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National Disability Sports Alliance Announces Team to Compete in the Mills Team Challenge at The North American Young Riders’ Championships, Presented by State Line Tack

Wadsworth, IL—April 1, 2002—The National Disability Sports Alliance (NDSA) is delighted to announce the riders selected to compete in the fourth annual Mills Team Challenge at the 2002 North American Young Riders’ Championships (NAYRC), presented by State Line Tack, at Tempel Farms in Wadsworth, IL, August 6-11.

The Mills Team Challenge features riders with disabilities competing together with able-bodied young riders at the Championship. Each team is comprised of riders from the disciplines of Dressage, Eventing, and Show Jumping along with a rider with a disability who competes in Dressage.

The riders selected to compete on the team, which will be coached by Lisa Gatti of Huntington, NY, are Rebecca Hart of Erie, PA; Erin Waddell of South Lyon, MI; Christopher Lipe of Powder Springs, GA; and Keith Newerla of Seaford, NY. Meghan Strigh of Mays Landing, NJ has been selected as the team’s alternate and Sandy Rafferty of Troy, MO has been named the team’s Chef d’Equipe.

The team was chosen based upon their highest “championship” and “musical freestyle” scores submitted to the NDSA for placement on the Advanced or Developing Rider lists. The riders will compete in two classes at this year’s NAYRC, both the championship and the freestyle. The combined scores of these events will determine the team’s overall placing in the Mills Team Challenge.

The National Disability Sports Alliance is the governing body for equestrian sports for athletes with disabilities. Through events such as the Mills Team Challenge the NDSA helps riders with a disability find competitive success on a national and international level. For more information on NDSA and NDSA Equestrian, please contact (401) 792- 7130 or visit the NDSA website at

The North American Young Riders' Championships is the premier equestrian competition in North

America for young riders, age 16-21, and is a USA Junior Olympic – Equestrian Event. Young equestrians come from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean Islands to vie for team and individual Championships in the three Olympic equestrian disciplines of Show Jumping, Dressage, and Eventing.

For the third time, a Prix St. Georges Freestyle will be part of the Dressage Championships. The top 25 riders from the Team Championships will compete in the FEI Young Riders Individual Test. The Prix St. Georges Freestyle Test will then serve as the individual final for the best 15 competitors out of the team and individual test.

Once again this year, a challenging CCIY* Eventing competition will be offered in addition to the CCI-CH-C-Y** Eventing Championship. This allows up-and-coming Junior and Young Riders an opportunity to ride on a team and get a taste of international competition.

The NAYRC also offers a CSI* - JY Combined Competition for show jumping juniors and young riders. These riders, who take part in individual classes in addition to an unofficial team competition, gain valuable first-hand experience of what it’s like to compete in international show jumping.

The NAYRC began in 1974 as an eventing challenge between the United States and Canada. A Dressage Championship was added in 1981, and Show Jumping debuted in 1982. The first complete NAYRC was held in British Columbia, Canada in 1982. Tempel Farms has hosted the Championship 12 times since 1985.

The Mills represent the newest concept in retail and entertainment with a powerful combination of state-of-the-art environments, interactive shopping, dining and entertainment. Visitors come from across the nation and from 50 countries worldwide, making The Mills leading tourist destinations in the United States. Gurnee Mills, located near Tempel Farms in Gurnee, IL, is the Midwest's largest value retail and entertainment mall with over 200 manufacturer and retail outlet stores and has a long history of supporting the North American Young Riders’ Championships. For more information on Gurnee Mills, please visit

For more information on NAYRC activities, please visit At the NAYRC website you will find zone, region, area contact information, a competition schedule, Tempel Farms information, and many other details pertaining to the event.


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