Elite dressage judge inspires enthusiasts at Reaseheath Equestrian Centre

The world’s most senior and well respected dressage judge, Stephen Clarke, helped competitors, trainers and judges take their knowledge to a higher level when he gave an inspirational lecture demonstration at Reaseheath Equestrian Centre in Nantwich.

Stephen, who is based at Cotton Equestrian Centre, Holmes Chapel, was President of the Ground Jury at the London Olympics 2012. He is an FEI Official International Judge and has judged at all major competitions including three World Cup finals, three European Championships and the World Games. Throughout his career as an elite judge he has had a great influence in the development of judging systems and the training and encouragement of established and new judges in the UK.

In his current role as Dressage Judge General of the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), the international governing body for all Olympic equestrian disciplines, Stephen creates and co-ordinates discussion among judges world-wide and ensures all conclusions are communicated to the FEI. His key aim is to create a common theme among judges, ensuring consistency in marking and equality in standards across the globe.

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His evening lecture attracted judges, competitors and dressage enthusiasts from across the region, with tickets selling out months in advance. Four competitive rider / trainers rode tests ranging from novice to Prix St George, with Stephen awarding marks and advising the riders how they could improve.

In conclusion, Stephen told his audience: “The main thing for judges to bear in mind is that they should be influenced only by the movements within the test, award a fair mark for those movements and give constructive feedback which will encourage riders to progress.”

Reaseheath Equine Events Co-ordinator Heather Cooper said: “We were delighted to welcome Stephen to Reaseheath for the first time and extremely pleased that he was complimentary about our indoor arena and surface. Having such a well respected and prestigious judge here was a great coup for us and much appreciated by spectators.”

The next event at Reaseheath Equestrian Centre is on Thursday March 26th with three day eventer Michael Owen, click here for details and to buy tickets. For details of Reaseheath’s competitions, events and short courses see our Equestrian Centre page.

For details of Stephen’s latest training dvd see:

Photos by Roy Gadsden