WWU Equestrians Gain Experience in Competitive Judging

Two groups from the William Woods University equestrian science program traveled to Tulsa, Okla., Oct. 22-25, to participate in the intercollegiate judging competition held during U.S. Arabian Nationals. The students got the chance to view—and participate in judging—a national caliber show.

The team judged 10 classes, and for four of those classes the students had to give oral reasons for their choices. This requires the student to stand in front of a judge and cite specifics from the rule book as to why they pinned the class in that order.

Out of the 22 collegiate teams that competed, the WWU team (which has to split into two groups for competition) took 11th and 12th place.

The following students were members of Team 1 which took 11th place: Jessica Grosz of Harrisonville, Mo.; Emily Davis of Grain Valley, Mo.; Amanda Seitter Peculiar, Mo.; Heather Sim of Vernon Hills, Ill., and Katie Hudson of Tebbetts, Mo.

Miranda Weber of Niagara, Wis.; Maggie O’Leary of Florissant, Mo.; Leah Szyp of Rockford, Ill.; Isabelle Hilgers of Warrenville, Ill., and Frankie Hart of Lee’s Summit, Mo., made up Team 2 which took 12th place.

According to WWU clinical instructor of equestrian science and judging team coach, Jennie Petterson, the team this year is composed mostly of students new to competitive judging.

“These are brand new teams; this was the first competition for many of these people,” said Petterson.

Petterson feels that competitive judging is a great opportunity for any student.

“It’s a chance to learn how to judge horses, yes,” said Petterson, “But also to present yourself in a two-minute extemporaneous speech in front of a knowledgeable judge. You can apply that in any occupation.”