Medium or Large Pony? By any other name a rose....
Coming from hunter/jumper background, my ponies are 12.2 and 12.3 and would be considered mediums. In driving, it seems as if there are only small and large ponies so mine would be considered larges. Anyone know why they seem to size driving ponies differently? I hate this new format also.
I have a 12.2 pony as well, and although I consider him a medium, you're right about most shows offering only small/large.
I think it really does depend on the show. The HDT's/CDE actually offer a VSE division for minis, so a 12.2 pony wouldn't be lumped in with the minis, they would go in the pony division, which includes ponies of any size.
Some of the pleasure shows I've been to only call for small pony and large pony, while others have small pony, large pony, and a separate mini division.
I would imagine that probably there just isn't enough turnout to support mini, small, medium, and large pony classes.
I also thought that this was odd when I first started as we have a 13h and 13.1h pony and they are considered larges as well. I'm guessing that Chewbacca is right and that there isnt really enough entries to split the classes. I suppose its not a huge deal as they don't need a certain amount of strides etc so they are on equal playing fields. Though it would be harder for a 12.2h pony to perhaps show a difference in all the gaits as it would for a 14.2h pony to do....
At Bromont CDE they had a medium pony class which really surpised me! I have never been to a show that offered times for medium ponies. It was actually a little harder for us and we had to keep slowing the ponies down as we always school and show with large pony times.
I have recently acquired a 10.2 classic Shetland pony that is very forward and very strong. I would LOVE to do combined driving with her as she has no stop to her, I've just worried about her size. She's very competitive and rules the field of full sized horses she's turned out with. My daughter only has another year to ride her before it's just driving her and we both want to have fun with her.
Can a smaller pony be competitive without overly stressing them?
For sure Idrivetrotters! The only thing I would suggest for your pony would be an appropriate sized carriage. We did full CDE's with our 13h pony and he weighed about 600lbs. His carriage alone was 400lb and then 2 adults on it - he was pulling more than he weighed and completed 14km + CDE's and was very competitive. We felt that it was not fair for him to work so hard (though you would never know it - he would never stop or look too tired) so we were either going to sell him or get him a buddy. We decided we could never sell him so we bought his half brother and never looked back!
We have since then bought a lighter carriage for single work (about 275lb) and of course its much easier for the ponies to pull alone.
As long as you have a light enough carriage, I see no problem showing a 10.2h pony and not over stressing them.
Yay! Thanks everyone, I have an easy entry cart for putzing around the levees on but I want to get a nice cart that I can show in. I'll get some videos of Prissy (Prissy the Wonder Pony is her official name at the barn) up soon. She's being pointed for Mardi Gras parades in Jan/Feb, looking at some cool costumes for her.