Miranda Akins of Photography In Stride attended the Future Event Horse qualifier at Loch Moy Farm last week and kindly submitted a report and photos on the action. Many thanks to Miranda for writing, and thanks for reading!
Despite the heat and the bugs, all the babies at last week’s Future Event Horse qualifier at Loch Moy Farm in Maryland were happy and bouncing around. Even the hot weather didn’t slow these youngsters down as they gave us all a look at which horses could be the next stars of the sport.
Seven horses competed in the 3-year-old class, with Frame Gandalf, owned and handled by Martin Douzant, taking the win on a score of 80.0. The Hanoverian gelding is by the Hanoverian stallion Grey Top and out of Celine.
Two horses competed in the 2-year-old class, with Balou’Czar, owned and handled by Joanne Emblin, winning on a score of 78.5. The Zweibrucker gelding is by the Hanoverian stallion Bon Balou and out of Whimczical.
Three horses competed in the FEH Yearling class, with SF Rama, owned and handled by MaryAnn Luke, winning on a score of 78.2. The Oldenburg filly is by the Holsteiner stallion Riverman and out of Lumiere.
Thursday afternoon started with a very educational jump chute session for both owners and horses. The horses were first asked to trot around and stretch their legs before trotting or cantering a figure 8 with the help of the jump crew. The more energetic ones were happily throwing in their lead changes while some of the others were being show offs with their expressive trots.
The horses warmed up by first being introduced to the chute with a handler and walking over the poles. They then trotted through in hand before being asked to do it on their own. When they went through, they were asked to stop at the end of the chute with a carrot as a reward before being walked back to the beginning.
As the horses started to get a hang of it, the crew slowly built up the chute, starting with a cross rail then adding fences as they went. You could see each horse learning with each step as the owners learned themselves.
Friday the babies competed in the qualifier, many with hopes of getting a qualifying score for the FEH Championships, which will be held at Loch Moy Farm in October. While nearly everyone was tired and worn out from the heat, the babies were energetically bouncing and dancing excitedly. Everyone clearly was wanting to show off.
For those unfamiliar to FEH events, the horses are first asked to stand so the judge can review their conformation. Once that is through, they walk a small triangle, then are asked to trot a larger triangle. Once that is done, they are asked to stand again and are dismissed.
If you haven’t attended an FEH event, I highly recommend it. You learn so much, whether you are involved with developing event horses or not. Many of the young horses you’ll see are the future of our sport. Who knows, maybe that yearling bouncing around could be a Rolex winner or even go to the Olympics.
Click here to view full results from both the YEH and FEH qualifiers at Loch Moy. Click here to learn more about the USEA’s Young Event Horse Series and here to learn more about the Future Event Horse Series.