ADDITION TO ‘THE CANADIAN’ FUTURITY
CRTWH announces an exciting addition to ‘The Canadian’ Futurity –
The Virtual Futurity!
In existence since 1982, ‘The Canadian Futurity’ was never envisioned or designed to be a static program. The goal was to improve the Canadian TWH by identifying, rewarding and recognizing quality Canadian-born horses.
Initially, in the eighties, ‘The Canadian’ was a regular horse show, in which each horse was compared with the other horses in the same class, and then ranked or placed. This system, a comparative judging system, is used world wide for the majority of horse shows. Visionaries at CRTWH determined it would be beneficial to the breed if TWH participating at ‘The Canadian’ were evaluated rather than compared. An evaluative system is the one used internationally by Sport Horses and Warm Bloods to identify and classify superior horses.
In 1992 ‘The Canadian’ took a bold and courageous step and changed from a comparative program to an evaluative program. Since that time every entry is evaluated against a Breed Standard that includes conformation (front legs; hind legs; head, neck, body and balance; manners and disposition) as well as movement or way of going. The judge assigns a numerical score for each of the characteristics and a scribe is present to note the judge’s comments on a score sheet. The judge has approximately 5 minutes to evaluate each horse – five minutes during which the judge focuses on that horse and that horse only.
One original and lofty goal of ‘The Canadian’ was that the Futurity be a nationwide program.Canadais a big country and the founders realized that this nationwide goal would be a long-term goal. In reality it is not feasible for horses, particularly young horses, to travel the distances involved to attend a Futurity inAlbertain the fall. One solution would be to organize Regional Futurities in other parts ofCanada, with the winners traveling to one spot for the national Futurity. Regional Futurities are a worthwhile goal, but the practical reality is that, even within provinces, distances are great, traveling is expensive, and central locations are difficult to find – and volunteers to organize such an undertaking are even more difficult to find.
In 2004, the CRTWH has decided to take another bold and courageous step to come closer to the goal of a nationwide Canadian Futurity. Desiring to be more inclusive and to allow horses from acrossCanadaan opportunity to participate, the Futurity Committee believes they have arrived at a reasonable alternative. After 21 years, ‘The Canadian’ is changing through expansion of the program.
Recognizing that all horses cannot travel to the Futurity, ‘The Canadian’ will come to them. Current technology and increased availability of that technology make things possible that would have been impractical 10 years ago. ‘The Canadian’ will make use of that technology in the expansion of the program. The latest addition to ‘The Canadian’ is the ‘Virtual’ Category. There is now 2 categories – a Live Category and a Virtual Category.
The Virtual Futurity Category is designed as an alternative for those who cannot attend ‘The Canadian’ Futurity for a variety of reasons and circumstances: distance, weather, timing, personal decisions regarding weaning, injury to a horse and other unforeseen circumstances. Naturally, the Live Category and the Virtual Category will not compete against each other. Competition will be within the same Category. However, any horse entered in the Virtual Futurity Category may in another year compete in the Live Futurity Category provided the entry fees are current, just as horses in the Live Category one year may compete in the Virtual Category another year.
Any person who enters a horse in ‘The Canadian’ may elect to bring the horse to ‘The Canadian’ Futurity inAlberta(Live Category) OR may send a videotape of the horse to ‘The Canadian’ Futurity (Virtual Category). The decision to participate in the Virtual Futurity Category may be made either at the time of entry or until 10 days after the live competition. This will accommodate those who must travel great distances as well as those who plan on attending, but unforeseen circumstances eliminate their ability to bring the horse.
Those who elect to enter the Virtual Futurity will not be eligible for Futurity prize money, just as those who enter and do not attend are not eligible for Futurity prize money. However, those who participate in the Virtual Futurity by submitting tapes of their horses will receive a written evaluation of their horses when the tape is returned. Entries in the Virtual Futurity will also receive Certificates of Participation in the Virtual Futurity.
The Canadian Registry of the Tennessee Walking Horse is convinced that expansion of ‘The Canadian’ Futurity through the addition of the Virtual Futurity Category will further the goal of a nation-wide Futurity for TWH allowing breeders from all parts of Canada to participate.
In recognition of the many horses that were presented in The Canadian Futurity from 1982 to 2004, the following are pictures of some of the horses and people who supported “The Canadian: Futurity.