It always rains in Seattle, right? Surprisingly, not when Dressage Today OnDemand and USDF came together to film “On the Levels” – the new 2023 US Dressage Tests that will be effective December 1, 2022 – November 30, 2026. The sun shone brightly without a cloud in the sky. Along with that came the hottest temperatures of the year. However, with a 7 a.m. start and all the participants working efficiently to move the day along, 21 tests were ridden before the heat got the better of anyone.
On the Levels Participants
With Mount Ranier as a backdrop, beautiful Donida Farms, owned by David and Gwen Blake, in Auburn, Washington graciously hosted the event July 26. In addition, judges Mike Osinski, an FEI 4* judge who recently judged the World Cup in Leipzig, Germany, and Kari McClain, also an FEI 4* judge, shared scoring and commentary duties.
Perhaps the best part of the process was the variety of horses and riders presented for the demonstrations. All ridersdressed in white breeches with blue USDF polo shirts. They ranged from juniors to professionals to older adult amateurs. Horse breeds varied from a pony to a Norwegian Fjord to an Arabian. Using this variety gives viewers a chance to see the tests ridden by different skill and training levels. This gives a better represention of those that show all over the country.
Tests started with USDF Intro Level and went through USEF Developing Grand Prix. Riders and horses completed all the tests in each level. The tests were scored and commented upon as if they were at a show. And not every ride was perfect, which showed the “real world” tests.
Videos of all the rides along with descriptions of the movements, scores, and comments will be available for purchase through the USDF Online Store and to all subscribers of Dressage Today OnDemand starting in November. (USDF Members receive a 45% discount off membership with Dressage Today OnDemand as part of the USDF Member Perks Program!)