Equestrian takes third at Mt. Ida show
The Dartmouth equestrian team ended its winning streak this weekend, placing third overall at the Mt. Ida show Sunday. Dartmouth was one point behind the University of Vermont, who claimed second place. The High Point College was the hosting college, Mt. Ida.
Due to an error by the UVM team, Dartmouth is now the solid leader of the region despite the third place finish on Sunday. One of UVM's riders was not eligible and the points that she had earned for UVM were taken away and the team was additionally penalized. This puts Dartmouth into first place with an unofficial total of 144 points. Mt. Ida is in second with 137 points and the three-year running regional champions UVM are trailing with 130.
"I'm thrilled that Dartmouth is first place in the region," said Coach Sally Batton. "However, I do understand the disappointment that the UVM team is feeling. Now our job is to maintain our lead and keep working hard in practice and showing well and end up the Zone I, Region 2 champion."
Several riders took home top finishes at the Mt. Ida show. First place winners include Tim Malone '07 in open fences, Daisy Freund '08 in open flat and Janelle Moerlein '06 in novice fences.
Malone said, "I felt good about my fences class. I drew the same horse as last year, and since I rode it really poorly last year, I was determined to do well on it this time and not make the same mistakes. I got along with it a lot better this time, and ended up winning the class."
Lizzy Rauner '06 earned second place in intermediate fences, earning enough points to class up to open fences. Rauner will compete in the regionals competition at the end of the spring season. Also, third place winners included Daisy Freund '08 in open fences and Lauren Pfisterer '06 in walk/trot/canter.
"I think the team's been riding really well this term, a lot more consistently than we rode last year, and I think that's the reason we're in the lead now," said Malone. "Last year we had riders ride well at every show, but it was usually different riders every time. This year everyone's been a lot more consistent, so it's a lot easier to choose our point riders for the show."
With her first and third place finish, Freund did well enough to ride in the Reserve High Point Rider class at the end of the show. Freund won the class earning Reserve High Point Rider for the show.
Malone added, "The new riders definitely had a positive impact on the team; all of them are really solid riders and have been major contributors to our success."
The equestrian team is looking forward to their home show at Morton Farm Saturday of Homecoming weekend. Batton is looking to prepare the team to continue winning individual classes and shows as a team in the region.
"I'm planning a few drills for the team this week in practice that will add a little polish to their positions and really make them stand out against the competition," Batton said.
High expectations for the team continue, as the team will defend their first place standings within the region against UVM and Mt. Ida.
"The Dartmouth team pulled together at our first home show on Oct. 2 and were the College Champions for the day," Batton said. "I'm expecting the same for this weekend."