HI Spy: Why Do You Compete?


Blue ribbon show horse“Oh, there’s always some point in the day when my friends and I will look at each other and ask ourselves, ‘Are we having fun yet?’ It’s usually after one of us has gone off course or blown a lead in a flat class or a horse has sneezed all over our show clothes,” says Jackie Price. She and her barn buddies compete in hunters and English flat classes, though they’ve been known to venture into all-around events like trail and showmanship at local shows. “Even though we always say we can’t wait for the show day to end so we can pull off our boots and take a hot bath, we keep showing, which I guess means we’re crazy.”

Are horse show competitors crazy? Or do they simply love the perks of performing? While there are plenty of things to groan about when it comes to showing, no one can deny the benefits. After working hard in lessons and schooling sessions, riders get to test their skills against their peers. A ribbon is the tangible reward for hours spent perfecting position, timing and finesse. And then there’s the camaraderie. Longtime friendships are built from spending afternoons at the backgate, memorizing patterns and commiserating over rounds that went wrong. Champion horses, those magnificent animals that continue to win season after season, become four-legged heroes, regardless of who owns or rides them. Those are just some of the glories of going for a blue ribbon.

Whether you compete in dressage or gymkhana games, jumpers or western pleasure, showmanship or three-day eventing, we’d like to hear what keeps you coming back to competition. We know that entry fees are high, the food at the concession stand is often icky, show clothing is expensive and the days are long. So why do you grab more horse show fliers off the bulletin board at the feed store, or hunt through a horseman’s newsletter looking for another competition? Click on Submit a Comment below and share your secret fascination with competing. Some of the responses will be selected to appear in an upcoming issue of Horse Illustrated.

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  1. I started showing because it was just what you did when you rode at a hunter barn. After stints in hunters/jumper, horse trials, and dressage, I realized I don’t really like showing, so I pretty much quit. I still enjoy the training and the pursuit of improvement, but these days I only venture to shows to put miles on a young horse. To desensitize a young horse, nothing beats the sights, sounds, and smells of a horse show.

  2. For me it’s not the smalll amount of time you spend in the ring that makes a horse show worth it. It’s getting ready, making your horse imaculate, walking around the showgrounds while you graze your horse, checking out the other barns. Even simple things like warming up in the ring and putting standing wraps on at the end of the day makes show days that much more interesting.

  3. I show because it gives me something to work for. It doesn’t matter whether I win or lose, but I love to have a goal to work towards and see myself and my horse improve. Also show environments are so hectic and exciting! It’s fun just to see everyone else turned out and giving it their best!

  4. For me there’s no greater treat than watching a perfectly turned-out pair put in an excellent course of jumps and walk out of the ring smiling. I love cheering on my friends and helping them rush to get ready, and then winding down with them in the evenings reliving the day!

  5. I never think of showing as a day to win some ribbons and have poor sportsmanship against other competetors, Instead its a great way to spend time with family, put all the work you did with your horse to the test, and at the end of the day no matter if you won anything or not I know I enjoyed myself the whole time! I love the seriousness and the fun of showing!

  6. i show because i love to show what me and my horse work so hard for. we spend hours a day working and perfecting everything with our horses. it makes everything worth while when my horse and i walk out of the ring after having an amazing class. even though showing can get expensive and tiring, i love it and will show horses until i am too old to get in the saddle!

  7. I just like the thrill of horse shows. To me there exciting and there so much fun. I also set goals for me and my horse to complete and if we didn’t do well in a class, we’d go back and fix it. I like to compete against others too. I guess you could say I have a compettive edge.

  8. I compete for my horse. I just love the atmosphere when you step foot on the show grounds. It’s so full of excitement; you’re just waiting for your turn to show the judges what you and your horse are made of. It is so fun to be around other people that share the same passion as you do! (: The ribbons and trophies are all apart of the experience and thats what makes it competitive, but the reason I compete is to show the judges and all my competition that my horse, Gangsta, and I have been working our rumps off to get to where we are and that we aren’t just good… we’re AMAZING!

  9. The adrenaline rush that starts from the moment you unload the horse to when you step into the ring and trying to balance being impeccably groomed with adequately warmed up and the suspense of waiting for your name to be called and wondering how you will rank is what keeps us coming back to the ring.

  10. I love showing because of how great it feels when you’ve done the best you can and it pays off. I used to compete for the prizes, to be the best, but now I do it because I love just showing what I got. Being able to compete with my friends is awesome. We encourage each other no matter what happens. Having an awesome trainer who is so down to earth and keeps me from getting too nervous is a total plus to the whole experience. I’ve played competitive sports for most of my life so the rush and energy is what I live for. I hope that I can keep competing for a very long time.

  11. I love showing, both me and my filly are extremely competitive and want to make it to high level events. I think if you love a sport, then what is the point of practice if you never go to the game? Showing is a great way to meet new people and horses! It is really fun and a way to learn how to be the best. The adrenaline rush is amazing, it is what me and my horse live for!!

  12. I compete because of all the fun excitement a horse show has. Making new friends, all of the work that’s involved, the connection between you and your horse, the adrenaline rush that I get when I enter the ring and standing in the line up at the end of a class nervous and excited all at the same time while the placings are being given and at the end of the day whether it be good or bad the success that you know you gave it your all and the feeling of accomplishment.

  13. I show for the fun, the passion, the adrenaline, and the love of the sport. There is simply nothing in the world better than the adrenaline rush you get after the perfect round, or the contentment you feel while grooming you horse early in the morning before a big show day and all around knowing you came you showed and you kicked but.

  14. I continue to show because when my horse and I have worked hard training and it seems like we’ll never get that move right, and then we go out there and nail it, I get this undescribable feeling of satisfaction. Even if we don’t do everything right, and we finish last, it’s okay, beacause we did it together, and we both had a great time.

  15. I show because I think it’s good for my horse and I to get through different challenges together and it will make my relationship with my horse stronger. Even if we don’t bring home a ribbon, I know together we accomplished something. It also lets us know where we are with our skill level. Lastly, it feels so great to see a ribbon hanging on my horses stall and knowing that we accomplished something.

  16. Because I spend hours and hours training, cleaning, and working my butt off, so why shouldn’t other people be able to see how hard we work, and how much I love my horse? Whenever I go to shows, I think it’s amazing to watch the other teams out there, showing off what they can do.

  17. I compete because I love it, and my horse loves it. I love it for the chance to see improvement from my last show and chance to dedicate a whole day to my horse, without other distractions or commitments. My horse seems to love it just as much as I do. She knows when we are going to a show and as soon as she steps off the trailer she is ready to go. When we get in the rings he is all there and goes perfectly seeming to know that she is being judged. I think she is more competitive then me sometimes.

  18. I have not competed before so this is my first year. One reason i am doing it is becuase it means more time with my lesson horse Ana! I am showing eglish and cant wait. I have worked at shows and have realized one thing. Horse and rider become a better team once they are in the arena! Horse trust rider more and rider trust horse better. They are a team, not working against each other. I hope me and Ana can become a good team.

  19. We show, but we have had to cut back on how many we attend. But we go to the shows because the Morgan Show Circuit is so inviting and exciting. We can always make new friends and talk with everyone. And plus, the horses are all so talented and beautiful that it’s worth watching, cause you can’t get bored.

  20. I compete because there is always a new goal to achieve at a show. No matter how well you do in practice, the show is when it really counts! Shows are just another way for you and your horse to achieve something.

  21. Horse show goers are competitive by nature; why else would we be there at five in the morning? In order to do well and win you have to be. Horse showing is an addiction. Sure, you may have to spend less on regular expenses such as tennis shoes, and shorts because “The Big One” is coming up and you need some new boots or jodphurs but it’s worth hearing your name and horse’s name called over the loud speaker. You spend hours a week practicing over and over, you sacerfice normal activities such as dates or parties but when your called over and recieve that ribbon and that thrill goes threw your body it is an unexplainable feeling in which nothing else can give you that measure of satisfaction. Horse showing is an addiction and nothing in the world compares to attending…Why do we keep going back as expenses get higher and higher…Maybe we are just that crazy???

  22. I don’t do a lot of horse showing, but i do do some open shows. I don’t go to shows just to win ribbons, I go because I love it. Even though there are those shows where your horse just didn’t cooperate, it’s all worth it when you come out of a class with a huge smile on your face, knowing that in that class, you did your best, and your horse did too. It’s the satisfaction that keeps me going to the shows I do go to, especially when you come out of the class with a blue ribbon in hand. Horseback riding is hard work, and a lot of people underestimate it. Months of training, conditioning, and preparing all seem worth it to ride that really good dressage test, or get a clear round in jumping!!!

  23. When I go to a competiton, I view it as a way to show off my horse to the world. I got my current horse when i was 9 and she was 4. We both went through some pretty rough times when it came to training, since we both had to learn together. I find the show ring a place to say, “I did it. It might have been a hard and long road, but I finally got my dream and didn’t give up on my horse, even when she was being a “brat.” I also feel that when I’m in the show ring, it really assesses my horsemanship skills. Entering a show every once in awhile allows me to analyze how I ride under pressure, and according to how I did, I can fix it, so next time I do a show or ride in general, I can have a specific area to improve on.

  24. I just love the thrill & the excitement. Even the stress if fun to go through! I remember my first show, & loved knowing that you worked hard to get here & if you do bad, okay, you’ll get another chance someday, but if you do great, it just keeps getting better & better! My favorite part would have to be the trust & bond between horse & rider, even if it’s not you! You see these huge, powerful, creatures that trust thier riders every move & treat them like thier family, it’s so touching!

  25. I love the thrill of showing! Some people are surprised that i show because my first show was a disaster! I was showing my new Thoroughbred at an open schooling show near by. When we got there he went nuts! He started kicking the other horses, bucking, and rearing with me on his back (keep in mind I was only 13). What we ended up doing was putting me on a horse that was never jumped let a lone ridden with an english saddle, and i took her in an 18″ hunter hack class. We didnt win but i was determined to beat this other girl that i absolutely hated that was in that class. LOL. But after trying out many different horses i found the perfect one. she was the cutest little breed stock paint filly. We bought her when she was three and i retrained her from a western pleasure horse to a stadium jumping machine! Just after a year from my first show I won the all around hunter at state with that little filly! My dream is to be on the United States Equestrian Team and compete all over the world.

  26. I have always hated being in front of huge crowds by myself, but showing has helped me conquer that fear, slowly. I love to show! My horses personality definately makes showing fun! If you go to shows with the right people, you are bound to have fun. It’s not just about the ribbons…it’s more like a learning experience.

  27. I like to show because, I have a 7 yr old TB and he’s never been to a show in his life. So I like him to get used to the suroundings (loud noises, people running, ballons, unbrellas, ect…). Its really desensitized him and me. But the most inportant thing is actully showing, goinging into the ring by ourselves and completing a course of jumps.

  28. I love to show my American Quarter Horse that is a chestnut and her name is Lucy because it will quiz me what I learned and remember from my wonder trainer Bill Crabtree in Red Lodge Montana. I am 15 years old and Lucy is about 17. I love to do pole bending, barrel racing and jumping over logs. I love horses ever since I was little. When I catch Lucy other horses usually come near me including Lucy but Lucy always chases them because she protects me and loves me and we are like sisters of some kind which it might seems weird but it is true.

  29. I show to make friends, gain experience i may not even learn at home, and to just have fun overall. Too many people today can take showing much, much too seriously-even if it is a small/large show, etc.-and become sensitive and easily upset or snitchy. It takes the fun away from other competitors to be around them for a day or more, competing against them and being around them. People need to see the fun in showing, and even if I have a bad day, I always go back and review to see what I could have done better or what I need to work on, and I always praise my horse for a day’s showing well done. Being with my horse during a show and putting out our best is what makes my money worth it.

  30. I find that showing is a way to show off what you and your horse have worked so hard on. Showing is also so much fun I think besides for being sweaty and smelling bad and if you compete in gaming events like i do u always get dusty and somtimes I even get dirt in my hair. Ewwww! but it still is so much fun. At the end of the day you look back at what you have done and say to yourself that was alot of fun i cant wait for the next show.

  31. I love my horse and going for a ribbon is exciting. But horse shows wouldn’t be any fun at all if I showed alone. So I think the one element that keeps me coming back is the social part of showing. I like laughing with my friends at the backgate or between classes, or worrying about our courses together, or crying together if we both have bad rounds.

  32. I compete because it’s what my Hackney loves to do. I enjoy it to. I couldn’t live without at least one show a month. The best “show” I think is the Canfield Fair.It’s not really a show, but it is a great place to learn the ropes. It’s the biggest tri-county fair in Ohio. Local shows are some of my favorites shows to because you see people you actually know.

  33. I show because it makes me feel closer to my horse and it helps us bond.. I also do it because it makes Kharisma feel good….and not to mention I have fun most of the time…

  34. I show for the competition, the eletricity in the air, the adrenaline rush, and the challenge it gives my horse and me. Its a wonderful feeling when you win the blue, but its an even better knowing that my horse and I did it together.

  35. I love to work on patterns and horsemanship, and test them out against other people. I like to see how good I am, and I love to show off my horse.

  36. I compete because I love showing off the horses I ride and finding out what I can do to improve my dressage tests. It really helps me become a better rider from it, so I can come back after working on the judge’s comments and do better. It really gives you a sense of accomplishment.

  37. I compete for the adrenaline. I compete for the partnership of a young woman and a show-wild horse. I compete for the rush as I push us further and further; for the mere seconds that pass when my hair whips behind my face on the homestretch of a barrel run. I compete for the cheering of friends and family, and for that tiny beep that tells me I’ve stopped the timer and now I am recorded in the books. I compete for myself. For my horse. For us.

  38. I compete because it is for fun and you can learn a lot of things from other people. I learn how to control my horse better and it helps with trailering.

  39. i show no matter what.
    i don’t care about winning or placing i just do it for fun and enjoy it very much.
    Though the ribbons and throphies are nice to get you can replace those but you can’t replace the fun,joy and excitement you get from doing it.

  40. I compete for the fun and joy of competition.before last year I had never really competed in a real horse show, but now that I have I can’t wait for show season to start up. I also love the prepping and making your horse the shiniest of them all. Competing for me is the reward for all that time at the barn scooping poop and taking riding lessons. When I show I feel so proud of how far I’ve come and I get to show everyone watching how far I’ve come also. So in the end, Why do I show? I show for the glory, the friendly competition and as a reward for how much progress I’ve made.

  41. I compete because I like to show people that Mustangs can do things just as well as the other horses, people can be very naive about them, there were girls showing Quarter Horses at my local fair this year who were truly scared of my horse becasue she was a mustang, I like to change peoples opinions about them.

  42. I love competetion not because of winning and ribbons. But to also make new friends, have fun and learn from my mistakes and all. Like when the horse, wont take the jumps correctly, in the future I will work on the situation and make it even better then before. I also compete to show, that not all EX-Racing TB’s are dangerous or nuts or crazy. That most just need a well good and calm rider

  43. I compete not for ribbons, (though of course I LOVE winning blue), but because I am proud to show off what I’ve learned with my beatiful horse, Starlight, and because its fun!!!

  44. I compete to push myself to train the best horse I possibly can. When Jiggs and I get a chamionship, or even a top three, it’s great knowing i’m not just riding some push button lesson horse, but a greenie i’ve dedicated my time and money too.
    Satisfaction and pride are the best reasons, although bragging rights are fun too.

  45. I compete to conquer my fear of competition. I always get extremely nervous just thinking about horse shows so making myself go helps me prove to myself that I can and that taking lessons is worth it.

  46. I compete with my rescued half arab pony to show everyone from the ranch that he was abused at that he is a great little pony, full of attitude, spunk, and spirit to place, and win, in anything we do together.

  47. I compete to see if my horse and I are improving, and to see what exactly we need to work on at home. I save money by doing the local 4H shows and other schooling shows, instead of traveling out of town. So, you still get the fun and excitement of showing, and saving some money at the same time!

  48. i compete because i love to preform infront of people. i love the rush i get from doing hunters with my horses and i love blue and tri-colored ribbons most! but my favorite thing about horse shows is having all eyes on me.

  49. I compete because i love love love all of my horse show friends, and its so much fun just like how good you feel when you do well. Sure it sucks when you lose, but as long as you ride a lot and have a nice enough horse then you should be competetive! It’s just i love every minute of it. And i have to work hard at the barn to be able to afford it with this economy now, but i wouldnt stop showing for anyhting. I do it because i love it.

  50. why do I compete? some friends i have might ask me this. my answer is this; i love to show. weather my horse is having a bad day, or not. you see, my horse was wild when i got her, and i trained her all my self, for Western and English pleasure. When Dayzi and I do well, it makes me feel good to know that my hard work and persistance payed off. i like to get out there, and if you will,’show ’em what we got’ in my miond, even if we are not placed, we did not lose. maybe in your mind, you did better than maybe you would have done at the last show, but didnt place. that does not mean you “lost” it means that you improved, in your own little way. =]
    Olivia and Dayzi

  51. I compete at horse shows because I like to show off my skills to people there. I like to have my name out there and people to know me. I like to meet new people and the people I like to meet are in the horse world. Thats how you make your name and to be known is to mingle with the horse world.

  52. I show because:
    1. It is a wonderful way to see your hard work pay off.
    2. You create memories, whether happy or not.
    3. You do your best, even if it’s not good enough.

  53. I compete for the experience. Arena riding helps for sure, but there is experience in the show ring that you can’t get anywhere else. There is also that feeling of sweet victory when that blue ribbon is handed to you after a hard day in the ring. But above all, ribbon or no ribbon, the experience is irreplacable. Nothing can be better for your riding career than a good ride at a show.

  54. To me my horse Wildfire is a great jumper. I enter him in competitions because he deserves to show everyone his talent.

  55. I compete because i love being with the horses and i love meeting new people. I absoloutly love competing. Its so much fun because most of the time all of your hard work pays off. I have won 33 ribbons so i have been showing for a while. I enjoy it whether i get a blue ribbon or not! Just have fun!

  56. It allows me and my horse the chance to show off all the hard work and dedication we’ve put in together, and the long hours spent in the saddle, and showing is a great oppurtunity to get your horse and you all done up!

  57. I compete because its worth the time to get ready for and its very rewarding. And its worth all the hard work too. Even if I don’t win, its nice to know that i did my best and so does my horse.

  58. To compete at a show is many different things. It is a way to gain experience as well as a way to show off experience. It is a way to test yourself and your horse, and to prove things not only to others but to yourself. Your victories you savor, and your faults you remember.

  59. I LOVE showing and learning new things. I have only shown twice but improved TONS the second time and I am definitely going to show again!!

  60. i show because i love to look up at all the little kids looking nervous and all the trainers shouting last-minute instructions, and all the basic buzz of a horse show. then, all of a sudden, everything stops as the class ends and your name is called for fist place.

  61. I compete cause it is a time to show what my horse and I are made of. It is also a time to have fun with friends and thier horses.

  62. I compete because it helps you learn more about you and your horse as one unit. It not only prepares you for further advancement, but it also is ridiculously fun. I LUV it.

  63. I compete for many reasons. My main reason is that short moment of an overwhleming sense of happiness and accomplishment when you win or just have a good ride after all the sweat and tears it took to get to that point. I show for all the friendships I have made that will last a lifetime. I love every moment of every show whether I win or lose. The shows are where I am most in my element displaying everything I have learned over the years and always learning something new.

  64. Showing helps keep me sane and allows me to meet new and old friends that you don’t see everyday, its always fun to win too!

  65. Showing is a great outlet for me and my horse. We become closer as a team. It also gives me the opportunity to meet new people. I like to show what my horse and I are made of and will make sure the judge knows too.

  66. i compete becuase it is fun. it is also a way that me and my horse can show off all weve worked on and get closer in the process. We are best friends and every chance we get to show off our skills well take it haha

  67. When you are standing there in the ring with a blue ribbon, there is a kind of adrenaline rush. And besides, even if you don’t win, you and your horse learn something every time!

  68. I compete for the experince. I am new to showing. I did show last year at a local show. It was alot of fun and I really learned alot from my horse and my friends.

  69. I show because I like people to see all the hard work that I have put into my horse. Also who wouldn’t like getting up before the sun has even thought about rising, driving to the show grounds, finding that oh so wonderful poop satin on the two inches of horse that is showing under the blanket. Then having to deal with warm up arenas, crying kids, crabby ponies, scary jumps. What can I say, its all worth the getting sick from the food, getting covered in God only knows what, and having the time of your life doing it.

  70. I compete because it is the only thing that i now how to do and that is show off my horse. I have trained and rode horses since i was aroune six years old and i could never for get my first show i was eight and i was barrel racing my mare that my mom had since she was eightteen. My horse now is the best part of my life and i could never live with out him

  71. I compete because its fun and a bit of a challenge but still fun. This is my 1st year doing this but I love it.
    horse lover!!!

  72. I compete because it is a great way to show all the work you have put into your horse. It also really helps school your horse to accept different situations, which benefits any horse and rider.

  73. I compete in the Hunter/Jumper’s. Depending on what level horse I ride, I go out for fun. With the green horses I just go out and just see what they give me. And with my AA horses I go out to spred my name so when I turn professional I will have the win of classes to help support my name.

  74. I compete to gage how much my horse and I have improved over the show seasons. It makes all the hours at the barn seem worth it when you start consistantly earning the blue ribbons.

  75. I have to say I do it to prove my skill and to show off the horses I ride. Besides that, it’s very rewarding to be able to show off the ribbons and see how far you’ve come.

  76. I compete simply because it’s fun! I practice hard and enjoy the opportunity to show off my skills. Now that I have my own horse I look forward to showing him off at the local schooling shows. He’s my first horse and I’m so proud of him. Eventually I hope to get lots of ribbons with him, but for now I just want to get him the show mileage he needs and build his confidence.

  77. I love competing because it is fun and exciting. Showing helps me improve my riding by seeing if the first place winner does something differently than I do. I also love when you have been working on something like riding without stirrups, and if you got placed well doing it, it is like making it official that you can do it. All that hard work pays off.

  78. I show because it’s just plain fun and win or lose i will be in the showring. my horse has fun and i have fun. My filly is only two years old and she is already turning into an amazing show horse even if she’s having a “baby” moment she will always pull it together and do her best in the ring she’s never let me down and i couldnt be more proud of her:)

  79. I compete, because I love seeing all my ribbons I have worked hard for. You work so hard and it gives you a feeling of accomplishment.

  80. I show for many reasons. I love the thrill of competition and the great experience. It is awesome to see all of the ribbons and trophies that you have worked and trained so long and hard for. It is a growing and learning experince for both horse and rider. Its just a fun and exciting thing to do and I will never get tired of it.

  81. I compete for the sheer thrill of competition. Weather I win or lose, it doesn’t matter, I’m a winner in my mind. I like to see all my years hard work pay off. And if I lose, I will learn from my mistakes and try my hardest next time. Its not all about winning for me, I just go for the experiance, and its fun too!!

  82. I love the rush of competition- especially over fences. My friends and I cheer each other on, but we all have a healthy competitive spirit and help each other laugh any embarrassing situation off like a spill or a sloppy course. I also love prep my horse. From washing to detangling to braiding and tacking up my own personal victory is spraying on that Show Sheen and walking out to the ring with an immaculate appearance. I really show to see how our training has payed of. I especially like it when someone who was at another show before me says “Wow, I remember last time Flyer was just rushing at those fences- he looked great.” ‘Cause even if I didn’t place that time, I still won.

  83. I compete purely for fun. I’ve learned that it’s best not to get to rapped up in winning because things don’t always go as planned, for example, you spend a ton of money on entry fees and then the minute you ask for the lope, your “perfect show horse” throws a bucking fit and tries to trample the judges! Sometimes you just have to go with the flow and have fun.

  84. I compete with a horse that sadly isn’t mine. He is a bay thoroughbred gelding named Show Day. I’ve only just started jumping in lessons, and I only compete in flat classes. Furthermore, I don’t compete at away shows, only the few at my local barn. I currently compete with this horse because I know that I don’t have much time left with him. His owner has to move somewhere far away from the Big Apple, where I can’t see, not to mention ride, Showy anymore. He was actually supposed to leave a while ago, but things with his owner are complicated and the date keeps getting pushed further and further. So this show season, I intend to compete with my lovely Equine in as many shows as I can before I must say my final farwell.

  85. I have 2 Icelandic horses, My mare and I compete in The Extreme cowboy Race, ACTHA, as well as any trail competition I find. I love it!!! My gelding is inexperienced and still learning- what a blast it is to watch him compete and do so well. The challenges and the other participants make it fun and exciting. Yes I spend a lot of time working myself and my horses, The prize is when we accomplish our goals, for me that doesn’t always mean 1st place (though I like that too). My horsemanship and communication with my horses is what I strive to improve all the time.

  86. I compete because I love feeling good about what my pony and I have been working really hard at back home. Even when I don’t win a ribbon, I love the way that I feel when my horse and I come out of the ring, just finishing a clear round.

  87. What keeps me wanting to show is the spirit Mustangs generate in me, that let’s show them together how great we can be! I want people to see that Mustangs are awesome and do not deserve to be dog meat! I wish to bring the best out of my horse for people to enjoy as much as I do! I hope people see the white freeze brand and the beauty of the freedom runners! So that the Mustangs may live on! That is why I show, so that I can improve my best friend’s people’s lives.
    And of course that wonderful feeling… Thank God for horses.

  88. Even though the competion can be strong, and entering is a little costly, it is all worth it. For me it is not about the blue ribbon, even though it is nice. I do not need a ribbon to prove to anyone, including my self, what my horse and i are. I know that insid what we have together is much more valuble than any ribbon. Every time we go out, there is a new wall to face(sometimes to jump over), But we go to it leaving our fears behind us and becoming stronger.It is a mental game, learing to replace negitive energy with positive energy, realy believing that “we can”, and to trust eatchother. We do not come to win, but to learn, to have fun. We become a better team, our bond, and conection becomes so much stronger, along with our trust. Its the wind and freedom pumping through my veins, her veins; when we are on the xc course. The feeling of “I CAN” and proving it to myself, and my horse. Its nice if we place; but if we win or loose, i could care less. Because for me if we go out, have a good time, and learn a thing or two; well then in my opion it was a great show.

  89. Competition is amazing, I’m a barrel racer and there is no feeling like a perfect run. Even thought I have a 1 hour drive to get to my horse and a half hour drive to get to my corral with my horse, then I have to sit in the sun for 4 hours with no way to get out of the sun, and have to listen to all the drama, It’s all worth it when I hear my name in the top 3.

  90. Competing is not just about the ribbon! It’s about the chance to show what you’ve worked so hard to perfect, the friends you make, the bond between you and your horse, and it’s a lot of fun… even the misadventures. (Of course, a blue ribbon is nice, too!)

  91. I compete for the fun of getting out and doing something. It also gives my horse practise. It helps her to be calmer around other horses and in the show ring. We do not have a dirt arena so it gives her practise in dirt.

  92. I compete to show people the my mare is talented. I don’t like briging attention to myself but I love it when people appreciate my mare. She is a special light in my life and I love the excitment of a show. I don’t care if I place last in every event. I just like to know that Destiny and I, did the best of our abilites!

  93. I compete because it feels great when they hand you that blue ribbon and you know you and your horse were the best! And all of those hours of hard work actually do pay off! πŸ™‚

  94. Even though I compeat in hunter/jumper shows at least once a week, I do it for the fun. I also love the feeling of going against people who are twice as old as me (I’m 13) on horses three times more expensive and exprienced then mine and winning. Me and my trainer also use smaller, local shows to get our younger horses more exprience.

  95. Experience. The experirence of showing is something that will stay with me for a lifetime, and will stay with my horse the rest of his lifetime. Ribbons are good, but that’s just another dust collector in the barn, whereas skills and experience can never leave you.

  96. I compete because of the experience and also the feedback. There is no direct feedback, but based on where you placed, you can pretty much tell if you excelled or not. And if you didn’t, you can practice on what that particular class was(walk trot canter, jumping, ect). It’s also good to know where you stand compared to other riders so you get a feel of your riding technique.

  97. I compete for the exact reason- for the crazy/hectic fun! I also compete because someday I want to be an olympic eventer- it’s my dream πŸ˜‰

  98. I compete because it’s fun. It is a good bonding time for me and my horse. Most people go to win but we go to have fun. Who cares if we don’t win a blue. As long as he did well, it’s worth it for me(:

  99. Competing for me is a mix of different things: First off, it’s just plain fun; I can think of no other way I’d like to spend my time. Second, it’s humbling; anyone’s arrogance can be put in its place in the blink of an eye. Third, it puts you and your horse’s relationship to the test; you learn more about each other that day than you do at home. And lastly because when you do win – which isn’t always the important part – it proves that all your hard work is paying off. It’s an ego boost, especially for those like me who fall on a regular bases!


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