According to a press release from the club, 25 members competed in the Mounted Drill Team Competition at the Florida State Fair in Tampa on Feb. 16. The 25 members divided into 10 teams and each rider competed three times. The club entered teams in four of the five contested classes, winning three blue ribbons in the Maiden, Youth and Open classes, placing third and fourth in the Quad Class and winning the Judge’s Choice Award as well.
“The Judge’s Choice Award really made it special,” the release said.
According to the release, the award was given for things not listed on the score sheet, things like teamwork, hard work, individual skill and ability to overcome.
In addition to the above awards, each individual team member won a blue ribbon. The 4-H Club also put on a “Maverick and the Maidens” drill during the intermission for the judges.
The Spalding County 4-H Club has also performed well at other venues.
At the Dixie Challenge in Pelham, Ala., also held on Feb. 16, Grace McLean, a seventh-grader at Kennedy Road Middle School, placed second in the BB shooting contest. She hit 359 out of 400 shots and earned the highest score in the standing position.
“We’re pleased with all their progress and results that any of our youth are making,” said Wade Hutcheson, county Extension Service coordinator.
The Spalding County Extension Service manages the 4-H Club, among other programs.
“We are very proud of our youth and all of their accomplishments,” Hutcheson said.
The Spalding County 4-H Club’s winning streak continued on Saturday in the Georgia Horse Council Mounted Drill Team Competition in Unadilla, Ga.
“Unadilla went spectacular,” Hutcheson said.
According to a press release, the Spalding County 4-H varsity team won gold medals in the Rodeo, Freestyle Open and Freestyle Youth classes, while the junior varsity team won gold in the Freestyle Novice class. Overall, Hutcheson said, Spalding County won five gold medals, four silver medals, one bronze medal, two fourth-place finishes and one fifth-place finish. Hutcheson believes that the strong showings in Georgia and Florida mean that the Spalding County 4-H Club will be the Region Seven Southeast Champion.
According to the press release, the club would like to send the varsity team to the National Mounted Drill Team Competition in Texas in June and is looking for sponsors. Those interested can contact the Spalding County Extension Service at 770-467-4225.