Albion Dressage Seizes Regional Points Lead
After a slow start in the first half of their double-header at Michigan State University, the Albion College dressage team snatched the regional points lead on Sunday, October 16 with a win. Leading the team with the individual high point award was first-year Paige Gustafson (Dexter/Dexter) in the upper training division and senior Nora Cox (Minneapolis, MN/Homeschool) with reserve high point in the introductory division.
Windy weather and bad luck at the draw table meant that the Britons weren’t able to finish higher than sixth of the 10 competing teams on Saturday, but it all came together on Sunday for both the “A” and “B” teams. Alyssa Olson (Clarkston/Clarkston) netted a second place finish in lower training and Robin Todd (Mill Valley, CA/Tamiscal) gave a solid ride at first level to finish fifth.
When the current regional points were tallied at the end of the weekend, Albion holds a slim lead heading into their home meet on Saturday, November 19 at the Nancy G. Held Equestrian Center.
Choate and Pankratz Lead Albion to Win at Home
After a slow start to the morning, solid rides from senior Olivia Choate (Fenwick/Gratton Academy) and sophomore Hannah Pankratz (Bad Axe/Bad Axe), as well as the rest of the Briton stock seat team, helped Albion secure a win in the second half of their double-header at home.
Choate earned a win that qualified her for the IHSA regional show in the advanced division, as did Pankratz, who will head for Regionals in the intermediate division. In addition, at the end of the day, first year riders Liz Rosner (West Bloomfield/Homeschool) and Chantal Chuba (Grosse Pointe Park/Grosse Pointe South) netted a one-two finish in walk-trot that helped secure the team victory.
Other top performers for the young Albion team included Michelle Miele (Bloomfield Hills/International Academy), Elle Root (Alpena/Alpena), and 2010 Semi-Finals qualifier Katie Petchell (Pinckney/Pinckney), who wound up in a five-way ride-off for reserve high-point at the end of the day.
The Britons get a brief break before their next meet, which will find them at Grand Valley State University on November 6.
Petschar and Utt Lead Britons to Victory at Saginaw Valley
It was the juniors from northern Michigan who led the Albion College stock seat team to their first victory of the 2011 season on Saturday, October 8. Chelsea Utt (Harbor Springs/Petoskey) won her reining class on the way to being named High Point rider for the first half of the Britons’ double-header at Saginaw Valley State and Elizabeth Petschar (Iron Mountain/Kingsford) took first in the walk-trot division to qualify for the IHSA regional show in the spring of 2012.
The Albion stock seat team is an even mix of returning riders, including last year’s IHSA Semi-Finals qualifier Katie Petchell (Pinckney/Pinckney), and first-year competitors, which gives coach Denise Webber a good feeling – particularly after they netted the win in the morning portion of Saturday’s competition. Though the Britons dropped to a fourth-place finish in the second half of the day’s competition, the season looks as though it’s shaping up to be a good one for Albion.
Next on the schedule is the home meet, hosted at the Nancy G. Held Equestrian Center on Albion’s campus this Saturday, October 15.
Equestrian Center Hosts Sisters Riding for Haiti Cause
Some unexpected overnight guests bunked at the Held Equestrian Center on Wednesday night—Brandy and Ashley Nelsey, who are on a trip from West Branch to Houston. The sisters are riding on horseback from their central Michigan hometown to Texas to raise money for a clean-water project In Haiti.