Top riders trot off with prizes

The Cayman Islands Equestrian Federation honoured this year’s top riders.

The federation recently staged its inaugural dinner to announce the national and reserve champions for 2014. MLA Roy McTaggart volunteered as Master of Ceremonies at the George Town Yacht Club and welcomed just under a hundred federation members from around the Island.

Federation president Sharon Hinds reviewed the show season and highlighted the growth of the membership and the accomplishments of the riders in the past year. She noted that during the last campaign the federation had hosted a record number of shows and was performing impressively overseas and at home.

Of note were local riders taking three of the top four spots in the Children’s American Dressage Invitational in 2013. Cayman teams were joint first in the 2013 Caribbean Junior Show Jumping Competition, first in the Fédération Équestre Internationale’s 2014 World Dressage Challenge and a local children’s squad placed first in the Caribbean Equestrian Association’s 2014 Dressage Challenge.

Awards were then distributed for the National Jumping Series Championship and National Dressage Championship for the 2013/14 season. The competitions represent two separate leagues where riders can accumulate championship points by competing at local shows held throughout the year. The shows constitute the domestic training grounds for the international meets, giving riders realistic competition experiences at home which they can use as a training springboard to the events overseas.

The first honorees were the 2014 dressage champions. In the Introductory category, Meegan Slattery was awarded the Champion’s Ribbon with Leah Alberga taking the Reserve Champion spot. Two sets of ribbons were awarded in the Training Level category. For the juniors, Madeleine Aquart and Ashley van den Bol took the Champion top spots with Saskia Drake and Thea Millward taking the Reserve ribbons. For the adults, Michelle Boucher and Tracey Surrey took Champion ribbons.

Phoebe Serpell and Anja van Genderen were the Champion and Reserve Champion, respectively, in both the junior Preliminary and Elementary categories with Jessica McTaggart-Giuzio and Tracey Surrey taking Champion and Reserve Champion, respectively, in the Preliminary adult category.

At the Elementary adult level, Alexandra Bodden took the Champion spot with Polly Serpell taking Reserve and at the Medium level, Thea Millward was Champion with Alexandra Bodden, the Reserve. McTaggart-Giuzio added the Champion ribbons in the Advanced and Prix St. George categories to her haul, with Charlotte Hinds taking Reserve Champion in the Advanced category.

The dressage awards were followed with the National Jumping Series Championship trophies. In the 0.6 meter junior class, Chloe Fowler took Champion with Jenna Boucher as Reserve Champion. Hannah Fowler was Champion in both the 0.7m and 0.85m junior classes with Reserve Champions going to Jenna Boucher in the 0.7m class and to Phoebe Serpell in the 0.85m class.

In the 0.6m adult class, Juliette Forrester and Tanja Braendle were Champion and Reserve Champion, respectively. Tanja Braendle was also Reserve Champion in the 0.7m adult class with Michelle Boucher taking the Champion spot. Michelle Boucher also took the Reserve Champion spot at the 0.85m adult level with Alexandra Rado named Champion.

In the open classes, Polly Serpell was Champion of the 0.9-1m class with Thea Millward the Reserve Champion. In the highest category, 1m-1.1m, Isabelle Smith was Champion with Polly Serpell as Reserve Champion.

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