Skip to main content

Youth demonstrate expert equine knowledge, passion for horses in hippology contest

Two horses in a field.

Urbana, Ill. -- In 4-H, learning about horses means much more than learning to ride. Young people with a passion for horses participated in recent statewide educational contests related to the equine industry. 4-H’s educational programs enhance members’ knowledge of horse health, breed characteristics, management, and feeding. That knowledge and skills were tested during the State 4-H Hippology Contest held April 13 on the University of Illinois campus.

In Hippology, youth field a wide range of questions, ranging from breed identification, anatomy, tack identification, and feed samples to disease management, parasite identification, and quality assessment. They also are given a timed problem-solving challenge they must solve on the spot in front of a panel of judges. Horse ownership is not a pre-requisite in the either the educational programs or contests.   

Top finishers included:

Senior Division: Allison Burrs from Carroll County, first; Talisa Thomas from Whiteside County, second; Hannah Wenzel from Saline County, third; Stephanie Niesen from DeWitt County, fourth; Sydney Woodard from Monroe County, fifth; Ellis Rogers from Knox County, sixth; Emily Conlee from Knox County, seventh; Michaela Persico from Kendall County, eighth; Maya Woodard from Monroe County, ninth; and Annelise Veeder from Kendall County, tenth

Intermediate Division: Moira Curry from Pike County, first; Gracie Walker from Hamilton County, second; Alexis Modaff from Kendall County, third; Addison Yordy from Ogle County, fourth; Emma Steiger from Rock Island County, fifth; Nora Moore from Madison County, sixth; Hanna Koch from Tazewell County, seventh; Shannon Bernard from Jefferson County, eighth; Gabby Carden from Bureau County, ninth; and Caitlan Ritter from McLean County, tenth.

Junior Division: Devin Burrs from Carroll County, first; Mallory Paur from Madison County, second; Audrey Winkler from Jefferson County, third; Annabelle Sutter from McLean County, fourth; Addison Diehl from Ogle County, fifth; Lily Hongsermeier from Ogle County, sixth; Julian Henry from Knox County, seventh; Cecilia Kampmueller from Champaign County, eighth; Dalton Carls from Rock Island County, ninth; and Jocelyn Erickson from Mercer County, tenth.

Illinois youth who will compete in the National 4-H Hippology Contest are supported by the Illinois 4-H Foundation and its donors.  This year’s event also Horse Bowl and Horse Speaking events.

About Illinois 4-H: Illinois 4-H is the flagship youth development program of University of Illinois Extension and administered through the College of Agriculture, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences. 4-H grows true leaders, youth who are empowered for life today and prepared for a career tomorrow. The hands-on approach in 4-H gives young people guidance, tools and encouragement, and then puts them in the driver’s seat to make great things happen. Independent research confirms the unparalleled impact of the 4-H experience, demonstrating that young people are four times more likely to contribute to their communities; two times more likely to make healthier choices; two times more likely to be civically active; and two times more likely to participate in STEM programs. 

For Further Information, Contact:

Source:  Deb Hagstrom, University of Illinois Extension Specialist, Horses

Writer:  Carissa Nelson, Media Communications Manager, 4-H State Office,

About Extension

Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. Illinois Extension is part of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.