What is horsemanship and why an award for it?

Horsemanship goes beyond simply riding or care of the horse. It involves the combination of both mounted and unmounted knowledge and abilities. Our Horsemanship Award is designed to encourage riders to expand their knowledge beyond their riding skills to include all things horse related. 

A Horsemanship Award will be given for each of the following levels:

  • 10 & Under

  • 11-18

  • Open - Riders in any other division 


Who may participate?
Any junior or amateur rider who has exhibited in any judged class at any TRAC Hunter Jumper Schooling Show April through October of the current show year is welcome to participate!

How will the Horsemanship Award be determined?
Riders will take a written exam during our October horse show. The top two highest scores in each division will receive an award. In the event of tie scores, participants will remain tied.

What if a rider competes at more than one division level during the year?
Any rider who shows at more than one division level during the year, (for example: A rider who moves from Hopeful Hunter to Schooling Hunter), may take only the more advanced test. 

What will the written exam be like?

There will be a separate exam for each of the three levels: 10 & under, 11-18 & Open. All of the exams will consist of multiple choice, true/false and matching questions. Topics may include: parts of the tack, parts of the horse, colors and markings, equipment and its usage, horse care, etc. Topics listed are simply guidelines - not all exams will include all topics. The proctor(s) may assist by reading questions or answers for anyone who has reading difficulties.  We understand that several, if not all, of the riders taking the Beginner Exam are not able to read the questions and answers.  Our proctors will assist the participants by reading the questions and answers to the children and guide each child to select the answer of their choice.

How should a rider prepare for the written exam?

Ask questions of equine professionals (trainers, veterinarians, farriers, etc.), read books, interact with the horse, etc. - be curious! Increasing your horse knowledge and experience is a continual process that never ends - enjoy it! The more engaged you are, the more you will learn!

What is the cost to take the exam?  The exam is free to eligible participants (see "Who May Participate?" above).  However, we ask you to let us know ahead if you plan to take the exam so that we can be sure to have a suitable number of tests and proctors available.

When will the Horsemanship Awards be presented?
Along with the many other awards we offer, the Horsemanship Awards will be presented at our annual year-end awards banquet. 

Will the Horsemanship Award count toward other awards?
Yes! The top scoring participant in each of the three tests will have 10 points added to their point total toward the Overall High Point Award. The second highest scoring participant in each of the three tests will have 5 points added to their point total toward the Overall High Point Award.

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