Skip to content

A Look at The Fun Show Judging



By David L. Howard

Judging has come a long way and the ability to critique it has come even further!

Due to a health issue, I was unable to attend the Fun Show for the first time in its history but thankfully I could watch the live stream provided by Dean Johnson on the Walking Horse Report.com and check the final placing and judge’s cards after the class. This is a wonderful feature but there is noting quite like being there in person.

With little to do but stare at the walls, I also had time during my hospital stay to check comments about the Fun Show on our site as well as several other sites.

In this new age, the judges are not only being critiqued by the people at the show, several of the folks viewing the live stream had very strong opinions about some of the ties.  While I enjoyed the live stream, there is absolutely no way to get a complete picture of the class and have a realistic view of who won.  Sorry…can’t be done!

Personally, I quit “judging” the judges a long time ago… after I became a Corporate Sponsor at The Celebration and was in center ring for several classes on the final Saturday night.

It is easy to sit rail side and tie the top three and quite a bit different to be in center ring and tying anywhere from 6 to 10 horses.  At a show like the Celebration, the crowd noise and pressure are intense beyond belief but passing judgment on other people’s horses at any show is pressure packed.  There is a lot at stake in every class…from lead line to the Championship Stake.

Having said that, I decided to do my own analysis of the Fun Show working just from the cards.  I am not sure what the analysis shows but I found it quite interesting.

There were a total of 51 classes at the Fun Show.  There were 25 unanimous decisions (49%); two of the three judges tied the winning horse in 21 of the classes (41%) and there were 5 classes (10%) where all three judges tied a different horse.  In other words, in 90% of the classes at least two judges were in agreement on the winner.

As far as the individual judges, Joel Weaver tied the winning horse in 44 classes (86%); Nathan Clark tied the winner in 40 classes (78%) and Brock Tillman tabbed the winning entry 36 times (71%).

Not having been at the show, I can’t venture an opinion on these three fine judges, but looking at the cards it seems they were pretty much in agreement and very consistent.

More Stories

  • TWHNC welcomes new CEO

    The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration (TWHNC) has hired Warren Wells to be its new Chief Executive Officer. Wells will be the fifth CEO in the Celebration’s rich history.  Wells, originally from Bedford County, currently lives in Signal Mountain, Tenn... Read More
  • FAST makes donation to Bedford County Cancer Society

    The Foundation for Advancement and Support of the Tennessee Walking Show Horse, FAST, hosted two Red Ladies classes at their Spring Showcase a few weeks ago. The classes were held in memory of Kathy Zeis who was a founder of FAST as well as a long-time exhibitor.  Read More
  • WHTA Fun Show meetings scheduled

    The WHTA Show Board of Directors will meet Wednesday, May 26, at 4 p.m. The General Membership meeting will follow at 5 p.m. Both meetings will be held at the Blue Ribbon Circle located on the Celebration grounds in Shelbyville, Tennessee. Read More
  • Latest Issue 5 10 21

    Read More
  • Birth Announcement – Jonah Smith Harney

    Jonah Smith Harney was born on Friday, April 23 at Ascension St. Thomas to proud parents Justin and Rebekah Harney. Jonah joins big brother, Jack Harney... Read More
  • Additional money added to the trainer who brings the most horses toWalking For Cancer

    An additional $250 has been added to the $500 reward for the trainer who brings the most horses to Walking For Cancer, scheduled for Saturday, May 8. The total reward will be $750 for the trainer bringing and showing the most horses.  Read More
  • Equine Obituary – The Royal Dollar

    The only bad thing about horses is that they can never live long enough. Sadly, The Royal Dollar was humanely euthanized on April 29, 2021, due to crippling arthritis and other orthopedic difficulties... Read More
  • WHTA Auxiliary to host Money Tree Classic

    The Walking Horse Trainers’ Auxiliary will once again host the Money Tree Classic during the Fourth of July Weekend. The show will be held on Friday, July 2, 2021 in Calsonic Arena. Steve Glidewell, Jason Hughes and Johnny Puckett will mark the cards for this year’s event... Read More
  • Birth Announcement – Ford Thaddeus Way

    Ford Thaddeus Way was born on April 13, 2021 to parents Thad and Erica Way. This 5th generation horseman joins his proud big sister, Elliott Ann. He weighed 6 lbs 12.9 oz and measured 19.5 inches long... Read More
  • PRHTA revises class schedule

    The PRHTA Horse Show, scheduled for May 7-8, has revised their original class schedule... Read More