In a fight right down to the finish, Zone 4 emerged victorious in the $15,000 Neue Schule/USEF Prix des States Team Championships on Friday, October 15, at the 75th Pennsylvania National Horse Show at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, PA.Clinching the win for Zone 4 were Reid Arani riding Hocus Pocus de Muze, Ansgar Holtgers, Jr. aboard Elina, Zayna Rizvi with Excellent, and Hailey Royce on Sonic Boom, all hailing from Wellington, FL, and led by Chef d’Equipe Kim Land.
Following the conclusion of Friday night’s first round, the field of 29 riders returned to contest the same Manuel Esparaza-designed course again in the second round, and the race for the gold ultimately came down to the anchor riders for Zones 7, 4, and 2.
For Zone 4, that rider was Holtgers, and he and Elina delivered. As rails fell for Zones 7 and 2, Holtgers came home clear, ultimately clinching the win for the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) Zone 4 team.“I thought, ‘now I have to go clear and put some pressure on and go quick enough,’ but once I entered the ring, it’s just another class,” said Holtgers, 16. “I have to jump clear. That's the first thing and the most important thing. It worked out, and my horse is just unreal. She’s honestly a life-changing horse.” While the win may have come down to Holtgers’ and Elina’s return ride, it would not have if it were not also for Rizvi’s, Royce’s, and Arani’s clear rounds throughout the evening. All four riders produced at least one clear round and Rizvi and Arani both jumped double clear.“We’ve been working toward this all year,” said Rizvi, 16. “I think it really means a lot to all of us.”
Source: Press Release