Blenheim was host to the International Jumper Futurity Finals this week. With a goal to encourage and promote the breeding of top sport horses, the IJF competition offers an opportunity to showcase young horses in the early stages of their training. Considering that most of the entries have very limited or no show ring experience, the competition is designed to be inviting for the equine youngsters as well as showcase their talent.
On Wednesday each horse was ridden in a 90-second ‘freestyle’ flat phase with trot and canter circles in both directions including demonstrating a lengthening and shortening of stride. Then they remain in the ring and jump a straightforward 3’ course. The next day the course was set at 3’3” and could include simple double combinations. Each horse that completes both rounds was awarded $1,000 and additional prize money was awarded by the judges in these categories: Movement/Type, Consistent Performance and Grand Prix Potential.