Buffalo, NY - March 23, 2012 – The Buffalo Equestrian Center is pleased to announce that two of its students have qualified for the Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) Zone Finals. It was only two years ago that Caroline Schutte and Susie Schoellkopf put their heads together to conceptualize the program, but even in its short existence they have seen nothing but success. The IEA program acts as a saving grace for those riders possibly unable to afford the equestrian sport, or with little access to horses. This program has given students an exceptional opportunity to be involved with a unique sport and enjoy team camaraderie at numerous competitions and around the barn.
On February 11, 2012, the Buffalo Equestrian Center's IEA team competed at Heritage Stables in Skaneatles, NY, contending for the top honors and the qualifications to attend the Region Finals held at Alfred University Equestrian Center on March 11, 2012. After an intense weekend, Caroline Schutte and Maddie Callanan came out on top.
The two girls will compete at the Zone Finals with the hopes of progressing to the IEA Hunt Seat Nationals that will be held April 20-22, 2012 at the Coliseum at New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse, NY. The Zone 2 Finals will be the last qualifying factor, and this weekend, March 24, Schutte and Callanan will make their way to Flemington, NJ, to compete at Briarwood Farm.
Each rider is judged on both an individual and team level, earning points throughout the year to qualify for the esteemed Region Finals and eventually the National Qualifier. The IEA program teaches secondary and upper-level students the fundamentals of equitation and horsemanship. It is apparent that the hard work is already paying off.
Based out of Buffalo, NY, SBS Farms' Susie Schoellkopf and Jennifer Alfano run one of the foremost show hunter training operations in the country, and travel nationwide to compete in the nation's most prestigious horse shows. SBS Farms, Inc. continues the proud tradition of the Saddle and Bridle Club as one of the top show stables in the northeast. Schoellkopf is also the Executive Director of the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center, which houses both The Buffalo Equestrian Center as well as SBS Farms. Built in 1922, the 160-stall facility is a historical landmark, with its unique English Tudor and gothic style architecture. For more information on SBS Farms and the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center, please visitwww.thebtrc.org.