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National Disability Sports Alliance Announces Qualified Riders for NDSA Championship at Bayer/USET Festival of Champions

Kingston, RI—May 14, 2002—The National Disability Sports Alliance (NDSA) Equestrian Committee has announced the list of riders who have qualified and accepted invitations to participate in the NDSA Championship for Riders with Disabilities to be held at the Bayer/United States Equestrian Team (USET) Festival of Champions, presented by State Line Tack, June 20-23.
The riders who have qualified and accepted invitations to participate are:

Eleanor Robinson of Marysville, WA
Margo O’Callaghan of Seattle WA
Kathy Whelan of Atlantic City, NJ
Rebecca Hart of Erie, PA
Barbara Grassmyer of Placerville, CA
Robin Brueckmann of Summerfield, NC

Kebbie Cannon of Waxhaw, NC

Erin Waddell of South Lyon, MI

At the Championship, presented once again by the National Horse Sports Foundation, riders will have a preliminary warm-up competition on Thursday, June 20. The Individual Championship will take place on Saturday, June 22, and Musical Freestyles will be performed on Sunday, June 23. Overall, the placing of the Champion and Reserve Champion for the NDSA Championship will be based on the combined scores of the Individual Championship and the Freestyle.

Although the Championship is in its second year, this year is the first time that the horses must also qualify to be eligible to compete in the event. All horses will be required to participate in a veterinary inspection prior to the competition.

Among this year’s qualifiers is the winner of the 2001 NDSA Championship, Barbara Grassmyer of Placerville, CA. Grassmyer rode Bally Shannon, owned by Trudy Phillips of Chadds Ford, PA and scored 67.666% in the Championship test and a 72.857% on her Freestyle for a combined average score of 70.261%.

Following Grassmyer in the standings was Reserve Champion, Rebecca Hart of Erie, PA, and third place finisher, Robin Brueckmann of Summerfield, NC. Both riders have also qualified for this year’s NDSA Championship.

NDSA is the National Governing Body for equestrian competition for riders with disabilities. NDSA works closely with both USA Equestrian and the USET to provide opportunities for riders with disabilities within the “able-bodied” community.

NDSA is responsible for conduct and administration of approved sports in the United States. NDSA formulates the rules, implements policies and procedures, conducts national championships in twelve sports, disseminates safety and sports medicine information and selects athletes to represent the United States in international competition. NDSA is a CBO (Community Based Organization) member of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).

For more information on NDSA or the NDSA Championship, please contact Denise Avolio, NDSA Equestrian Sports Technical Officer, at (914) 949-8166, or email, or visit

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