Persistence Pays off for Bellerive at 2019 USHJA Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals

Chloe Bellerive topped the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals with Genevieve Munson taking silver, Maya Aryal in bronze, and Lauren Obermeyer in fourth. Photo: Rachel Sowinski/USHJA

Findlay, Ohio—November 11, 2019—Twenty-year-old Chloe Bellerive was no stranger to the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge when she arrived at the 2019 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals—she has been a participant since its inaugural year in 2012. This year was the Kneedysville, Maryland, native’s time to shine as she stood atop the podium to win the overall competition hosted by the University of Findlay, in Findlay, Ohio, November 8-10.

One of 24 finalists to qualify to attend, Bellerive returned to take the gold after claiming bronze in 2018. She also had the high score in the Horsemanship/Identification Exam, second in the Practicum, and third in the Written Exam.

“I truly am so thrilled to be the winner of this after so many years of trying, being persistent with it, and studying more and more every year. I am just so thrilled,” said Bellerive. “I prepared a little differently. I looked online at the PowerPoints for the jump rules, and I studied bits more because I knew that was a weakness of mine in previous years. This year, I studied more of my weaknesses rather than studying an overview.”

A senior at the University of Kentucky, Bellerive recently finished applying for veterinary school and credits the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge for helping her along the way.

“I think the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge was truly one of the most helpful ways to prepare for veterinary school because it brings out not only the stuff in the barn but also dealing with medications, with a veterinarian, a barn manager and trainers,” she said. “But I think the biggest thing I learned was to make connections when given the opportunity. The Horsemanship Quiz Challenge has given me many connections over the years with several professionals in the industry, and I think that will definitely help me in the future on my pathway to become a veterinarian.”

As part of her winning prize package, Bellerive will receive a two month paid internship at Spy Coast Farm in Lexington, Kentucky over the summer of 2020. Through this special learning opportunity, she will be able to experience all aspects of a Warmblood breeding and training facility by working with Spy Coast Farm’s resident veterinarian and young horse trainer.

“I am so very excited to have the opportunity to work with Spy Coast Farm through the internship. I have never worked at a sport horse farm in Lexington yet, I’ve only worked with Thoroughbred farms through the University of Kentucky, so I am super excited to actually be working with what I am used to—the hunter/jumper industry,” said Bellerive.

In addition, Bellerive was awarded a $2,000 training and education grant provided by the USHJA Foundation, a Charles Owen helmet, certificate for a pair of Parlanti Paddock Boots, State Line Tack grooming tote, and a gold medal.

Joining Bellerive on the podium this year was Genevieve Munson, 15, of Rogers, Arkansas, who received the overall silver medal and had the top scores in the Written and Practicum Exams. Last year’s fourth place finisher Maya Aryal, 15, of Fairfax, Virginia, earned bronze and had the second highest score in the Horsemanship/Identification exam, as well as third in the Practicum.

Munson received a $1,500 grant for training and education, a Charles Owen helmet and a silver medal; while Aryal received a $500 grant for training and education, a Charles Owen helmet and a bronze medal. Awards and ribbons were awarded to the four finalists overall, as well as the four finalists with the highest written exam scores, highest horsemanship/identification exam scores and the highest Practicum A scores. All training and education grants are provided by the USHJA Foundation through generous support from donors. 

Twenty-four finalists participated in the National event. Photo: Terisé Cole/USHJA

As part of the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals, finalists participated in a variety of educational seminars in addition to three phases of testing. This year’s seminars included a sport psychology session with sport psychologist Kip Rosenthal, an equine nutrition session with equine nutritionist Dr. Nicole Rambo, an active rider fitness session with personal trainer Susan Gertzman, an equine reproduction session with equine reproduction specialist Dr. Michael Stone, and an equine gastric health lecture with specialist Leah Mitchell.

The USHJA Horsemanship Quiz Challenge and Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals are supported in part by a generous grant from the US Equestrian and the USHJA Foundation. USHJA also extends thanks to Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Committee members Chair Terri Young, Vice Chair Cricket Stone, Mary Babick, Elizabeth Blaisdell, Kirstie Lynn Dobbs, Julia Hogan and Brooke Mallin for overseeing the weekend activities.

The USHJA extends its gratitude to all of our official sponsorsCharles OwenCWDParlanti and Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital; and Horsemanship Quiz Challenge award partners and sponsors: Boy O Boy BridleworksSpy Coast Farm and State Line Tack.

2019 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Nationals Results

OverallGOLD: Chloe Bellerive

SILVER: Genevieve Munson

BRONZE: Maya Aryal

Written Exam

1. Genevieve Munson

2. Rebecca Hopkins

3. Chloe Bellerive

4. Ariana Schneider

Horsemanship/Identification Exam

1. Chloe Bellerive

2. Maya Aryal

3. Lauren Obermeyer

4. Rebecca Hopkins

Practicum Exam

1. Genevieve Munson

2. Chloe Bellerive

3. Maya Aryal

4. Lauren Obermeyer