump away from home

Other helpful points are:

- Good with blacksmith. You tend to keep your blacksmith longer that way
- Can you turn it out with others and on its own?
- Does it need a friend when it travels?
- Can you clip, trim, pull manes etc without doping? Easy to work around if you know in advance.

But perhaps the most important points are:

A. Don't overhorse your child. Just because you want to live a dream does not make your child a good rider
B. If you buy a horse that has been there and done it will not automatically bring success. You need the other half of the team - A RIDER
C. If you buy a horse from a producer's yard and want the same success be prepared to keep having it produced
D. Don't waste people's time
E. Only if you like what you see in the first five minutes contunue to the riding stage, the seller is not there to give your child a free ride
F. Find out as much as you can about the pony from different sources ie, the pony club, hunt, BSPS
G. Vetting is a good idea and will protect both the buyer AND the seller

The seller

A. Be truthful in your ad
B. Don't think the buyer will not see the splint, curb, etc
C. The more you tell in advance the better chance of a sale
D. If the child cannot ride the pony, tell the person and wait for a better home, you owe it to your pony
E. Never assume the deal is done until the money is in your hand
F. Bite your tongue and be nice they will be gone soon!




These words of wisdom come from forum member Peaceful2

Website designed, maintained and of M Hughes and J Saxby 2008