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USA Equestrian

Van Eldik Wins Hunter Seat Equitation Final

Lauren Van Eldik, 18, of Ocala, FL, defeated a field of 233 of the nation’s top junior riders to win the 2003 USAE/Pessoa National Hunter Seat Medal Final held Sunday, October 12, at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA.

Joe Fargis of Middleburg, VA, and Carol Thompson of Colts Neck, NJ, adjudicated the three rounds of competition judged on equitation and the rider’s ability to ride their horses with control, competency and compatibility.

The USAE/Pessoa Hunter Seat Medal Equitation Medal is a coveted USA Equestrian prize and proves to be a significant stepping-stone for international competitions as 30% of past winners have gone on to represent the U.S. internationally. This year over a thousand Hunter Seat Equitation Medal qualifying classes were held at USA Equestrian recognized competitions throughout the country, resulting in approximately 400 young riders qualifying for this event.

Lauren Van Eldik adds her name to the Adrian Van Sinderen Memorial Trophy, joining famous winners from the past including Victor Hugo-Vidal, George Morris and Katie Monahan-Prudent. This year’s winner received a Triple Crown Custom cooler, a Pessoa saddle, a Mountain Horse Classic Rider jacket and a custom pair of boots from Der-Dau.


1. Lauren Van Eldik, Ocala, FL
2. Josephine Nash, North Salem, NY
3. Lexy Reed, Beaver Falls, PA
4. Ruth Drumm, Lenox Dale, MA
5. Addison Phillips, New York, MY
6. Blythe Marano, Bedminster, NJ
7. Courtney McKay, Ocala, FL
8. Maria Schaub, Holmdel, NJ
9. Whitney Weeks, Southport, CT
10. Charlie Jayne, Elgin, IL
11. Brianne Goutal, New York, NY

U.S. Equestrian was formed through the combination of USA Equestrian and the United States Equestrian Team. The vision of U.S. Equestrian is to provide leadership for equestrian sport in the United States of America, promoting the pursuit of excellence from the grass roots to the Olympic Games, based on a foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare of its horses, and embracing this vision, to be the best national equestrian federation in the world.


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