Later this month, five lucky Maryland pony clubbers and their coach will be heading to the Kentucky Horse Park to compete in the Prince Phillips Cup national games tournament held during the famed Land Rover Kentucky Three Day Event. Kate Benjamin (Westminster), Mackenzie Hicks (New Windsor), Ella Jensen (New Market), Kate Keiser (New Windsor) and Brooke Keiser (New Windsor) make up the Thunder Hooves Mounted Games Team. Riders are from Talbot Run Pony Club Riding Center and Burntwoods Pony Club. They are coached by Matt Brown of Warrenton Pony Club, who is also a Mounted Games Across America member.
The Thunder Hooves team was formed in November 2017 with the goal to form a team that could make it to USPC Champs that following summer. The team began practices twice a month with Coach Brown guiding them and molding them into a cohesive team. The first step to champs was the Maryland Region Games Rally in May 2018. By winning their division at this regional rally, the team secured their spot at champs.
That July, five kids and their parents packed up five ponies and headed to the Tryon International Riding Center in North Carolina for the 2018 USPC Championships East competition. On July 23, the ponies arrived at Tryon and the girls, who has arrived ahead of the ponies, were there ready to get them settled into their home for the next five days. For the next three days, they competed once a day and ended up placing fourth overall and third in horse management. But their journey didn’t just end in North Carolina!
Having obtained their initial goal of getting to champs, the team found out their scores qualified them for the 2019 Prince Phillip Cup in KY! They have been practicing all winter and the time has finally come for another trip south. We will post updates of their trips here on The Equiery’s homepage as well as on social media so keep checking back!
And good luck in Kentucky ladies!