Home Understanding the Versatility World Championship Competition

Understanding the Versatility World Championship Competition

With the added money in this year’s Versatility World Grand Championship competition, there has been a renewed interest in participating in the classes.  With that interest has come some questions regarding how the Versatility World Grand Champion title is awarded.

The Versatility World Grand Champion competition is not a specific class, but rather a grouping of classes that make up a hi-point competition the results in the awarding of a World Grand Champion title.  In addition, there are sub-competitions that award Hi-Point awards in specific grouping of classes.

Hi-Point Competition

There are three categories of versatility competition outlined in the MFTHBA Rule Book:  Versatility Pleasure Horse, Versatility Work Horse and Versatility Speed Horse.  These three areas have their own set of classes that feed into their Hi-point award.

Versatility Pleasure Horse includes Showmanship, Western Pleasure and English Pleasure.  Versatility Working Horse includes Reining, Western Horsemanship, and Trail.  Versatility Speed Horse includes Barrel Race, Stake Race and Pole Bending.

In each area, hi-point awards are presented for Open, Open Amateur and Youth.  These three competition areas feed into the overall Versatility World Grand Championship.

This year a fourth hi-point competition was added.  The Versatility 2 gait hi-point incorporates the two gait classes added to the versatility schedule. Only one overall hi-point will be awarded in this area (i.e. it will not be separated into Open, Open Amateur, etc.).  This one is outside the MFTHBA rule book and therefore classes under this hi-point competition do not go toward the overall Versatility World Grand Championship title.

Based on this year’s schedule, the following classes will apply to the hi-point competitions:

Versatility Pleasure Horse

Showmanship:  Classes 1 and 2

Western Pleasure:  Classes 3 and 4

English Pleasure:  Classes 9 and 10


Versatility Working Horse

Reining:  Class 8

Western Horsemanship:  Class 6 and 7

Trail:  Classes 26 and 27


Versatility Speed Horse

Barrel Race:  Classes 28 and 29

Pole Bending:  Classes 30 and 31

Stake Race: Classes 32 and 33


On the entry form, riders will indicate whether they are an Open or Open Amateur rider.  While the classes are combined, points will be calculated independently. This will allow the awarding of an Open Hi-Point winner and Open Amateur Hi-Point winner in each category.  Youth exhibitors have separate classes except for Reining.  In the Reining class, their points will also be counted independently.

The new 2-Gait Hi-Point competition will include classes 1, 5, 11, and 25.  If an exhibitor competes for the Open, Open Amateur or Youth Hi-Point awards, they are not eligible to compete for the 2-Gait Hi-Point award.

Versatility World Grand Championship

To be eligible for the Versatility World Grand Championship title, a horse must place in the top

10 in at least one three gait class in the Pleasure Horse division (i.e. either Western Pleasure or English Pleasure).  In addition, the horse must compete in at least one class in all three divisions (Pleasure Horse, Working Horse and Speed).

An Open, Open Amateur and Youth World Grand Champion top 5 will be named with each horse receiving payback money.  Like the Hi-Point awards, points in combined classes will be accrued separately.  Open riders will accrue points toward the Open Versatility World Grand Champion title and Open Amateur riders will accrue points toward the Open Amateur Versatility World Grand Champion title.

The point system for the scoring is an escalating scale with the more horses in the class making the available points awarded higher.