Pony Club competitive rallies provide an opportunity to demonstrate proficiency in an atmosphere of cooperation, fun and teamwork. A competitive rally allows Pony Club members to test their skills against others. In addition, rallies are educational experiences that expose participants to new ideas and ways of doing things.
Competitive rallies can be unmounted, as in Quiz, where teams of four members compete in a verbal quiz. Other USPC rallies are mounted, involving teams of three, four or five riders and, in most disciplines, an unmounted Horse Manager.
Rallies are an opportunity for members to put into practice all that they have learned, both riding and horse management skills. Teams are responsible for themselves and their mounts. Parents, trainers and coaches are not allowed in the barn. Supervision is provided by knowledgeable volunteers, called Horse Managment Judges, who are available to answer questions, do safety checks before members leave the barn with their mounts, turn back checks after the members have ridden, and to judge the teams on their overall organization and Horse Managment skills
Rallies can be small and informal, such as a rally for D-level members within a single club or center, or they can be inter-club/center competitions. Or rallies can be larger and more formal, such as regional rallies.
In a regional rally, teams of Pony Club members from a particular area test their
skills without outside help, but with the advice and support of judges and officials. Teamwork, cooperation and high standards are stressed
and outside assistance is limited to coaching in restricted situations.
Some regions hold rallies for each discipline (i.e. a Dressage rally in addition to an Eventing rally and a Quiz rally) while others hold one large rally for several disciplines.
Pony Club competitive rallies teach members about themselves, about support and reliance on others, about sportsmanship, and about personal growth involved in winning and losing.
The culmination of these rallies is a USPC National Championship competition. Each year, clubs and centers may participate in regional rallies in Eventing, Dressage, Show Jumping, Quiz, Games, Polocrosse and Tetrathlon. Championships are held each year. Championships may be held in the East and/or West. Team competitions in each of the disciplines take place over a period of several days. Championships attract regional teams from all over the country!