How Do This Year’s USEF Pony Medal Qualifiers Compare to Previous Winners?

Chart by Helen Chimbos.

BY Helen Chimbos

This week is an exciting week for riders and their ponies. Throughout the year, many riders’ goal is to qualify for USEF Pony Finals at The Kentucky Horse Park. In order to qualify for the USEF Pony Medal, riders needed to accumulate 30 points in Pony Medal classes from July 2, 2022 through July 1, 2023. This year, the Pony Medal Finals has 256 qualifiers competing from all twelve zones. Interested in seeing what zones have the majority of qualifiers? Let’s take a look!

Every zone has riders that contribute to the 256 Pony Medal qualifiers, but a few in particular stood out the most. The top three zones that have the most riders were Zone 2 (Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York), Zone 3 (Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and West Virginia), and Zone 4 (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Tennessee) who combined, make up over half the qualifiers. The zone with the smallest percentage of riders was Zone 6 (Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin), accounting for 1.6% of the overall qualifiers. 

Winners from the last 10 years hailed from Zones 2, 3, 4 and 7 (Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas). In the last three years, the Pony Medal Finals winner was from Zone 4. The chart shows that from 2012-2022, 40% of the Pony Medal Final winners were from Zone 4, 30% from Zone 2, 20% from Zone 3 and 10% from Zone 7.

After comparing the data from past years with this year, the popular zones of qualifiers for this year are the same three zones that were most popular from the Pony Medal Final winners over the last 10 years. Good luck to all competitors and stay tuned for more Pony Finals News from The Plaid Horse.

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 Pony Finals Green Winners 1999-2022