Bethany College senior Ali Malcanas saw a commercial for the saddle club at just five years old, that’s when she told her mom she wanted to ride horses.
7News caught up with Ali to get an inside look of her incredible story.
Ali Malcanas is one of the best equestrians in the nation.
“I’ve always felt really natural on a horse,” said Ali Malcanas, senior at Bethany College.
Ali competes in the intercollegiate horse show association. She says competing isn’t all about natural talent, it takes dedication.
“I have the frist about 10 seconds that I get in the ring to decide whether it’s going to go really well or if it’s probably going to go terribly and what I need to do to fix the things that need to be fixed,” said Malcanas.
She shows that dedication every week, taking at least two riding classes, practicing five times outside of those lessons, all while taking 21 credit hours to finish up her degree.
“She had her mind set on this from the beginning of the year, kept the can do attitude that we try to instill in all of the team, all the riders, you know we work hard, she worked hard. And each show just got better and better she hit her stride basically,” said Beth Johnson, coach of Bethany equestrian team.
“I’m hoping to place in the top 10 and then compete in a work off on Saturday with the top 10 riders around the nation. I think I can do it, I’ve worked hard and I’m disciplined enough to get it done,” said Malcanas.
Getting it done will mean giving it her all at the championship Cacchione Cup.
“It’s going to be really cool, I mean I don’t know this will be my first time taking a student to you know in this type of competition to a national competition,” said Johnson.
“I’m really proud to be coming from Bethany and representing Bethany as the first student going to nationals,” said Malcanas.
Hopes to move onto Seton Hill to be a grad assistant and assistant coach, she wants to get her own horse and train and compete.