Harrisburg, Pa.—Oct. 13
“Experience” is usually one of the tenets that makes competing in a championship easier. But the Zone 10 team had no issue contending without it in this year’s USEF Junior Jumper National Championship Prix Des States. None of the four riders from California and Nevada had ever taken part in the competition, but nonetheless snagged the team championship over Zone 4 and Zone 7 respectively.
The team consisted of Ariana Marnell, 17, of Las Vegas and Away Semilly; Cameron Trimino, 16, of Orange County, California, and Firewall; Emmeline Adamick, 17, of San Francisco and Igelo; and Della White, 18, of Newport Beach, California, on Giggs. They finished on an overall score of 8 faults, a tremendous feat given all other competing zones racked up at least 20 faults each.
Marnell already reigned supreme earlier that day, winning the grand junior hunter championship aboard Babylon.
“I felt comfortable going into [the Prix Des States],” she said. “I didn’t feel that much pressure. After showing a horse like Babylon, where there’s so much pressure, the class was more fun for me.”
Marnell produced two double clear rounds on Away Semilly, a horse she started riding at the end of the winter circuit. Though Marnell competed at the Pennsylvania National last year, she showed hunters and equitation. This week marked her first indoor jumper competition.
“At the end of the day, while it was our first time competing at this level indoors, I knew I had shown this horse enough,” she said. “I know how to ride and we all know how to ride. I tried to remember that it’s just another round, rather than a big deal, and I still needed to ride the horse and focus on the basics.”
Marnell’s teammates shared her sentiments. Adamick emphasized the difference between her usual show haunts and The Farm Show Complex arenas.
“This is my first time ever being at Harrisburg and ever doing indoors,” said Adamick. “I’m used to riding at Spruce Meadows—big grass fields—so it’s definitely a different experience.”
But Adamick quickly adjusted to her new venue, producing great rounds with only a rail down in each.
“I’ve learned not to hug the wall just for the sake of hugging the wall these past few days,” she said. “Instead, I learned to use them to be as efficient and as fast as possible and maintain a good rhythm.”
Teammate Trimino rebounded from a tough first round to produce a strong second trip, with just one down.
“I was really proud that I was able to get back in there after a tough first round and be able to get it done. My horse and I finally got it together, and I’m really happy that we ended on a good note,” Trimino said.
White and her mount Giggs, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood, anchored the team as the last pair to compete in the final round. Though White could have clinched the gold for Zone 10 even with a rail down, she produced a clear second round to match her first.
“I was fine going last in the order,” said White. “But I honestly had no idea what the scores were, which was probably better. If I did know what the scores were, I think I would’ve been a little more nervous.”
Jumper competition continues tomorrow with the final round of the USEF Junior Jumper National Championship.
Find full results here. Check out all the Chronicle’s coverage from the Pennsylvania National here. Check out the Oct. 30 issue of the Chronicle of the Horse magazine for analysis from the competition.