It has been narrowed down to 11 finalists.
- Austin Skeens, VA
- Ally McGlynn, CA
- Lauren Yeagy, Elizabeth Henry and Emma Sloan, IN
- Mia Braundel, NC
- Jane Cook, TX
- Hannah Herrig, FL
- Alexandra Tett, PA
- Grace Gaynor, MD
- Carter McInnis, SC
- Magdalena Valenti, TN
- Tosca Holmes-Smith, BC
Tune into www.eventingconnect.today as these 11 finalists continue to strut their sponsorship worthiness with blogs and vlogs over the next few weeks. We encourage you to provide feedback and share your favourite blogs and vlogs on social media as these young riders vie to be Bit of Britain’s Next Top Rider! Voting for the Bit of Britain’s Next Top Rider begins on December 1st.
Be sure to use the hashtag #BofBNextTopRider
The college experience: Eventer style
by Alexandra Tett
My greatest fear when I was ten years old was college. I truly believed that I would have to quit riding. Why? Why is it that the world has to stop when you go to college and eventing is no longer within your reach? Allow me to make a list of the most obvious reasons: the financials, the significant other or potential significant others, the location, there are only 24 hours in a day and there are so many people to talk to, things to see, places to go, and things to do. While we must deal with the reality of all of these reasons, there a few simple ways to make dealing with these realities exponentially easier.
I am here to talk about the things that nobody tells you. I want to inspire all the young riders out there in middle and high school and tell them that when the idea of college becomes relevant, you have something to look forward to, not to shy away from. I cannot offer you honest and quite recent experiences of mine that I have had in my first semester at the University of Delaware while competing two FEI horses. I am here to tell you something completely unsurprising and unheroic: people make time for what they want. It is as simple as that.
There are about a million different hoops to jump through to make college and horses work, but there are three that will make the solution to every other hurdle blatantly obvious: major, location, and prioritization/time management skills.
The major…This can make your life extremely difficult if you are trying to be a neuroscientist while competing horses full time. I am not saying that it is completely impossible to be a neuroscientist if you can manage your time in a way that allows you to do horses on the side, but the reality is there are only 24 hours in the day and nobody is lying to you when they say college is demanding. What they don’t tell you is that you actually have control over how demanding it will be. I am a communications major. It is not the most difficult, but it is still giving me an excellent opportunity to educate myself with important business skills such as social media, public relations, economics, personnel management, and even room for a minor such as Spanish. These are all things that are useful in the horse industry and almost every other industry so I have options when I graduate.
The location…I am fortunate enough to be 25 minutes from Phillip Dutton’s barn. My commute time is therefore reasonable. This allows me to get out to the barn almost every day. Besides the 3-4 hours or so I spend at the barn six days per week, competitions are another time consumer I had to figure out how to fit into my schedule. I am at a location that is less than thirty minutes away from two major competitions: Plantation International and Fair Hill. That’s four or five competition weeks out of the year where I miss the minimum amount of school. Location is definitely an important piece of the puzzle that will make it all work. Fifteen minutes less of commute time can make all the difference in making the horse and school schedule fit together.
The prioritization/time management skills…Thankfully, this is a skill that can be taught and perfected with a little bit of practice. It is simply being able to appropriately make little decisions that have big effects, such as knowing which school days are not wise to miss and which competitions are the most important. I find that with the help of mentors from both worlds, school and horses, often have the right advice and will gladly help you prioritize.
At the end of the day, if you want something badly enough you will make time for it. I was not about to give up my Olympic dreams for school, but I was not about to give up my education for a career in the horse industry, either. I wanted both badly enough that I found a way to make it work. We eventers all share the invaluable traits of drive and determination. With those two traits, not even college will stand in the way of your four-star dreams.
Follow Alexandra on her social media and help her to become the 2018 Bit of Britain’s Next Top Rider:
2018 Bit of Britain’s Next Top Rider quest is on
The finalists have been chosen. In case you missed it, here is what will happen next:
Part 2 – We will get to learn more about each of these interesting young riders
Tune in over the month of November to find out about the unique stories behind these young riders. Riders will be submitting Blogs or Vlogs to share their stories. This is an amazing group of up and comers with goals and dreams. Look forward to hearing about Eventing from all over North America. Be ready for stories that are going to make you laugh, cry and cheer.
Part 3 – Public voting
On Dec 1, 2017, public voting on the Blogs and Vlogs will begin on Eventing Connect for the finalists. The public voting will end on Dec 12, 2017. The public voting will account for 50% of Bit of Britain’s sponsorship decision. Other considerations will include their social media following and social media interaction from Oct 19, 2017 to Dec 12, 2017.
Part 4 – Sponsorship Announcement
On Jan 1, 2018, the sponsorships will be announced on Eventing Connect. Three riders will receive sponsorships for three different values that will include a variety of products from which the riders can choose:
- 1st place – Gold ($1500 USD),
- 2nd place – Silver ($1000 USD)
- 3rd place – Bronze ($500 USD)