Adrian College offers a variety of unique sports, this includes the Equestrian Team. Adrian has both a Stock and Hunt team; you have the choice to pick one or to be on both teams. The Adrian College Equestrian Team is open to anyone, no experience with horses is needed. The team is open to teaching you and helping you learn every aspect of taking care of the team horses and learning to ride. If you have always wanted to learn to ride and take care of horses, the Adrian College Equestrian team is the perfect place for you. You will start at the lowest level and it is very rewarding to move up as you improve. The team has two captains that are dedicated to helping you become the best possible rider that you can be, and two coaches that are also there to teach you from a different perspective. Coaches Troy and Jody Prime are horse trainers and great teachers. Team captains Lori Girrbach (Stock), and Maddison Austin (Hunt) have been showing at a very high level outside of the team and are very knowledgeable in a competitive aspect. Captain Lori Girrbach said, “I am beyond thankful for this team and the four years that I have been blessed to compete as a college athlete. As one of the team captains, I have learned many valuable leadership and communication skills that will continue to guide me as I graduate college and start my career.”
Every member is responsible for taking care of the team horses and keeping the barn clean. This includes cleaning stalls and making sure the horses have food and water throughout the day. The equestrian team practices two nights a week for about two hours, and they do team workouts two nights a week as well. The team has plenty of horses to use for practices, so you are able to practice on a variety of different horses. The equestrian team gets new horses every year to practice on aswell to really help each rider learn to ride any horse that they could draw at a show.
Each team has a show or meet every other weekend. These meets are where we compete against other colleges in a way that is unique to most horse shows. The hosting team provides horses for the show, and every rider draws a horse that they have never ridden before to show for that class. This gives each rider an equal opportunity to show their abilities to the judge. Depending on the show, riders could be judged on the rail, or on a pattern. If you have enough experience or points you may also be able to compete in the jumping, ranch, or reining classes. The Adrian Collge Equestrian team has been placing very highly this year and may be able to take a trip to regionals as a team. Only two teams per district are able to compete at the regional level, the rest will be individual.
Members of the equestrian team believe it is a very rewarding experience, there is so much to learn about the horses and how to ride, but you also learn many other skills being on the team. Some include, work ethic, dedication, problem solving, team work, and can also be a therapeutic break from school. Senior Abby Taylor said “Before Adrian, I had never ridden a horse before and then I joined the team and never looked back. The team is very welcoming and is incredibly supportive on and off the horse!” She started on the team her freshman year and will be graduating this spring! Spots are open on the team, and anyone is welcome to join!