by Maggi Painter


SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. – The National Horse Show Commission held its annual judges’ applicant school on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2008, in the Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville. Mike Carpenter of Franklin, Tenn., welcomed the 27 new applicants at 9 a.m. in the Hall of Fame Room. There were 13 NHSC judges who missed the December meeting yet were present to take the refresher coarse.  Mr. Carpenter gave a brief overview of general judging rules and procedures before sending the applicants to the arena to listen to speakers on different divisions.

Leigh Bennett started it off with an overview of the pleasure division, academy and equitation. Bennett discussed some new rules that are being implemented this year. The country pleasure division was now an entry level class and horses had to be shod in a keg shoe. It is no longer mandatory to canter or have a pattern in the equitation division.

Duane Rector made the trip from Kentucky to discuss some of the differences in judging a Kentucky show while Jennifer Davis of Shelbyville, Tenn., went over some of the rules for the spotted saddle horses.

Carlyle Johnson of Shelbyville, Tenn., covered the halter and model division.  Mike Carpenter returned to cover the park performance, show pleasure and the performance divisions.