Doug Payne is Youngest to Complete Training Program for Officials

Doug Payne, 26-years-old, has become the youngest person to receive the "r" Eventing Judge and "r" Technical Delegate  licenses which allows him to officiate through the preliminary level. Payne completed the U.S. Equestrian Federation/U.S. Eventing Association training program for eventing officials in 14 months.  

His mother, Marilyn Payne, one of the founders and principal developers of the training program and the only American to be chosen to judge the Eventing competition at the Olympic Games held in Hong Kong in 2008, said, “Certainly, I’m proud of my son, but we’d like to encourage more young riders and trainers to participate in this program. We want to develop more high quality officials.” 

Reflecting on the amount of time it took to complete the program, Doug said, “It certainly was time consuming, but I was still able to train, compete and offer instruction to my students. Quite honestly, going through the program helped me become a better competitor and trainer. It has been well worth the time and effort.” Marilyn reiterates, “The training program produces better judges for us because these competitors have a deeper understanding of riding and training.”

Doug, who continues to compete, instruct and train horses through his barn in Oldwick, New Jersey, recently judged his first show in Nassau, Bahamas; Following the show he taught a three-day clinic on dressage and jumping. Next, he is slated to officiate at the New Jersey Horse Trials in March and then, the Old Chatham Horse Trials in New York this summer.

He and his mother are joining together to offer a Training Solutions Clinic in April where they will evaluate horses with training problems. Drawing on their combined experience to solve each problem that may be blocking the path to success, whether it involves competing on the flat, over fences, or simply pleasure riding, Marilyn and Doug have developed a unique format to help riders learn techniques for resolving issues that prevent a horse-rider combination from achieving their full potential.  

Horse/rider combinations will be selected to reflect a variety of problems, as described on their entry blanks. In each session, the rider will demonstrate the problem he is having with his horse. Then Doug will ride the horse and comment on what he feels, while Marilyn discusses the root of the problem and offers several methods for solving it. Doug will use his riding skill and Marilyn’s training techniques to improve the horse. The rider will then remount and be coached on how to use the solution developed by Doug and Marilyn.

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