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Western Equestrian Society

The Western Equestrian Society (WES) was formed in 1985 to promote the discipline of Western Riding to the standard as practised in the United States. We promote the sport for enthusiasts at all levels, whether pure beginners or seasoned competitors. You can enjoy all of our ridden activities with ANY breed of horse or pony. Members participate with Highland ponies, Welsh ponies and cobs, traditional cobs, Haflingers, Arabians and also the various western breeds. In fact, you name the breed and there’s probably a WES member out there riding it in a western saddle! We like a bit of variety!
Western Equestrian Society
Western Equestrian Society2 months ago
As you will be aware the last issue of the WES News was the last printed edition. At the AGM there was some discussion about desirability of maintaining the magazine and whether a digital version could be produced for minimal or no cost. Chris Thompson has very kindly volunteered to take on the task of producing this.

His intention is to produce a PDF version of the WES News which will be distributed either as an email attachment, or if the file sizes too big via an email giving a link to where it can be uploaded from. The PDF version would be similar in format to the printed version, except that it would be optimised for on screen reading.

The next issue of the WES News would have been out in June, and he is working towards getting a PDF version out in the same timescale. Obviously in order to produce a viable magazine, he will need input from the area and county representatives as well as members and so would request that you send any reports of what's been going on in your area, together with any suitable photographs, etc. up to his email address, for inclusion. cpa.thompson@btconnect.com
Western Equestrian Society
Western Equestrian Society2 months ago
Congratulations to Jane Gibbs and Sarah Cameron the 2018 recipients of the Bill Sheppard Achievement Award.
Western Equestrian Society
Western Equestrian Society5 months ago
We’d like to take the opportunity of thanking all the Members, Area Reps, Judges, Show Organisers, Stewards and Volunteers who have contributed to the Society during 2017. On behalf of WES Council may we wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year. We look forward to seeing you at events throughout 2018

Western Classes


An Introduction to Western Classes

Showmanship:

In this class it is the handler that is being judged. Conformation of the horse is not taken into account although grooming, condition and trim is. The majority of the points are gained from leading the horse, posing the horse for inspection, and the general manner in which the competitor presents their charge for inspection.

Trail:

This class requires horse and rider to negotiate a series of obstacles placed on the arena surface. The horse is marked on its attitude on approaching and dealing with each element of the course. Obstacles include a gate, walking, jogging or loping over poles and backing between poles or around cones. Other obstacles can be four poles forming a square of between 5 and 6ft in which the horse must turn 360 degrees, sidepassing over, in front of, or between poles in both directions, and carrying an object from one point to another.

Horsemanship:

Riders are judged on seat, hands, ability to control and show the horse. Results as shown by the performance of the horse are not to be considered more important than the method used by the rider.

Pleasure:

A good pleasure horse has a flowing stride of a reasonable length in keeping with his conformation. He should cover a reasonable amount of ground with little effort. He should be shown on a reasonably loose rein, but still have light contact and control. He should be responsive, yet smooth, in transitions when called for. Maximum credit should be given to the flowing, balanced and willing horse which gives the appearance of being fit and a pleasure to ride. This class will be judged on the performance, condition and conformation of the horse, however, a minimum of 20 percent of the judging should be based on condition and conformation. Entries will be penalised for excessive speeding or being on wrong leads.

Reining:

In an approved reining class, any one of the approved American National Reining Horse Association reining patterns may be used. One of these patterns is to be selected by the judge of the class and used by all contestants in the class. Each contestant will individually perform the required pattern – containing spins, stops, roll backs, circles, flying changes and a backup.To rein a horse is not only to guide him, but to control his every movement. The best reined horse should be wilfully guided or controlled with little or no apparent resistance and dictated to completely – any movement on his own must be considered a lack of control. All deviations from the exact written pattern must be considered a lack of or temporary loss of control and therefore faulted according to the severity of deviation. Credit will be given for smoothness, finesse, attitude, quickness, and authority in performing the various manoeuvres while using controlled speed.

Western Riding;

Competitors are required to ride one of the patterns set out in the Society rule book. The class is designed to show the calm, easy paces of the horse and its ability to be correctly balanced at all times. Western riding is neither a stunt or race, but it should be performed with reasonable speed. The horse will be judged on quality of gaits, change of leads, response to the rider, manners, disposition and intelligence. Credit shall be given for the emphasis placed on smoothness, even cadence of gaits (i.e. starting and finishing the pattern with the same cadence). And the horse’s ability to change leads precisely and easily at the rear and the front at the centre point between markers. The horse should have a relaxed head carriage showing response to the rider’s hands, with a moderate flexion at the poll.

Ranch Riding: (Formally known as Ranch Horse Pleasure)

The ranch riding horse should simulate a horse riding outside the confines of an arena and reflect the versatility, attitude and movement of a working horse. The class is judged on the horse’s ability to work at a forward, working speed while performing the required and optional maneuvers. The required maneuvers are the walk, jog and lope (both directions), the extended trot and extended lope at least one direction as well as stops, back and one change of direction. The optional maneuvers are sidepass; turns of 360 degrees or more; change of lead (simple or flying); walk, jog or lope over poles or other reasonable maneuvers a ranch horse could perform. Scoring is on a 0-100 point scale with 70 denoting an average performance.

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