Locals do well at skijoring event

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Leah Mitchell rides her Horse, Jackson, as they pull skier Sayre Smith. Mitchell did well at the recent Rebecca Farm event and was second at nationals. (Elora Akins photo)

Several Columbia Falls competitors were among the top finishers at Rebecca Farm March 4 as Montana Equestrian Events sponsored a skijoring event there.

Cold temperatures caused the first day of the event to be canceled, but competitors took to the course March 4, where Columbia Falls resident Eric Christianson took second in the sport class, riding horse Danger S Lee and pulling skier Aaron Oberliter. Their time of 20.51 seconds was 40 seconds behind the winners.

Skier Toby McIntosh took second, third and 10th in the open class with riders Joe Scanlon, Scott Ping and Kristen House.

Rider Steve Armstrong, on horse Cocoa, also teamed up with Nelson to take fifth in the sport class.

Leah Mitchell was seventh, 19th and 20 as a rider in the sport class, riding horses Jackson and Eleanor Wood with skiers Lance Nelson and Ed Anderson.

“This really is a team sport,” Mitchell said. “It is a combination of the horse, the rider and the skier. There is a lot of horsemanship involved and some very skilled skiers and they all have to work together if they want to win.”

Mitchell was back in action at the National Finals skijoring event in Red Lodge, where she took second in the sport class.

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