Equestrian finishes third riding on home turf
"When your feet are frozen, it doesn't matter if a horse steps on them because you can't feel it."
Key Fields '99 said the weather conditions were less than perfect for the Dartmouth Invitational on Saturday , but the Big Green equestrian team still made good use of their feet and of their home court advantage and placed third in the tournament of thirteen teams.
Instrumental in helping the squad obtain their third place finish were four first place finishes in individual events. Those top spots went to Beth Smith '01 for her work in the novice flat competition, Brook Cosby '00 in the advanced walk/ trot/ canter category. Also capturing the top spot were upperclassmen Suzanne Lang '99 for her performance in the walk/ trot division and Michelle Glander '99 also for walk/ trot.
Red ribbons were earned by two other Dartmouth riders, Fields '99 for walk/ trot/ canter and Meg Heirs '98 for advanced walk/ trot/ canter.
"Our freshmen look great, and I am excited to see how well our team does when we continue our season in the spring," co-captain Megan Phillips '99, who was very impressed with the team's performance, said.
"The team is great this year," Annette Gaynes '99 said."Given the right horse and the right circumstances, any rider can win."
Despite finishing third, Gaynes was elated about Dartmouth's victory over one rival.
"We beat Harvard," she said.
No matter what, we have a blast together, and seem to be really pulling together as a team, rather than just a bunch of individuals who like horses."
Overall, head coach Sally Boillotat was very pleased with the teams effort. "I'm really proud of how this team rode today," she said.
"We finished third out of thirteen schools and had quite a few blue and red ribbons. The team also pulled together and helped run our home horse show, which was a big help for me. I'm excited for our last show of the fall season next weekend at Boston University and look forward to our spring season," Boillotat said.
The Big Green riders were busy for the entire day because, besides competing, they also had to saddle and groom all the horses. The show ran smoothly and horses were very cooperative which was key and differed from years previous to this one. Many of the riders from others schools praised the exceptional quality of Dartmouth's horses and facilities.
The Dartmouth Invitational is one of the only shows in which the home team not only coordinates the event but is responsible for providing for the horses' welfare.