St. John’s equestrian team has its first show of the year on Sept. 23, and now it is hard to believe that it was only two years ago that they became an official team for the 2016-17 school year.
The team began as a club a few years ago, with three coaches and two competing riders. Others who were also interested in riding and horses then starting joining the club. Ms. Fernandez, one of the club’s original moderators, explained that it was “really just about experiencing horses.
The Equestrian Club continued to expand. By the 2016-17 season, they finally had enough riders to complete a full JV team at riding shows. Every show allows eight riders to compete at the JV level and eight to compete on varsity. With the team’s growth, it was finally qualified – the next step would be to become an official sport.
Last year, equestrian team was added to the list of varsity sports here at St. John’s and the varsity team was made up of Amalia Grobbel ’18, Calli Sindahlsen ’19, and Iris Moseley ’20. In addition, the team had seven JV riders.
This year, the team has almost doubled in size with 14 riders, seven returning riders and seven new freshmen. The team has begun an “unofficial partnership with Rock Creek,” as described by Ms. Fernandez. The riders have scheduled lessons at the stables in Rock Creek because SJC does not have on-campus equestrian facilities.
The equestrian team has very high hopes for this year. They want to become a more unified team. Ms. Fernandez shared that “this year feels a little more real.” Returning rider Maddie Breeden ’21 said she is “looking forward to [this season]… and starting workouts that’ll help [them] to be seen as a real team.”