Thought 4the day: Sometimes in life everyone does have twists and turns thrown at their lives horses and ponies included. If everyones path was smooth it would end up predictable and boring. We all know that horses are not predicatable. They have many hidden depths that we all have yet to discover. When trust and and repsect is built the love and everything else that is needed falls into place. A partnership can take years sometimes to form. Never give up at the first hurdle. Hurdles will only get bigger otherwise. Stick with each other. Understand each other and above all enjoy each other..
Fact 4the day: Combined driving (also known as horse driving trials) is an equestrian sport involving carriage driving. In this discipline, the driver sits on a vehicle drawn by a single horse, a pair or a team of four. The sport has three phases: dressage, cross-country marathon and obstacle cone driving, and is most similar to the mounted equestrian sport of eventing. It is one of the ten intern...ational equestrian sport horse disciplines recognized by the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI); combined driving became an FEI discipline in 1970.
The FEI classification system denotes driving competitions as Concours d'Attelage (CA), which may be either National (CAN) or International (CAI). A National Event is limited to competitors of that nation, who shall take part according to the regulations of their National Federation. Foreign athletes may take part by invitation. An International Event must be organised under the FEI Statutes, General Regulations and Sport Rules, and may be open to competitors of all NFs. CAIs are primarily for individual athletes. However, at World Championships, competitions for national teams of three or four members run concurrently with the individual competition.
There are two categories of international competitions – CAI-A and CAI-B. The CAI-A category denotes a higher level of organisation and facilities provided.
Normally, it is assumed that a CA classified competition is for horses. If pony classes are involved, the letter P is added to the classification (e.g. CAIP-A). Numbers denote the arrangement of horses in the class (e.g. CAI-A 2 is a competition for horse pairs, whereas CAIP-B 1/2/4 is a Category B competition for ponies – singles, pairs and four-in-hand).
World championships are denoted as Championnat du Monde Attelage (CH-M-A). There are three World Championships for horses – Singles, Pairs and Four-in-Hand. These are held every two years, with Single Horse (CH-M-A 1) and Four-in-Hand (CH-M-A 4) Championships in an even-numbered year and Horse Pairs (CH-M-A 2) every odd year. In addition, a World Combined Pony Championships (CH-M-AP, which include singles, pairs and four-in-hand) are held every odd-numbered year.
FEI World Cup Driving, is a series of competitions for four-in-hand horse teams. Introduced in 2001, it provides an exciting style of competition which takes place in an indoor arena. The course combines marathon and cone driving obstacles. Five or six drivers, each with a team of four horses take turns to drive the course against the clock. World Cup Driving events are classified as CAI-W and take place throughout the winter months (Nov to April).
Competitions for drivers with disabilities are classified as CPEAI (Paralymic Equestrian) and the championships (CH-M-PE-A) are held in every odd-numbered year.
At the National level (CAN) the sport is governed by each country's National Federation, sometimes through a governing body, which will have rules based on the FEI Rulebook, but maybe with some variations. Most countries hold their own National Championships.
Most people will start driving by joining a local organisation or club, who organise training sessions and one or two-day competitions. Keen drivers can qualify to take part in national events from which they may put themselves forward to be selected to represent their country at international competitions or World Championships. Because a driver always needs a groom (backstepper or navigator), it's possible to take part as such and to enjoy the competition as much as the driver (and horse).
Quote 4the day: Everyone always wonders whats at the end of the rainbow... why look you have your lucky pot of gold in the stables :o))