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WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

Talbott gallops to UNH to pursue a professional horseback riding career

Saanvi Arora
Talbott poses for a photo with her horse, Zaza.

She holds the memories of her childhood close to her – lining up small horse toys given to her by her mom as she watches her favorite cartoons, a rotation of any show with horses in them. As a little kid, her fascination with horses preoccupied her. Little did she know, that small interest would manifest into a lifelong passion. 

Senior Lauryn Talbott’s fascination has certainly grown from watching horse cartoons. She is now placing in competitions her younger self would never have dreamed of, including the Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) and several mini grand prix. With all these accolades under her belt, Talbott has one focus: a career in horseback riding.

Though this has been Talbott’s passion from a young age, she fully realized that she wanted to pursue horseback riding as a profession after attending the World Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Florida during the past two winters. The WEF is a globally recognized competition, where equestrians from all over the world compete at various levels. Talbott competed last year, however she was unable to compete this year due to her horse, Zaza, being injured. Despite this, she was able to work at the competition, and the difficult manual labor and long hours validated Talbott’s longtime dreams. 

The riding arena in Talbott’s backyard. (Saanvi Arora)

“Obviously horses have been such a huge part of my life, and Florida really helped me confirm it because I was like, if I can’t get through the 5 am wake ups until 5 pm, like 12 hour days [and] hard work in the sun, I can’t do this as a professional,’” Talbott said. “Because as a professional, you’re not just riding, you have to do the manual labor behind it to keep the horses. So I think that decided that I was ready for it, and I also just can’t see myself being happy doing anything else.”

Though she is sure now that her career path will incorporate horses, Talbott has not always been certain of the profession she wanted to pursue after high school.

Throughout her riding career, Talbott has had many horses that have been injured, which has been difficult for her to navigate. The first time it happened was the most difficult, and that intense frustration of being unable to determine the problem steered her in the direction of wanting to quit the sport entirely. However, because her family had just moved to a new house with a farm for her riding, she was able to rediscover her love for the sport through the rehabilitation process.

“I spent a lot more time on the ground with my horse throughout the rehab process, and that kind of helped me rediscover what the sport was really for, rather than just the riding all the time, it’s also for the horses.” Talbott said. 

The stable where Talbott’s horses stay on her farm at her house. (Saanvi Arora)

However, Talbott’s parents were a large part of the reason that kept her motivated to continue her riding journey. From getting her started in riding, to taking her to competitions, and even live streaming competitions they were unable to attend, Talbott believes her parents’ constant support is what has helped her get this far. 

“My parents are my biggest supporters because they’ve seen me [go] through it all. There have been moments where I’ve gone through really tricky spots in the sport, and I’ve been like, ‘I want to quit, I’m done’, and my parents have always been like, ‘No you can find a way through it’, and help me [get through it],” Talbott said.

Talbott often has to be out of school for weeks at a time for her competitions, which creates a lot of stress surrounding her school work. However, history teacher Christopher Gorham believes that her discipline and ability to compartmentalize and focus on several tasks showcase the true makings of a professional. 

Ponies found at Talbott’s farm, Split View Farm. (Saanvi Arora

“In today’s world, people, even adults, have multiple careers. They might have two or three or four different positions before it really gels into a career,” Gorham said. “But for Lauryn, it seems like this is a lifelong love that she’s had since she [was] quite little.”

Talbott will be attending The University of New Hampshire in the Fall to major in equine sciences and minor in either business or communications. The equine science major is a pre-vet program specific to horses, where Talbott will learn about the anatomy and science of horses. At UNH, Talbott will also get the opportunity to ride for their team, carrying over a decade long passion into the next stage of her life. 

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Saanvi Arora
Saanvi Arora, News Editor
Hi! I am a junior and one of the News Editors for the Ghostwriter! Some things that I love to do outside of school are playing the guitar, singing, reading, listening to music, or hanging out with my friends and family. I am looking forward to another great year!

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