The Roles of Officials at Working Equitation Competitions

Working Equitation competitions are great fun, and they also require a number of people to help ensure they run smoothly.

For those interested in hosting a Working Equitation competition, we highly recommend volunteering at one or more first to become familiar with the different roles / tasks that need to be done so the event goes well.

Show Managers
Show Managers are responsible for the management of the Working Equitation competition. The Show Manager ensures that all necessary show personnel are in place and properly trained and ensures the Ease of Handling and Speed courses are designed.

They are responsible for applying for and complying with the requirements of the competition license and for arranging good technical, sporting, and humane conditions, required for the smooth performance of the competition, in accordance with the licensing agreement.

They are responsible for sending the results to WE United for official posting within 10 days after the end of the competition.

Judges are the ultimate authority at a Working Equitation competition. They evaluate each competitor based on established criteria, scoring horse and rider for how well they complete each of the movements in the Dressage Trial, the quality of their obstacle work in Ease of Handling, and ensuring that time penalties are appropriately applied for the Speed Trial.

They are on hand during the Course Walk to ensure that questions about the course are answered in accordance with the rules.

Typically, judges also try to remain on the competition grounds for a short time after the event to answer questions people may have about their scorecards.  WE United judges are well-educated in the sport and have demonstrated a commitment to equine welfare and to helping people develop their understanding of the sport.

Technical Delegates
Technical Delegates are required at all WE United licensed competitions. They must have on hand a copy of the WE United rules and are responsible for the supervision and performance of the trials and ensuring that the rules are complied with, in conjunction with the Judge.

The Technical Delegate is responsible for receiving any complaints  made by the competitors and arranging for them to be given to the Protests Committee and for drawing the Order of Go for the Dressage and Cow Trials.

If competitors have any questions about the legality of their tack and attire or the rules governing the competition, they should seek out the Technical Delegate for clarification prior to entering the arena to compete.

Paddock Steward
A Paddock Steward is required at all licensed competitions. They are responsible for coordinating the warming‐up exercises of horses and riders in the Paddock to ensure a good and safe warm‐up environment.

In addition, the Paddock Steward is responsible for inspecting the tack and attire in accordance with the definitions set out in the Tack and Attire Rules. Competitors with inappropriate tack/attire may be permitted to adjust their tack/attire before the start of the trial provided it does not interfere with their ride time.

The Paddock Steward also checks for any blood stains or recent wounds, before and after each horse and rider combination competes in each trial.

The Secretariat is required at all competitions to ensure the prompt and correct administrative processing of the results and provide the judges present at each trial with assistance as required.

The Secretariat is comprised of a Competition Secretary, Scribes for the judges, scorers, and any additional personnel necessary to fulfill the duties of the secretariat

The Secretariat is responsible for the prompt display of the entry orders, announcing the results, and preparing the portfolios for the judge(s), as well as for the reliable processing of the scores, timing the Speed and Cow trials, and preparing the Final Placings.

The preparation of the judges’ material should be done in advance, as it can take several hours to create, print, and organize all the score sheets for the judge.

In addition, the Secretariat is responsible for posting results within two hours after the conclusion of the trial.

ScribesScribes are responsible for writing down judges’ scores and comments throughout for each entry in the competition.  A good scribe is able to write quickly and neatly in English.

Scorer: Scorers compute each competitors’ scores by adding all the marks awarded by the judge and dividing by the points possible.  They record scores on the Final Placings Worksheet. Accuracy and attention to detail are critically important in this position.

Additional Volunteers / Workers

During the Speed Trial at licensed competitions, two human timers, or one human timer and one ‘electric eye’ timer must be used.  Timers use stopwatches to time each competitor.

Grounds Crew: During the Ease of Handling and Speed trials, several people are needed to help re-set the course, such as replacing the ring on the bull and moving the pole back into the drum and re-setting any obstacles that have been displaced by a competitor.



Leave a Reply