Growing in Numbers and Strength, The Equestrian Team Jumps into Action

Feature StorySince the start of the Wilde Lake club, the equestrian team has expanded into elev- en JV and varsity riders. With a passion for riding, junior Madison DeLawder found a way create a club that allowed her pursue her love of horses.“It’s a good opportunity to give a less appreciated sport a chance,” said senior co-captain Hannah Becker.

The equestrian team competes from the beginning of the school year in August to February and they have a show once a month. Riders bring their own horse or rent from the barn. According to DeLawder, renters are at a disadvantage because of the strong, personalized relationship she feels riders have with their own horses.

DeLawder said riding horses can be a dangerous sport. “Our horses are unpredictable animals that we trust with our lives every time we get in the saddle,” said DeLawder. “There have been many times that I have come far too close to serious injury, or even death, than I would like.” With the help of DeLawder’s leadership, the team has been winning ribbons since its formation. Last year, DeLawder was reserve division champion with three first place ribbons.

“It’s an individual but team sport,”said sophomore JV rider Sarah Moore. This is only her first year being on the team and she has already noticed the difference between riding in high school and riding on her own: She has teammates to talk to and more opportunities to compete in shows. Because DeLawder created the equestrian team, she has given Wilde Lake students the chance to express their love of horses with others who feel the same.

DeLawder is one of the few students who created and managed a successful club. She hopes that the program will continue to grow in the following years. “I can trust the younger members of the club right now to keep it up and continue to improve it after the older girls, including myself, graduate,” said DeLawder.