Driving is the fastest growing equestrian discipline. Because of a renewed interest in this sport, driving classes are once again being offered in many shows across the country. Driving is one sport which does not discriminate by breed, size, gender, color or number of equines. Whether your interest is taking a quiet drive through the countryside or watching a skilled driver negotiate a highly athletic team of horses through a marathon hazard, the rewards are many.
Indiana Whips and Wheels, Inc. was established in 1995 to promote the sport of Carriage Driving. Through demonstrations, driving events and educational programs, IWWI offers many opportunities for novice or experienced "whips" to practice and improve their driving skills. The Indiana Combined Driving Event (ICDE) is held in the fall and draws entries from across the United States and Canada.
Combined Driving Events parallel the sport of Combined Training (Three Day Eventing) and consist of the following phases.
An assessment of the turnout, cleanliness, condition and general impression of the horses, driver, grooms, harness and vehicle traditionally judged at the halt before dressage.
Linda Sadler showing her Morgan, Fortune, in presentation
at American Heritage CDE in Port Washington, WI.
Shows driver's skill in precise rein handling and obedience along with good manners and free and regular paces of the horse(s) as the movements of a Dressage test are driven.
Linda Copeland driving her pair of warmbloods (yes, she is
driving 2 horses) at Oak Hill CDE in Lexington, VA.
Tests the speed, stamina and courage of the horse as well as the skill and judgment of the driver, as a series of hazards are negotiated over a cross-country course.
Linda Copeland, this time guiding Maxed Out through
the water hazard at Metamora CDE in Metamora, MI.
Demonstrates the ability, agility and willingness of the horse and the accurate driving skill of the driver through a series of measured cones and constructed obstacles.
Linda and Max breezing through the cones course at Indiana CDE.
The pictures below show a formal turnout complete with groom dressed in livery (left) as well as an informal turnout suitable for a beginner at the training level.
Dwayne Wanner having a go at an advanced dressage test at Indiana CDE, 2004.
Tango being driven by Virginia Goodman at the Whips & Wheels
Schooling Show in May, 2004.