Westerville, OH - To congratulate the winners of the 2015 Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA) National Championships, Custom Saddlery - a platinum sponsor of the event - awarded a total of eight top-quality saddles at the show. One was given to each of the champions of the four individual levels of competition, and four were given to the champion team. Custom Saddlery, the Official Saddle of the U.S. Dressage Team through the 2016 Olympics, was proud to play a part in fostering these young riders to greatness through sponsoring the IDA Nationals and awarding the outstanding winning rides. By granting access to the tack used by the country’s top dressage champions, Custom Saddlery encourages the young riders that competed at the IDA Nationals to continue growing in the sport of dressage.
Kari Briggs - the Business Manager of Otterbein University’s Austin E. Knowlton Center for Equine Science, which is where the competition was held - expressed appreciation for Custom Saddlery’s sponsorship of the event. “We’re so grateful for Custom Saddlery’s support at IDA,” she said. “It was a great success. With the support of Custom Saddlery, IDA has been able to put on a fantastic competition.”
Founded in 1995, the Intercollegiate Dressage Association started as a small competition among a few colleges and secondary schools in the northeast region. As dressage grew in popularity, the sport developed within college and secondary school riding programs, enabling the IDA to grow and become what it is today. The IDA relies on companies and sponsors such as Custom Saddlery to support the country’s top up-and-coming dressage riders.
The winning team of the 2015 Intercollegiate Dressage Association National Championships was Emory & Henry College of Emory, Virginia. The team was represented by Nichoals Martino, a sophomore competing in the First Level; Bailey Halverson, a junior at Upper Training level; Karissa Donohue, a sophomore competing at Lower Training Level; and Eli Worth-Jones, a freshman at Introductory level. Emory & Henry College Dressage team coach, Lisa Moosmueller-Terry, was proud of her team’s performance and of the hard work that they put into the season. “I felt that the Emory & Henry Dressage team was very strong going into Nationals, and throughout the rest of the season. It is difficult to choose just four riders to represent the entire team at Nationals, but in the final shows leading up to Nationals it became clear which riders would represent Emory & Henry the best at this prestigious competition.”
The team was thrilled to win their Custom Saddlery saddles. Moosemueller-Terry commented, “The Emory & Henry 2015 National Champion Dressage Team already loves Custom saddles! The saddles put the rider in the right position to balance well and achieve a stable, correct posture that allows the rider to effectively communicate with the horse. Custom’s saddles are premium dressage saddles, and we are so fortunate to add more of these beautiful saddles to our team! We’re very grateful for Custom Saddlery’s support of IDA and collegiate riding. Sponsors like Custom Saddlery are important to the IDA because of the reputation that Custom Saddlery has with dressage riders outside of collegiate completion.”
In addition to awarding the champion team with four saddles, Custom Saddlery gifted another four saddles to the individual champion of each level. Kelsie Bricker, an Otterbein University rider and IDA 2015 National Champion in First Level Dressage, was thrilled to receive a handcrafted custom-fit saddle for her first-place ride. “I think winning a saddle from Custom Saddlery at Nationals is one of the best things that could be won,” she stated. “It makes people want to work really hard throughout the year to have a chance to win one of their saddles. It is incredibly generous of Custom Saddlery to allow the winners to get a saddle from them, and I know it is appreciated more than words can express with other riders as well.” Bricker has ridden in Custom saddles in the past, and is already a fan. “I like them a lot - they are very well-made. I'm really excited to use the one I won— and I am sure my horse is excited to have a custom-fit saddle from Custom Saddlery as well!”
To Custom Saddlery, sponsoring the next generation of talented dressage riders and providing them with the quality tack they will need to make it to the next level is vital to the sport of dressage. Custom Saddlery offers top-quality saddles like those awarded at IDA Nationals, and has countless ways to customize a saddle specifically for an individual horse and rider’s needs and preferences. Saddle fitting services and accessories are also available.
For more information about Custom Saddlery, visit www.mysaddle.com or call 1-800-235-3865.