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Wellington Equestrian News | Sophia Calamari: National Equestrian Champion at 13
Sophia Calamari, a 13 year old teen from New Milford, Pennysylvania along with her 6-year-old pony, Smitten, have gained major recognition after being hailed as champions during the United States Equestrian Federation Pony Finals held in Lexington, Kentucky. The pair bested 250 ponies and riders during the completion as they conquered the Small Green Pony Championship and the Overall Green Pony Championship.
Sophia and Smitten have set a record by garnering the highest points in the history of the competition after bagging 1,011.50 points in total. The points included the 252 points in the under saddle phase, 249.75 points in the over-fences, and 260 points in the model phase.
Additionally, Sophia and Power Trip, who’s also one of her ponies, got the seventh place during the show’s equitation finals. Yet again, this was another feat conquered as the duo beat 159 pairs in the finals.
For Sophia, riding horses is a passion passed on by her mother, Laurie Scott. With Laurie’s guidance, Sophia has been joining competitions since she was 7 years old. In fact, they both worked together in training and taking care of her award-winning pony, Smitten. He was a bit restless in the beginning, but no one could deny that he possessed natural talent and flare.
After winning the competitions during the United States Equestrian Federation Pony Finals, Sophia and Smitten have impressively set on to earn five championships and one reserve championship within the six shows that they’ve participated in.
By December this year, Sophia will phase out from the small pony category and will pass on Smitten to her younger sister, Francesca, who is also a rider. Sophia is set out to compete in the junior hunter’s division and will be training for equitation. After graduating from that level, she will be moving on to standard-sized horses.
Sophia, along with her family, is no stranger to Wellington Florida. They have been staying in the village every winter as Sophia trains with her trainer Garry Duffy at the Ponies & Palms Show Stables. Sophia also joins the festivities by competing during the Winter Equestrian Festival here in Wellington.
Sophia went to the Mountain View School District and was a consistent straight-A student before home schooling. One day, she aspires to attend Princeton University and compete in the Olympics.
The future, indeed, looks bright for the young champion, Sophia Calamari, and we cannot wait what she will be conquering next.
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Wellington Fl Officials Focus on Road Safety As The Winter Equestrian Festival Approaches
It’s almost that time of the year again when thousands flock to Wellington Fl for the Winter Equestrian Festival, but for now, part-time residents are returning to the village to prepare and train their horses for the season. Of course, with a surge in population comes a surge in traffic. Particularly if you live in Wellington, you’ll know that you won’t be dealing with just ordinary traffic but golf-cart traffic.
Florida law presides over golf traffic in Wellington but the village itself has not been able to pass its own regulations despite previous attempts.
It may come as a surprise to some but golf carts are commonly used by residents in Wellington for quick trips like picking up kids from school or tutors and especially for commuting in equestrian areas like going from farm to farm or heading over to the showgrounds. However, according to village officials, there are many people who use the golf carts illegally on a regular basis and that, according to them, is a real danger.
According to state law, golf carts can only be used either on private property or in golfing communities. They are not allowed to be used on sidewalks and they can only be used on some roads if the golf cart is street-legal which means it would need seat belts, turn signals, windshields and head lights. On top of that, the street-legal golf carts would also need to be inspected, insured, and registered with the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles. If used, they are only allowed on the road with a maximum speed limit of 35mph.
Since there have been quite a few golf cart-related accidents that happened in Wellington in the past, the officials aim to prevent any mishaps from happening in the future by educating the public with golf cart usage and safety.