Megan Young Finishes a Brilliant Junior Career With a Win
in the 2004 ASPCA Maclay National Equitation Championship at the Metropolitan National Horse Show.

NEW YORK, NY – November 3, 2004 –

The title of National Champion was on the line Sunday afternoon, November 7, at Pier 94 at the Show Piers in New York City. At the end of this long day, one of the 104 riders entered in the 2004 ASPCA Maclay National Championship for the ASPCA Horsemanship Classes would emerge with that title.

Riders qualified for the finals by placing in regional competitions held throughout the United States earlier in the year.

The first round of jumping action featured a challenging course designed by the judges for this year’s finals – Olympic course designer Linda Allen, former Maclay national champion Chrystine Tauber, and Scott Williamson. The course consisted of 14 jumping efforts including a double and a triple combination.

Following the first round of jumping action, the list of riders was trimmed to 74 and they returned to the ring in three groups to determine who would move on to the final round of competition.

The judges then narrowed the final field to 15 riders:

1 – Addison Phillips, New York, NY
2 – Catherine Wright, Old Chatham, NY
3 – Brianne Goutal, New York, NY
4 - Whitney Weeks, Wellington, FL
5 - Maria Schaub, Holmdel, NJ
6 – Kasey Ament – Reche Canyon, CA
7 – Megan Young, Jacksonville, FL
8 – Julie Welles, West Simsbury, CT
9 – Blythe Morano, Denville, NJ
10 – Daisy Johnson, New York, NY
11 – Nikko Ritter, Geneva, FL
12 – Jessica Speiser, Armonk, NY
13 – Nicole Adamson, Los Angeles, CA
14 – Morgan Taylor, Salinas, CA
15 – Ana Ousouljoglou, Bridgewater, NJ

The riders returned in reverse order and competed over a different course, this time consisting of 10 jumping efforts that included a double combination and a trot jump at the last fence. Riders were also asked to canter directly to fence number one and hand gallop the third fence.

When the dust cleared from this second round of jumping, the issue had yet to be settled and the title was still on the line as the judges requested further testing from the top three competitors.

Addison Phillips, Megan Young and Julie Welles were asked to jump another course.

For Addison Phillips it was a nightmare at the first jump of the test when her horse apparently misjudged the distance to a natural obstacle of brush and rails, crashing through the fence. Phillips did a wonderful job of maintaining her balance and composure to complete the testing without further problems.

“I really can’t explain what happened in there,” Phillips said. “I thought I got to the fence pretty well, but he never really left the ground.”

Megan Young was workmanlike and polished in completing her test, as was Julie Welles. Julie’s horse however, pulled a rail.

When it was all said and done it was Megan Young’s name that was announced as the 2004 ASPCA Maclay National Champion.


Megan Young wins the
2004 ASPCA Maclay National Championship at the Metropolitan National Horse Show in NY.
Photo by Flashpoint Photography.

For Megan Young of Jacksonville, Florida it’s been a year of great success, topped off by a tremendous fall tour. Young won the North American Equitation Championship at the Capital Challenge Horse Show in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, in late September. She followed that with a win in the USEF National Hunt Seat Medal Finals at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and then a second place finish at the USET Medal Finals at Gladstone, New Jersey.

At the Metropolitan this weekend she won the Grand Junior Hunter Championship and was named Best Child Rider on a Horse.

“It has been a great year,” Young beamed. “I never expected it to be so wonderful. I’m the luckiest kid ever. It has been a great final junior year.”

Megan talked about today’s Maclay Finals. “The first round course was good,” she explained. “You had a couple of options. You could either do some leave-outs or you could add up depending on what you thought the judges were looking for,” Young went on. “I think they were looking more for you to add up. There were a couple of jumper judges involved and I think they wanted you to show you had control over your horse or were adjustable enough and not just in there to run and leave out strides because anyone can leave out strides,” she said.

Then Young talked about phase two. “Unfortunately the flat phase is not the best part of my riding, so I dropped down to seventh after that,” Young said.

“In the finals, coming in seventh, I knew I had nothing to lose,” Young said. “I decided I was going to go in there and be impressive and do the best I could. The first two jumps felt great so I just galloped on to the third and he swapped, so I was a little worried at that point,” Young pointed out. ”But the rest of the course worked out really great and we moved up enough to get involved in the final testing.”

The problems for Addison Phillips in the test were a windfall for Young. “It was shocking really,” she said. “But it really helped me, so I was lucky she went first. My horse had jumped it almost the same way before so after watching Addie I was able to be just a little smarter about it and ride up to the distance rather than just cantering down to it and make sure I jumped the jump and not be to impressive,” Young explained.

Young was holding her breath, right up until the announcement was made. “I thought it could still go either way between Julie and me,” Young said. “Into the testing of the top three, Julie got called on top and at that point I really didn’t know how far on top she was. Then it was a matter of how they were going to score Julie’s rail down, they could have said it wasn’t her rail, so I really thought it could have gone either way.”

A great junior career comes to a close with a National Championship for Megan Young. But Megan says she won’t be going to Disney World anytime soon. “We’ve got a horse show in Tampa and then it’s on to the National Horse Show in Wellington. So I’ll keep going through the National but then I’m hoping to take a break and go to school. I’m enrolled at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville to study psychology.”

The 2004 ASPCA Maclay National Championship for the ASPCA Horsemanship Classes. Official Results.

1 – Megan Young, Jacksonville, FL
2 – Julie Welles, West Simsbury, CT
3 - Addison Phillips, New York, NY
4 - Nicole Adamson, Los Angeles, CA
5 - Morgan Taylor, Salinas, CA
6 - Brianne Goutal, New York, NY
7 - Jessica Speiser, Armonk, NY
8 - Maria Schaub, Holmdel, NJ
9 - Blythe Morano, Denville, NJ
10 - Whitney Weeks, Wellington, FL

For further information on the Metropolitan National Horse Show, contact the National Horse Show Association of America, Ltd., PO Box 386, Greenvale, NY 11548. E-mail: NationalHS@aol.com; Phone: (516) 484-1865; Fax: (516) 484-1982. Or on the web, visit: www.nhs.org

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