Eventing at NC State was founded in 2016 and we currently have 18 undergraduate members as well as a supportive group of alumni riders. We are proud to be the first intercollegiate team in North Carolina located at the heart of the 1862 Land Grant Institution, NC State University. We have riders just beginning their eventing careers as well as those that are seasoned competitors, competing from Maiden through Training level. No matter what level they are competing, we cheer just as loud for each of our riders. We truly have built a team based on treasured horsemanship and friendship.
We primarily have our clinics at our home base, Portofino Equestrian Center, where we work closely with our coach, Aaron Hill. We are lucky to have such a beautiful facility and an experienced trainer to help us reach our goals. Each of our rider’s board and train with whomever they choose and many members trailer into Portofino on a regular basis to take lessons with Aaron. We try to schedule monthly clinics around everyone’s busy school and horse schedules. We train hard as student athletes on a daily basis to prepare for intercollegiate events. We are lucky enough that, through sponsors and fundraising, we are able to support our members by reimbursing entry fees and providing accommodations at shows.
As we look back at 2019, the first intercollegiate event of the year was Southern Pines Horse Trials at Carolina Horse Park. We had four undergraduates and one alumnus competing and their top finishes landed them in second place of the team competition. We sent two teams and an alumnus to FENCE HT with over half of our members placing in the top five of their divisions. We sent four riders to the USEA Intercollegiate Championships at Chattahoochee Hills and they placed twelfth as a team with all riders placing in the top eight of their divisions. In the fall, we sent a team of three riders to Tryon Riding and Hunt Club where they finished fifth as a team. Our last team challenge was Virginia International & HT where we sent three undergraduates and one alumnus. We continue to look forward to the 2020 season and are proud of all of our competitors over the past year. It was a great one full of many learning moments, personal bests, and team bonding. We have had many personal placements throughout the year, but our priority is always to take care of our horses and each other. We always look forward to the team spirit, because that is something we love to indulge in. From our wolf masks to our ears and tails, you will always be able to spot a member of the Wolfpack in our red and white!
We spend a lot of time out of the saddle with each other and have team social events each month. Some of our favorite socials from the past year have included bonfires, going to the NC State Fair, pizza and movie nights, and team dinners. I personally look forward to these events because as a student, many of my peers don’t get the intense time management and juggling it takes to be a full-time student and a full-time rider. This can often prove difficult to balance but having friends that are having similar college experiences can make you feel a bit more at ease. Riding is a huge part of each of our lives, but we must also remember to take care of our mental health and be there for one another.
We really work hard to volunteer and fundraise in order to continue to support our riders and our community. We do a great deal of our volunteering at Portofino when they have their fall and spring Horse Trails. Our members fulfill many of the positions necessary to run a successful event and in return we are able to use the premier facility throughout the year. Much of our fundraising is at Carolina Horse Park where we often sell merchandise or food and drinks. We typically volunteer at the Tack Exchange twice a year at the NC State fairgrounds and sell raffle tickets and merchandise. The team also collects tack donations that we clean up and tag to enter in the tack exchange. Each fall we work with Yankee Candle for an annual fundraiser where we get a large portion of the proceeds. With the help of our sponsors, donations, and fundraisers we are able to function and support our college equestrians. We know that without this it would make competing in college more difficult and we are very grateful to be a part of this dedicated organization.
Our goals are to continue to do what we love, together. We strive to help our riders reach their personal goals such as moving up a level or qualifying for AEC. We continue to value our professional relationships and hope to form lasting partnerships with our local horse community. We have a lot of strong riders from diverse backgrounds and we hope that as our team grows, we are able to recruit some upper level talent as well. We value taking care of each other and our horses and that is something that comes before winning ribbons any day. My vision for the team is to continue to grow, but also to stay grounded.
What makes this team unique is that we are truly friends who care for each other and one another’s horses. Our group chat is an outlet to bounce ideas or discuss issues we might be having. Many of us spend a great deal of time together getting dinner or studying at the library. Plenty of our members even live together and continue to be friends after graduation. My favorite part of this team is not only the closeness we share in our sport, but the diversity of our goals and pursuits. A few of us are pursuing vet school, law school, PA school, and other different degree paths. We are students first and therefore we are able to bring many unique points of view to the team. This makes us stronger and gives us a more robust outlook. The team members are able to share our passion for horses and support each other in each of our own ventures. After being a part of the NC State Eventing Team, you will have friends for life, a network of scholars, and memories to last a lifetime.
The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program was established in 2014 to provide a framework within which eventing teams and individual competitors could flourish at universities and colleges across the country. The USEA offers a discount of $25 on annual USEA memberships for current students of universities and colleges registered as Affiliates with the USEA and many events across the country now offer Intercollegiate Team Challenges throughout the year, where collegiate eventers can compete individually as well as on teams with their fellow students.
In Intercollegiate Team Challenges, each rider’s score is multiplied by a coefficient appropriate for their level to account for differences in level difficulty and then the individual scores are added together to determine the team score. Only the best three individual scores will count towards the team score, so teams of four will have one “drop” score. Click here to learn more about the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program.
The USEA wants to feature your collegiate eventing team in our Intercollegiate Eventing Spotlight series! Please send your story and photos to Claire Kelley at [email protected] to be featured.
Tack cleaning is one of those barn chores that might not be our favorite but is certainly necessary for keeping our equipment in top shape. Aside from caring for your tack so it lasts for years to come, regular tack maintenance is important for safety. The last thing you want is the potential for a stitch, zipper, or buckle breaking while you're out on course.
Following feedback from our membership to the rule change proposal for the USEF Rules For Eventing: Appendix 3 – Participation In Horse Trials, the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Board of Governors voted to modify the rule change proposal, but still to recommend the establishment of rider licenses and increase Minimum Eligibility Requirements (MERs) to the regulating authority of the sport US Equestrian (USEF).
The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is happy to announce the dates, locations, and judges for the USEA Future Event Horse Championships in 2021. The Future Event Horse (FEH) Championships offer classes for yearlings, 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, and 4-year-olds to evaluate their potential for becoming successful upper-level event horses.
USEA Area II announces its annual fundraising auction online is open for bidding! This fundraiser is over 20 years old and now well-known as the "Black Friday" for entries to ALL your favorite events! In typical years, the auction is held as a silent auction at the Annual Area Meeting, but because of COVID-19 restrictions, no in-person meeting will be held, so we're bringing the auction to everyone online this year.