The Belgian Alliance’s Hitch Program is open to all members of the Belgian Corporation of America. The mission of this program is to continue to promote the Belgian horse in other disciplines and be able to recognize the top three in each category each year.  This program supports the mission of the Belgian Alliance by promoting the horse owners and the events that recognize the Belgian Horse. The Hitch program is based on an accumulation of points earned by exhibitors at various shows throughout the year. Awards are presented to the top three point earners throughout the year in an array of hitch classes. Points for each show are weighted based on the number of exhibitors.

Coming in 2024!

Please visit website and Facebook page for continued updates on the program.

State Shows:

Georgia National Fair, Idaho, Illinois State Fair, Indiana State Fair (National Belgian Show), Iowa State Fair, Kansas State Fair, Keystone International Livestock Expo, Michigan Great Lakes International, Minnesota State Fair, Missouri State Fair, New York State Fair, North American International Livestock Expo, Ohio State Fair, South Dakota State Fair, West Virginia, Wisconsin State Fair

Regional Shows:

Grange County Fair (Centre Hall, PA) LaPorte Draft Horse Show (LaPorte, IN), Mississippi Valley Fair (Davenport), Wilmington Classic (Wilmington, OH)

 

If a show is not a recognized Belgian Merit Halter Show, but offers hitch classes- the show has the opportunity to apply.

Belgian Alliance Hitch Rules:

  1. There is no entry fee necessary to participate, but you must be a member of the Belgian Corporation of America or the Canadian Belgian Horse Association.
  2. Canadian members will be recognized in the same manner as American members.
  3. It will be the responsibility of the owner or exhibitor to monitor their points through the show season on the Corporation’s website and address all concerns and questions to the Belgian Alliance immediately.

Participating Shows

  • Each state is allowed one State show and two regional shows to represent them in the Belgian Alliance – Hitch Program. In the event that the state does not have a state fair that represents the Belgian draft horse than a show can be chosen by the Belgian Draft Horse Alliance Board of Directors to represent the breed for that state.
  • If there are multiple shows in the state that have well-attended Belgian draft horse shows, these shows may complete a Belgian Alliance Hitch Program application to be presented to the Belgian Draft Horse Alliance prior to December 1st (Extended to March 1st, 2024 due to launch of program, review applicants in Spring Meeting) to be accepted as a regional show into the Belgian Alliance Hitch Program the following year. The show must meet the following criteria:
    • Must maintain an index level of 3 for 2 years out of 3 years. If you do not achieve this, the Hitch Program show status will be pulled until the show can provide a revised plan and show success at maintaining the requirement.
      • *Barring unforeseen circumstances, it is the discretion of the Belgian Alliance to determine if the two out of three-year guideline would be extended*
    • Show must be open and unrestricted to all registered and grade Belgians.
  • Following are the current recognized State shows:
    • Georgia National Fair, Idaho State Draft Horse Show, Illinois State Fair, Indiana State Fair, Iowa State Fair, Kansas State Fair, Keystone International Livestock Exposition, Michigan Great Lakes International Show, Minnesota State Fair, Mississippi Valley Fair, Missouri State Fair, Nebraska State Fair, New York State Fair, North American International Livestock Exposition, Ohio State Fair, South Dakota State Fair, West Virginia State Fair, Wisconsin State Fair
  • Following are the current recognized Regional shows:
    • Grange County Fair (PA)
    • La Porte County Draft Horse Show (IN)
    • Mississippi Valley (IA)
    • Wilmington Classic (OH)
  • Shows that are supported by the Belgian Alliance will be recognized shows:
    • National Belgian Show
    • North American Belgian Championships

Hitch Points Awarded

  1. The first five participating exhibitors of each class will get the following awarding of raw points:
    • 1st gets 10 points
    • 2nd gets 7 points
    • 3rd gets 5 points
    • 4th gets 3 points
    • 5th gets 2 points

Additional points can be awarded if there is a Gelding/Mare Six as well as a combined Six Horse Hitch. If all three are supported by a show, the Combined Six will be awarded in the following manner:

    • 1st gets 5 points
    • 2nd gets 4 points
    • 3rd gets 3 points
    • 4th gets 2 points
    • 5th gets 1 point
  1. The following fifteen classes will be recognized:
    • Ladies Cart
    • Men’s Cart
    • Mare Team
    • Open Team
    • Mare Unicorn
    • Open Unicorn
    • Mare Four
    • Open Four
    • Mare Six
    • Open Six
  1. If a show has Open classes instead of the mare or gelding split, the points will count in their respective categories.  
  2. Classes can be combined breed classes if the show indicates the horses that were Belgians.
  3. These overall raw points will then be multiplied by the index of the show to give the hitch the total points earned at that show.
  4. Index multipliers are determined by the number of hitches shown in the classes (not the number entered) at that show that year. The index of the show will not be known until the completion of the show.
  5. The index is determined as follows:
    • Index of 7 if 31 and above exhibitors represented
    • Index of 6 if 26 to 30 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 5 if 19 to 25 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 4 if 13 to 18 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 3 if 8 to 12 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 2 if 4 to 7 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 1 if 1 to 3 exhibitors represented
Riding Class Points Awarded
  1. The first five animals of each class will get the following awarding of raw points:
    • 1st gets 10 points
    • 2nd gets 7 points
    • 3rd gets 5 points
    • 4th gets 3 points
    • 5th gets 2 points
  2. The following two riding classes will be recognized:
    • English Riding
    • Western Riding
      • Either class can be ridden by a man or woman.
  3. Classes can be combined breed classes as long as the show indicates the horses that were Belgians.
  4. These overall raw points will then be multiplied by the index of the show to give the animal the total points earned at that show.
  5. If an exhibitor has two entries in the class, the exhibitor must have two applications to participate with rider information. If only one application is submitted, the highest point winner will be awarded points for that exhibitor.
  6. Index multiplies are determined by the number of exhibitors shown in the riding classes (not the number entered) at that show that year. The index of the show will not be known until the completion of the show.
  7. The index is determined as follows:
    • Index of 7 if 31 and above exhibitors represented
    • Index of 6 if 26 to 30 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 5 if 19 to 25 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 4 if 13 to 18 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 3 if 8 to 12 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 2 if 4 to 7 exhibitors represented
    • Index of 1 if 1 to 3 exhibitors represented

Show Season

  1. The show season will run from January 1st to November 25th of each year.
  2. As soon as the points are received by the Belgian Draft Horse Alliance and tallied, they will be posted on the Corporation’s website for viewing. No additions or changes will be accepted after the Friday following NAILE.
  3. It is the responsibility of the owner or exhibitor to proof their points as they go through the show season and address any concerns or questions to the Alliance immediately. Results furnished with “entry” rather than the name of the exhibitor will not be listed.

Recognition

  1. The recognition of the top three exhibitors for each class will be done at the annual meeting of the Belgian Draft Horse Corporation.
  2. The exhibitor will receive an award & recognition for gold, silver, or bronze.
  3. The gold, silver, and bronze winners for each class will be featured in the Belgian publications.
  4. In the event of a tie, it will be broken by adding the total points earned at shows where the two exhibitors were shown against each other and the exhibitor with the most points will be declared the winner of the tie. If the tie cannot be broken by this method both exhibitors will be recognized as a true tie and awarded in a similar manner.

Recording of Points

  1. The points for the current year will be recorded and tallied on the Corporation website for viewing and inspection.

Premier Hitch Exhibitor

  1. Premier Exhibitor Award: Awarded annually to the exhibitor with high point in all Belgian Alliance Hitch program categories. 
  2. In the event of a tie, both exhibitors will be recognized as a true tie and awarded in a similar manner