Mountain & Moorland Ponies
The Mountain and Moorland Classes are the showcase of the the British native pony breeds of which there are 9;
Section A Welsh Pony
Section B Welsh Mountain Pony
Section C & D Welsh Cobs
Each entry is compared with the breed 'standard' by the judge who also takes into consideration the manners and turnout when deciding on a winner.
These are the 'supermodels' of the equestrian world. Ponies and horses should be elegant, pretty, well turned out and have impeccable manners and behaviour.
Although there is no 'breed standard' they must have good conformation and move correctly.
All exhibits need to prepare an individual 'show' to put their horse/pony through it's paces and hopefully impress the judge.
Working Hunter and Hunter Ponies
These classes combine the elegance and quality of the animals with their ability to jump a course of rustic (as opposed to coloured) fences - similar to those which may be encountered whilst hunting.
The judge is looking for a stylish and clear jumping round coupled with good conformation, manners and turnout.
Coloured and Spotted Horses and Ponies
Like all the showing classes, these are judged on their conformation, behaviour and turnout.
An added dimension is their unusual colouration.
Although most spotteds are either Appaloosa or Knabstrupper (or cross-breeds of either), Piebalds (black & white) and skewbalds ( any colour other than black, and white) are found in many breeds and cross-breeds.
Veteran Horses & Ponies.
These classes are open to horses and ponies over the age of 15 years. The judge will take into consideration their overall condition for their age in addition to the usual criteria of conformation, manners and way of going.
Young Handler Classes
These classes are for children to 'have a go' at in hand showing. The type and quality of pony is not taken into consideration, it is the ability of the handler which is being judged.
This is a selection of children's games - on horseback.
Walk, trot canter & lead is fairly self-explanatory.
The riders execute four 'lengths' up and down the rows of poles, first in walk, second in trot, third in canter, then they dismount and lead their ponies across the finishing line. However, if a pony goes at a pace faster than they should, they have to turn a circle before continuing.
Bending - in this race the pony and rider have to 'weave' in and out of the poles as fast as they can!
The flag race is a mounted version of 'fetch and carry' - the object being to collect all the flags to one end in the shortest time.
Apple bobbing - the pony and rider have to complete a trip up and down the outside of the poles before the rider dismounts and 'bobs' for an apple.
The onerous task of judging the mounted/led equestrian fancy dress is given to the consort of the current show president