Showing, Memberships and Awards How To

We know that signing up for shows for the first time can be complicated, confusing and frustrating.  We’ve put together this page of information to help ease the process of showing either Dressage or Eventing.  Please check out all the resources below as well as check out some of your options for awards programs to join.

Memberships Required for Showing


For showing recognized Dressage each person associated with the ride (rider, trainer/coach, horse owner) will need memberships.  If the owner and rider are the same (you own your horse), duplicate memberships are not needed.  If the owner and the trainer/coach are the same, duplicate memberships are not needed (example: Brenda owns the horse).

For ease of your entries, Brenda has memberships to all: USEF #215778, USDF #52833,  CDS #C51071.

USEF – Competing Membership – required.  You will also be required to do Safe Sport Training when you joing USEF.  You will declare your status with USEF (Amateur card).

California Dressage Society – CDS will get you a Group Membership to USDF.  So you do not have to buy USDF membership unless you want scores to count towards medals and rider awards.
USDF – Participating Membership or Youth Participating Membership (You will need this if you want to qualify for any awards with USDF like your USDF Medals, All Breeds, Year End Awards, Horse Awards, etc).

Horse Memberships – Your horse will need UDSF and USEF numbers.

USDF – Horse Recording Number or Lifetime Number.  I suggest lifetime as it makes you eligible for all awards.  And you don’t have to renew it.  Your horse has a number most likely if it has ever shown.

USEF – I suggest lifetime if you plan on showing more than one year.  Check to see if the horse already has a number.  You can pay for this online once you have your USEF membership under your Membership Dashboard.  If you are adding a new horse, you can scroll down until you see the tile that says “Add New Horse” with a plus sign, and fill out the application.

You can also just pay the penalty for not having memberships if you only want to do a couple of shows (or just do opportunity classes…which is like a schooling class), but if you want to do rated classes and get scores for medals, you will have to do all the memberships.


Coming soon


Dressage Entries

Dressage Entries are done via EQEntries.   You can also enter via paper prize lists, but you will be charged extra and will have to worry about time more.

For your entry you will need:
– The USEF Entry Agreement and the USEF Waiver/Release signed by owner, trainer and rider per horse.  These are updated usually once a year.
– Your horse’s vaccination record (within 6 months of show).
– Facility release is applicable (check prize list for show).
– Horse numbers for USDF / USEF.
– Rider numbers for USDF / USEF / CDS.
– Trainer numbers for USDF / USEF / CDS.
– Owner numbers for USDF / USEF / CDS.
– Contact information for Rider, Trainer and Owner.
– Emergency Contact.
– Safe Sport Training complete for Owner, Trainer and Rider each year.

If you have questions about using EQEntries, they have a super helpful FAQ page that explains everything.

For seeing ride times and results during the show, you can check on Fox Village.

Eventing Entries

Coming Soon

Ownership Transfers and Leases

Ownership Transfers

It is very important that before you go to show your horse, you have all your paperwork done as it can lead to scores not counting.

If you have bought a horse and haven’t had the ownership transferred over for your organizations, you will need to do that well in advance of showing your horse as it’s not a quick process.  You will need the previous recorded owner to do some footwork for you, so doing this when you purchase a horse is certainly easier than trying to get it done months or years later.

USDF Horse Ownership Transfers
USEF Horse Ownership Transfers – can be done online now.  Instructions on the link.
USEA Horse Ownership Transfers


Lease Recording

You don’t have to record a lease.  If you do, it labels you as the owner with the org for the term of the lease  (must give an end date) and there is a charge for recording the lease.  If more than one person is showing the horse (you and the owner), don’t record the lease.  If you are full leasing and don’t have the option of the owner signing up for memberships, you can record a lease if it makes your life easier.  If your horse owner is happy to pay the memberships or are showing themselves, that is usually the easier option.  There is a fee for Lease Recording per year and you have to do it with both orgs below if you intend to record a lease, so you don’t save much money by not going the membership route for the owner.


Awards Programs

Jockey Club TIP – Great award program for Thoroughbreds with year end awards and show awards.

USDF Rider Awards – Includes USDF Medals, Freestyle Bars, Performance Awards, etc.  These are based on scores over time.  You will need to apply for the award once you accomplish the scores necessary.

USDF All Breeds – Yearly awards based on your score median for your Breed Registry.  You need to declare your horse for All Breeds with their Breed Organization by August 1.  You need 8 scores with a median of 60% to qualify for the year (per level).  Each Breed Organization has different forms to fill out and fees required to apply for All Breeds awards, so check out your horse’s registry organization listed here to learn more.

USDF Year End Awards – You don’t need to do anything for these.  If you get high enough scores, you might get an award, but it’s highly competitive.

USDF Horse Performance Certificates – similar to the USDF Medal program but for horses, and more requirements.

USDF Youth Dressage Rider Recognition Pin Program

Breed Organization Awards – Some Breed Organizations offer Awards Programs if your horse is registered with them.  Check out your Breed Organization (Jockey Club, American Warmblood Society, Arabian, American Hanoverian, etc) to see if there is an awards program.  Each has different methods of applying for the program. You’re missing out on fun and sometimes lucrative awards depending on your Breed Organization.

CDS Gem Award – similar to the USDF Medal program except the levels are a little different.  You will need to apply for the award once you accomplish the scores necessary.

CDS Plate – You don’t need to do anything for these except call and order your plate for each year.  1 plate per horse per year, each score over 60% will be noted for the level.

CDS Sport Horse Award – similar to the USDF Medal program but for horses, and more requirements.

CDS Pony Award – high point per show for ponies.

USEF Awards – USEF doesn’t have any specific Dressage or Eventing awards.

USEA Leaderboard – based on points earned at USEA recognized competitions throughout the calendar year.

USEA Certificates and Blue Ribbon Program

USEA Medal Program