Volan, South Carolina
South Carolina Equitation on the Flat Horse Volan has been named the Horse of the Month for the month of February by the NCEA as announced Thursday morning.
Volan began the month by earning MOP honors with Grady Lyman after scoring a 78 in Equitation on the Flat against Liberty. Drawing Lyman again, Volan and the freshman rode to an 80 against TCU, scoring the second-highest in the event. Closing out the month at home, although not with a South Carolina rider, Volan scored, yet again, the second-highest ride of the flat event with an 86.
Volan is a 17.0 hand DWB gelding donated to the program by Kate Eagleton three years ago. Volan was Eagleton's equitation horse as a junior and competed in all the major finals. Volan has been to the NCEA National Championship where he has been nominated as a fence and flat horse on multiple occasions. He is currently nominated on the flat for the national championship.
In the fall of 2017, Volan injured his stifle. Upon further examination it was determined he needed to go to an equine hospital to get better x-rays of his stifle. Volan was taken to Tryon Equine Hospital fearing the worst, but hoping for the best. The prognosis was not good – Volan had fractured his stifle in multiple places.
The damage was more than expected with multiple bone fragments having to be removed and the surgeon said only time would tell if he would be able to be ridden again.
It was a long, slow process. He lost all of his muscle and the team had to be extra careful, taking him along slowly. Volan continued to be sound, except at the lengthening trot the entire spring of 2018. In the fall of 2018, the team began to see if he would hold up going back into practice on the flat. It took the entire semester to get his strength back, but he was able to get some time in the meets. He is now competing, and winning, on the flat and is getting back to jumping.