Photographed L-R: Madison Walker, Bailey Gibson, Jenna Farmer, Sam Ellis and Doug Mundrick.
The UGA Collegiate Horse Judging Team made first national contest appearance
The UGA Collegiate Horse Judging Team made their first national contest appearance in many years at the Ohio Quarter Horse Congress Judging Contest on October 16, 2019. This contest is hosted by the largest one breed horse show in the country that has hosted the contest for 51 years!
The contest serves as an ultimate test of the judging standards for a wide variety of performance events in the American Quarter Horse Association shows. College students and youth evaluated 12 classes of top quality horses in classes such as conformation, western pleasure, hunter under saddle, equitation, western horsemanship, hunter hack, western riding, trail, reining, and ranch riding. A possible 50 points per class was earned for perfectly aligning the horses as an official panel of AQHA judges placed the classes. In the afternoon, the students individually addressed the judges with their reasoning for placing five classes from the morning. Students could earn up to an additional 50 points/per reason set with excellent accuracy, correct terminology, and effective presentation skills.
The Congress contest was won by West TX University from Canyon, TX, followed by Oklahoma State University. The Dawgs finished just out of the top 5, placing sixth overall. The five member team was composed of Samantha Ellis (Mechanicsville, VA), Jenna Farmer (Conyers, GA), Bailey Gibson (Nolensville, TN), Doug Mundrick (Madison, GA), and Madison Walker (Grayson, GA). Each of the UGA students earned some personal “bests” in reasons and placings scores, but most noteworthy was their ability to score a 45 or above on the oral reasons. The University of Georgia Animal and Dairy Science Department offers two courses on equine evaluation that started these students into the collegiate competitive world of horse judging.
Coached by Dr. Julia McCann, the entire team is grateful to the GA professionals and their horses that have been shared with the group. The team is very appreciative of the College of Agriculture and Environmental Science and the ADSC Department and Head Dr. Francis Fluharty for their support. Another new team will be cultivated this spring for contests in TN and OK in April and May, 2020!