LCHS Equestrian Team Is Back and Ready to Ride

First published in the Dec. 30 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.

By Paulette Osorio
Special to Outlook Valley Sun

After losing last year’s season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the La Cañada High School equestrian club returned to competition this fall better prepared and with a roster that includes 18 riders.
Each member rides with their own trainer all year and then, as a team, select riders compete on behalf of LCHS at the four Interscholastic Equestrian League shows. IEL comprises nearly 200 public and private middle school and secondary school from the Southern California region. The competition is fierce but all involved enjoy the experience whether they win or lose.
Since the start of the school year, the LCHS club team has sent riders to IEL shows in November and, most recently, on Dec. 12. Both events were held at Hansen Dam Horse Park.
Returning riders have done quite well so far.
Sophomore Chloe Lee returned to compete in the Novice Hunters/Equitation Division for the second show and placed eighth in her working hunter over fences class.

Photo courtesy Paulette Osorio
Junior Emilia Osorio-Lowery shows off her ribbons from the second Interscholastic Equestrian League show.

Junior Emilia Osorio-Lowery has placed ninth and sixth in Freshman Equitation Flat and posted two seventh-place and one runner-up finish in her Freshman Hunters/Equitation over fences classes in the last two shows.
Sophomore Kaylee Thornburgh has been introducing her young horse, Fidelio, to Junior Varsity Jumpers and continues to help him grow more experienced with each ride.
Junior Riley Thornburgh moved up a level to Varsity Jumpers (highest division in IEL with 3-foot, 6-inch fence heights) on her horse, Liberty, and placed eighth and fourth in the first show, and third and fifth in the December show. She is currently ranked third overall in the division.
The team has four new riders competing this year.

Photo courtesy Paulette Osorio
Caroline Kelly with her 10th place ribbon.

Eighth-grader Olivia Cha and freshman Caroline Kelly started out in Novice Hunters/Equitation the December show. Cha took home third, sixth and ninth place ribbons in her over fences classes and a fourth place in her flat class. Kelly placed 10th in her flat class.

Photo courtesy Vidya Narayan
Seventh-grader Aditi Iyer just started riding a few weeks ago and took home two 3rd place ribbons for introductory level dressage in her first show.

Seventh-grader Aditi Iyer, currently the youngest competing member of the team, rode in two dressage classes at the first show in November and placed third in both.
Sophomore Ava Strauss had a strong showing at both shows on her horse Sparkling Rose in Junior Varsity Jumpers with fence heights of 3 feet. Strauss and Rose placed seventh and second and took home the JV Jumpers Reserve Champion ribbon in the first show. The duo then placed 11th and first at the most recent show and is currently third in her JV Jumpers Division for the season.