West Springfield, Mass. - The New England Equitation Championships (NEEC) celebrated its 44th anniversary this year, hosting the five-day event, which is managed by the volunteer NEEC Committee and is one of the longest running and most prestigious equitation finals in the country. All five days were produced by ShowNet and livestreamed on USEF Network. Click here to view the archive stream on USEF Network.
The renowned judging panel included Linda Andrisani, Ralph Caristo, Todd Karn, Jimmy Lee, Patrick Rodes (course designer) and Sissy Wickes.
The 46+ Adult Medal kicked off the week on Wednesday, October 16. After two rounds and a test of the top three, Michele Foote emerged as champion with reserve honors going to Sherrill Woessner. In the 28-45 division, last year’s reserve champion, Carolyn Lavin, came back to win her section of the Open class and also championed the Medal, while Julie Hogan followed in reserve. On Thursday, the 22-27 Medal champion was awarded to Alexandra Carlton, ahead of Elizabeth Chenelle who earned reserve. In the 18-21 Medal class, Clara Bechtold rose to the top of the class and also collected champion honors in the Medal, while reserve went to Emily Gilbert.
The Junior Open sections took place on Friday and Saturday. On Friday evening, more than 75 Junior riders took the written phase of the Horsemanship Class. Originating at the NEEC, the Horsemanship Class combines a rider’s written test score, practicum, and first round Finals score to determine the overall top Junior horseman. This year the Junior Sportsmanship Award was presented to Emma Fletcher, who was selected by her peers for the award.
Sunday’s Junior Medal Final featured 171 riders. Last year’s Junior Open winner, Katrina Tiktinsky, along with esteemed Grand Prix rider and ‘R’ judge Ellie Raidt lent their voices and expertise to the livestream commentary during the final.
After two rounds and a test of the top four, Taylor Griffiths masterfully clinched the top title with reserve honors presented to Ellie Ferrigno. Griffiths' trains with Frank and Jennifer Madden, while Ferrigno trains with Val Renihan.