Approved 28th October 2016
The Shetland Breed Societies Judges Rule Number 13 States :-
The SPS-BS seeks to ensure that all its competitions are judged fairly and that there is no bias or favouritism. This is only achievable if owners, exhibitors, riders, handlers and judges observe the following rules in the spirit they are intended.
A judge may not place in a class a pony,which to his/her knowledge has been bred, sold, leased or produced by the judge or his/her immediate family, partners, business partner or employer since 1st January of the preceding year: nor may he /she place a pony in which he/she has a financial interest since 1st January of the preceding year: nor may he/she place a stallion by whom he/she has had a mare stinted in that season.
What is the point of this rule ?
A judge would always have an interest, especially in seeing his/her own prefix doing well.
It puts the judge no matter how impartial in an awkward position.
It would look bad if a judge made a pony of their own prefix, or one that they used to have an interest in champion…… It would be embarrassing for the judge to place it last.
The rule is perfectly ok until all the that stuff about January of the preceding year
In my opinion ( and everyone else that I have talked to about it ) a judge should never be allowed to judge a pony that he/she has bred or has had an interest in… There are many reasons why this should not happen. I have yet to find any other organisation that allows it.
Rule Number 13 then goes on to explain what should happen if a pony appears in a class before the judge is allowed to judge it :-
Should a situation arise when such a pony appears, a referee, preferably on the appropriate panel of judges, should be appointed by the show secretary to place the pony in question in its position in the class, If possible, a judge may not have as their steward any person who owns a pony, has bred a pony or has any other interest, financial or otherwise, in a pony in the class being judged.
The January of the preceding year rule does not appear to apply to the Steward. This makes the rule more strict for the steward than the judge.
Shows cannot always afford the luxury of having a spare judge on stand by just in case. (just for the Shetlands ). Bringing a judge from another class causes delays, and can cause havoc with show schedules that are usually tight… Neither of these helps to encourage show organisers to affiliate to the breed society.
The whole rule could be simplified by making it the exhibitors responsibility not to enter a pony which has, or has had, connections with the judge.
I would be interested to hear comments from others… I will treat them as private and confidential. email@example.com