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Zoe Conlee Captures Overall Individual Gold, Team IHSA Captures Team Gold at 2014 USHJA Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Finals

Twenty-One Participants Show Thirst for Learning through Written Exam, Educational Seminars and Practicum Testing


For Immediate Release


Findlay, OH-November 18-Twenty-one participants gathered from seven zones, the United States Pony Club and the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association to compete as teams and individuals in the National Finals of the USHJA Horsemanship Quiz Challenge, presented by Sweet Briar College, at the University of Findlay (OH), November 14-16. Zoe Conlee, 18, of Ridgefield, WA, captured the title of overall individual gold medalist and team gold was awarded to the IHSA team of Kabisa Baughen, Brown University; Emily Dengler, SUNY; and Emily Garrett, Ohio University.


Conlee, who competed in the HQC Finals in 2012 and 2013, was the individual silver medalist in 2012. She currently competes with her horses in the 1.40m jumpers, is involved in breeding several broodmares to produce jumper prospects, and works with a small training program of students of all ages.

Left to Right: Emily Dengler, silver medalist; Cricket Stone, Youth Committee Chair; Zoe Conlee, gold medalist; Kirstie Dobbs, Youth Committee Vice Chair; and Sara Sprague, bronze medalist. Photo Credit: Tricia Booker/USHJA Archives


In addition to her gold medal, Conlee received a $1,000 grant for training and education, a Charles Owen helmet, and a 60-day internship with leading American sport horse breeding and training facility, Spy Coast Farm.


"I'm looking forward to go and work with people working with young horses," said Conlee of the internship with Spy Coast Farm. Already having involvement in breeding, Conlee expressed her excitement to learn more about working with and training young jumper prospects.


"Zoe is a repeat HQC Finals participant and has not only expanded her horsemanship knowledge, but really has a thirst to learn more," said Cricket Stone, chair of the USHJA Youth Committee, which oversees the HQC program.


The members of the winning IHSA Team each received a $1,000 grant for training and education and a Charles Owen helmet, in addition to their gold medals.


"This is such a great program," said Kabisa Baughen of Sarasota, FL, who rides for Brown University. "I really liked the seminars and how they made you realize what you didn't know, in a way that made you want to learn it."

HQC Finals participants attended seminars in conformation, bandaging/wrapping, saddle-fitting, and audited the concurrent Emerging Athletes Program National Training Session, in addition to taking a written test and practicum.

Left to Right: Team Zone 1, silver; Cricket Stone, Youth Committee Chair; Team IHSA, gold; Kirstie Dobbs, Youth Committee Vice Chair; Team Zone 10, bronze. Photo Credit: Tricia Booker/USHJA Archives


Also earning high praise from the Youth Committee and participants was host facility, the University of Findlay. Findlay's James L. Child, Jr. Equestrian Complex hosted the USHJA Emerging Athletes Program National Training Session and the concurrent Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Finals in 2013 and 2014.


"We are incredibly lucky to be back at the University of Findlay," said Stone. "They have a wonderful facility and great resources."




Team Gold: IHSA (Kabisa Baughen, Emily Dengler, Emily Garrett)

Team Silver: Zone 1 Team (Grace Powers, Sarah Sprague, Elisa Zygiel)

Team Bronze: Zone 10 Team (Sabrina Jain, Devyn Hinkle, Ana Park Von Simun)


Individual Gold: Zoe Conlee

Individual Silver: Emily Dengler

Individual Bronze: Sara Sprague


High Score Written Test: Sabrina Jain

High Score Practicum: Sara Sprague


About the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge
Created to promote education and advancement of horsemanship skills and equine knowledge, the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge allows youth (competition age 21 and younger) to compete to win an assortment of prizes including a $1,000 grant for training and education. 


To qualify for the HQC Finals, participants must master both the Level One and Level Two online quizzes. Participants must receive a 90% or higher on Quiz Level One to advance to Level Two. The exam materials are based on the Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Study Guide, which covers an array of topics including anatomy and physiology, first aid, grooming, nutrition, shoeing, tack and stable management.


The top-three finalists in each zone and the top-10 individuals nationally who have not qualified by being on a zone team, based on Level Two Quiz scores of 90% or higher, are invited to compete at the HQC Finals. The three top-scoring finalists in each zone comprise the zone teams. These finalists also compete as individuals. Participants take a final written exam, as well as a practicum. The highest-scoring zone team and highest-scoring individual finalist are named the overall winners of the HQC Finals.


The 2014 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Program is supported in part by a generous grant from the United States Equestrian Federation.


Complete coverage of the 2014 USHJA Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Finals will be published in the January 2015 issue of USHJA In Stride. Please visit the USHJA HQC Finals page for more information.


Following an internal audit of the 2014 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Finals scoring, held November 14-16, 2014 in Findlay, OH, USHJA has declared a second individual winner, Devyn Hinkle, 18, of Oakland, CA, alongside Zoe Conlee. Devyn will receive a gold medal, as well as a $1,000 grant for training and education, a Charles Owen helmet and a 60-day internship with leading American sport horse breeding and training facility, Spy Coast Farm.


United States Hunter Jumper Association 
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