Dressage Affaire 2015 Groom's Class
There’s something so awesome about a Groom’s Class. There’s a whole lot of work behind the scenes - but I won’t bore you with that. The fun part comes together as I walk through the barn aisles, talking to Grooms and trainers about the class. Some Grooms are shy and don’t want to participate, some Grooms are competitive and love to talk smack. The trainers and owners and riders are supportive! I talk of prizes, bragging rights, and fame. OK, fame may be a stretch but it’s a step in the direction of supporting Grooms and recognizing all that we do.
So here’s some info on a really fun Groom’s Class that I put on with the help of Shapley’s at Dressage Affair in Del Mar CA. This show is always a blast - it’s a great time of year in CA and the show is right next to the beach. We worked closely with the show manager, Lisa, to create a fun atmosphere for the class. So we decided to host the class next to the stabling, after the last ride one day, during the barn parties. (Translate to first night during the wine and beer).
We also had the wonderful support of TWO judges - Joan McCartney and Louise Koch. Horses and Grooms were inspected and judged on the following criteria:
- Tack - cleanliness and Safety
- Polo Wraps - consistent, clean, symmetrical
- Braids - symmetry, tidiness, overall look
- Ringside bucket - well prepared, innovative?
- Special areas - mouth, under the tail, hooves, etc.
- Overall impression
Carly Collari with "Royal Hill KZI"
Diane Schulz with "Kandu D Tango"
Lois Cardenas with "Valor"
Suzanne Arenkas with "Donatello"
The judges Joan and Louise also spent time talking with every Groom. And while this “talking” was mostly about their buckets, the horses, there was also a lot of appreciative words of support and thanks given to the Grooms. It’s wonderful to overhear, and even more wonderful to see the Grooms smiling and beaming.
So - scores tallied, lots of 10’s being awarded, and final results announced!
Third place went to Alis Carbone and the horse Don John. Don John is owned by Beverly Gepfer and ridden by Nick Wagman.
Second Place went to Javier Lara and the horse Roo, owned and ridden by Verena Mahin.
First Place went to Mario Gonzales and the horse Adante, owned and ridden by Katherine Cassidy, trained by Tina Caldwell. He scored a 10 for his polo wraps AND his ringside bucket!!
Prizes were amazing!!! Cash was generously donated by Shapley’s and yours truly. Shapley's also donated a great bucket of grooming goodies to the winner! I also had t-shirts, and grooming packs provided by Grand Meadows. Always fun! I think the best part of this class was the audience - loads of trainers, owners, and riders lined up along the warm up. What fun!
Would you enter a class?