Justamere Equestrian Centre


Showing for the first time can be exciting, but also nerve wracking, especially if you’re new to the sport. Never fear, it’s not as confusing as it seems and we’ll guide you through. You’ll soon come to find that horse show days are the best!
With that in mind, here are some basics to showing at Justamere:
Our first show of the season is our Welcome Spring Show, traditionally held in May. The last show of the year is our Halloween Fun Show, held in October. In the summer months, we offer the Hunter/Jumper/Dressage Association (HJDA) series of shows.

Our HJDA shows are a series of four shows that combine both the Hunter/Jumper discipline, as well as Dressage.  Riders compete in their division(s) to earn points towards our Year-End Championships, which are awarded at the last HJDA show of the season.

The divisions are organized according to skill level and/or age of the rider and/or horse, and riders can qualify for more than one division:

Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced Equitation divisions:   This division is based on the skill level of the rider: either beginner, intermediate or advanced. Equitation is a division judged on the ability and style of the rider, their “equitation”. A rider can enter both an over fences equitation class and on the flat equitation class in this division. In the over fences equitation class, each rider will individually ride a jump course of 6-8 jumps, ranging in height of low verticals and cross-rails for beginner riders, up to a height of 2’9” for the advanced equitation riders. In the flat class, riders walk/trot/canter in both directions as a group.

Junior, Beginner, Open and Green Hunter divisions:  Hunter divisions originated from the hunt field, and many of the rules and judging criteria are based on the tradition of fox hunting. As a result, both the horse and rider are judged individually and as a team in the ring. Horses are judged on hunting pace, movement, style of jumping, and manners. Riders are judged on their position, ability to communicate and control their mount with invisible aids, and ability to execute the course. A rider can enter both an over fences class and a flat class in this division. In the over fences class, each rider will individually ride a jump course of 6-8 jumps, ranging in height of low verticals and x-rails for Beginner and Green hunters, up to a height of 2’6” for Junior and Open hunters. Also included in this division is the Hunter Hack class, which is a combination of both a jumping and a flat class. Riders walk/trot/canter in both directions as a group and then line up to individually complete 2 jumps (or vice-versa, depending on the judge)

                        Junior Hunter: For riders age 17 & under as of Jan. 1st of the current year

                        Beginner Hunter: For riders in their 1st or 2nd year of showing

                        Green Hunter: For horses that are in their 1st or 2nd year of showing

                        Open Hunter: For all riders, regardless of age or skill level

Walk/Trot division:  As the name implies, riders in this division will only walk/trot, no cantering or jumping.
There are multiple classes offered in this division:

                        Walk/Trot Hunter

                        Walk/Trot Equitation

                        Trot poles: a course of ground poles to be trotted.

                        Pole piles: two standards with a pile of poles between them

Introductory and Training Level Dressage Divisions: The actual word "dressage" is French and evolved from the verb dresseur meaning to train. Dressage is a discipline, or type of riding. Many liken it to horse “ballet”. In a dressage, horse and rider are judged on how well they can perform a series of movements, which is called a Test, and these Tests are the same throughout the world. When watching an Olympic rider and horse perform a Grand Prix test (the highest level and a simply beautiful sight to behold), know that they started out by riding the Introductory/Training level tests our students ride in the shows.  

Year End Awards: Riders earn points based on how they place in their classes at the HJDA shows. 1st place = 10 points, 2nd place = 8 points and so on.  At the end of the season, we award Champion and Reserve Champion in each of the above divisions. The most important thing to remember about year-end championships: a rider must ride in 3 of the 4 HJDA shows and must be entered in the last show, typically in late August, to qualify for year-end championships. We keep track of a rider’s points during the season and post those points on our website: www.justamere.info. We have an awards ceremony at the last show, handing out prizes and ribbons to our champion and reserve champions, it really is quite exciting!

  • Entry forms can be found right here on this website. Look under the Entry Form tab to the left.

  • Entry forms can be dropped off at Justamere in the drop box in the observation room or mailed to the Show Secretary (address is on the form)

  • On the Friday before the show, you will receive an email (if you included your email address on the entry) showing which classes you are entered in. If you entered the show and don't receive an email by Friday, contact the show secretary. If you need to change your classes, or there is any other issue, PLEASE contact the show secretary! Much easier to correct errors before the show than during the day of show craziness!

  • Riding attire is a show coat, traditional button show shirt, tall or paddock boots, & breeches. Riders under 10 years old have the option of full show attire OR may wear white 'polo' shirt, tan breeches & paddock boots. Hair should be completely under your helmet with a hairnet. For younger riders, a single/double braid with ribbons is acceptable. Boots should be clean and polished, coat and breeches clean, shirt ironed and crisp. You and your horse should be “show-ready”.

  • The Hunter/Jumper Classes in the show are run in the same order listed on the show entry i.e. Class #1 is the first class of the day, Class #2 is the second, etc.

  • Dressage Classes are given assigned ride times and those times will be posted on the Thursday before the show

  • Which leads to the MOST ASKED QUESTION EVER:
    What time should we be there? This is the one question everyone asks and the one for which there is no answer! Shows start at 8:00 am, except for the Spring & Halloween shows which start at 9:00 am. There are just too many variables in a show to be able to give a time with any accuracy. Horse shows in general are a perfect scenario of “hurry up and wait”.  We recommend that you bring some chairs, we have food concessions on the grounds serving breakfast and lunch, and make a day of it. Not only does this allow the newer riders to watch the more advanced classes, any day spent at a horse show is a fun and relaxing day! 

  •      You must complete a Lesson Student Pre- Registration Form and submit it with a $20 non-refundable deposit, which will be applied towards your show fees. This lets your trainer know that you would like to be in the show. This registration form is due by the closing date of the show, generally the Sunday prior to the show. If a registration form & deposit are not turned in, you will not be entered in the show.

  • Your trainer will enter you in the appropriate classes and assign the horse you will ride. We make every effort to rotate students and to give everyone their favorite horse during the shows. Please remember how many students we have and understand that it is a difficult job to assign everyone their favorite horse at every show. Remember...riding different horses makes you a better rider!

  • You will receive an email the Friday before the show with your assigned classes and total fees due. If you have any questions regarding your entry, the classes, or any other show questions, please contact the show secretary, we want to help make showing a fun experience, not stressful!

Remember that it's not all about winning the blue ribbon! Competitions give you a chance to see how you compare to other riders and to get an idea of the skills you need to continue working on!
For the most up to date announcements, it is highly recommended you join our Justamere Equestrian Centre group on facebook