WELLINGTON, Fla. (Feb. 17) — Worthington Christian Schools will have top representation at this year’s FTI Winter Equestrian Festival at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center with sisters Paige and Kelly Jo Coughlin of Delaware, Ohio, taking on the best riders in the country for the next 12 weeks.
This is the second time the girls have competed at the WEF, a AA-rated show that features the top level of competition in the country with the most stringent judging. Paige, 11, and Kelly Jo, 10, will compete in two categories — Children’s Small Hunter Ponies and Equitation for ages 11-and-under.
Under the watchful eye of renowned trainer Angela Moore out of Johnstown, Ohio, the sixth and fourth graders will take on more than 50 riders in each category. In the Children’s Small Hunter Ponies class, riders are given two to three jumping courses each day that they must learn and execute with no faults. In Equitation, they are judged on riding technique and various skills inside a ring.
In the first week of competition, Paige scored both a third and a fourth place result in Equitation aboard her pony Absolute Mischief. Meanwhile, Kelly Jo rode Hillcrest Smokey Joe to a win and a runner-up finish.
The main goal for the girls at the WEF is to accumulate enough points to qualify for this summer’s Pony Finals in Kentucky. To reach that goal they will continue to train hard for four days a week, Tuesday-Friday, and compete almost every weekend. They even have an early summer trip planned to the Netherlands for a riding clinic with international sensation Karim Farin.
More than 10,000 horses are entered in this year’s WEF, including the mounts of several Olympic team members.
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Scott “Woody” Woodruff
JEGS, Director of Media & Motorsports
Office: 800-345-4545 (#3, ext. 412)