IHSA Celebrates 50 Years

The Western events kicked off on May 5 with two AQHA Team events and the individual Open Horsemanship.

Mark Mowbray on his way to win the Open Horsemanship title.

50 years ago a young 17 year old student wanting to ride at college put together the idea for a unique competition that would allow students to compete on borrowed horses. By the end of the school year the concept had grown to 40 students. 50 years later the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association is a thriving and vital component of the equine industry, giving new riders a chance to get involved in horse showing and supporting young athletes as they transition into a professional career.

IHSA Nationals kicked off the 50th anniversary celebrations this week in Lexington, KY. Hunt seat riders dominated the arena yesterday before their hat-wearing counterparts got their turn to battle it out in the famed Alltech Arena.

The AQHA Team competition kicked off with a win for Ohio State University by Taylor Overmier in the reining. This was Overmeir’s third National Championship appearance which helped her clinch the win on two very different mounts. After tying in the first round with University of Nebraska’s Selena Finn, both girls came back in the work off. Overmeir’s experience helped her seamlessly transition to her second mount and clinch the win.

“It helps a lot to start of the team com competition this way. It gives us strong morale and really helps boost the team spirit”.

The quest for the AQHA Team Trophy continued in the Novice Wester Horsemanship. University of Findlay’s Brandon Morin clinched the win despite having to complete a re-ride after his initial mount spooked in the pattern. 

Graduating senior and past AQHYA President Mark Mowbray finished the day with a win in the Open Horsemanship.

Stay tuned for more coverage as AQHA celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Intercollegiate Horse Showing Association in Lexington Kentucky.