By Anthony Cavarretta, Staff Writer, and Andrew Scarpaci, Assistant Sports Editor
Hedda Walltott, a senior nutrition major from Saltsjo-Boo, Sweden, is one of the top riders on the equestrian team.
Walltott qualified for the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) Regional Show this year, and won novice over fences and flat at the IHSA Regional Show in 2019. She also won her section of intermediate flat at the Adelphi/Pratt Show in 2019.
Walltott finished up her season abruptly since the remainder of equestrian shows were canceled due to the new coronavirus pandemic. In her three years on the team, this was the season she was looking to get the most from. She had high expectations and ambitions for herself going into the last semester of her senior year.
“With no previous experience of North American riding, I have developed and learned so much,” she said. “This was my last chance I had to show what I really got and get that receipt of all the hard work I’ve been putting in during these years.”
Walltott led the equestrian team all the way to the regional finals before they were canceled due to the pandemic.
“When the news hit that all upcoming shows, including Regionals, Zones and Nationals were canceled, I was devastated,” she said. “Everything me and my team had been working so hard for this whole year was just gone, done. I had no words.”
With equestrian being a sport that falls into both spring and fall, Walltott and the team are protesting for an extra year of eligibility.
“What is happening right now is no one’s fault and competing athletes are putting in so much work into their sport, they shouldn’t be punished for this,” Walltott said. “They should get their chance to continue doing their sport. If winter athletes get their season cancelled too, I wish the same for them, to gain an extra year of eligibility.”
With the equestrian season over, Walltott looks to finish out her academic year at Post and expects to graduate at the end of the 2019-20 school year.