December 13, 2013
The hard hat requirement will apply to both flat (hunter under saddle and hunt seat equitation) and over-fences classes at the 2014 Ford Youth World, then all youth English classes in 2015. (Journal photo)
A new look is coming to the AQHA youth show pen, and it’s one rooted in safety. At the 2014 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show in August in Oklahoma City, all exhibitors in English classes will be required to compete in an American Society for Testing and Materials/Safety Equipment Institute-approved hard hat with harness. This requirement will apply to both flat (hunter under saddle and hunt seat equitation) and over-fences classes.
Starting in 2015, youth exhibitors will be required to wear an ASTM/SEI-approved hard hat with harness when competing at any AQHA-approved show in an English class, including flat and over-fences classes.
The hard hat requirement will be an amendment to Rule SHW320.2 in the Official Handbook of Rules and Regulations. The amendment was passed by the AQHA Executive Committee after it was initially passed by the AQHA English & Dressage Subcommittee, and ultimately the AQHA Show Council.
“Exhibitor safety is a paramount concern at AQHA-approved events,” said AQHA President Johne Dobbs of Champaign, Illinois.
“This amendment solely affects the youth division, and in so many other sporting events, youth wear safety helmets, so this really is about safety first,” Dobbs added.
With regard to certified hard hats versus uncertified, the Safety Equipment Institute certifies a wide variety of safety equipment for different purposes. SEI uses detailed studies about the types of head injuries common to the sport for which they are certifying the product and the specific types of impacts sustained.
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