My Mare Gydja secretly thinks that she is better than the rest of us, and can frequently be seen looking on disdainfully as we gallop about playing. She was born in Iceland and according to her this makes her a ‘proper’ Icelandic horse. Now she even has her own film!
In 2013 we visited the Icelandic Horse World Championships for the first time and vowed that we would be in Denmark in 2015 for the next one, and here we are! The trip was a little more dramatic that the one to Berlin in 2013. We drove through Holland and then Germany where unfortunately we were involved in a crash. We were not hurt and after a five hour delay the car was patched up and we continued to Denmark where I am glad to say there is less traffic, and much more sensible driving!
At the end of my blog post that year I mused about the need to continue to focus on the well being of the horses (link here: WCs 2013 Report) so this year it’s good to see the new Judges guidance being applied. This years WCs Magazine says
The prime judging criterion should be the harmony between the horse and rider. The rider must handle the horse with fairness, delicacy and respect; be it’s true leader rather than is dominator. At all times the rider must put the horse’s welfare at first hand and guard it’s health and safety. The horse should be able to fulfil it’s tasks with pleasure; be calm and supple, but also confident, attentive and keen.
For the competitors the new guidance will mean lower scores this year as they work to adapt to the new requirements and the ‘firewalls’ come into effect – barriers in the scoring for each element that can not be crossed and will guide the judges.
The elements are
Riding Skills and connection
Beat and Balance
Suppleness and Relaxation
Outline and movements
Correctness and precision of execution
Such great sentiments. I am looking forward to seeing a competition that is judged in this way.
I have begun my training for the Show season, and this means lots of tölting. My Mate Roger is trying to work out why I tölt so fast when we are out on a rambles, but don’t offer him the same speed on the oval track in competition.
It’s easy really. My really fast tölt out on our rambles is so I can get home more quickly and get fed! Fast tölt on the oval track is a waste of energy as I just go round in circles (or ovals!).
Watch my super fast fun tölt here.
Whilst I don’t really mind being called a pony, if it mean humans think I am cute, and give me extra treats, I am of course an awesome Icelandic HORSE! If you don’t believe me, take a look at this.