When we founded the Inter-School Horse Show series (ISHS) in 1995, our focus was to create a venue in which middle and high school students could compete on teams and represent their schools in the show ring. Now, 20 years later, we are proud to say that the ISHS has helped more than 40 local schools start Equestrian Teams, and that over 500 young riders have had the opportunity to participate in a school-organized equestrian team because of ISHS.
The hundreds of riders who have come through our series have had the opportunity to build relationships with students from other barns and schools who share their passion for horses, and has given young riders of all levels the opportunity to gain experience in the show ring. Because you do not need to own your own horse to compete, our shows have made riding more affordable and accessible to aspiring equestrians and their parents.
The ISHS is a community-based organization, and we are thrilled to announce that we are opening our barn doors to invite all young riders to compete in our show series! Starting in the 2015-2016 season, we are allowing 5th-12th graders to compete in the ISHS either as a member of his/her school's team, or as a single rider independently from his/her school.
We remain committed to our founding principles and still encourage schools to have Equestrian Teams, but we are now providing students whose schools do not allow teams with the opportunity to participate in our series.
On this page, you will find basic information about competing as an Independent Rider, and visit our Rules page for more details about our series. We are excited to have you participate in the ISHS and look forward to seeing you at our next show or clinic! If you have any questions along the way, please feel free to contact us.
TALK TO YOUR ATHLETIC DIRECTOR
We have found that most schools are excited to offer horseback riding as either a club or a varsity sport, so first talk to your Athletic Director to determine how riding can be integrated into your school's athletic program. The level of school involvement varies from school to school. Most of our schools that now offer riding as a varsity sport began as clubs, and that can be a good way for new schools to start. The ISHS allows schools to participate as either teams or clubs, and we do not need proof of school support.
However, if your school will not allow a Equestrian Team or has an Equestrian Team that competes in a different show series, you can now compete in the ISHS as an Independent Rider.
When competing as an Independent Rider, you will be considered your own "team." Independent Riders will follow the same rules as School Teams, but the rider will be competing on behalf of his or her self, rather than on behalf of his or her school.
If there are more than one Independent Riders from the same school, they can form an "Independent Team." In this case, they would follow the rules exactly as if they were a School Team, except their team will be competing on their own behalf, rather than on behalf of their school. Independent Team members will choose a name for their team.
Our shows are organized similarly to traditional Hunter shows, with a few exceptions to allow for teams to compete and for Independent Riders to compete within that framework.
We one show a month for Varsity and JV. Varsity and JV shows will now be held on the same day, but are still considered two separate shows. Varsity shows are for more experienced riders, and JV shows are for riders who are new to the sport or who have less horse show experience.
- JV riders can compete in one (1) division per show.
- Novice and Intermediate Varsity riders can compete in one (1) division per show.
- Advanced Varsity riders can compete in one (1) division and The Surrey Equitation Metal Class.
- The Surrey Equitation Metal Class is a more challenging over fences class that we offer to Advanced Varsity riders.
- Classes are pinned individually and Champion and Reserve Champion ribbons are awarded for each division.
- Ribbon placements are assigned a point value. The points an individual earns in his or her classes are combined with the points his/ her teammates earn in their classes. We use the team's collective points to determine the Champion and Reserve Champion schools for each show, and combine the points each team earns throughout the year to award team end of the year awards.
- For more info about the points, see our Rules page.
Teams must have a coach on-site at each show in which they are competing. The coach must be an adult who has adequate riding/ show experience so that he/ she can assist the riders.
Riders who do not have a coach present will be provided a coach for a fee of $20/ rider. If you need a coach, make sure your indicate this on your entry form. All coaches must sign in with the show secretary when they arrive to the show grounds.
Riders are required to submit a Lesson Verification Form with their entry forms to show that the rider is enrolled in a lesson program. See our Rules page for more information and see our Forms page to download the Lesson Verification Form.
HORSES & TACK
Unlike traditional horse shows, riders do not need to own their own horse or tack in order to compete in the ISHS. Riders are allowed to compete on their own horses, and riders who do not have their own horses can "lease" one from the host barn at each show.
These horses are used by various riders throughout the day, so we ask that you do not "warm up" or practice on leased school horses prior to your class. If you lease a horse but wish to use your own tack, please check with a representative from the host barn. Some barns will allow you to use your own saddle and saddle pad. Click here for more information on leasing a horse.
Riders are required to wear formal Hunter attire when competing and all riders must wear wear NEC certified hard hats while mounted. Click here for more information on show attire.
ENTRY FORMS & FEES
- For each show, entry fees and forms are due by the Sunday evening two (2) weeks before the show date.
- Each team must have a contact person's name, phone number and email on their entry.
- All entries must include:
1. Registration Form
2. Entry fee (make checks out to: DBR PROMOTIONS)
- Mail entry forms and fees to:
14709 Spring Meadows Dr.
Darnestown, MD 20874
- One Lesson Verification Form per rider must be submitted in September and a new one in January
- Any entry that is left at the host barn or check will NOT be processed. Late entries will be assigned a late fee.
- Click here for Registration Forms and Lesson Verification Forms.
- Click here for more information on pricing and fees.
- Click here for show dates.