Edited Press Release
There were 32 entries that participated in the THIS Children’s Medal 14 & Under on Saturday at WEF 10 in the Equine Tack and Nutritionals Ring 6. Of those young riders, only the six with scores of 82 or above would return to test.
The top six riders waited in the ring, heard their test, and attempted the test in reverse order of their scores from the first round. Eva Mackenzie on her own Demonia GS Z would be the last to test on her score of 88 and would hold on the top spot to secure the win.
“I was a little nervous because I haven’t really done this horse in that many of these classes,” said Mackenzie. “I’ve only been riding her for about three months.”
Though newly formed, the partnership between Mackenzie and her nine-year-old warmblood mare has been a fruitful one. The pair have been champion or reserve in the Equitation 11 & Under division each time out this season and have a significant lead in the circuit standings.
“She’s really comfortable, and she just canters to the jumps, always with her head up,” said Mackenzie. “She’s also really sweet in the barn. She’s just a really good girl.”
Instead of testing on the flat, the medal’s final placings were decided with a test over fences that included a trot jump, an option of line on a rollback, and a halt. This presented a unique challenge.
“I was a little bit nervous [about the test],” said Mackenzie. “I was trying to just listen and figure out which jumps I was supposed to jump and have a plan for which way I was going to go.”
The testing kept Mackenzie and Demonia GS Z in the top spot but allowed two other riders to move up in their initial placings.
Hayley Hewitt, who returned with a score of 85.5 that had her in third place, moved up to second with Martel VDL owned by the winning rider Eva Mackenzie.
Emma Brody, with Lolita owned by Ashland Farms, also was able to better her position coming back in the sixth spot on a score of 82 to finish third.