“We’re here, we’re hungry, and I would watch out for the Dawgs!” University of Georgia said. “Being a NCAA D3 school, Eventing is the only team sport [at Transylvania] that competes against the ‘big’ schools,” stated Transylvania University. Auburn University shared that, “Our team has been looking forward to the Championship all year.” Friendly competitive atmosphere, lifelong friendships, and lucky charms; it’s time for the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Intercollegiate Eventing Championship at the Virginia Horse Trials in Lexington, Virginia on May 24-27, 2018.
18 schools, 23 teams, and 87 starters - it’s fair game this weekend on who will take home the crown. Coming from far and wide, collegiate riders will make the trek to Virginia Horse Trials to show off their school pride, team camaraderie, and put in the fight for the top spot. Will it be the defending champions or one of the four schools making their championship debut? Click here or click on the picture below to meet the teams of the 2018 USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championship!
So, what does the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championship mean to each team? Read on below for their responses.
Clemson University: “After coming .04 points away from the championship title two years ago and winning the Championship last year, Clemson has dedicated their whole year to prepare for this event. While winning is a big goal for us, we are also excited to be bringing three full teams this year and promoting how amazing the Clemson's Eventing Team is! The Intercollegiate Championship gives us a chance to show all eventers that college students have what it takes to successfully train and compete horses while having a busy class load. We're excited to get out there and make Clemson proud!”
Transylvania University: “The Championship is a team favorite competition. The Virginia Horse Center is a fantastic venue and the team spirit surrounding the Championship always makes for a fun weekend. For Transy, being a NCAA D3 school, eventing is the only team that competes against the "big" schools, which is pretty cool.”
University of Georgia: “For all of us this is a weekend where we hope to make the team, our trainers, and ourselves proud. Every girl here has struggled this year to get back out on course. But we're here, we're hungry, and I would watch out for the Dawgs!"
Texas A&M: “The opportunity to compete at the Championship in Virginia is extremely exciting and means something different to each member. Most of the riders met and got to know each other better from the trip last year and look forward to another year of bonding, laughing, and general shenanigans.”
Auburn University: “Our team has been looking forward to the Intercollegiate Eventing Championship all year. It is an incredible opportunity to represent our school at this level and at a prestigious event like the Virginia Horse Trials. We are very grateful to our supporters Devoucoux and FLAIR for their donations that help us look our best. We want to give a special shout out to our individual coaches Julie Richards, Werner Geven, Lizzie Walters, Stephanie Counts, and Susan Wainwright for all their help getting us prepared for the Championship.”
University of Kentucky: “It takes a sport that is normally just between an individual and their horse and instead gives riders a chance to be a part of a team. It combines two of my favorite things, the University of Kentucky and eventing, into a friendly competitive atmosphere. [It also] builds lifelong friendships.”
University of South Carolina, Aiken: “The Championship is a great goal for the team to aim towards throughout the year and work towards together."
University of Findlay: “It is so exciting to be competing and representing the University of Findlay at its debut appearance at the Intercollegiate Eventing Championship. This is a huge step in the development of the eventing team that we have first-handedly been a part of. We are extremely thankful to be here and hope this is the first of many Intercollegiate Championships for Findlay’s team.”
Virginia Tech University: “We are so excited to be competing close to home and representing Virginia Tech! Our team has doubled in size from the last Intercollegiate Championship and all of our riders are looking forward to competing, supporting one another, and most of all, having fun!”
Randolph Macon College: “The Intercollegiate Championship is just the icing on the cake for us. It's a way to end what has already been an incredible year of team building, reaching personal bests, and cheering for each other. Having so many other colleges there really demonstrates that eventing is a real college sport!”
North Carolina State: “The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program in general gives us the opportunity to indulge in our love for eventing and to continue our passion as students. The Championship gives us something to look forward to and get “pumped up” with team spirit.”
University of Virginia: “It is a great opportunity to represent our school and our team. The Intercollegiate Championship also helps us come together as a team and support one another in a sport that is usually an individual competition. Meeting the other teams and riders from across the country who are also balancing school and horses is a really fun part of the competition as well.”
About the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program
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. Click here to learn more about the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program.
If you’re like most riders you’ve probably heard someone say something like, “Your last mistake is your best teacher,” or “if you’re doing everything right you’re doing something wrong because you’re in your comfort zone.” While I agree whole-heartedly with these sentiments, I actually prefer, “Equestrians don’t make mistakes. Mistakes make equestrians.” They make us bolder, braver, and brighter; but only when we develop a positive relationship with our mistakes and respond to them in productive ways.
Up-and-coming eventing athlete Tommy Greengard of Malibu, California, was named the recipient of the United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation’s Amanda Pirie Warrington Grant for 2024. A current competitor on the U.S. Equestrian Federation's (USEF) Eventing Emerging Program List, Greengard has aspirations of representing the United States internationally.
Bethany Hutchins-Kristen headed into 2023 with hopes of earning the SmartPak USEA Stallion of the Year award for a second year in a row on her homebred Geluk HVF, and after a stellar season, including a top-10 finish at the TerraNova CCI2*-L (Myakka City, Florida), she took home the top prize with an 18-point lead.
Are you following along with the action from home this weekend? Or maybe you're competing at an event and need information fast. Either way, we’ve got you covered! Check out the USEA’s Weekend Quick Links for links to information including the prize list, ride times, live scores, and more for all the events running this weekend.