The 2017 South Australian Dressage Championships took place on March 11-12, where a number of locals had success, and followed up with a state squad call up.
Pinkerton Plains’ Cheryl Hatswell, Angle Vale’s Anne Smith, Mount Torrens’ Ruth Schneeberger, Charleston’s Cooper Oborn and Lisa Ashby all earned spots on the senior squad.
Shea-Oak Log’s Jemma Dodd and Gawler’s Nicole Berry also earned stripes on the junior squad.
All riders are excited for the challenge ahead, but couldn’t undervalue the need of working as a team.
“It feels good (to be on the squad), it feels like there’s a sense of team and opportunities to have lessons with the state coach,” Ms Dodd said.
“I’ve been on the squad since 2012, it feels like a reward to be on the squad from having accomplished things in competitions.”
Junior squad teammate Nicole Berry mirrored what Ms Dodd had to say.
“It’s really good, it feels like it is a reward for all our hard work from competitions, and it feels good to be part of a team,” she said.
The senior squad members agreed that it was an “honour” to be involved.
“It’s a great honour to be on the state squad, there’s a great sense of comradery between the riders,” Ms Smith said.
“I’m also looking forward to our state coach Ricki MacMillan coming to visit, and it’s a great opportunity to learn from someone who’s been to the Olympics and World Dressage Championships.”
Ms Ashby is set for her first appearance on the state squad, which has been a long time coming.
“It’s a real honour, I’m really excited about it, it’s my first time on the state squad,” she said.
Both Ms Schneeberger and Ms Hatswell believed the team orientation has been welcomed.
“It’s a very good feeling this time around, because I think we all have a good connection with each other as a team, whereas in previous years it wasn’t, we didn’t do anything together, we didn’t have a state coach,” Ms Schneeberger said.
“I think it’s fabulous, there’s a team of members that you can bounce ideas off, you feel like you’re a part of a team,” Ms Hatswell said.