Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A Great Start to the Season for Many!

Fair Hill International kicked off their first Starter Trials of the season Sunday in Elkton, MD.  Team Lily proudly had eight riders out to compete!  This competition was the first of the season for some of the riders, and the first horse trials ever for a few!  The Starter Trials hosted four divisions of Novice, Beginner Novice, Introductory, and Elementary, and our riders were dispersed through all the divisions.  

The day kicked off with the Novice divisions early in the morning, where we had Lucie Hughes, Eliza Crosby, and Jenn Cain riding.  These riders have all had one or two starts this season, and they were looking to have a good, confident experience out on the course.  Eliza finished fourth on her dressage score, while Lucie and Jenn added just one rail to their dressage scores to finish sixth and ninth.  

The Beginner Novice division brought out three more of our riders; Olivia Saber, Cassidy Heitzenrater, and Nicole Spiroupolos.  For Cassidy, this was her first start of the season, while Olivia and Nicole were having their first crack at a horse trials!  Olivia impressed us all with a first place finish on her dressage score in the Junior Beginner Novice!  Nicole had a great ride but unfortunately had to pull up half way through her course due to a tack issue.  Cassidy had a great ride as well until an emergency dismount at the ditch late in the course.  Both Nicole and Cassidy are looking forward to getting back on the course soon to finish what they started!

Our last two rides of the day were Hannah Daneker and Braden Speck.  Hannah and Braden were having their first start of the season in the Introductory and Elementary divisions.  Hannah had a great dressage test on her pony, Magic Carpet Ride, and had an unfortunate parting of company in the show-jumping.  Hannah has been riding so well this spring and I cannot wait to see her iron out the kinks at the next event!  Braden was our other blue ribbon winner with Rosenharley Romello,  adding no jump faults to his dressage score.  
What pleased me the most about this weekend was how prepared our riders were despite inconsistent training over the last month.  It did not matter that their lessons have been sporadic through my traveling and competing; they went out and rode incredibly anyways.  We will have many more starter trials in the coming months, so our stars of tomorrow can get out there and get cracking!

On a side note, I am especially proud of No Boundaries, who is currently ranked 5th in the country on the USEA Overall Leaderboard!

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