Dressage Anywhere, a new online dressage competition site has just been launched. Wherever you live you can now ride a British Dressage test of your choice and have it judged by a top British Dressage judge without even leaving the yard!
The idea is the brain child of British Dressage List 1 judge and trainer Nereide Goodman together with partners, Lucinda Freeman and Ruth Chappell. They have been developing the project over the past 18 months, working closely with British Dressage and gaining great ideas and support in the process. Their first competition schedule will be open for entries on 25th January 2010. As international FEI judge Jo Graham said “This is an exciting new concept, competitors will be lucky enough to benefit from being judged by the more experienced, listed British Dressage judges who are not always available to judge these levels”.
To enter, simply get a friend to video your test, upload it to www.dresssageanywhere.com following the simple on-screen instructions (Entries are not allowed from previously judged competitions).
When judging is completed you can download your score sheet from the website and see your result on the scoreboard.
You can compete to win prize money and rosettes or pick any test and use it as a training exercise. “Pick Your Own” or training tests will still be judged by a British Dressage judge but one who is also a trainer and will give you additional feedback to help to improve your performance in the arena. www.dressageanywhere.com is the perfect opportunity to try some new tests or move up a level and get some “real” judge’s feedback. You also get the opportunity to be marked by judges that may not be local to your area, as well as international judges at the higher levels.
Just like a real life dressage test, the video must be filmed in real time (i.e. not edited to show the best bits) and you can always re-shoot your test until you’ve reached your best performance or until your friend gets too bored! The tests must be filmed in the correct sized arena complete with markers but with lots of helpful advice and tips on the website for setting out an arena, filming and uploading your tests – it couldn’t be easier.
Competitions are held monthly ranging from Walk & Trot through to FEI tests so you don’t have to be a Grand Prix rider, start with a walk and trot test and work your way up. You don’t even have to have your own horse – persuade your local riding school to run some sessions where you and your friends can practice and have your test videoed. Keep an eye on all the scores as they come in during the days after you enter and see if you have been placed. The option to keep your video private means that only you and the judge can watch your test.
Registration is free and the cost for tests range from £10 -£16. Whilst the rules dictate that dress can be informal you can dress yourself and your horse in show gear if you prefer, in this case boots and bandages should be worn so it is clear that your test has not been filmed at another competition but the 6am starts and plaiting are of course optional!
So whether you want to practice before the Regionals or are nervous about appearing in public, if you have no transport or have used up your travelling allowance, are far away from a competition venue or just want to dip your finger (or hoof) into the sport then this new service is ideal for you. Also coming soon, FEI and British Eventing tests – watch this space!
For further information: www.dressageanywhere.com