Drums is a Working Equitation obstacle that may be included during the Ease of Handling and/or Speed trials at WE competitions. Some people call this obstacle the “cloverleaf,” which describes the pattern required at the obstacle. This obstacle may be used at any performance level.
To perform this obstacle, the horse and rider enter between the drums with the obstacle number on their right. They perform a complete right circle around the first drum. Upon completing a full circle around the first drum, at the point of crossing an imaginary line between the first drum and the second drum and at the point halfway between the drums, the horse shall change direction to the left. Upon completing a ¾ circle around the second drum, at the point of crossing an imaginary line between the second drum and the remaining drum and at the point halfway between the drums, the horse shall change directions and begin a full circle to the right around the third and final drum. Upon completing a full circle around the third drum, the horse and rider shall pass between the first and third drum to exit the obstacle on the same line of travel by which they entered the obstacle.
For the best score, horses and riders should ride the same size circles around the drums to create symmetry.
This obstacle consists of three drums or similar objects such as barrels or posts arranged in the shape of an equilateral triangle. The obstacle number should be placed on or near the first drum.
At the Children’s, Introductory, Novice, and Intermediate levels the center to center spacing between drums is 4 meters (13 feet). For Advanced and Masters levels, the center to center spacing between drums is 3 meters (10 feet).
- At the Children’s and Introductory levels, competitors may walk or trot
- At the Novice A level, competitors must trot
- At the Novice B, Intermediate A and B, Advanced, and Masters levels, competitors must canter
The judge will award a negative score for this obstacle if the horse and rider knock any of the drums over.
During the Speed trial, horses and riders navigate the Drums as quickly as possible. A horse and rider receive a penalty of +10 seconds to their final time for any drum they knock over. If they perform the incorrect pattern at the Drums obstacle without correcting it, they are disqualified from the trial.
Complete details about the construction, requirements, and judging considerations for this obstacle can be found in the U.S. Working Equitation Rules, here.
Last updated December 15, 2016