For the first time a new format for judging the freestyle has been tested at an international dressage competition on Sunday 28 June 2015. At the CDI Fritzens, Katrina Wüst's Degree of Difficulty format for judging the freestyle went into its first practical testing phase.
Wüst first presented her Degree of Difficulty format at the 2013 Global Dressage Forum, but ever since it's been quiet about the development and implementation of the system. Wust developed the program together with programmer and dressage rider Daniel Göhlen. Riders have to hand in their choreography beforehand and are scored on the degree of difficulty of the movements and floorplan. Riders can choose from a catalogue of possible movements and achieve bonus points for particularly difficult movements.
"The catalogue of difficulties is a means to create more transparancy in the scoring," Wüst said at the 2013 GDF according to St. Georg. "The basic requirements for the freestyle are according to the FEI like a car without options and many riders just don't know how to increase their scores via a degree of difficulty and which movements are standard. In the past judges also did not have enough consideration for the often high difficult transitions between movements and only looked at the execution of the movements. The harmony of the ride, however, is still the most important thing."
At the 2015 CDI Fritzens the first testing phase commenced. The freestyle was judged the "normal" way as well with Wüst's new system. The scores will be compared and analysed in the next few weeks.
Trond Asmyr considers the test a success. "We had a successful, technical test of the new judging system at the Schindlhof. It was very interesting to be one of the judges to test the newly designed system and to conclude that it worked well," he said.
The actual implementation of the system will not take place before 2017. "At the Olympic Games the judges will be work according to the old system but it could be possible that the first Grand Prix freestyles will be judged with the new system at some CDI's. We are first concerned to implement the system at Grand Prix level and later one we can develop it for the lower levels," said Asmyr.
Source: St. Georg
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