St. Andrews Finishes Fourth In National Championship
Caroline Taylor of St. Andrews Presbyterian College scored the highest on the written phase during the American National Riding Commission's 32nd national championship this past weekend, helping her team to a fourth-place overall finish.
A senior psychology major from Colorado Springs, Colo., Kelsi Peterson led St. Andrews riders by finishing eighth in the individual competition.
The Savannah College of Art and Design won the 2009 team competition while its leading rider, Kelse Bonham, won the overall individual title.
In the awards ceremony following the competition, St. Andrews Equestrian Center Director Peggy McElveen received the prestigious Professional Service Award from the ANRC while Liz Harris, the St. Andrews assistant director of therapeutic horsemanship, received the ANRC Sportsmanship Award.
Kira Gainey and Lindsey Crowther, the coaches for the St. Andrews ANRC team, lauded their team's efforts.
"This event was the culmination of all of their hard work," Crowther said. "They were not just showing horses, but they also helped in every possible way in setting up this show. They painted and decorated every jump for the competition."
Gainey added, "I was very pleased with how hard they all worked. They all supported each other and helped each other as a team."
Three of the St. Andrews riders, Taylor, Peterson and Morgan Worthington, finished in the top eight for the written phase.
Peterson led St. Andrews riders with an eight-place finish in the dressage phase. She also finished seventh in the hunter trials and sixth in the hunter seat.
"I'm really proud of my team," Peterson said. "Everyone really rode well and rode their hearts out."
Others competing for the St. Andrews team were Lindsey Gates, a sophomore from Santa Paula, Calif., Audrey Hayden, a sophomore English major from Dumfries, Va., Rob Jacobs, a sophomore politics major from Temple Hills, Md., and Alexis Stevenson, a senior psychology and business equine major from Jacksonville, N.C.
The event was dedicated to the memory of St. Andrews graduate Jon Conyers who passed away on Nov. 5, 2008. During his 26-year equestrian career, he served ANRC as a rated rider, judge, coach, intercollegiate chair, member of the Board of Directors, and national championship manager. He coached at St. Andrews, The Barracks, University of Virginia, Wesleyan College, Savannah College of Art and Design, and Sweet Briar College.
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