Katie Jerram-Hunnable on our next generation of show jockeys, why we should be grateful and being on the fence about ride judging
Whether you’re nine years old, 15 years old or even an adult, sometimes you get brain-freeze. In the show ring there is an immense amount of pressure on our young riders who get pulled in at the top of the line and are required to perform a set show on command.
Nerves can get the better of them, and it’s particularly difficult to come out of the line and ride a routine – which is sometimes highly complex – told to you then and there. This happened to a young client of mine at the start of the year and afterwards she decided not to show again all season.
These days, it’s more important than ever that we’re encouraging our numbers, so I would like to see set routines for riders to practise before the day of a show. In a dressage competition, you learn and perfect your test at home. When the first rider goes out to do their show in the ring, they’re at a disadvantage to those standing down the line, who can watch and establish the workout firmly in their minds.
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