Equestrian competes in three shows, multiple High Point Riders named

By Mark Rossman ’14, Sports Editor

The equestrian team is off to a promising start for its Fall season.

The team has competed in three shows thus far, including the Red Wing Farm Show and the Flint Rock Stables Show.

At the Red Wing Farm Show, Kat Torsiello ’16, co-captain of the F&M equestrian team, won High Point Rider, earning the most points at the show.

Esther White ’17 earned High Point Rider for the second show, at Flint Rock Stables.

“As hosts of the last show, it was nice to see everyone leave and everything go smoothly,” said Max Sechzer ’14, co-captain of the equestrian team, said. “It was a nice way to end the day.”

The team practices a minimum of once a week and rides at Flint Rock Stables in Litiz, Penn. about thirty minutes away. Because the entire team cannot compete all at the same time, two to five people practice at once.

“We take lessons once a week, usually in groups of two or three with people who are at the same riding level, and we ride different horses from the barn every week,” said Nora Van Veen ’16, rider on the equestrian team.

Sechzer believes the team has made great strides this year and has high hopes for the season ahead.

“I want to send a record number of people to qualify for Regionals, and I really think that this year we can get at least one person for Nationals,” Sechzer said.

Equestrian is unlike any other sport.

“In other sports there isn’t an implicit hazard, but there is an implicit hazard working with horses,” Sechzer said. “Something bad could happen to you, you could fall off or get kicked. You have to be mindful.

“The real person that helps us compete is an animal that you have to form a relationship with or try to understand in a very small period of time,” Seczher added.

The team has come together as a cohesive unit this year.

“I’m just excited to spend more time with the team,” Van Veen said. “Since we’re at the shows all day, we spend a lot of time together and get to know each other really well. I’m also really looking forward to Regionals, which is right before Spring break in March. I went last year, and I only need one point to qualify for this year.”

“For other sports your equipment consists of balls and bat but for equestrian your main equipment is your horse, which is a huge animal with its own brain that you’ve probably never ridden before, so competing the way we compete is very different,” Sechzer said.

The equestrian team has come a long way in the past few years and is ready to compete at a higher level this Spring semester.

Senior Mark Rossman is the Sports Editor. His email is mrossman@fandm.edu.

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