WE United recently posted a second brief survey looking for input on a couple of rules questions. The survey link is at the bottom of this article.
While we are on the subject of contemplating rules improvements, ponder this. The currently method of breaking ties for the overall winner in a competition is to go back to the Dressage phase score. The winner of the Dressage Phase is declared the winner of the overall. This is done without regard to the possible disparity in the EOH scores between the tied riders.
The following example has occurred at Intro Level and Youth levels and will occur again. If rider A prevails in the Dressage Phase by only one point, and rider B prevails in the EOH phase by 10 points, and each rider is tied with the same competition points, the Dressage rider is declared the winner. This is done despite the clear evidence rider A really did not have the better overall performance. This tie breaking method is known as the “Dressage Bias”.
An easier and better method of resolving ties is available. Simply sum the Dressage and EOH scores of the tied riders. The larger combined score is clearly the superior rider! This is a sport about the best overall horse and rider, not the best Dressage rider doing other things too. The following example illustrates the summing method with a different outcome!
Rider A Dressage score of 62% EOH 45% Total 107
Rider B Dressage score of 61% EOH 55% Total 116
As you can see, the summing method would permit the better overall rider to prevail and should be employed at all levels when ties occur.
This solution was posed to WAWE President Joao Ralao Duarte, and his response was yes, that is an acceptable method of resolving ties.
You have it from the top, this is an acceptable (better) method of resolving ties. If WE desires to grow the sport, then treating newcomers (and all riders) in a fair and compassionate way should be at the top of the priority list. Developing a Youth Program is a prerequisite to receiving the protocol. Lets not be chasing our young riders off because of an arcane rule process that has no logical basis. Ask your organization to promote a better method of resolving ties.