Here's another kind of tack "mistake" that doesn't bother me when I'm judging a performance class.
It may not be obvious on first glance, but look carefully at that browband. It's sitting beneath the point where the throatlatch splits from the cheekpiece. This is a not a standard arrangement, and there are some performance judges who will take exception to anything that falls outside the normal range.Needless to say, I am not one of those judges. Positioning the browband in this manner does not interfere with the function of the bridle. Instead, it creates a little bit of extra space for the horse's ears. That might not be a big deal for most horses, but if you've got one that's extra sensitive, it can be a life saver. Note that Matt also wears his bridle number on the saddle blanket. That's another accommodation for a horse with ear issues.
Tack issues like this just don't matter in the real world. What matters is performance...
and despite his funky browband arrangement, Matt--who shows under his registered name, Haidaseeker Playboy--is a top competitor.Let me be clear--I'm not suggesting that performance showers set out to use mismatched tack or bridles that are assembled "incorrectly". It's always better to get things as close to "perfect" as possible. However, as a judge, I'm not going to throw out a superior entry because of minor tack errors. As long as it's safe and functional, it's fine by me.