Ayden Uhlir is the first equestrian to ink a sponsorship deal with Nike. She’s also the first rider to receive a grant from the Women’s Sport Foundation, which includes a one-year sponsorship with Gatorade, ESPN News, and additional exposure from the various partners of the Women’s Sport Foundation. Receiving this grant places Ayden among the likes of Vanessa Williams, Gabby Douglas, Nastia Luikin and other impressive athletes who have received similar grants from the Foundation.
Originally from Arlington, Texas, the 21-year-old dressage rider made the move to Southern California to become a working student for Christine Traurig, the USEF Developing Horse coach. During her time with Traurig, Ayden competed her 17-year-old KWPN bay gelding, Sjapoer, in the U25 division, with several top placings. Ayden and Sjapoer were also part of the first Young Rider team to travel to Europe, where they competed in the Hagen Future Champions Nations Cup, placing 7th in the Big Kur. She has since sold Sjapoer to enable the next chapter of her career, which has lead her to Voerde, Germany to train with Johann Hinnemann.
In the October issue, Ayden reveals how she did it.