Victory Farm was proud to enter four riders in the UPHA Exceptional Challenge Cup on Saturday Morning during the Academy Divisions.
Pictured Above L-R: Level 4 Winner Shawna Hoover riding Roanie (QH); Reserve Level 4 Elijah Diffley riding MoonShadow (QH).
Level 5 Champion Julia Walsh riding Big Junior Brown (ASB) and Reserve Savannah Heavner riding Micah (Morgan).
From the UPHA: "It is part of the mission of the UPHA (United Professional Horseman's Association) to encourage and promote educational activities and competition related to the sport of showing horses. Through our Challenge Cup programs, many juvenile and adult riders have increased their equine knowledge and athletic skills. In 1997, with Challenge Cup Championships offered in many different breeds (Saddlebred, Morgan, Arabian) and age divisions, former UPHA President, L.F. Lavery, felt that the program was incomplete without a division for the physical or mentally challenged rider. In 1998 the UPHA Equitation Committee and the National American Riding for the Handicap Association (NARHA - now PATH Int'l) developed the UPHA Exceptional Challenge Cup.
In 1999, the American Royal, held in Kansas City, Missouri, and the UPHA hosted the first UPHA Exceptional Challenge Cup Championship. The championship is designed to give mentally and physically challenged riders the chance to compete and earn awards at a national level. The American Royal is an exciting venue for all riders to compete, and is a place where champions are made."
The Exceptional Challenge Cup was truly a challenge for these riders! A challenge they worked hard to conquer and they DID! Riders enter the ring, showing their horse at the walk down the first rail then trot back down the far rail. The workout pattern is a serpentine at the trot. Each rider proved their ability by completing the class and pattern! All four riders are challenged with Cerebral Palsy (three have additional diagnoses), making it especially difficult to trot. We are so very proud of them all!
Victory Farm riders also gave a Patriotic Themed Obstacle Course skills demonstration with different riders on Friday and Saturday nights. (Saturday night riders are pictured below) In honor of Memorial Day weekend, the course, designed to showcase the horsemanship ability of each rider, consisted of red, white & blue weaving poles, cavallettis and different obstacles with poles and flags. Riders demonstrated their ability to control their horse through the course and to "jump" the cavallettis!
** Please see photos of this exciting event on our Facebook page "Victory Farm Inc" Album entitled "Victory Riders at Dallas Summer Classic Horse Show".
Photo progressions include explanations - You'll enjoy it! Take a look!
Victory Farm Riders, Families and All-Volunteer Staff would like to thank the Management Team of the Dallas Summer Classic Horse Show and the UPHA for all their support!