Lets take this blog to the next level

If you have a photo of crappy show riding, know of a jerkwad trainer or judge, or someone in the show world that is an abusive piece of shit then send the info to me. This blog is not anti-showing, it's anti-abuse. So there is no truth to the claims from the TWH, ASB, western pleasure and dressage zombies that I'm trying to shut showing down. Instead I'm trying to make showing more honest and to get abusive practices out of the showring! Email me at shameinthehorseshowring@gmail.com

I have a request for my readers: If you have successfully rehabbed a show horse, or gotten a rescue and taken it on to a show career then let me know, I'd love to feature you here!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

One seriously screwed up judge

I’ve bitched before about crooked judges. I know it evokes a lot of eye rolling and muttering about me “being a wanna be that just can’t cut it.” Those of you that think this are wrong and this judge is exactly why.

Meet Becky George, of Becky George Show Horses. Becky is not only a trainer and youth coach, but also a carded APHA judge. Sounds typical of a lot of the trainers and judges in the horse world. Becky spent a lot of time hauling horses to shows and making sure her little stable of darlings got their high points and year end awards.

Becky was showing at NSBA shows in June of this year:

She was judging in Minnisota in August.

And judging in Iowa in September

Busy judge, questionable ethics, zero good judgment.

Like most trainers sometimes Becky had a monkey wrench thrown in her plans by unexpected occurences. And like some of the people who belong to the “Those Who Can Do No Wrong Club” she decided to take things into her own hands and make sure that monkey wrench was no more than a passing annoyance.

Becky George is from Tomball, TX. Her youth client (rider A) was running for number 1 Youth 14-18 in 2007 - and her main competition was another youth competitor from Kerrville, TX (rider B). Apparently Rider A's horse had to have colic surgery and was out for a while, which allowed Rider B to surge ahead in the point standings - when Rider A's horse was finally recovered, she found herself behind in the point standings.

What next occurred was a systematic course of behavior, instigated by Becky George, to recruit other riders to block and cut Rider B’s horse off and other people to kick and bang on gates in an attempt to spook Rider B’s horse. This happened at several shows. Not only did they endanger a horse and rider by their antics, but Ms George also verbally abused and threatened Rider B. Imagine, a judge threatening and harassing a child? Sounds like something that should never ever happen. Sadly it does happen, even at National levels, even in other breed organizations.

So just how mentally screwed up do you have to be to deliberately attempt to scare a youth horse over a fricking ribbon? Evidently as screwed up as Ms. George. Remember this woman is a judge. She is supposed to have the highest integrity of any person in the horse world. The sad part is that she is just one of many corrupt judges out there, that thinks that little card gives her the right to flout the rules.

Apparently it got so bad Rider B’s father, had to hire a security guard for the horse at his stall and hire a videographer to follow Rider B everywhere at shows, in an attempt to capture Becky, Rider A or anyone else harassing, attempting to intimidate, or being ugly to Rider B.

The affidavits on this case read like a who’s who of the Paint Show World. Ms. Becky was not only harassing a youth exhibitor and getting her youth clients to participate, but she was also going after anyone else that got in her way.

Becky George killed a sale for another trainer, Adam Deardorf, at the '07 World Show, as she was pissed at Adam for giving a deposition in this case - the other depositions are from participants of, and witnesses to, the harassment. Becky called the potential buyer's trainer and told them many things that she *believed* were wrong with the horse. Vindictive? Yes, but it’s something that happens in every horse organization and at every level. I know this personally.

This bully mentality is ridiculous - and for a trainer and judge to be instigating it is amazing. Can you imagine the great lesson in sportsmanship she is teaching her youth clients? And really, do you think their parents were unaware of this? Here’s what I think: I think the parents knew, and I think they were okay with it because their little show darlings “must” be allowed to win for their self esteem and so they can be used as child trophies during the parental brag sessions at work. Parents who help their kids cheat are scum. Trainers who cheat should be banned from the organization for life. Trainers/judges that harass children should be jailed.
Seems like the APHA did decide to be proactive and they did pull Ms. George’s judges card. I doubt if it’s a life time ban, and considering what other judge’s have gotten away with and retained their cards I imagine she’ll get it back at some point.

So tell me your best worst judge stories. Just who do you know that needs to be out of the horse show arena?