The THIS Children’s Medal 14 and Under was the first class to take place in Ring 6 on Saturday morning. The medal consisted of a first round course, as well as an over-fences test, for the top six riders. Rylynn Conway and her own Crossbow held onto the lead through both phases of the class to receive top honors.
Although Conway, of Fair Haven, NJ, is only 12 years old, she is making a name for herself in both the hunters and equitation. The rider rode Crossbow to a second place finish in Section A of the USHJA 3’3” Jumping Seat Medal on Friday. The duo, trained by Beacon Hill Show Stables, is excited to begin competing in the big equitation together.
“I’ve had him for about a year and a half, and he has been so good for me,” commented Conway of the 16-year-old Warmblood gelding. “He was actually my first horse, so we started with the junior hunters and now he has become my equitation horse.”
Tenth in the order, Conway rode Crossbow to a high score of 87 in the first round to take the lead in the class of 26 competitors. Even though the pair had to overcome some obstacles in the schooling ring, Conway was still able to ride a confident and smooth course.
“I thought my first round was really good especially because I actually fell off in the schooling ring right before!” explained Conway. “But then I went into the ring and he felt great, and we were able to have a really good round.”
Conway and Crossbow were last to go in the test and they were able to hold onto their top spot after the pair produced a second beautiful round.
“My plan was to make super tight turns,” said Conway. “I got to go last, which was nice because I watched everyone and got to see where they were turning. I think our turn after the first jump was really nice and helped us stand out to the judges.”
Clara Propp, of New York, NY, rode C.J. Towers Inc.’s Jupina Colada to a second place finish. The pair moved up two spots after they received a first round score of 83. Excelsior, MN, resident Taylor Landstrom and her own Inferno earned a third place ribbon. Landstrom and Inferno scored an 82 in the first course and then moved up two places after the test.
Competition will continue on Sunday, the final day for the third week of the Winter Equestrian Festival, with the $137,000 NetJets Grand Prix CSI3* in the International Arena. For hunters, the Large Pony Hunter champion will be named on Pony Island in Ring 11.