"I’d love to see the days of the comatose show hunter behind us, and I think we’re going to see that happen sooner rather than later.
"There’s a feeling in our industry that I’ve not experienced before— trainers, owners, riders and judges are realizing that where we’ve ended up isn’t really where we wanted to go."
@FranJurga writes: ProEquest.com re-published a piece written before the New York Times' sharp appraisal of medication abuse in the show hunter ranks at US horse shows.
This reminds me of all the warnings heard over the years about the Tennessee walking horse soring abuse. "What sport is blameness?" critics asked. "Watch out! Your sport may be next!" many warned.
So here we are. Who's next? And what showing discipline doesn't have something to keep the owners and trainers awake at night?
But perhaps the most valid question is, who's doing something about it? And who thinks the ostrich approach is still a valid path into the future?
From the end of the article: "The sport is about making our horses happy and not about making people look good! ... At the end of the day, if we’re doing the right thing for the horses, then everything else is going to fall into place."
Click on the headline or graphic to read Julie Winkel's insightful essay.
Via Fran Jurga