The Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) Western National Finals, was held at the Oklahoma State Fair Park in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, during the National Reining Horse Association 2015 Derby.
IEA riders ranging in age from 11 to 19 years old competed in horsemanship & Reining classes on horses drawn day-of. The riders do not have any time to familiarize themselves with the horse they draw before they set foot in the show pen.
The top four riders from the IEA Varsity Open Reining Class (Caroline Gute, Jordan Carpenter, Tyler Kirby and Emma Willeke) competed against the top four NRHyA riders in the NRHA High School Reining Championship class.
“It was another spectacular day at the Adequan arena. The team competitions were close and the sense of spirit and good sportsmanship was everywhere,” IEA co-founder and Executive Director Roxane Lawrence said.
Founded in 2002, the IEA has more than 11,000 middle and high school student-riders across the United States. The IEA was organized to promote and improve the quality of equestrian competition and instruction available to middle and secondary school students and is open to public and private schools and barn teams. Its purpose is to set minimum standards for competition, provide information concerning the creation and development of school associated equestrian sport programs, to generally promote the common interests of safe riding instruction and competition and education on matters related to equestrian competition at the middle and secondary school levels. For more information on the IEA, including how to become involved, visit www.rideiea.org.