Among the many championship teams we have at the University of Louisville, the Saddle Seat Team is one you may not have heard of.
Yet the team won a national championship this April at the Spring Premier Horse Show in Alltech Arena at Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. After winning four regular season shows, that made the team five for five in the 2018-2019 academic year.
The UofL Saddle Seat Team has been a member of the Intercollegiate Saddle Seat Riders Association (ISSRA) since 2009, and began with only three members. Now, it sports 15.
“Saddle Seat riding is unique because it is an English style of riding that has history in America,” said Coach Deveau Zubrod. “The ISSRA competitions are based on equitation, which is a rider’s body position. Good equitation riders exhibit good horsemanship, and proper body position creates a more functional rider as well. We want our riders to carry their hands high – to accommodate the long neck and carriage of our horses. Riders have good posture and secure leg position. Saddle Seat riding is a very balanced discipline.”
The riders practice at Zubrod Stables in Prospect.
“Although I am not a UofL alumna, our barn, Zubrod Stables, and myself have a rich history with UofL athletics,” said Deveau Zubrod. “My grandfather was a graduate of the engineering school at UofL and we have been financial supporters over the years. We are so honored for Zubrod Stables to be a part of the University of Louisville through the ISSRA Saddle Seat Team.”