SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. – The USHJA Emerging Athletes Task Force has selected Mount Holyoke College student-athlete Bridget Finnerty as one of just five horsemen to serve as a Stable Manager at the EAP National Training Session at the University of Findlay on November 13-16, 2014.
"Bridget's knowledge and care of horses, along with her responsibility level, level of academics and attention to detail are a large part of why she has received this honor of being selected," said CJ Law, head riding coach. "I am incredibly excited for her and this outstanding opportunity."
It is a huge honor for the Baltimore, Md., native, who opened her sophomore season at the Preseason Tournament of Champions on September 20. At that event, she helped the Lyons to third among a field of 18 teams, placing second overall in Open Fences.
Finnerty had an outstanding rookie season for the Lyons in 2013-14. In addition to six first-place finishes, including an Open Flat and Open Fences victory during the spring Mount Holyoke Show, Finnerty finished sixth or better in eight regular season shows.
Finnerty also placed 10th in Medal Honor at the 2014 Winter Tournament of Champions and was second in the Team Open Flat and third in Individual Open Flat at the Zone Championships. She rounded out her first year campaign with a sixth-place finish in the Collegiate Cup Open Equitation on the Flat at the IHSA National Championships.
A competitive rider since the age of 12, Finnerty had a number of successes during her junior riding years before coming to Mount Holyoke. She placed top three of the Maryland, Virginia and Mid Atlantic Medal finals and was also honored to participate in the Maclay Finals. Before starting at MHC, Finnerty concluded her junior riding days on a high note, winning the Amy Reistrup Equitation Challenge for the East coast in Lexington, Va.
Finnerty also took part earlier this year in the Regional Emerging Athletes Program, which was an extensive four-day training session where those selected had the opportunity to work with top riding clinicians and some of the country's leading stable managers. Those in attendance were instructed on flatwork, gymnastics, related distances and course work, as well as an intensive stable-management curriculum that incorporated proper care and grooming, horsemanship skills and barn management.
The top stable manager at this year's EAP National Training Session will receive a $1,000 educational grant, sponsored by the USHJA Foundation.
Mount Holyoke's riding team opens its regular season schedule on Saturday when it travels to Northampton, Mass., to compete in the Smith College Show.