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The Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology

Alum Billys Shady wins CAC equestrian event

Lauren Billys with mother(July 10, 2020) - Equestrian rider Lauren Billys Shady, a Fresno State alumna, won the gold medal in eventing at the recent Central American and Caribbean Games in San Salvador.

The Visalia Native claimed Puerto Rico's first medal at the event with her horse, Can Be Sweet. It was another impressive, international honor, for her which included Olympic appearances in 2016 and 2021 with her horse, Castle Larchfield Purdy.

The eventing competition consisted of three events (dressage, cross-country and show jumping) that were hosted on consecutive days at the end of June.

The 35-year-old qualified was chosen to represent the tiny Caribbean island via her grandmother (a Puerto Rican native) who encouraged to join the team that was formed in 2009 (and she was selected a year later).

She wrote on her Instagram page, "“This is my first win at a championship. I have so many to thank: my federation, the Olympic committee, my owners, my teammates who helped me warm up and stood by me, Amy Spink groom extraordinaire, Emily Sandler, Tamie Smith for her inspiration and coaching via WhatsApp, my husband, my family, my barn family at home, sweet Charlie for stepping into the role of champion effortlessly and confidently, and my grandma for encouraging me to do this 13 years ago.”

More info about the competition is at:

As a student, Lauren was also decorated in the classroom as a Fresno State Department of Viticulture and Enology undergraduate student achiever at graduation and president of the campus Enology Society of Fresno.