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Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center Participates in Special Olympic State Equestrian Games

Tampa, FL - June 2, 2009 - The Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center (VTRC) recently returned from the Special Olympic State Equestrian Games, held May 29 -30, where 19 of their top students had the opportunity to compete. This year's competition was held at the Bob Thomas Equestrian Center on the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa, FL.

The VTRC had two students competing at the top level, the Walk-Trot-Canter division, which includes a training-level dressage test and an equitation class. Carrie MacMillan rode Will, while Chirstina Cooney was aboard Desi during the competition. Both girls did an excellent job with their mounts and were able to handle the pressures of the show with ease.

"We really try to stress learning to ride independently, and riding independently at home is a little different than riding independently at the shows where you are a little more nervous; being able to do that is very important," explained VTRC Founder and Executive Director Ruth Menor. "Part of traveling and competing means learning to deal with victories and disappointments. The riders learn to become more independent by being away from home, and they get the experience of traveling with a sports team, which is very exciting."

The VTRC traveled with 19 students, six horses, six chaperones, and 10 horse handlers on a tour bus to the competition with the biggest team in the state. The large undertaking was well worth it for the exciting opportunity the riders got to experience. Students participated in a number of different classes including pole bending, barrel racing, obstacle courses, equitation, and dressage.

The VTRC was founded 27 years ago and has been participating in the Special Olympic Equestrian Games for 23 years. There are three levels for the event: County, State, and International. Menor has had students compete at the International level and has also served as an International Games coach.

The VTRC is a nonprofit organization based in Loxahatchee, FL, that provides recreational and therapeutic riding instruction to people of all ages with varying developmental, physical, and psychological disabilities. The organization, founded in 1982, assists more than 350 adults and children every year, helping them gain a sense of accomplishment, greater independence, and a higher quality of life. The VTRC has received a "Premier Accreditation" rating from the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA).

For more information on the Vinceremos Therapeutic Equestrian Center, please visit http://www.vinceremos.com.

Photo Credit: Students from the Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center had the opportunity to compete at this year's Special Olympic State Equestrian Games in Tampa, FL. Photo Courtesy of the Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center. Photograph may be used only in relation to this PMG press release.


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