Young Rider Sydney Collier, of Ann Arbor, Mich., will head to the USEF Para-Equestrian Dressage National Championship and selection trials for the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games after winning this year’s Jonathan Wentz Memorial Scholarship. Collier will be showing Willi Wesley and NTEC Cuplee at the selection trials in Gladstone, N.J., June 2-5.
The Jonathan Wentz Scholarship Fund was established to continue the dream of Paralympian Jonathan Wentz and to advance high performance para-dressage in the United States by supporting and encouraging young riders to set the goal of international competition. Funds are awarded to help offset competition expenses up to $1,000.00 per competition to help cover entry and other fees, including stabling and/or shipping (must be greater than 500 miles one way) costs for competition.
Collier (Grade 1b) participated in the 2012 USEF National Championships but was unable to compete in the London Paralympics since she was under the minimum qualification age of 16. The scholarship fund helped Collier travel to Florida for a CPEDI*** earlier this year.
“I am excited and focused as selection trials and the [USEF] National Championship gets closer and closer,” said Collier. “It was such a great experience in 2012 to have qualified at the national level. Even though I was too young at that point to be included in selection trials for the London Paralympics, it was an invaluable learning experience as I was growing and developing as a rider. I hope other junior/young riders will continue to use the national level shows as preparation for events like this regardless of the possible age restraints because it is absolutely the best way to find yourself prepared for all the ins and outs of future international and high level competitions.”