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Diamond Bar Arena hosts equestrian drill team championships
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Coordination was the key to riding during the weekend State Drill Team Championships at Diamond Bar Arena in rural Ceres. - photo by Contributed by Don Cool

The top equestrian rodeo drill teams from California congregated at the Diamond Bar Arena in Ceres on Saturday and Sunday for the 2014 California State Drill Team Championships.

The event drew teams from as far north as Redding and as far south as Los Angeles. The competition, sponsored each year by the California State Horsemen's Association Inc (CSHA), has been held at the Ceres arena for the tenth consecutive year.

According to Jill Kraut, chairperson of the CSHA Drill Team event, 2014 is a milestone year is that it marks the 65th anniversary of the first California State Drill Team Championships hosted by CSHA in 1949. To mark the occasion, a special "65th anniversary "Unified Ride" was held Saturday evening at the conclusion of the first day of competition. The ride was a compilation team consisting of 65 riders representing the teams competing at the championships.

"It was a remarkable sight to watch as the team of 65 riders gave a stunning performance," said Kraut.

Sunday afternoon's competition concluded with the presentation of awards and crowning of the State Champion Titles. The Blue Shadows of Southern California took home top honors winning the "Grand Champion" and "Junior Division Champion" titles for the seventh consecutive year. "Reserve Overall Champion" and "Mixed Division State Champions" categories were awarded to the Smokin' Guns of the San Ramon Valley. The "Senior State Champion" title was won by the Sacramento Sheriff's 911 team, and the "Quad State Champion" was won by the Lucky Clover 4-H.