Howell High School equestrian team wins regionals, heads off to states


The Howell High School equestrian team rode their way to success this past weekend in regionals on Sunday, Oct. 4, with a winning score of 481 points. The group competed in Division B against other rivaling teams such as Whitmore Lake, Caro, Port Huron North, Marine City, Brighton, Kingston, and Perry. This reigns in Howell’s 8th victory in regionals since 2005.

“Winning our regional meet felt great, not only because we won, but because it was a real team effort,” Coach Rajala says. “Every one of our riders were able to pull in some points and that is really what made the whole weekend.”

Rajala has been coaching for Howell’s High School team since 2009, going on to say that this win has made them closer as an equestrian team “family”.

The training process for this upcoming game isn’t scheduled to be more tedious than any other competition. The team plans to spend their days before states reenergizing, slowing down their routine, and relaxing their minds, due to the fatigue coming from meetings every weekend.

“Our routine doesn’t really change much,” Rajala says. “Instead of having our usual team practices, we’re just going to work on a few individual patterns and problems. Once we are at states, we will tweak a few last minute little things when we ride our practice patterns the night before, but we aren’t trying anything new.”

Considering the equestrian team’s history of success, everyone involved is radiating with confidence on the feasibility to go home with another trophy to their name.

“We [all of the coaches] have a lot of confidence in this team as we head off to states. We had a lot of good teams we had to beat, just to get to this point, so we know how to compete and most of this team has competed in this level before,” Coach Rajala says. “What makes us so confident is that we have a rider in every class that has the skill sets and the ability to be able to win that class. There isn’t one class that we aren’t strong in.”

The team will head out to states this week, set to meet in Midland on October 14th – 18th.