2021 Arizona Driving Trial Series

This page contains information on what our AZ Driving Trail entails, as well as specific information about 2021 scheduled events. NOTE: Entry for ADT 2 is now available.

SCHEDULED EVENTS - when information is available, the link below will be filled with color:


Arizona Driving Trial

ADT stands for Arena Driving Trial, but for ADCS, it stands for Arizona Driving Trial as we have adapted some of the ADS rules to better serve us. This is usually an informal one day competition with most of the elements of a 3 day combined driving event (CDE). The Judge and TD are sometimes more advanced drivers, rather than rated officials. The idea is to keep costs down, while providing opportunities for learning and practice for our membership. 


A dressage test is driven, a cones course is negotiated, and finally, several hazards or obstacles complete the event. There is no full fledged marathon section. The "in the obstacle" times count for all levels, except Green Drivers at Training Level. There are usually fewer hazards/obstacles compared to a CDE.  If set in an arena, there may only be two obstacles, driven twice. If at a site with permanent obstacles, usually only four are used.


The ADCS usually holds a series of six ADT competitions each year. They are at various locations throughout the state. The club tracks points earned based on the results of each individual ADT,  and awards Year End Awards in each class, through 6th place. Club members must compete with the same equine, at the same level, in two ADT events to be eligible for a year end award. Up to four placings will be used in the point totals – fewer if fewer are attended. 


An awards banquet is held after the final ADT of the series. Usually, it is held in conjunction with the yearly Christmas Party and General Meeting. See the CLUB CALENDAR in the Menu for any upcoming ADT events. The event information page will have the Entry Form and event particulars approximately one month prior; one week prior, the Hazard and Cones maps are posted for download.


For the most recent copy of our ADT rules, classes offered, and year end points> ADCS – ADT Rules



Precision part of the competition...


Really fun!.


Very Exciting!




ADS (the American Driving Society) as well as FEI (International Equestrian Federaton) have designed a series of tests for each level of driver. Tests are driven in a specified size arena that is usually 40 X 80 or 40 X 100 meters. Sometimes a smaller size is used for very small equine (VSE-39 inches and less). ADCS commonly uses a 30 X 60 meter arena for VSE.


Tests include an enter down centerline at the trot, halt and salute the judge, trot and walk circles of various sizes in both directions at particular spots in the arena, working trot and lengthened trot down sidelines or across the diagonal, and a final halt and salute. The exact pattern and order of elements will change with each test and depending on what level the test is. Some Intermediate and FEI level tests include a canter. 


Examples of Driven Dressage tests can be found at the ADS website. (a link to dressage tests is in the footer)


In addition to Dressage at an ADT, ADCS offers judged dressage tests as part of our Pleasure Show, and has at times offered Dressage only competitions.



CONES COURSE - Part 2 of an ADT

A Cones Course is a really fun part of a combined driving event. Course length ranges from 500 to 800 meters, depending on the area available for setting up the course. A course may contain up to 20 elements, the most common of which is a set of cones with a ball set atop each cone. Each element is numbered, with a red number on the right of the desired direction of travel, and a white number on the left side. The numbers indicate the order in which each of the obstacles is to be driven.


After the whistle sounds, the driver passes through the start gate (in the correct direction) and proceeds to drive through the numbered obstacles in the correct direction and order, then passes through the out gate. Time on course is taken. Depending on the level of the driver and the size of the equine, there is a specified allowed time for each entry. If the time on course is within the allowed time, no time penalties are given. If a driver is over the allowed time, then time penalties are figured at .5 penalties for for each second over the allowed time. In addition, one or both balls down at an obstacle adds 3 penalties to the score.


Each entry has the track width of their wheels measured. Then depending on the level and horse size, a value is added to that track width, and the course is adjusted to that value; i.e., the distance between the cones making up each obstacle is adjusted to the setting for that driver. This way, drivers in the same class with different sized carriages, all have the same amount of clearance in an obstacle for their vehicle.


In addition to cones driving at an ADT, ADCS offers various cones competitions as a part of our Pleasure Show.


Monica Phillips and Miss America

driving a cones course.



OBSTACLES - Part 3 of an ADT

Obstacles is the preferred term, but this part of an ADT is also referred to as "hazards." In a CDE, the obstacles are the last portion of the Marathon Course. In an ADT, this is the only portion of the marathon that is used.


An Obstacle is comprised of a series of “gates” that are set up in a defined area that may have natural elements like trees, or man made fences, upright poles, barrels, barriers made from other objects, and so forth. The gates are lettered A through E. A red letter goes on the right side of a gate, and a white letter on the left side, to show the required direction of travel (red must be on the right to pass through a gate in the correct direction), and to define the sides of the “gate.”


The level of the competitor determines which of the gates must be negotiated correctly. Training Level is required to do A, B, and C, for instance. There is also an “In” and an “Out” and time is taken in the obstacle as the horse nose breaks the “In” gate, and until the nose passes the “Out” gate. For the time to count, all required gates must be taken in the correct order (A, then B, then C) and in the correct direction. Gates become “dead” after they are driven correctly, and may consequently be redriven in any direction to get to the next required gate. Corrections of course may be made, but add penalty points to the score. Usually, an ADT uses four Obstacles, or may use two and drive them twice.


The elasped time in all Obstacles is converted to penalty points by multiplying the time by .25. Penalties in Obstacles are added to the scores for the other parts of an ADT to determine a final penalty score. Should an Obstacle be driven incorrectly (a gate is missed or driven in the wrong direction-and no correction is made) the competitor is eliminated and they do not place in the competition.

Here is an Obstacle using posts and rails sections to make the "gates."


INFORMATION FOR 2021 ADT #1 AT Apache Junction Rodeo Grounds

Event Date: ADT #1  Saturday, February 20, 2021 

All the information and downloads for this event are on this page. You must scroll down to find everything:

See Results 


Rodeo Park Event Center
1590 E. Lost Dutchman Blvd.
Aerial photo     Get Directions    Park Rules   Grounds Map

Dressage Judge for ADT #1: Cynthia Ganem, who has judged for us the past few years at A.J.


Cones Judge: Mike Self


Technical Delegate: Trish Demers

Dressage Tests for this event: 

These new tests show the pattern from "C," the judge's view. If you are an ADS member, you can go to the ADS website and download the tests with the view from "A."  Training Test B diagram  Training Test B Written Directives;  Preliminary Test B diagram  Preliminary Test B WrittenDirectives;  Intermediate Test B diagram  Intermediate B Directives.


(On a smart phone, files may appear on the bottom of the page, not in this section.)

      Safety Check Sheet   To be turned in at Safety check/wheel measurement.


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Obstacle Maps (Hazards) 

     Cones Course


INFORMATION FOR 2021 ADT #2 AT Apache Junction Rodeo Grounds

No public will be allowed in, and participants are asked to keep their helpers to the minimum needed, and to not bring or encourage spectators, unless they sign up to be volunteers. All entering the grounds will be required to sign a general event liability/covid release which will give us contact information for tracking, should it become necessary. Please submit that form via Online, to limit contact. Combination Covid/Event Liability Form    AJ Mitigation Plan (dated for ADT 1, but still applies.)

Event Date: ADT #2  Saturday, March 27, 2021  See who has entered to date.

Masks are required anytime the 6 foot minimum distance is not possible. Please bring your own masks.

Everyone entering the site must also submit a combination Covid/Event Liability Waiver online. Please use this LINK.



Rodeo Park Event Center
1590 E. Lost Dutchman Blvd.
Aerial photo     Get Directions    Park Rules   Grounds Map-this is ADT 1, but should be similar
Holding pens available for overnighting your horse, but are limited to approx. 20 animals. Pens are uncovered. Overnight camping on the grounds is permitted for this event for Friday night only. Those coming in on Friday are asked to arrive after 12 noon Friday, as organizers will be busy setting up that morning and unavailable for check in.

Entry Forms: Entry Form now available. Entries will close March 19th (entries must be received). We do need to limit entries to a number that will allow us to be cleaned up and out of the facility by 4 or 5 pm, due to a city activity there that evening. Based on ADT #1, that will be 25 entries, unless we come up with a way to allow more. A waiting list will be kept if capacity is reached, so we may allow more entries if the time limit changes. Unfortunately, the new Dressage tests take more time than the older tests.


  1. Download this Entry Form pdf, fill it out and mail with a check to the event organizer listed on the entry form.

  2. Use this Online Enter Only Form and mail your check to arrive by the deadline.

  3. Enter and also pay online with the Enter & Pay Form. Note: The Online pay form seems to now be fixed, but it no longer adds up your total and shows it on the submit button. You will now need to add that yourself and enter it on the Grand Total line.

Driving Directions: see above under Location

Event Organizer: Peggy Jaeger and Dana Moore.  Use this link to E-mail Peggy (may not work for all)

Want to Volunteer? Approximately 15 volunteers are needed to help run this event.  

Use this contact link to volunteer or ask for more information about volunteering.


Food on Site: No. Several miles to the closest fast food establishments, so best to bring a bag lunch.


Start Time/Schedule: 1st Dressage Test is set for 8:00 am; Check in with TD for Safety Check at least 15 min. prior to test time and bring your completed Safety Check List. Report to the Cones Course immediately after your dressage test. Obstacles begins after the volunteer lunch break which starts when cones finishes. Guessing by 2 pm.  Should we have extra volunteers, Obstacles could start sooner. 

Dressage Judge for ADT #2: Vivian Creigh, Tucson. FEI Driver and experienced judge. Also a new club member and new to Arizona.


Cones Judge: TBA


Technical Delegate: Trish Demers


Stabling: See above under Location.


Shavings: If desired, bring your own, but most of the pens are very large.

Dressage Tests for this event: Many who attended ADT #1 expressed interest in doing the same tests again, so we will, with the exception of the Intermediate Test. Ring size for all will be 40 X 80, unless we reach event capacity and have a large number of VSE entries. We may then decide to have VSE use a 30 X 60 to try to save some time. VSE entries would be notified ahead of time if we change their ring size. 


These new ADS tests show the pattern from "C," the judge's view. If you are an ADS member, you can go to the ADS website and download the tests with the view from "A."  

Training Test B: Diagram   Written Directives    (Movement 6 is Times 2)

Preliminary Test B: Diagram  WrittenDirectives  (Movement 6 is Times 2)

Intermediate Test A: Diagram    Written Directives  (Movement 9 is Times 2)

For all tests, leave the arena at a trot.

Fees if paying by check: Entry fee for ADT is $60. Stall fee is $5 per pen for stabling overnight on Friday and/or using a pen on Saturday. Those paying online are charged extra to cover the processing and transaction fees, which are not refundable. There is no show from trailer fee, and no dry camping fee at this site. No electrical is available.

ADCS Refund Policy for This Event: If you scratch after Close of Entries, any refunds, if requested, are at the discretion of the organizers. Any online processing fees associated with the entry can not be refunded. "No Shows" the day of the event will receive no refund. Cancelation before the close of entries, will get a full refund less the online processing fees if you paid Online.

FILES FOR ADT #2 - ADDED AS AVAILABLE (please print off your own copies):

(On a smart phone, files may appear on the bottom of the page, not in this section.)

      Safety Check Sheet   To be turned in at Safety check/wheel measurement.


      Obstacle Maps (Hazards) 

      Cones Course

      Dressage Schedule - Posted here when Final. Tentative emailed to drivers. 

Just some reminders about downloads/printing copies. The browser you use, and the device, affects how these files appear and the quality. With some, when you click on the file, only a screen view will appear, which may not be the best quality. Better quality results from actually downloading the file to your computer before printing. Again, the browser may determine how you get the file to your computer. Some have a small window with a download icon that will appear if you hover over the bottom of the screen view with your cursor. Others require going to the FILE menu at the top of your computer screen and using the "export as pdf" under that drop down menu. Some browsers may download the file to your computer just by clicking on the file and to view the file you will have to open it on your computer. This requires knowing the destination of your downloads on your computer, which can usually be set through your browser's preferences.


(Will appear here as entries come in.)

Training Single VSE

JoAnne Souza           Dennis

Avery Talbott            Cheezit

Loralea Daniel          Simon

Training Multiples VSE

JoAnne Souza           Sterling/Chardonnay

Preliminary Single VSE

Priscilla Smedley       Dream

Priscilla Smedley      Wakita

JoAnne Souza          Joker

Susan Passe             Jester

Kelly Talbott             Toula

Lisa Schultz              Trigger

Training Single Horse

Rolanda Smedley     Renegade

Melanie Sweeney     Legado

Preliminary Single Small Pony

Rita Self                    Max

Preliminary H&P Multiples

Dana Redford         Roadster/Hotrod

Marcia Fetherston  Diamond/Diva

Intermediate Single Horse

Julie Mitchell          A Soldier's Moment (Cadet)

Intermediate Single Pony

Rita Self                 Zoey


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2021 ADT #3 At Atonna's in Paulden

Event Information

Location: Atonna's in Paulden

Date: Saturday, May 15th, 2020.   


Dressage Judge: Lois Whittington 

Technical Delegate: Gary Gang


Dressage Tests: Test A at all levels. See below for links to the tests.

Entry Form: Check back, should be available by early April



Dressage Tests: Training Test A: Diagram   Written Directives  (Movement 8 is Times 2)

                                Preliminary Test A:   Diagram   Written Directives  (Movement 7 is Times 2)

                         Intermediate Test A:  Diagram  Written Directives  (Movement 9 is Times 2)  

For all tests, leave arena at a TROT.   

Please let the webmaster know if the links to the above Dressage Tests on the ADS site should happen to expire.


Safety Check List Form (pdf)  DOWNLOAD     Turn in this form at your Safety Check.       

Cones Map and Obstacle Diagrams (links will be active 1 week prior)

Cones Map   Obstacle 1   Obstacle 2   Obstacle 3   Obstacle 4

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