Icelandic Show Information
There are two types of Icelandic shows; Gæðingakeppni and Sport. These two types of shows are split into different classes, wich is again divided into the age of the rider.
The “Gæðingakeppni” is the most widely spread form of competition on horseback in Iceland. There are many reasons or this, for one it is in very much line with the old traditions around the Icelandic horse and in the Gæðingakeppni the special characteristics of the Icelandic horse can be expressed better than in other competitions. Traits like spirit and character, form under the rider and the power that lies within, together with the free and simple form of the competition make it easy to approach the horse in a positive manner and thus to show the horse at its best.
There are competition classes for all age groups: Children (10-13 yo), Teenagers (14-17 yo), Young Adults (18-21 yo) and Adults.
B-Class Gæðingar (four-gaited)
In this class three rounds are ridden, walk for at least half a long side, trot, slow tölt, fast tölt and gallop on one long side each gait and one long side free choice to receive a full mark.
Willingness/spirit and form under rider are multiplied by 2, but the marks for the gaits have no extra weighing.
A-Class Gæðingar (five-gaited)
In this class pace is added and shown on a 175 m straight track, which counts as one long side (1/2 round) of an oval track, but the total number of rounds is still three, that is 2 1/2 plus pace on the straight track.
In the A-class there are no demands for slow tölt, but the tölt tempo is free up to a medium speed.
In the A-class the marks for tölt, pace, willingness/spirit and form under rider weigh double and are therefore multiplied by 2.
If we compare the Gæðingakeppni and the sports competition we see that in the sports competition the rider is in the key role, by showing precise riding, rhythm, speed and form. In the Gæðingakeppni however the horse plays the key role and most types of horses fit within this competition form, which is more free and open. There are much less demands regarding precision and the show is based on spirit, power and extension in the gaits. The rider only has to show one long side in each gait in order to receive a mark, they can turn around once if they want to and they can show the gaits in any order they want for each gait to come out as good as possible. For example, the rider might choose to start the performance with a powerful gallop sprint and then switch over to a powerful trot or tölt - it is all free and open for the rider to adapt the program to their needs and the horse's qualities. In all classes of the Gæðingakeppni the rider is free to decide how they set up the program and they can show the gaits in whatever order fits them and their horse best. The "Gæðingakeppni" competition is for all people interested in competing who enjoy showing the best qualities of their horse - from the children's class up to the adult classes where there is no age distinction. The approach to the horse is connected to the original image of the Icelandic horse where the spirit is free and the character comes out - That is our true Icelandic horse, a "gæðingur".
On the oval track there are gaited tests in tölt, four gait (walk, trot, canter, tölt) and five gait (walk, trot, canter, tölt and pace). The performance of horse and rider is judged, mainly through the quality of the gaits. In tölt, an even four-beat gait without suspension is required, one or two feet on the ground at any single moment. Pace should have a clear moment of suspension but can have a visible four beat characteristic because of the action of the front legs. It should be ridden at racing speed.
The prescribed length of the oval track is 250 m, although tracks between 200 m and 250 m length are accepted.
There are different levels of horses and riders: Sport A is the highest level and often needs qualification through Sport B and sometimes Sport C and D. In Sport A, riders compete alone on the oval track. In Sport B, C and D they compete in groups of 3 to 5 riders.
Here in the club, the horse (and rider) have to win a certain number of the classes to go up a level.
- From beginner to D-class the equipage needs to win 5 beginner shows.
- From D-class to C-class the equipage needs to win 12 D-class shows.
- From C-class to B-class the equipage needs to win 20 C-class shows.
- From B-class to A-class the equipage needs to win 30 B-class shows.
- From A-class to Champion the equipage needs to win 50 A-class shows.
Beginner is the lowest level for the horse, and champion is the highest.
The winning price for the shows can be everything from a special trophy or a ribbon, or CC content.