Intercollegiate Dressage Champions Win Custom Saddles at IDA National Championships

Monday, May 2, 2016
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The 2016 IDA National Champion team of Emory & Henry College received saddles from Custom Saddlery along with their blue ribbons (Photo courtesy of Jessica Allanson)

Long Valley, NJ - The iconic saddle manufacturing and fitting company Custom Saddlery returned this year as a platinum sponsor of the 2016 Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA) National Championships. The competition was held at Centenary College in Long Valley, New Jersey. A total of eight top-quality saddles were presented at the show in support of the Nation’s top intercollegiate dressage riders. Custom Saddlery, the Official Saddle of The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team through the 2016 Olympics, was proud to be a part of presenting the talented young riders with brand new Custom saddles.

One saddle was awarded to each of the champions of the four individual levels of competition, and four saddles were given to the champion team. Custom Saddlery was happy to once again sponsor IDA Nationals and play a role in fostering the growth of young riders.

Since its inception in 1995, the Intercollegiate Dressage Association has grown from small competitions among a few colleges and secondary schools in the northeast region, to the nationally recognized and increasingly competitive program it is today that fosters teams in every state. With more riders, teams, and competitions than ever, IDA relies on premier companies and sponsors such as Custom Saddlery to support the country’s top up-and-coming dressage riders. Candice Ozolins, a Custom Saddlery saddle fitter based out of New York State, attended the event to provide her expert saddle fitting knowledge to competitors and spectators in attendance.

The returning National Champion team, Emory & Henry College of Emory, Virginia, once again took the top honors by winning the 2016 IDA National Championship. The team was comprised of Nicholas Martino in First Level, Karissa Donohue in Upper Training, Elijah Worth-Jones in Lower Training, and Taylor Carroll in Introductory Level. Lead by Emory & Henry College Dressage team coach Lisa Moosmueller-Terry, the team skillfully perfected each division’s ride, earning four beautiful Custom Saddles for their school.

Moosmueller-Terry expressed her pride in her students, stating, “I felt that the Emory & Henry dressage team was very strong going into Nationals, and throughout the rest of the season.”

The team coach was as grateful and excited as her students were to receive Custom Saddlery saddles. “The Custom saddles are premium dressage saddles. We are so fortunate to add more of these beautiful saddles to our team,” she said. “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. 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 competition.”

Representing the host school in Upper Training level, Amanda Defelice, a senior of Centenary College, won her division on Individual Day and also received a Custom saddle. “We have one Custom saddle at our school already, and it is my favorite saddle. My boss has two as well and I love riding in them. I did not have my own saddle before this show, and I’m so excited that I won the Custom saddle,” Defelice said. Upon graduation in May 2016, Defelice plans to pursue a career in training and competing young horses up through the levels. She will be ready and outfitted with the tools she needs for success in her Custom saddle.

The other three individual winners were Samantha Majors of North Carolina State University in First Level, Elijah Worth-Jones of Emory & Henry College in Lower Training level, and Sierra Davenport of Emory & Henry College in Introductory Level.

The sponsorship and support of the next generation of talented dressage riders is of utmost importance to Custom Saddlery. The company is happy to be a part of providing the eight IDA National Championship winners with high quality tack to further their skills and prepare for post-intercollegiate life. 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