The R.W. Mutch Equitation Championship, sponsored by Hayutin Education, tested the tenacity of twenty-seven riders Sunday morning at the Desert International Horse Park (DIHP). The Championship is a unique class which requires riders to be responsible for the course walk as well as the management and schooling of their own horse. Communication between a rider and their trainer is strictly prohibited.
Madison Nadolenco on Cala D’or 3 in their presentation ceremony. Photo by ESI.
This didn’t phase the fourteen-year-old rider from Calabasas, CA, Madison Nadolenco. Nadolenco piloted Morgan Dickerson’s Cala D’or 3 through two jumping rounds and an additional flat work-off to earn the top spot in the championship.
Brooke Morin (Laguna Beach, CA) took reserve honors aboard Kathryn Fletcher’s Bournedale and Zoe Brown (Redwood City, CA) earned third place for her ride on Cacau FF, owned by Georgy Maskrey-Segesman.
“He [Cala D’or 3] was actually a grand prix horse and this was only his second equitation final ever. He has been incredible,” shared Nadolenco, who is trained by Tasha Visokay of Ingenium Farms. “His first equitation flat was the USET Talent Search. He is learning really fast and he has been nothing but an amazing partner.”
Madison Nadolenco on Cala D’or 3. Photo by ESI.
The championship is named in honor of Ronnie Mutch, a well-respected rider, trainer, and judge. “The origin of the class was developed by myself, Frank Madden, and Sheri Robertson with the idea in mind to have the junior riders take all the information they have learned from their trainers and apply it without their trainers in a show format,” remarked Hugh Mutch, Ronnie’s son and well-decorated trainer at 2 Mutch Show Jumping. “The class will help juniors learn how to warm up their horse and work with their horse in a successful manner to advance their horsemanship skills, all while testing their equitation.”
“Yesterday, I competed in the USET and we decided I would treat it in the same way [as the R.W. Mutch Equitation Championship]. I walked the course by myself to get a similar feeling as to how it would go today,” noted Nadolenco on the format. “I tried to replicate the course as much as I could in the warmup. I practiced oxers with no ground lines and tight turns so he could get the feel of it before we walked into the ring.”
As the sponsor of the R.W. Mutch Equitation Championship and the Official Education Partner of the Desert International Horse Park, Hayutin Education will provide Nadolenco ten hours of premier tutoring in recognition of her achievements.
Nadolenco will stay at DIHP and continue her equitation classes next week at National Sunshine Series II. “Next week I have the CPHA Style of Riding Finals, which Frijole [Cala D’or 3] will do. My other equitation horse has the PCHA 14 & Under Medal Finals and the NCEA Junior Hunter Seat Medal Finals,” shared Nadolenco.
About the Desert International Horse Park
With nearly 1.3 million square feet of competition and riding space, the Desert International Horse Park is one of the largest equestrian facilities in North America. Offering multiple weeks of world-class equestrian competition from October through March, the facility is a destination location for thousands of equestrians, their horses, family and friends for several months annually. Competitors from all over the world travel to Thermal, CA to not only compete but to enjoy everything the desert has to offer.