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South Cariboo equestrian gearing up to compete in B.C. Summer Games

100 Mile House resident Samuel Harvey and his horse Lindor are looking forward to competing in this year's B.C. Summer Games. Scheduled for July 17 to 21 in Maple Ridge this year, the B.C.

100 Mile House resident Samuel Harvey and his horse Lindor are looking forward to competing in this year's B.C. Summer Games. 

Scheduled for July 17 to 21 in Maple Ridge this year, the B.C. Summer Games give amateur athletes from across the province the chance to compete in a wide range of sports. Harvey is a member of the Equestrian Junior Jumping Team as their Northern Region team member. 

"It's going to be a lot more of an experience than I'm used to. There's the competition aspect to it and it sounds like I'm going to have a lot of fun meeting new kids and being a part of the jumping team," Harvey, 17, said. 

Harvey first became interested in riding horses at the age of nine after his mother, Amanda Harvey, purchased a new horse for the family. He started riding and soon fell in love with horses and horse riding. 

At 13 he began to compete in horse jumping shows which he also quickly developed a passion for. Harvey explained he enjoys the team dynamic that develops between a horse and its rider to succeed at the sport.

"You need a perfect horse and rider team. If you go in there and aren't on the same page it's not going to go good," Harvey said. "It takes a lot of preparation and practice." 

Harvey attributes his success to the relationship he's built with his horse Lindor. Lindor's previous owners had mistreated him, Harvey said, to the point where he was almost put down because he was considered a "dangerous horse." After Harvey bought Lindor he and his mom worked to rehabilitate him and trained him to be a good partner. 

"I feel it probably made me a better rider just being able to take my time and understand him. I'm a better horseman (because of that) in general," Harvey remarked. 

Last summer, Harvey decided, with the encouragement of his former coach Cat Armitage, to try making this year's BC Summer Games. Over the last few years, the height he and Lindor have been able to jump has increased with their bond, so he figured the summer games were their next step.

To qualify he and Lindor competed at several different events jumping over the qualified height at each. Once he received his class results he submitted them to the Horse Council BC for consideration. Overall, Harvey said he had a high point average and that the jumping team is made up of those with the highest averages from each region. 

"I was a little worried I didn't qualify but then I came home from work (in June) and Mom and Dad told me I made it and I was stoked," Harvey said. "I feel like it all kind of paid off." 

In Maple Ridge, Harvey said his goal is to jump for gold, full stop. He noted he views this year's games as a springboard for his future sporting career with his ultimate ambition being to compete at the Olympics one day. 

"I'm really excited just to show everyone what I can do after practicing and really putting a lot of effort into this."

Patrick Davies

About the Author: Patrick Davies

An avid lover of theatre, media, and the arts in all its forms, I've enjoyed building my professional reputation in 100 Mile House.
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