Elizabeth Traband, Michael Golinowski, Thea Chafee by Sportfot 440_8311
Elizabeth Traband, Michael Golinowski, Thea Chafee on the podium during the award ceremony of the IHSA Metropolitan Equitation Invitational. Photo by Sportfot

UNIONDALE, N.Y. – April 26, 2019 – Athletes from the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) competed in a collegiate catch-ride format typically unseen at a world-class, international event like the Longines Masters New York. The inaugural IHSA Metropolitan Equitation Invitational was held April 26 at NYCB Live, Home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, in Uniondale, New York, for a lively audience of cheering supporters. The two-round class provided an opportunity to showcase some of the best East Coast IHSA riders.

Michael Golinowski, 18, from Burke, Virginia, a freshman at Bridgewater College earned the top spot. Equestrian talent Elizabeth Traband, 21, a junior at Penn State University, from Centre Hall, Pennsylvania was reserve champion and Thea Chaffee, 21, from East Greenwich, Rhode Island and a junior at Colgate University took the third-place spot on the podium.

The participants drew to compete aboard horses, sight-unseen, in a first-round over fences. The top twelve riders returned to the arena on another drawn horse for a flat phase.

For the first phase, Golinowski drew Orion, provided by Orion Training Stables. “Orion over fences was absolutely fantastic. He was there for me every step of the way. I had a great, great time on him. I had Zazu (provided by St. Lawrence University) for the flat and she was a feisty little mare. I was expecting a nice strong, ready horse when I got in there and that's what I had. I felt confident in myself.”

Michael Golinowski and Orion by Sportfot 444_6766
Michael Golinowski and Orion, provided by Orion Training Stable. Photo by Sportfot

Longines Masters New York provided two of the most respected authorities on hunter seat equitation to judge the event, George H. Morris and Brianne Goutal-Marteau. Morris is widely regarded as the founding father of hunter seat equitation. He is an Olympic silver-medalist and as the U.S. chef d’équipe, he led the team to Olympic gold in 2004 and 2008. Goutal-Marteau was the first U.S. junior rider to win all four major U.S. equitation finals. Goutal-Marteau is a graduate of Brown University, where she competed in the IHSA.

“It was quite an honor and quite the experience,” Golinowski said about being judged by two such preeminent judges. “But for them to pick me as the winner – that's definitely something that I haven't fully processed yet.”

The 2003 IHSA Cacchione Cup champion, Dr. John Piggot, an Equine Surgery and Emergency Clinician, at Cornell Ruffian Equine Specialists, joined Catie Staszak and Max Von Zimmerman in the announcers’ booth. Piggott added insight into what it is like to compete in the catch-ride format. The NYCB Live venue came alive with the excitement and enthusiasm of the young IHSA athletes and their families and friends who came to cheer them on.


Elizabeth Traband and Belle by Sportfot 444_6856Elizabeth Traband and Belle, provided by Marist College. Photo by Sportfot

“I think simply getting to be at an event like this is just unbelievable–it’s the best riders in the world,” Traband said. “I get goosebumps thinking about it. It's an incredible experience. It's amazing that they're having us here.”

Chaffee, too, was impressed with the experience and expressed her thanks to organizer and Centenary University co-coach Michael Dowling. “It's just such an honor and there are so many people that made this happen,” she said.

Many generous sponsors stepped up to provide support and prizes for the IHSA Metropolitan Equitation Invitational. Golinowski earned an Equiline Scott Stewart signature saddle for the championship, Traband won a pair of LaMundial custom boots and Chaffe and the fourth and fifth place finishers all received Dublin boots. Golinowski was also awarded the Style of Riding honor, sponsored by Dover and The Pony App. The Pony App, founded by Olympian Lucy Davis, also supported through promotional activities and prizes. EquiJet provided equine transportation and prizes. The Rider’s Closet, founded by Georgina Bloomberg, provided gifts from Ariat.

Cadets from the United States Military Academy at West Point added fanfare to the award ceremony. After the presentation, the IHSA coaches, warmup riders and handlers were all smiles as they gathered in the ingate.

Thea Chafee and Renaissance yb Sportfot 444_6834Thea Chafee and Renaissance, provided by Windham Hill. Photo by Sportfot

“We were honored to have the IHSA showcased on an international stage at Longines Masters New York,” said Bob Cacchione, founder and executive director of the IHSA. “Thank you to the sponsors, Michael Dowling, all the coaches, horse providers and collegiate riders. Most of all, we are so grateful to Longines and the EEM team for providing this incredible opportunity and inviting us to this spectacular event.”


A passionate of equestrian sports, Christophe Ameeuw - CEO of EEM and Founder of the Longines Masters Paris-Hong Kong-New York Series - founded the Ecuries d’Ecaussinnes in 1997. Based in Belgium, the stables are internationally reputed for their activities in trading sport horses and high-standard breeding. They are also home to an offering some of the best teaching available in the field. In opening EEM, Christophe Ameeuw and his teams were in pursuit of a challenge: to reinvent show jumping by organizing equestrian events of an entirely new kind. The company built its development by creating the concept of the “Masters”, which together, under the same roof, the best of show-jumping, resplendent displays and art de vivre. After the successes of the Audi Masters in Brussels and the Gucci Masters in Paris, EEM came out with one of the world’s most prestigious equestrian events, the Longines Masters Series, on three continents, in Paris, Hong Kong and New York. Inspired by the Grand Slam in Tennis, EEM created a concurrent “Grand Slam Indoor of Show Jumping”, approved by the FEI, this intercontinental challenge is offered to the world's elite in show jumping, with two prize levels: The Super Grand Slam - a €2,250,000 super bonus for the three consecutive wins in the Longines Grand Prix, in the season order - The Grand Slam - a €1,000,000 bonus for three successive victories at Longines Grand Prix straddling two Longines Masters seasons.

In 2017, EEM created a new iconic competition, the Riders Masters Cup. Offered to the public alongside the EEF (European Equestrian Federation) and alternating between Europe and the United States, this battle pits the world's two leading powers in show jumping against one another: Europe and the United States. On the Asian continent, “Asia Horse Week,” rallying point for the international equestrian community there, also serves as a prime setting for the Longines Masters of Hong Kong, illustrating EEM's determination to develop the sport's international arms in the Asia-Pacific Region. Firmly set on putting equestrian sports front and center and making them accessible to all, EEM rolled out a new digital TV channel on November 14, 2017. offers viewers the chance to follow live and free of charge all EEM events worldwide.

Set in the three of the world's most emblematic metropolises - Paris, Hong Kong and New York - the Longines Masters series is recognized as one of the most prestigious events in the equestrian world. Created by EEM and inspired by the Tennis Grand Slam, the series quickly expanded their international reach (Hong Kong in 2013, Los Angeles in 2014). In 2015, the intercontinental trilogy turned into the Longines Masters Series. Alongside it, EEM created the “Grand Slam of Indoor Show Jumping”, approved by the FEI, the Grand Slam Indoor is the ultimate challenge for the world's elite in show jumping, with two levels of prizes: The Super Grand Slam: a bonus of 2.25 million Euros for winning three consecutive Longines Grand Prix in the same season. The Grand Slam: a bonus of 1 million Euros for three successive victories in the Longines Grand Prix from one season to the next. The TV broadcast of the Longines Masters Series reaches over 120 countries, almost 320 million households, a coverage increased this year by the launch of, the new digital channel of EEM. It allows everybody to freely livestream all the competition and events during the four days. For more information, see

Longines has been based at Saint-Imier in Switzerland since 1832. Its watchmaking expertise reflects a strong devotion to tradition, elegance and performance. Longines has generations of experience as official timekeeper of world championships and as partner of international sports federation. Known for the elegance of its timepieces, Longines is a member of Swatch Group Ltd, the world’s leading manufacturer of horological products. With the winged hourglass as its emblem, the brand has outlets in over 150 countries.
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