PRO just published a new episode of Faces of Eventing presented by World Equestrian Brands, this time starring Seema Sonnad, a familiar face in the eventing community, as she’s a rider, owner, volunteer and licensed official. You’ll have to watch the video to get the full scoop on all the ways she contributes to the sport, but here are some of the highlights:
Seema grew up eventing before going to college and starting her career in Michigan, and she returned to eventing as an adult, buying her first horse when she was 34. After moving to Pennsylvania, she started volunteering for what is now Radnor Hunt Horse Trials and ultimately pursued her USEF ‘r’ Eventing Technical Delegate license.
She remains a strong advocate of volunteering and encourages eventers to get involved: “The cool thing about volunteering is you get to be such an insider. You really know what’s happening. You really learn the sport in a way that you don’t get to see as a rider — what it takes to make it happen, what’s going on.”
After supporting a variety of working students in ownership roles, she had the chance to support Caitlin Silliman when she competed Remington XXV for Ron and Densey Juvonen. Seema is also a member of the Ideal Contini Syndicate for Sally Cousins, whom she rides with during the winter in Aiken.
“The nice thing about being involved in sponsorship and ownership for people like Sally and Caitlin is that I also get to groom for them, so I was Caitlin’s groom at Richland when she had both of her horses there in the three-star (last year),” Seema explains in the video.
The best part comes right at the end, when Seema gives a really nice summary of why we all go eventing: “In eventing, it doesn’t really matter if you’re the volunteer in warmup or the owner watching your horse go out or the rider on your own horse. That whole ‘5-4-3-2-1, go, have fun’ is what makes eventing eventing.”
Well said, Seema, and thank you for supporting the sport in so many different capacities.