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The skills challenge portion of the competition for King’s and Queen’s Equestrian Champions was held last night, with results announced in court earlier today.  Many thanks to the outgoing King’s Champion, Baroness Alanna of Skye, for sending us detailed results and tracking down details as the Gazette staff realized they were needed for this article.

The original plan had been to have a final round with a limited number of competitors after completion of the skills challenge, but the heat this weekend has been dangerously high, and it was decided that for the safety of the horses to cancel the final round, and select the champions based on their combined performance in the two courses which had already been run, weighted equally.

Horses are as susceptible to heat exhaustion and heat stroke as humans, and our competition asks them to perform strenuous athletic activity while carrying 200 pounds or so of rider and armor.   Most of them will be resting today, and going home tonight when it will be cooler in the trailers.  The safety of the horses comes first.

The winner of the competition, and King’s Champion of Horse is Duchess Kiena Stewart, riding Brady.

Duchess Kiena Stewart, King's Equestrian Champion

Duchess Kiena Stewart, King’s Equestrian Champion

Her Majesty Caoilfhionn selected Lady Leana Doucet, riding Taro, as her Champion.

The skills challenge for the evening round consisted of running at rings with a lance, chopping apples with swords, and spearing targets from horseback.

Apple chop is not something commonly seen in SCA competition.  As the name suggests, riders attempt to strike an apple with a sword as they ride past at the best speed at which they judge they can hit the target. Adult competitors have the option of using live steel or a wooden sword. Four points are awarded for splitting the apple, two for seriously damaging it, and one for hitting it in any fashion. Generally if you use a wooden sword you can only get a hit, but Zachary Kerr, age 9, chopped his wooden sword down so firmly on the last apple of the night that it split cleanly in two!

A total of 21 riders completed all portions of the tourney.

The top 4 competitors in the evening portion of the tourney were:

  • Master Rhys Terafan Greydragon riding Hottie
  • Mistress Doucette de Verdun riding Baby War Pony
  • Duchess Kiena Stewart riding Brady
  • Angelique de conte riding The Dread Pirate Roberts

The top 4 competitors overall were:

  • Duchess Kiena Stewart riding Brady
  • Mistress Doucette de Verdun riding Baby War Pony
  • Master Rhys Terafan Greydragon riding Hottie
  • Duke Randal of the Dark riding Jubal

Photo courtesy of Mistress Leonete D’Angely