Teenage riding participates in national championships; OPS student an “elegant and efficient rider” | Local | Today Headlines

Teenage riding participates in national championships; OPS student an “elegant and efficient rider” | Local

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DONNA L. HOLMAN T&D Correspondent

The first time Emma Doremus sat on a horse, she fell in love with its beauty and strength.

Eleven years later, she is an accomplished rider who has competed and placed well in countless equestrian events requiring specialist skills, exceptional riding and, most importantly, effective communication between horse and rider.

“I first rode horseback when I was 4 and have loved the sport ever since,” said Emma.

She not only enjoys the art of horseback riding, but also finds satisfaction in helping her trainers work with and condition horses for the show arena.

Due to her dedication to horseback riding and training, Emma qualified to compete in the United States Dressage Federation’s national competition this year.

In November, she rode her 8-year-old PRE, Pura Raza Español, named Elbrus BRH, in the American Dressage Final, which was held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Ky.

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“PREs date back to the 15th century and they were mainly used as royal horses,” explained Rachel Chowanec Kaney, Emma’s trainer. The purebred Spanish once carried kings and nobles to the European country.

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“Dressage is like dancing with the horse; there is a lot of harmony between horse and rider, ”said Kaney, who has worked with Emma for 4 years and praised her as“ a very elegant and efficient rider for someone so young ”.

“She has a very good posture and natural use of her body. She flows very well with the horse, ”said the trainer, who has a long history of working with equestrian athletes, including at the Olympic level.

There are many types of riding ranging from western fun to show jumping and reining to barrel races that test both animal and human endurance and skill. The type of riding Emma practiced dates back to 350 BC in Greece.

Dressage became more well defined during the 16th and 17th centuries as an art form that shows the seamless connection of the rider to his mount. Recognized as a sport in the 19th century, dressage is derived from the French word which means to train and essentially seeks to focus on the light control of the rider and the eager obedience of the horse which demonstrates the balance and precision of movement between both.

Emma and Elbrus BRH, who have only been training together for about 12 months, placed 16th overall in the 2021 domestic competition and intend to qualify again next year and score even higher.

The temperature on the day of their show fell below freezing and the high winds may have made a difference in their performance as the team left behind sunny skies and a mild 64 degrees in South Carolina.

“It just wasn’t their day, but they’ll be back next year stronger than ever. They are truly an amazing team and they will continue their quest to win this championship, ”said Jason, Emma’s dad.

“My favorite thing in the world is watching my little girl ride a horse and live her dream,” he said.

“I hope to compete in the North American Youth Championships (NAYC) and the Festival of Champions next year,” said the confident rider, who also competes in eventing, a sport that combines dressage, jumping. stadium and cross-country.

Jason and Nikki Doremus’ 15-year-old daughter, who currently resides with her father and stepmother, Shelly, and brothers, Graham and Grayson, attends preparatory schools in Orangeburg.

After graduating from OPS, Emma plans to go to Clemson or the University of South Carolina, where she will continue her love of animals by majoring in biology with a focus in veterinary science.

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Another PAHO student, Laine Grubbs, also qualified for the Kentucky National Show, but according to her mother, Miriam, did not make the trip this year due to the events of the senior class and her involvement in basketball.

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