Training 17th October - PTV in Bantry
In preparation for the beginning of our winter league, we started nice and easy with a PTV training session, where the riders attempted a handful of obstacles both ridden and in-hand. In total there were 8 riders and a handful of volunteers. Trainers Elaine and Frances split the riders into two groups of 4; group one would ride first while group two would be on foot, gaining experience from a judges perspective. Learning what the judges look for helps the rider learn what mistakes to avoid.
The trainers took two riders each to opposite ends of the arena, and with the volunteers/helpers similarly divided, the first training session began. The riders got to practise the obstacles prepared with help and advice from the trainers on their performances. After the rider had completed the obstacle Elaine and Frances then asked the opinions of those on the ground, the “judges” to mark them: did the rider demonstrate the correct approach and negotiate the obstacle correctly? What marks were awarded for gait or style? Armed with the obstacle data sheets and score sheets, the judges debated how they would score the rider’s performance, thus learning how to fill in the score sheets correctly.
When the riders had done all of the obstacles in the arena, they were then given the opportunity to do their own course of 8 obstacles, in whatever order they wanted, in-hand or ridden, or both. The volunteers on the ground could pick an obstacle and judged that obstacle, while those with more judging experience chose to judge a number of obstacles. After a break for lunch, it was then the turn of group 2 to ride, while group 1 would judge.
Overall, the day was a success, many questions were asked, riders and judges alike learned a lot. We are all now looking forward to the league event in November.
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