Fleeceworks recently announced its sponsorship of the Area V NAJYRC teams, which in July will be vying for a title that, for the under-21 set, is just about as prestigious as it gets. Young Rider Jacob Fletcher has gamely invited Horse Nation to tag along.
The Shepherds of Area V
Greetings from Area V Young Riders! Jacob Fletcher here. We have been on quite a ride this year and thought you all might want to take it with us!! Our trip began in January, where most of us have been sprinting around the countryside in a frenzied attempt to get qualified all winter and spring season. We have been everywhere: from the Ocala CCI* and CCI** to the opposite end of the Country where some are going to Colorado Horse Park’s upcoming CCI* and CCI**. Somewhere during all of our own shows, we had to take time out to see the show we all dream about going to… Rolex! Here my teammate Avery and I were lucky enough to meet up with the people from Fleeceworks. They have graciously decided to sponsor our Young Riders team this year, so we have decided to record our travels through a blog.
Having just recently qualified at the Chattahoochee CIC**, I can relax and stretch for a bit, but I still have a long way until team selection and bidding farewell to Area V on board Coach Mike Huber’s beast of a horse trailer! (I think it is safe to say we look like the “Clampits” a.k.a. the Beverly Hillbillies traveling down the highway. If only we could find a way to strap Mrs. Diane Pitts, our Area Coordinator, to the top in her rocking chair.) Just kidding, Diane like all of the other people involved in our young rider program are the best!
Jacob Fletcher, shown here on the Prof (a.k.a. Theo) jumping out of an Intermediate water. Photo credit: Jacob’s mom.
I, like many other aspiring young riders, will be staying at Mike Huber’s barn in Bartonville, Texas for the summer in preparation for Young Riders. Two weeks prior to our voyage to the Kentucky Horse Park, the infamous Area V Young Riders Boot Camp begins at Mike Huber’s barn, where we scrub his infinitely long concrete hallway with toothbrushes. OK, maybe it’s not that harsh, but we probably do the equivalent to that in our intense lessons in the unforgiving Texas summer heat! It’s a hard life for us Young Riders who ride until noon and then head to lunch, the mall, Mike’s swimming pool, Six Flags, or an abundance of other entertaining events. (It is tough to be from Area V hanging out together in Dallas.) Seriously, though we work very, very hard. We want to win! We want to be the best! And we definitely want to keep those awesome sheepskin pads coming our way!!!
I think you will enjoy coming along with us on this journey to Young Riders. For those of you who have never been to the Championships it can be like the proverbial “Agony and the Ecstasy.” Things can be going fantastically and then unexpectedly take a turn for the worse. The thing I have found about eventers is that they always seem to persevere. Either way, in Area V there never seems to be a dull moment! On this trek, you will be hearing from riders, coaches, grooms, and kids participating in the mentorship program at this year’s North American Junior Young Rider Championship. This year, we are expecting to have a full team and two individuals on the CCI* team, and a full team and one individual on the CCI** team. Just an introduction to a few of us.
Riders trying out for the CCI* include:
Tori New and Fleeceworks Mystere Du Val (Must be a good omen! Good Horse… Great product!)
Alyssa Phillips and Exploring
Jordan Payton and Slew’s Aftershock
Audrey Figari and Land Des Feuers
Brindley House and Might Be Regal
Diana Heinrich and Weja Annabridget
Taylor Wood and On Eagle’s Wings
Ann O’Neal Pevahouse and Don BoscoRiders trying out for the CCI** include:
Jacob Fletcher (myself) and The Prof
Alexa Ehlers and In Any Event
Avery Klunick and In it to Win It
Mary Frances Cargile and Take the Mick
Emma Kate Fisher and Carlingford’s Forever
Follow Jacob and Area V’s journey to NAJYRC on the “Events” page of the Fleeceworks website.