Amanda Atkins isn’t horsing around

Amanda Atkins isn't horsing around

PHOTO PROVIDED

A North student is leaping ahead of the competition. Amanda Atkins, senior and experienced equestrian, competed in the Maclay Finals at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY Nov. 1-6.

Amanda has been riding competitively for 10 years, ever since she was 8 years old. Her favorite thing about riding is the effort and work it takes to be good.

“It’s something that has to be worked for, so you can always tell who has dedication,” Atkins said. “It’s just a very honest sport.”

To prepare for shows, Amanda usually has no set schedule. Instead, she tries to ride every day to learn as much as she can before the show.

However, the days before the Maclay Finals were hectic and filled with riding multiple times a day, even riding past midnight on some days.

Atkins and her horse, UKnow, were off to a great start in the Maclay Finals, but despite countless hours of training, UKnow stumbled badly. UKnow couldn’t recover in time for the next jump; the horse refused to jump twice which led to defeat.

This was Amanda’s last year as a Junior competitor, but she will be moving on to the Adult Amateur division in January. She will be working on qualifying for the United States Equestrian Foundation Talent Search in the fall of 2017.

Although she suffered defeat at the Maclay Finals, Amanda Atkins will ride on in pursuit of success next year.