Saturday, December 27, 2008

Way to go, USEF!

I always talk about how important it is to teach our young riders the right things and encourage them to become the rescuers of the future. Glad to see USEF agrees - they have honored a young rider not only for her own talent, but for the fact that she donates her time to riding and schooling rescued horses!

Jessica Moctezuma Named USEF Junior Equestrian of the Year

December 11 2008Lexington, KY –The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) announces that Jessica Moctezuma has been selected as the USEF Junior Equestrian of the Year. Moctezuma will be honored during the USEF’s Annual Meeting, January 14-18, 2009 in Cincinnati, OH, as part of the Pegasus Awards held Saturday evening.

The Ruth O’Keefe Meredith Trophy was established in 1985 to honor a junior equestrian who has made outstanding contributions to equestrian competition while exemplifying exceptional talent, sportsmanship and dedication. After reviewing the many candidates nominated for one of the USEF’s highest honors, the Awards Committee selected the young equestrian who exceeded the demanding qualification criteria.

Moctezuma, 18, of Hardwick, NJ, has been making a name for herself in the Saddlebred world, not just by winning championships but by giving back to a cause that has given her so much. Moctezuma’s mother is the owner of North Wind Stables and in the last three years the stable has been very involved with Saddlebred Rescue, Inc. Moctezuma has been able to test ride over 200 horses and counting, and has helped in placing misused and neglected horses in loving homes.

Moctezuma is also a star in the show ring. In 2008, Moctezuma was the Senior Equitation Champion at the Lexington Junior League HorseShow. For the third year in a row she was the Mid-Atlantic Regional Equitation Champion and the 2008 NEHC Regional Equitation Champion. Also in 2008, she was the high-scoring rider in the three-gaited and five-gaited World Cup trials at William Woods University, which qualified her to compete on the five-gaited team at the World Cup held in South Africa this fall. Moctezuma is one of the few multi-disciplined riders in the ring to achieve success with equitation, gaited and show/country pleasure mounts, Hackney pony driving and under saddle, Western pleasure, hunt seat on the flat and road horses.

To qualify for the Junior Equestrian of the Year award, a young equestrian must have competed at USEF-recognized shows over the past year and while displaying good sportsmanship and integrity. The winner is also someone who has excelled and has willingly given back to their sport.

For tickets to the 2009 USEF Annual Meeting and Pegasus Awards in Cincinnati, OH, visit and click on “2009 Annual Meeting” near the bottom of the homepage.

For more information about the Junior Equestrian of the Year, please contact Melissa Davis, USEF’s Marketing Coordinator, at (859) 225-6944 or via email at