Jumper

In some classes, if the horse has a “clean” first round, (that is, they had no rails or faults), then they may continue directly to the second round, or shortened jump-off course. In other classes, the horses that were clear will exit the ring and return after the close of the first round for the jump-off. Both courses are timed, and in both rounds, time is the tie-breaker with the faster horse given preference. So in a jump-off, if two horses have 0 faults, then the one with the fastest time will win.

Like hunters, the various jumper divisions are divided by categories. Some include “young” jumpers for inexperienced horses. Other divisions can be divided by the status of the riders who pilot the horses around the course, such as junior jumpers for riders 18 and under, amateur-owner jumpers for non-professional adult riders or pony jumpers for children.

A typical jumper course is 8-12 fences consisting of natural as well as brightly colored jumps. Unlike hunters, jumper courses tend to twists and turn. Some of the fences are set at related distances and are meant to be ridden as a set with a specific number of strides, or canter steps, in between them. In jumpers, the horses also often are asked to jump water ditches and other more difficult obstacles.