"When you win two beautiful LONGINES watches in two days; it was a pleasure to give one to Alan to share the success, given how much Alan and grooms like him do behind the scenes for all of us riders. As I’ve always said; team work makes all the dreams work."
Driving News on Horsesdaily.com
Combined driving is designed to test a driver's ability & the horse(s)' control, speed and athleticism, in three demanding phases with a carriage in tow: Driven Dressage, Marathon & Cones.
The sport, conceptualized by HRH Prince Phillip, is modeled after the mounted equestrian discipline of three-day eventing or, the human equivalent of a triathlon.
Competitors can drive a turnout of a single horse, a pair of horses, or a team of four horses. The driver/horse(s) combination will accumulate penalty points throughout each phase of competition & the competitor with the fewest overall penalty points will place first. Accuracy, speed and endurance are all a necessary part of this exhilarating sport!
Phase one - Driven Dressage
The driven dressage phase tests the driver & their horse(s) on harmony, impulsion, ease of movement and suppleness through a sequence of scored movements in an arena.
Phase two - The Marathon
Typically, the second phase is the fast-paced and demanding cross-country marathon. The marathon tests a horse’s fitness, stamina, and agility along with a driver’s accuracy and judgment as they navigate an intricate series of hazards which will include water, steep hills, and sharp turns - all within the fastest time possible.
Phase Three - Cones
The last phase, the cones course, times the competitor while they accurately negotiate an intricate, winding course of narrowly-set cones without knocking them with the carriage wheels.
While combined driving is a technical and demanding sport, it can be enjoyed by people of any age, and with any breed of horses or ponies.
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