World Championships

In alternating years, the international Icelandic Horse community comes together in Europe to hold the World Championships competition. Each FEIF member association sends a team of horses and riders to find the best in the world. The competition includes Sport classes and Breeding evaluations. The 2019 World Championships are taking place in Berlin, Germany, from August 4th through August 14th.

More information is available on the host association's web site

Even if you don't have any interest in participating as a rider, please consider joining us in Germany. The US Team appreciates friendly faces in the audience. This is a great opportunity to see top Icelandic Horses and meet people from around the world who share your interest in the Icelandic Horse.

How many riders can the US send to the World Championships?

The team may be composed of 7 riders and up to 5 additional youth riders. If fewer than 7 adult riders choose to attend the Championships then youth riders may be included in the first 7 spots.

Who selects the team?

The Sport Leader, Asta Covert , will make the formal team selection solely based on the video tryout marks given by the judge hired to evaluate the riders.

How are the riders selected?

The team will be selected by computing the average score of each riders best results in the required tests. (See the "Requirements" below.) In the case of a tie that involves U.S. citizens residing abroad, who do not have scores in the National Ranking, any tie shall be broken by comparing that rider's World Ranking scores against those of other riders with whom they may be tied following the video competition. For greater clarity, the scores of a US resident rider derived from either the National Ranking or the World Ranking, whichever are higher, may be used to break a tie. In the case on a Non-resident rider, the scores from the World Ranking system may be submitted to break a tie. All riders who reach the minimum score will be considered as alternates in the event that one of the team chooses not to attend the Championships. The riders selected to the team will have until 2 weeks prior to the first paper work filing date with FEIF to withdraw from the team.

When will the team be announced?

The results of the tryouts will be published on the web site and the riders will be notified by email on June 10th, 2019.

How much does it cost to tryout?

Each test ridden will cost $60.00.

If you are a rider looking for feedback but not planning to try out for the team...

You are still welcome to submit a video of your riding. Your performance will be critiqued and you'll receive the judge's comments and marks to help improve your riding.

The cost to ride for scores only is $30.00 per test ridden.

Riders looking for feedback may send a video or DVD.

If you are a rider interested in trying out for the US team. . .

Please review the following requirements and recommendations for eligibility to try out for the US Team for the World Championships.


  1. Riders must meet all current FEIF Sport Rules requirements including being US citizens or holders of green cards for at least one year from the first day of the World Championships.
  2. Riders must be members in good standing of the United States Icelandic Horse Congress for at least one year before the tryout entry deadline, May 27, 2019.
  3. Riders must be ranked in either the World Rankings or US National Rankings in all their tests of choice for the World Championships tryouts.
  4. Each horse may only be used by one rider in the tryouts.
  5. The horse must be registered in the United States if the tryout (live or by video) takes place in the United States. If the horse is European, it must have a FEIF ID Number.
  6. Riders must submit proof their horse is microchipped.
  7. Riders must pay the appropriate fees.
  8. Riders must qualify by achieving the scores used to compete at the "master" level in Iceland: T1 6.5, V1 6.2, T2 6.2, F1 6.0.
  9. Riders who make the team are allowed to compete in any event at the World Championships as long as the event was ridden in the tryouts. Riders who qualify in F1 may ride any pace event at the Championships.
  10. Riders must qualify on the horse they will take to the World Championships.
  11. Everyone interested in trying out will submit a video of their ranked test by the deadline along with a tryout application. Tryout videos must be made no earlier than March 12, 2019.
  12. The riders may use a different horse in each test.
  13. Only one rider may ride any one horse for the team selection process.

Highly Recommended But Not Required

The purpose of these recommendations to the USIHC members is to help them be as prepared as possible for this level of competition.

  1. Attend Shows.
    You should attempt to compete in a minimum of two (2) shows with a FEIF International judge between the World Championships (2 years) and compete in a minimum of two (2) of the following disciplines: either Four Gait or Five Gait and either T?lt 1 or T?lt 2.
  2. Attend FEIF Youth Cup.
    If you are a youth rider you should make an effort, if possible, to attend the FEIF Youth Cup.
  3. Locate a trainer.
    You should locate a riding teacher educated in the gaits of the Icelandic Horse either here in the U.S., Iceland, or Europe where you can travel periodically and take a week or so of training during the 2-year interim period between the World Championships.
  4. Locate a competition horse.
    If you do not have a quality competition horse, there are a number of Icelandic Horse owners/breeders here in the U.S. and also in Iceland and in Europe who may be willing to let you borrow or lease one of their competition horses (and also possibly share in the expense) which gives them the opportunity to send their horse so that it can be seen at the World Championships. This arrangement is one that must be arranged strictly between the rider and horse owner.
  5. Compete in Icelandic horse shows in Europe and Iceland.
    During the two (2) years between the World Championships, try and compete in shows in Europe and Iceland as showing opportunities here in the US are limited. Getting used to the show atmosphere inexorably assists in making showing less stressful. Learning to ride under pressure is critical. We cannot create the same high stakes circumstances here in the U.S. that exists when riding in the shows in Europe and at the World Championships.

Where can I find the complete details of the USIHC's World Championships team tryout procedures?

The Sport Committee maintains a description of all the tryout procedures and the general thinking behind them.


World Championships Qualification Requirements for Breeding Horses

In order for a horse to be eligible to represent the United States as a breeding horse at the World Championships the following criteria must be met:

  • The horse must have been born in the United States and have a FEIF-ID starting with "US"
  • The horse must have participated in a FEIF breeding evaluation in the year of the World Championships, prior to the Championships event, for qualification scores.
  • The highest scoring horse in each division has the right to participate in the World Championships if it has reached the required qualification scores.
  • If the highest scoring horse is unable to participate, the next highest scoring horse earns the right to participate. If the second horse cannot participate the right will go to the next horse and so forth, as long as the horses have met the minimum qualification scores.

The following apply to all horses representing the United States in Breeding at the World Championships:

  • All rules of FEIF for the World Championship apply (passport, vaccinations etc)
  • Riders can be chosen freely by the horse owner.
  • Riders will be part of the US team and have to obey the rules set forth by USIHC or its representatives.
  • Riders have to wear US team clothing while representing the United States at the World Championships.

Qualifying Total Scores

5 year olds -- 7.8
6 year olds -- 7.9
7 years and older -- 8.0

5 year olds -- 7.9
6 year olds -- 8.0
7 years and older -- 8.0