Equestrian leaps to new heights

By J1 Reporter: Joie Ferrara

When choosing a sport to play, many people wouldn’t pick horseback riding as their first choice. Affording horses, trainers, horse transportation, and equipment adds up to be one of the most expensive sports in the world. Along with the cost, horseback riding is for people who enjoy adrenaline rushes and taking risks. Senior Cilla Quinn started riding horses when she was 11 years old. Since then, she has been practicing five to six times every week. 

Quinn has traveled to many places across the United States to compete; her favorite being either Chicago or Mississippi. One of her proudest accomplishments was being the second youngest person to compete in her Chicago competition, and ended up placing in the top 7 with jockeys who had been riding for 20-years plus.

Learning how to ride horses can be very intimidating for some people. Quinn learned how to adapt to each horse by letting go of her fears. “Timid people can’t ride horses,” Quinn said. Being timid causes the horse to feel scared.

Quinn’s sister, freshman Chloe Quinn, has even been hospitalized for getting a concussion and forgetting how to do basic tasks such as washing her hands. “It took awhile to get back into the swing of things, however the injury has made me a stronger rider,” Chloe said. 

The Quinn sisters have been thrown off many times and suffered from various injuries. Getting back on the horse after being injured is an important aspect of becoming a strong equestrian. “Competing in the same sport with my sister has bonded us together and made us closer. We help each other through every obstacle- in and out of the ring. It’s fun to have someone there to laugh with you when you make mistakes,” Chloe said.

The Quinn sisters hope to be riding as long as they can, and even hope their future children are interested in riding horses. “Despite the hefty price tag, becoming an equestrian has been worth every penny. I’ve learned so much about myself and I’m eager to learn more,” Cilla said. 

Cilla Quinn and her Luxembourg Warmblood, ”Luxe” compete in Chicago. Photo courtesy of Quinn.

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