For the last two seasons, the equestrian team has played bridesmaid to Skidmore. But with the combination of a strong returning squad, 15 talented rookies, and the graduation of 10 Thoroughbred riders, Cornell seems to be well poised to challenge for first place in its region this year.
The first step towards that No. 1 placement comes this weekend, as the team travels to Hartwick College in Oneonta for its first show of the season. The competition will be tomorrow.
“We’re riding really, really well,” said fifth-year senior captain Julie Canter. “The team’s melded really well, we’re a cohesive bunch.”
The team’s progress has come in the face of many deleterious rules effecting all Ivy League sports. Due to the seven week rule imposed by Ivy League Presidents which mandates that athletic teams discontinue practice for seven one-week periods in the academic year, the equestrian team didn’t begin practicing until four weeks into the semester.
The ruling affects the team more significantly than other sports since its season spans November through May. Being the only Ivy League team within its region, Cornell’s competition will all have more practices than the Red.
“It’s affecting us horribly because we’re a full-season sport. We’re a little bit behind,” Canter said.
Nevertheless, the team has fought through the late start and expects to show well in Oneonta. Many returners such as Canter, senior Kate Cornell, and junior Jeanette Pettit have been strong riders within the region for the past few seasons. In addition, some of the new talent will be joining the women as four of the new riders will take the trip to Hartwick.
As usual, Skidmore will probably provide the Red with it’s stiffest competition, but Canter believes the Thoroughbreds may be weaker this year.
“Skidmore’s the team to look out for, but they graduated 10 seniors, so they have a young team,” she said. “But I think we have a leg up since we have a lot of returning seniors.
“It looks like a good year — we don’t want to be second-place again.”
Archived article by Amanda Angel