Local teenager takes competitive riding to new heights

PARK CITY, Utah – Ivy Malman, 14, and her 10-year-old half Welsh half pony, Teddy, jump through hoops to make sure they continue to team up to compete in dressage, jumping cross-country and show jumping. Together, the sport is known as three-day eventing.

The list of priorities this incoming freshman has on her plate is already impressive and perhaps daunting for any adult. Between school, working a job, participating in voluntary extracurricular studies, maintaining a social life with friends and family, training at the Tally Ho stables (a place she found on her own), training herself and her horse as an elite athlete, as well as feeding, grooming, and the ubiquitous cleaning after said horse. You’d think the daily grind hinders Malman from having an impressive competitive schedule, but you’d be wrong.

Special cuddling sessions with Teddy can definitely be worth it, and Malman wouldn’t have it any other way.

“She’s been crazy about horses since she was old enough to talk,” said Melissa Band, Malman’s mother.

At Park City Montessori School, Other, horses were made available on site for student riders. At the height of COVID, Malman’s grandmother (nominee for the unofficial Best Grandmother award), who wanted to ride as a child but never had the chance, decided to donate next. She bought Teddy for her granddaughter to fulfill her own riding dreams.

Ivy and Teddy train at Tally Ho in Park City. Photo: Melissa Band

Seeing Malman in his happy place also makes Band happy, despite the ongoing upkeep of horse ownership that involves bills for hay, grain, vets, and trailers because those horses can’t just get to competitions at the back of the family car.

The inside joke to the parents of Park City skiers is a friendly reminder that in their days of seemingly incessant checks, at least their gear doesn’t have to eat twice a day.

Dream Team Teddy and Malman finished fifth overall in the adult division of a recent competition and finished second in the dressage discipline, making his sire, Brandon Malmansuper proud.

Equestrian is the only summer or winter Olympic sport in which men and women compete, with the emphasis on the real athlete, the horse.

Clyde P. Johnson