Leslie Wylie
Articles Written 1,168
Article Views 2,779,596

Leslie Wylie


ENBadge Become an Eventing Nation Blogger

About Leslie Wylie

Latest Articles Written

Weekend Instagram Roundup: Chinch on the Scene

Good to see Chinch out and about at Pine Top this weekend! Even if his Chinchbombs occasionally err on the side of creepy. Those beady black eyes with their vacant stare, his fuzzy tufts of untamed ear hair, the way he always just pops up out of nowhere … it’s almost like he’s not even real, but rather a stuffed animal or something.

Go Eventing. #pinetopfarm

A post shared by Eventing Nation (@goeventing) on

#Repost @markwaldolehner ・・・ Chinch can’t get enough of stadium.

A post shared by Eventing Nation (@goeventing) on


A post shared by Eventing Nation (@goeventing) on

Is it cross country time yet? #gooddirt #pinetopfarm

A post shared by Eventing Nation (@goeventing) on

And now, for a smattering of your photos from the weekend that was — from Pine Top Advanced CIC & H.T. [Results] to Three Lakes February H.T. [Results] to Full Gallop March H.T. [Results].

Treats for Frye :: Manicure for me. Treats for all after a confident weekend at Pine Top

A post shared by Claire-Cumbee (@clairecumbee17) on

#pinetopeventing #pinetophorsetrials #sunnygeorgia

A post shared by megmurfey (@megmurfey) on

So happy to compete in a show after taking awhile off for our injuries! Thanks for my support team & SUPER DOG

A post shared by Dichterlieben (@dichliebs) on


A post shared by Samantha Tisdall (@samanthatisdall_eventing) on

A post shared by Samantha Tisdall (@samanthatisdall_eventing) on

#tinytatertotdoesflorida #anotherclearxc #abitslow #pegasuseventing #gotinygo #tinytatertot

A post shared by Ellen Doughty-Hume (@ellendoughtyhume) on

Can't really complain… great horse, good friend, sunshine and wine!! #dreamhorse #sefarm #eventinglife

A post shared by Taryn Nolte (@tarypen_equestrian) on

When ur to cool for water bottles @aa_eventing @avaanderson__

A post shared by Madeline Catherine Scott (@eventing2431) on

Great weekend with the boys & @kristineburgess

A post shared by Greta Schwickert (@gretaschwickert) on

drip splashhhhh

A post shared by brieana cassidy (@brie.cass) on

That forelock though

A post shared by Christina Curiale (@ccuriale) on

Such beautiful weather at #pinetopfarm

A post shared by Leslie Threlkeld (@lathrelkeld) on

Rise and Shine Pine Top

A post shared by Mark Waldo Lehner (@markwaldolehner) on

Another favorite from today! #determination

A post shared by Zoë (@zgstudio_) on

Great job to all competitors! Go Eventing.

Weekly OTTB Wishlist from Cosequin

Save the date! If you missed last year’s Hoedown at Hagyard, held the evening of Rolex cross country day just down the road at the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, you have another shot to attend this year.

This year’s event takes place on Saturday, April 29, from 6 p.m. until the music stops. Enjoy BBQ, dancing, friends and, most importantly, a celebration of OTTBs in eventing sport. Tickets available soon — keep an eye on the Retired Racehorse Project website for more info!

Here are three available Thoroughbreds that caught our eye this week:

Photo via Maker's Mark Secretariat Center.

Photo via Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center.

Bawana Jake (Forestry – Starship Miss, by Twining): 16-hand 2006 New York-bred gelding

We love this gelding’s hind end, his uphill build, and his bright copper coat that makes him look like a shiny new penny! Although he is a little out of practice, Bawana Jake has a solid dressage foundation and is so easy and fun to ride. He needs a person who believes in him and who will dote on him, and he will try his hardest when he finds that special individual. And his connections at the Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center are committed to finding Jake’s person, wherever you may be!

View Bawana Jake on Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center.

Photo via Second Stride.

Photo via Second Stride.

Havlicek (Majestic Warrior – Roxelana, by Boundary): 16+-hand 2010 Kentucky-bred gelding

Retired by his breeder post racing to watch weanlings and be at the farm. Second Stride is helping him start a path towards a new job. Out of a Boundary mare, Roxelana, who was G1 placed and a G3 winner with over $264,000 in earnings! Well loved and raised his whole life, he’s a race winner. He rode fabulous for us. He’s kind and enjoys a job. Lovely RRP prospect!

View Havlicek on Second Stride.

Photo via Finger Lakes Finest.

Photo via Finger Lakes Finest.

Miss Valued (Congrats – Greenbackhasvalue, by Yankee Gentleman): 16-hand 2012 New York-bred mare

This very attractive, well put together and balanced, and very well bred big filly, who sold for $65,000 as a two year old, is just not showing it on the track this year after being a winning machine at the allowance level last year for another trainer. Her current connections would like to find her a new career while she is still sound.

They say she is a good girl, nice to handle with no vices. She posed perfectly for her photo session and jogged politely, showing good, even and well balanced movement, with good reach from the shoulder. As FLF’s volunteers took her photos and interacted with her, they all remarked on what a nice big filly she is. She has bled after some of her races this year, but once horses are off the track, and no longer asked to run at full racing speed, this issue is rarely any problem at all for any new career.

Miss Valued has good bone, an uphill build and strong sloping shoulder, which suggests good jumping ability. She has excellent potential for any sporting discipline, and with her pedigree she should also attract serious interest from breeders. She is by AP Indy’s son Congrats, a rising sire star in his own right. Her dam is a half sister to multiple Grade 1 stakes winner Hilda’s Passion, who sold for over $1 million as a broodmare prospect. She has a direct female line to the dam of the immortal Damascus, and her fourth and fifth dams are stakes winners and stakes producers. Indeed, her entire female family is full of graded black type winners and producers.

View Miss Valued on Finger Lakes Finest. 

Product Review: Draper Equine Therapy All Purpose Saddle Pad

The Draper Equine Therapy All Purpose Saddle Pad. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies. The Draper Equine Therapy All Purpose Saddle Pad. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

It was the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Lexington, and I’d had one (or maybe three) too many Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ales. Which, I think we can all agree, is the absolute best time to hit up the trade fair.

In the mood to play a little fast and loose with my credit card, I wandered around in search of products worthy of my late, great mare Maggie. Maggie would have jumped a house if you pointed her at it, but hoo-boy, she was a tough nut to crack in the dressage ring. “Tense” and “tight in the back” were common refrains among judge’s comments on our dressage tests, and our scores were never much to write home about.

I constantly worked to get her to relax and stretch down but couldn’t shake the gut feeling that her reluctance to let it go was rooted more in physical discomfort than training. She was often back sore the day after a tough workout, wincing away from my touch when I ran my fingers along her spine. From carrot stretches and massage to chiropractic adjustments and acupuncture, I threw my back into fixing her back, but unfortunately it was to no avail.

At WEG I stopped short in front of the Draper Therapies vendor. I hadn’t heard of the company before, but my interest was piqued. Not only were the saddle pads beautiful …

The delicate waved stitching is gorgeous! Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

The waved stitching is gorgeous! Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

… they claimed to give your horse oxygenated muscles throughout the back while providing better recovery and decreasing any soreness and/or swelling.

The science behind it is intriguing. All Draper Therapies products contain a technologically advanced fiber called Celliant, a proprietary blend of minerals which have been extruded into a polyester fiber that has been clinically proven to reduce pain, increase oxygen levels and regulate body temperature.

Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

I’m no science buff myself, so I’ll refer you to this video for a more in-depth explanation of how the stuff works:

Of course, you can science-talk all day long, but what I’m really interested in is where the rubber meets the road. Do the products work?

I noticed that they had the endorsement of Team Canada eventer Selena O’Hanlon. Selena has worn the red-and-white Canadian maple leaf at the Olympics, World Equestrian Games and Pan American Games, and she’s such an elegant rider to watch both on the flat and over fences. I also really respect Selena as a horsewoman who clearly loves her horses and she always puts her equine partners first, so if she was using a Draper Therapies saddle pad, that was a big deal.

Selena O'Hanlon and Foxwood High. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Selena O’Hanlon and Foxwood High. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Selena says she started using the pads in 2007, at Rolex, and has been a believer ever since. Even when she has to use a Team Canada saddle pad, she puts a Draper pad on underneath.

“They leave the back not overheated and sweaty and they don’t leave a saddle pad mark — there are no pressure points,” she says. “They also dry really fast and wash really well.”

Her longtime four-star partner Foxwood High has a delicate back and used to flinch when you put the saddle pad on … until she started using the Draper pads. “They’re really good for sensitive backs,” she says, noting that she loves the Draper stable wraps as well.

Draper Equine Therapy Recovery Wraps. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

Draper Equine Therapy Recovery Wraps. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

If it’s good enough for Selena, it’s good enough for me! I walked away with a white Draper Therapies All-Purpose Pad in hand and couldn’t wait to get home and put it to the test.

It felt good to place the pad’s soft, grey, fuzzy lining on Maggie’s back. I imagine the pad would be ideal for thin-skinned horses who are prone to rubs. The thickness strikes just the right balance, providing enough padding without compromising that all-important close-contact feel.

The shape of the pad is neither too big or small, and I use the all-purpose model with both my jumping and dressage saddles (although a dressage version and jumping version are also available). Like a custom-tailored suit or curve-hugging ball gown, it contoured immediately to Maggie’s topline with none of the bunching you get with a lot of pads. The girth loop is well positioned, although I ended up cutting off the upper velcro loop because my saddle is a monoflap.

As for performance, I wish I could attest that it magically transformed our dressage game from cringe-worthy to straight 10s, but of course there’s no quick-fix magic bullet for that. I can say that I felt a difference: She warmed up faster and just felt a bit more comfortable overall; it was like her whole topline was able to take a deep breath. Most noticeably, she was less back sore the day after a jump day, gallop or intense dressage school. And, as Selena noted, when you took the saddle off there were no pressure points or marks; they seemed to draw heat away from the back instead of trapping it between skin and pad.

The pads are available in both white and charcoal. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

The pads are available in both white and charcoal. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

Care of the pads is easy: Draper says that all its products can be washed in your home washing machine and placed in your dryer without affecting the Celliant properties. While I believe them I’ve shrunk way too many saddle pads in my day to risk it, and hanging them up to dry is just as easy. Cleaning additives such as bleach and stain remover can also be used without damaging the Celliant.

I’m hard on my stuff, and several years of sloshing through mud and leaving the pad for dead on the floor of my trailer tack room after shows, its pristine whiteness picked up some stains. While still 100% functional I relegated it to schooling pad only status and purchased a new one, without the motivation of high-gravity beer this time around.

The Draper Equine Therapy All Purpose Saddle Pad retails for $149 and is available here. Draper has expanded its product line in a big way over the years, with not only equine but also canine and people products available. In addition to saddle pads, Draper has sheets, quarter sheets, coolers, polo wraps, stable bandages and hock boots, all designed with the Celliant technology.

Draper Equine Therapy Perfect Polo Wraps. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

Draper Equine Therapy Perfect Polo Wraps. Photo courtesy of Draper Therapies.

Cheers to Draper Therapies for their contributions to our horses’ comfort and well-being! For more information, check out the Draper Therapies website.

Screen Shot 2017-02-22 at 10.16.18 AM


Thoroughbred Makeover Spotlight: Bobbie Jones and Proud Royal

Bobbie Jones and Proud Royal. Photo courtesy of Bobbie Jones. Bobbie Jones and Proud Royal. Photo courtesy of Bobbie Jones.

Area VIII eventer Bobbie Jones is having a blast with her her 2017 Thoroughbred Makeover prospect, Proud Royal. The 5-year-old gelding (Kings Blood (IRE) – Proud Owney, by Proud Truth) won twice in 15 starts on the track before retiring to Winchester Place Thoroughbreds in Paris, Ky.

Bobbie wasn’t on the hunt for a new horse at the time but …

“I met Proud Royal and knew he was coming home!” she says. “He wasn’t the biggest or most fancy horse on the farm, but I just had that feeling about him.”

After bringing him home she realized that he was eligible for the Retired Racehorse Project, so that became the goal. Wanting to try something a little different, she entered him in the Field Hunter and Freestyle divisions. She warns that she has a wild idea for the competition, but it’s top secret for now — we can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve, Bobbie!

Photo courtesy of Bobbie Jones.

Photo courtesy of Bobbie Jones.

In the meantime, she is savoring the development of their partnership.

“He is such a cool horse!,” she says. “I have very high hopes that he will be my first upper level horse. No matter what I ask him he’s always willing. He’s so chill too. Even from his first ride off the track, he just stood there asleep on a long rein without a care in the world.”

They recently set out for the horse’s very first cross country school — and by all appearances it went swimmingly!

Bobbie took her helmet cam along for the ride:

She explains the story behind his barn name, Dempsey: “Since his sire is Irish, I wanted to name him sometime that reflected his Irish heritage. After a lot of research I decided on Dempsey, which is an Irish name that means ‘proud.’”

They’re taking aim at Spring Bay H.T. for their first event together, and you can follow their journey to the Makeover on Dempsey’s Facebook fan page (which he narrates himself!).

Hey everyone! How’s it going? Soooo, first thing first….I kinda got in trouble today and my girl thinks public shaming…

Posted by Proud Royal: Retired Racehorse Project 2017 on Tuesday, February 14, 2017

One more note from Bobbie: “I highly recommend Winchester Place Thoroughbreds for anyone looking for an OTTB project. They take incredible care of their horses and work hard to find them homes to begin their second careers!

Learn more about the Retired Racehorse Project Thoroughbred Makeover here. Does your Makeover prospect deserve to be featured on EN? Email your horse’s story to [email protected]  

#DogsOfEN: Doggone It

Where there are horse people, there are dogs — and we love showing ‘em off! Check out this week’s batch of canine barn buddies (and one honorable mention feline), and don’t forget to tag your pups on Instagram with #DogsOfEN for inclusion in a future edition!

#eventerproblems of an #eventingdog with Briar and the wonderful @frances_mccann_ #horseshowdog #horselife

A post shared by Helen Brew (@helen_brew) on

Frank could learn something from Pup about how to cross ditches…. #noscopenohope #eventing #eventerproblems

A post shared by Collyn Smitherman (@collynsmithers) on

Ready for rocking horse 281627483 #horseshowlife #dogsofen #luckytongue

A post shared by Pasque (@pasque_n_friends) on

Truck rides down the driveway

A post shared by Tanja (@tanja.minder) on

Little dog problems #dogsofen #jackrussell #germanshepherd #farmdogsofinstagram

A post shared by Paige (@coldspringeventing) on

And our honorable mention cat of the week!

Go Eventing.

Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen Come Back Swinging in Pine Top CIC3*

Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen. Photo by CFD/Hoofclix.com. Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen. Photo by CFD/Hoofclix.com.

Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen dominated from start to finish today in their first FEI event since the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. They coasted to the top of Pine Top CIC3* leaderboard by a stout margin of 13.3 points in the sandbox and never looked back, ending the day on their dressage score of 36.3.

The 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse, owned by Jess, Kathryn Kraft, Holly and William Becker, ate up Derek di Grazia’s testing track. “I really feel good about today,” Clark said. “It was a big test and Glen answered it all super.”

After several years living and competing in England, we’re all happy to have Clark and his wife Jess back stateside. Based through March in Ocala, Clark and Glen have been on fire thus far this year. They prepped for Pine Top with an Intermediate division win earlier this month at Ocala Winter II, finishing on a score of 23.3, and their impressive performance today is a reminder of why they’re one of the most competitive partnerships not just in this country but on the international stage.

Doug Payne and Vandiver. Photo by CFD/Hoofclix.com.

Doug Payne and Vandiver. Photo by CFD/Hoofclix.com.

Clark and Glen have had a 99% stellar past couple of years, with wins abroad at Belton, Somerford Park and Blenheim, and top finishes at Luhmühlen, Chatsworth and Bramham. After being named to the Team USA for the Olympics they bested the final outing at Great Meadow, but the stressors of globetrotting caught up to them at a most inconvenient hour in Rio. After Glen’s release from quarantine in Miami, he underwent surgery to remove a bone chip in his knee and spent the fall recovering at their facility in Virginia. 

Clark says of his performance today: “I feel like it just means that he’s healthy, and that seems to be key for this horse.”

He remarked on Glen’s fitness, explaining that he allowed the horse to set his own cruise control on the cross country, and the speed Glen chose was high gear. “He feels really, really fit,” Clark says. “He’s proving so far this year that he’s peaking a lot easier and seems to be in top form.”

With one-day events being much more common in England, Clark felt comfortable with the condensed Pine Top format. “It’s great fitness work,” he says. “It’s really good for the horses, one day of getting their nerves up and performing and then you get to go home and your horse can spend the night in his own pasture.”

Of course when it comes to riders there is no rest of the weary — tomorrow Clark will be off again to compete at Three Lakes February H.T. As for Glen, their next stop is Carolina International, with the ultimate spring goal being a return to the CCI4* level at Rolex Kentucky. Best of luck and glad to have you back, Clark and Glen!

Kylie Lyman and Da Vinci Code. Photo by MWL/Hoofclix.com.

Kylie Lyman and Da Vinci Code. Photo by MWL/Hoofclix.com.

As an aside, yesterday EN posted videos of Clark and his former four-star horse Universe making his 1.40-meter jumping debut at HITS. Since we had him on the line we took the opportunity to ask him for an update on “Buzz.”

“His legs aren’t going to hold up to the galloping of eventing, but they seem fine for jumping,” Clark says. Buzz was never a fan of dressage anyway — “Poor guy, he hated it” — and Clark says the 16-year-old Dutch gelding is thrilled to not have to wear a “long flap saddle” anymore.

As much as Buzz is enjoying it, Clark says he’s benefiting from the experience as well: “Doing the big jumps pushes me out of my comfort zone, so you get to work on your nerves and being under that pressure which can only help you as a rider.”

Kurt Martin and Delux Z. Photo by SCH/Hoofclix.com.

Kurt Martin and Delux Z. Photo by SCH/Hoofclix.com.

Back to Pine Top!  In other news, both Advanced division winners led from wire to wire and finished on their dressage scores. Lillian Heard and Share Option came out on top in Advanced Test A on a score of 35.4; Kurt Martin and Delux Z took Advanced Test B on a score of 28.7.

Chris Talley and Sandro’s Star lead the CIC1* after dressage and show jumping, and Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z lead the two-star.

Leslie Threlkeld is our boots on the ground and will be along a bit later with more reportage and photos, so check back!

Pine Top CIC3* Final Scores:

Screen Shot 2017-02-24 at 3.14.05 PM

Pine Top: Website, Entries, Ride Times, Live Scores, Instagram, Twitter, EN’s Coverage

Friday Video from World Equestrian Brands: Kyle Carter’s Super Cool Conditioning Pool

I’m a huge fan of using water resistance for equine conditioning. I’ve been taking my own horses to the Aquatred and underwater treadmill at the University of Tennessee for years …

The little mermaid working on her spring break beach bod. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

The little mermaid working on her spring break beach bod. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

… and the physical benefits are apparent. Besides saving some wear and tear on our horses’ limbs, working in water seems to target a different set of muscles than what you get on dry land — core strength, especially — and goes a long way toward building cardiovascular fitness. I could go on and on and actually wrote a whole big story about this stuff for EN a couple years ago, which you can check out here.

While I haven’t seen it in the flesh, I am transfixed by the water complex/conditioning pool Kyle Carter built at his own Five Rings Farm. Laura Mungioli posted this video of her horse doing some water aerobics yesterday:

It’s neat to watch the pool in action after seeing a preview of it under construction in Episode 38 of “The Sort of OK Show About Horses with Buck and Kyle.” Kyle gets into the brass tacks of his water conditioning theories at around the seven-minute mark of this video, which is definitely worth a watch:

Very cool. Go Eventing!

Thursday Video from Standlee Hay: Universe Shows His Chops in the Jumper Ring

Just when we thought Clark Montgomery’s four-star partner Universe (“Buzz”) couldn’t get any cooler, he recently crushed it in two 1.40 meter classes at HITS. The 16-year-old Dutch gelding, whose myriad accomplishments include jumping handily around Pau and Badminton in 2013, is the consummate example of an all-around equine athlete.

Clark shared the videos with the remark, “To come back at the age of 16 from two-year injury and competing at the four-star level in eventing to jumping two 1.40 classes this week just tells you how much heart and try this little horse has. More than any other horse I’ve had the privilege of riding.”

Go Buzz. Go Eventing!

Event Rider Masters Announces 2017 Calendar, Expansion into Europe

Photo courtesy of ERM. Photo courtesy of ERM.

The Event Rider Masters (ERM) has released its 2017 calendar, featuring seven legs and a total of £400,000 in prize money across the series. New for 2017, the series is also expanding from the UK into mainland Europe, with venues located in England, Scotland, France and Germany.

The 2017 ERM calendar:

May 13-14: Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials (UK)
June 2-3: Internationales Wiesbadener PfingstTurnier (Germany)
July 8-9: St. James’s Place Barbury International Horse Trials (UK)
July 15-16: Haras de Jardy (France)
Aug. 5-6: Festival of British Eventing, Gatcombe Park (UK)
Aug. 26-27: Blair Castle Equi-Trek International Horse Trials (UK)
Sept. 15-16: Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials (UK)

For riders, the series offers prestige and prize money — each ERM leg is worth £50,000 with an additional £50,000 series bonus. For fans of the sport, it offers an engaging format and technologically innovative live stream coverage via Eventridermasters.tv.

Inaugural 2016 series champion Oliver Townend (GBR) remarked, “The shortened format of the ERM produced very competitive performances from riders across all three phases last year. It is very exciting for us (riders) that ERM has an additional leg for 2017 and will be expanding into Europe. I expect this will up the level of competition again, which is great for the sport, spectators and ERM viewers. I hope to target a few different horses and I cannot wait to be part of the series again.”

2017 ERM series champion Oliver Townend. Photo courtesy of ERM.

2017 ERM series champion Oliver Townend. Photo courtesy of ERM.

This year’s expansion of the series into mainland Europe opens it up to a broader swath of top eventers.

“The Event Rider Masters is a new series and one I’m very excited about,” said Ingrid Klimke, whose home nation will host the German leg at Wiesbaden. “It puts a modern spin on traditional eventing, distilling what is historically a three-day event into two action packed days for the spectators, and will transport equestrian to new places and new audiences.”

For more information on the series visit the website here.

[The Event Rider Masters — bigger & better in 2017!]

Eventer Andrea Glazer Selected for Team USA at 2017 Maccabiah Games

Photo by Alex Banks Photo by Alex Banks

Three Grand Prix show jumping riders and one intrepid eventer — Andrea Glazer — will represent Team USA at the 2017 Maccabiah Games this summer in Israel.

The Maccabiah Games — think Jewish Olympics — are held every four years, providing Jewish athletes from all over the world the opportunity to share their heritage and customs in competitive athletic settings. The Games commenced in the 1920s at a time when Jewish athletes were frequently excluded from athletic clubs and team participation and have continued for the past 80 years. Now the Games are the third largest multi-sports competition in the world.

Andrea was selected on this year’s U.S. show jumping team with Cloe Hymowitz (New York, New York), Haley Schaufeld (Wellington, Florida) and Sydney Shulman (Greenwich, Connecticut).

“I have huge shoes to fill as the only eventer on the team,” Andrea says. “Cloe, Haley and Sydney are amazing riders.”

Team USA had success at at the last Games in 2013, which was the first time equestrian disciplines (show jumping and dressage) were included in the Games. The show jumping team earned team gold and individual bronze, and the dressage team earned individual bronze.

“I am already nervous since I really want to make everyone here proud, but my excitement for the Games is overwhelming,” Andrea says. “I can’t wait to grow as a rider and gain experience in an international setting.”

Andrea will no doubt rise to the occasion. The 22-year-old is an accomplished eventer who has competed through the two-star level. She began riding at the age of 6 in her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, under the tutelage of Carrie Barrick.

“I’ve always been obsessed with horses,” she explains. “I think it’s in my blood because my mom, sister and brother rode as well until I was about 13.”

Currently a senior studying marketing at Auburn University, she now trains with Julie Richards in Newnan, Georgia, driving an hour and 10 minutes each way after her classes to ride.

“It’s absolutely worth it because she has helped my riding tremendously,” Andrea says. “Luckily, she has so many horses at her barn that she lets me ride and jump, so I am getting used to jumping all different kinds of horses. Phillip Dutton comes down and teaches lessons as well, so I really think I have the best coaches I could ask for to help me prepare for the Games.”

The experience of riding a variety of horses will come in handy at the Games, where she will catch ride a horse assigned to her. In preparation for the Games, she is planning on competing in Georgia Horse Park jumper shows this spring to hone her skills over the colored poles. She will also be spending a week training with show jumping trainer Neal Shapiro, who won team silver and individual bronze at the 1972 Olympics in Munich and twice won the Grand Prix of Aachen.

Photo by JJ Sillman.

Photo by JJ Sillman

Andrea’s experience competing in a team setting will also prove valuable. In addition to being a member of the Auburn Eventing Team, she was twice selected to compete at NAJYRC in high school. Sadly, her horses went lame weeks before the event both times but she still went to groom one year. She has also competed in more than 10 Pony Club rallies.

“I haven’t met any of the other riders, but I’m excited to,” she says. “I’m sure they know each other since they show in the same discipline, but I’m excited to meet other Jewish riders since I only know a few.”

Team USA coordinator Sandra Cohen says that the team component extends beyond the competition itself, as the whole experience is designed to foster community and connection.

“Riders from Team USA will first have the opportunity to participate in Israel Connect, a seven-day immersive training and touring program across Israel to sites like Jerusalem and the Dead Sea,” she explains. “Israel Connect allows Jewish athletes from Team USA to get acquainted with the land and people of Israel, as well as their American teammates, nearly 1,200 strong.

“Riders will march into the Open Ceremony at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem, wearing their red, white and blue, among 8,000 Jewish Athletes from around the world. Additionally riders will get to know other equestrians from all over the world, with athletes representing other countries, expected to include: Austria, Brazil, Holland, Hungary, Israel, Mexico and Spain.”

In addition to the show jumping team, the U.S. will be sending a dressage team as well consisting of Hope Cooper (Concord, Massachusetts), Rebecca Cord (Cochranville, Pennsylvania), Leah Johnson Marks (Ellenwood, Georgia) and Anna Sylvan-Jaffe (Fitchburg, Massachusetts).

Team riders were selected based on their show records, application essays and video observation. Andrea sent in video of her clear show jumping round on Detail Specialist, whom she describes as “one of my favorite horses,” in the 2013 Red Hills CIC*.

Photo by Sallie Johnson.

Photo by Sallie Johnson

“Ever since they added equestrian to the Maccabiah Games, it has been a dream of mine to ride on the team,” Andrea says. “I was in shock when they called me. I was walking home from class with one of my best friends and just started jumping up and down trying not to scream into the phone. I was, and still am, in shock that it’s all happening!”

Andrea has a big year ahead of her. After graduating in May and competing in the Games in July, she will start a job as a marketing intern at the Victoria Racing Club in Victoria, Melbourne.

“I just hope I can absorb all of it and make the most of these unbelievable opportunities,” Andrea says. “I want to be at my best going into the Games and between graduating college, representing the United States and moving to Australia, I want to grow as a person and rider, learning as much as I can along the way.”

Andrea says she is grateful for all the support and well wishes she has received in the lead up to the Games, in particular her mom Karen Abrams and dad Jeff Glazer and Peggi Bindner: “I wouldn’t have been able to do this without them.”

To support Andrea in her journey to the 2017 Maccabiah Games, visit her fundraising page here.

Tuesday Videos from SpectraVET: Buck Davidson Hat Trick at Rocking Horse Winter II

Buck Davidson dominated the Advanced Test A division at Rocking Horse Winter II over the weekend, claiming the top three spots. (He also second in the Advanced Test B division on Petite Flower, behind winners Alyssa Phillips and Bliss III,  in addition to finishing seventh on Park Trader and 15th on No Remorse.) 

Buck’s Advanced Test A scores:

Screen Shot 2017-02-21 at 6.24.08 AM

He is one busy dude who somehow always seems to be in two (or more!) places at once. At this event David Frechette, better known in the YouTube jungle as TheHorsePesterer, managed to capture the blur that is Buck on all three of his Advanced Test A horses in at least once phase. 

Enjoy! See full Rocking Horse Winter II H.T. results here.

#1: Buck & Copper Beach

#2. Buck & Halimey

#3. Buck Davidson & Carlevo

Why SpectraVET?

Reliable. Effective. Affordable.

SpectraVET is committed to providing only the highest-quality products and services to our customers, and to educating the world in the science and art of laser therapy.

We design and manufacture the broadest range of clinically-proven veterinary therapeutic laser products, which are represented and supported worldwide by our network of specialist distributors and authorized service centers.

Weekly OTTB Wishlist from Cosequin

CANTER PA just bomb-dropped some serious lookers this week!

CANTER PA is based out of Penn National Racecourse but also lists horse at PARX as well as various farms throughout Pennsylvania. We’ve seen some very successful event horses come out of this program … could you be the proud owner of the next CANTER PA grad superstar?

Here are three that caught our eye:

Photo via CANTER PA.

Photo via CANTER PA.

Saint Roch (Street Sense – Chatique, by Deputy Minister): 2013 16.2-hand Kentucky-bred gelding

A big, stunning, hunky fellow with an athletic build and sensible personality, this guy could be an awesome find.

Very polite and patient for his listing, he has a kindness about him that makes his handlers think he’d be a nice choice for an amateur, as well as a pro. Offering a nice sport pedigree including such sires as Street Sense, Deputy Minister and Dixieland Band, we can see him being sought after by eventers. Even prettier in person, when CANTER saw this guy walking down the shedrow they instantly hoped that he would be our listing for the day. Very handsome!

View Saint Roch on CANTER PA.

Photo via CANTER PA.

Photo via CANTER PA.

Doctor Action (Van Nistelrooy – Khayelitsha, by Gold Case): 2011 16.1 1/2 hand Louisiana bred gelding

Big, bay and beautiful! Retiring after finishing in the top three of his 20 race track starts, with $32,470 in career earnings.

A substantial fellow who is known for being kind and cooperative, CANTER thinks this one could be the right mix of build and brains to please an amateur. His trainer said she “loved” him and that despite his size, he’s easy for someone as petite as her to handle. He was a model citizen for his listing and seemed like the type to just go with the flow. Check him out!

View Doctor Action on CANTER PA.

Photo via CANTER PA.

Photo via CANTER PA.

Final AMX (Southern Success – Declined Amx, by Devil His Due): 2014 15.2-hand gelding

Babycakes! This youngster is just turning three this spring and has lots of filling out to do. While his photos don’t do him justice, his video does give you a feel for how pretty he moves.

Well-bred for sport, there are some lovely lines in this guy’s pedigree that makes us think he’ll be a lovely prospect, including Dixieland Band, AP Indy, Devil His Due and Buckpasser. We’re told Final AMX is a very nice horse to handle, ride and be around, retiring with no known issues or vices after only FOUR starts!

A clean slate, this guy is ready to be molded into your next partner. He was very polite for his listing and seems like a sensible prospect.

View Final AMX on CANTER PA.

Darren Chiacchia Cleared of 2010 Charges, Releases Statement

Darren Chiacchia and Amendment 15 at Bromont in 2014. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Darren Chiacchia and Amendment 15 at Bromont in 2014. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

U.S. Olympian Darren Chiacchia has been cleared of 2010 felony charges alleging that he did not inform a former sexual partner that he was HIV positive. The online docket for Marion County, Florida confirms that the charges were dropped on Feb. 15, 2017.

His representatives issued the following statement to EN:

“Olympic medalist, 2003 Pan American Games gold medalist, and 2004 Rolex Kentucky CCI4* victor, Darren Chiacchia of Ocala, FL and Springville, NY, has been cleared of all charges under a Florida HIV disclosure law. After reviewing all available evidence, the prosecutors have acknowledged that dismissal is appropriate. Sadly, those unsupportable charges caused an eight year journey through the court system for a case that lacked merit from the beginning.

“The statute cited in Darren’s case is a 1986 law intended to protect against the spread of HIV. Florida is among multiple states that attached criminal penalties, but with major advancements in medical science, the validity of these statutes has been called into question.

“For Chiacchia, this nightmare began on the heels of his traumatic brain injury (TBI) at the Red Hills Horse Trials in March 2008. A rotational fall at a vertical following a combination bank complex left Chiacchia in a prolonged coma. He thereafter struggled to recover his ability to take care of himself, his riding career, and the relationships around him. Chiacchia’s diminished capacity certainly left him vulnerable to anyone intending to take advantage of him.

“An individual did just that in June 2009 when this person tried first in New York, then Kentucky and finally Florida to have Chiacchia arrested. He falsely claimed that Chiacchia violated Florida’s Health law requiring knowledge of an infectious HIV condition. Complicated by Chiacchia’s brain injury which limited his ability to assist in his own defense, together with conflicting interpretations of the legal reach of that antiquated health law, Darren’s case dragged on through multiple prosecutors and defense attorneys for years. Meanwhile, due to this false charge, his reputation was severely tarnished.

“It was not until Ocala, FL attorney, Paul Guilfoil became involved on July 1, 2014 that the full factual record was compiled. Chiacchia’s recovering memory and the honesty of multiple witnesses clearly contradicted the 2009 false claim against him.

“Perhaps the only positive outcome of this tragic mess is the fact that Chiacchia has become increasingly active in supporting change to HIV laws. Across the country these statutes tend to discourage testing for and treatment of the virus. Medical science continues to improve the details of HIV identification and treatment.

“Chiacchia has energetically involved himself in both the Florida and nationwide efforts to amend criminal HIV laws to reflect these changes. The fight also continues to improve our understanding of the effects of traumatic brain injuries (TBI). The lessons learned in Chiacchia’s struggle to both recover from a TBI and to defend himself against false legal charges provide an important caution to lawmakers and athletes.

“Chiacchia and many others fervently believe that no one should be the target of false criminal allegations or charges that rely upon antiquated and constitutionally over-broad punishment for any citizen; especially those who suffer from a disability making it difficult or impossible for them to defend themselves.”

#EventerProblems Vol. 105: Smile! You’re on Eventing Nation

At the end of the day I think we can all agree that horses are a big bunch of hairy weirdos. (Although, I guess the same thing could be said of their riders — although hopefully with significantly less hair.) And sometimes we are able to capture that weirdness in a photo and share it on social media for all the world to see.

Exhibit A: your latest batch of #EventerProblems …

#photobombed by hay. #eventerproblems #horsefail #perfecttiming

A photo posted by Amie (@fonderofdublin) on

Go Eventing.

Weekly OTTB Wishlist from Cosequin

I drool a little bit into my computer each week putting together this column, but this week’s batch made me especially weak in the knees. Sanctify’s “look at me” presence, Elusive Talmo’s smart dapples, Keen on Green’s sweet eye … I would take all three home with me if I could!

The horses are located in New York and are available through ReRun Thoroughbred Adoption, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to giving retired racehorses the very best care so they can thrive and have meaningful and fulfilled lives after the racetrack. For more information on them or to fill out an adoption application click here.

Photo via ReRun.

Photo via ReRun.

Sanctify (Pulpit – Averymerrymoment, by Distorted Humor): 2011 16-hand New York-bred gelding

Sanctify has perhaps turned more heads on social media than any other horse ReRun has posted in the past six months. Running 17 times, he won $175,000 before retiring a few months ago to be actively marketed as a stallion prospect. Ultimately no viable option arose and so he was donated to ReRun. Having been gelded just three weeks ago, he will require an experienced home and handler and would benefit from a lot of turnout. He is not suitable for 24/7 turnout at this time, cannot be turned out with other horses and cannot be stalled close to mares.

He is clean-legged and suitable for all pursuits. Good to handle in all respects including clipping and farrier. He has no vices; however, he is not a “child friendly” horse nor suitable for beginners or those lacking experience with colts and stallions. This is a stunning opportunity to own a Thoroughbred that on the private market would price at over $5,000 and he is RRP eligible. Adoption fee: $1,000.

Elusive Talmo (Elusive Quality – Jesse’s Justice, by Lear Fan): 2012 16.2-hand New York-bred gelding

Elusive Talmo is clean-legged with no vices and is in search of a new home. He was adopted prior to Christmas; however, while his adopter tried to organize shipping their barn burned down, so he now finds himself in need of another home.

He is good to handle in all respects, and although not an A mover, he is suitable for all pursuits including jumping and would be an ideal project. He’s had a couple of training rides and was very easy, laidback and uncomplicated. Adoption fee: $600.

Photo courtesy of ReRun.

Photo courtesy of ReRun.

Keen On Green (Bustin Stones – Ivory Handled, by Personal Flag): 2011 15.2-hand New York-bred mare

Keen is ReRun’s very special princess. At 6 years old, she stands 15.2hh but is quite robust and roly poly. An easy keeper, she has no vices, tight legs and good wind. Racing 32 times, she won over $80,000 and came to Rerun last summer spending the past six months letting down and hanging out with their other mares. She is great to handle in all respects including clippers and farrier.

She has been started back under saddle and was all business — did exactly as was asked and behaved impeccably. She has untold potential in a variety of pursuits and ReRun would love to see her with her own special person as she really does deserve her own happy ending. She is RRP eligible and if adopted to enter, ReRun would consider sponsoring her and waiving her fee. Adoption fee: $400.

#DogsOfEN: Barn Life Is Ruff

Where there are horse people, there are dogs — and we love showing them off! Here’s your latest batch of canine Instagram pics, plus a few other assorted friendly barnyard creatures because we’re equal opportunity like that.

Be sure to tag your ‘Grams with #DogsOfEN for inclusion in a future edition!

I seem to be making a habit of ending up with dog proof horses XD #eventerproblems #ISH #funnyanimals

A video posted by Zara Flores-Kinney (@thefeanarion) on

Cross-country walks are the best. #dogsofen #eventing #jrt

A photo posted by Claire-Cumbee (@clairecumbee17) on

Truck salesman laughed when I said a bench seat was non-negotiable. 'I know,' he said. 'You farm girls and your dogs.'

A photo posted by Fine Idea Farm (@fineideafarm) on

Snow bunny #adogslife #dogsofEN

A video posted by Samantha Bergin (@sasabergin) on

Horse shows are exhausting! #ineedanap #dogsofen #piginablanket #bassethoundsofinstagram

A photo posted by TheAdventuresofOticusMaximus (@theadventuresofoticusmaximus) on

2 of my favorites ❤️ #ottb #jrt #dogsofEN

A photo posted by Ashley Betz (@ashbetz) on

When your dad's dog, Foxy, has mad cross country skills! #foxythedog #wishmydogwasahorse #nofear #dogsofen

A video posted by Elisa Wallace (@wallaceeventing) on

can you spot the #dogsofen on the way to his first horseshow #sportingdaysfarm and yes my dressage saddle is falling #eventerproblems

A photo posted by TheAdventuresofOticusMaximus (@theadventuresofoticusmaximus) on

Ruby thinks deep cleaning tack is exhausting. #eventerproblems #dogsofen

A photo posted by Kate Drake (@katedrakevt) on

When your horse and your dog like to share the beet pulp and everyone ends up with slop on their face #eventerproblems

A photo posted by Erin Gallagher (@flyingbequestrian) on

And … a bonus cat and a pig for good measure:

Go Eventing.

#EventerProblems Vol. 104: What Are You Wearing?

Equestrians are so fashionable! We walk around looking like we just stepped off a page of the SmartPak catalog, like, all the time.

Haha just kidding. We are ragged-out, mud-splattered, hoarder tack store addicts, and all our horses want to do in the world is run around naked covered in their own filth.

Allow us to share a few examples:

When it’s Sports Day at school so you represent. #equestrianlife #eventerproblems #shouldacleanedmyboots #ptlife

A photo posted by Mindy Kutzner-Shannon (@mkutzner) on

Precisely why I do not get manicures often. #eventerproblems #eventinglife #eventingproblems

A photo posted by ℓιzz (@live_love_ride92) on

Thank you Coco! Is it monday? Oh yes it is! #eventerproblems #horsenation #lynet

A photo posted by Lea Ditte Marsk Lauridsen (@lea_lauridsen) on

#couragehasopinions #ottbproblems #horsememes #eventerproblems #didntthinkthatthrough

A photo posted by @couragehasopinions on

Noooooooooooo!!!!!!! #notagain #eventerproblems

A photo posted by Kristi Cetak (@kristicetak) on

Some girls buy shoes….. #eventerproblems #new #saddle #handmade #buybritish #leather #horsesofinstagram

A photo posted by holbs27 (@holbs27) on

Multipurpose back on track polos. #eventerproblems #fashionforward #killingmesmalls

A photo posted by Samantha Bell (@samantha.bell089) on

Lost my helmet cover somewhere… #eventerproblems #redbud #crosscountry #eventinglive #rockinghorse #ocala2017

A photo posted by Redbud Farm Equestrian (@redbudequestrian) on

Something tells me I have a thing for blue… – #eventerproblems

A photo posted by Kate Drake (@katedrakevt) on

Too many red polos? #eventerproblems #washersfull #redvesteventing #cwdteamred

A photo posted by Beth Libby (@bether11) on

It’s because I make you wear purple, isn’t it? #eventerproblems #theflyingdorito

A photo posted by Celsie Rae Abelt (@westwindstudio) on

Go Eventing.

Flashback Friday Video from World Equestrian Brands: British Eventing 2016 Highlights

As our friends on the other side of the pond gear up for a brand new season of eventing, British Eventing takes one last look in the rearview of the year that was 2016.

Many thanks to British Eventing TV for sharing — they’re already ramping up content offerings in anticipation of the new eventing season, including a live stream scheduled for the JAS championship finals on Feb. 19.

Go Eventing!

#TBT Video from Standlee Hay: Leslie Law’s 2004 Olympic Gold Medal Ride

In the spirit of Throwback Thursday let’s rewind to the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. Leslie Law was representing Team Great Britain on Shear L’eau, one of two striking grey ISH full brothers upon which Leslie achieved a string of successes in the early 2000s, the other being Shear H20 who was his 2000 Olympic mount in Sydney.

Leslie and Shear L’eau performed a personal best dressage test in Athens, a 43.2, which put them in the top 10 heading into cross country. They had a sticky moment at the water but blasted around the rest of the course, coming home clear with 1.2 time penalties, then turned in one of only two double clears to ultimately clinch individual gold and team silver.

Watch highlights from the pair’s Olympic performance on this video from British Eventing TV. Many thanks to BETV for sharing — they’re already ramping up content offerings in anticipation of the new eventing season, including a live stream scheduled for the JAS championship finals on Feb. 19.

Go Eventing!

Tuesday Video from SpectraVET: British Super Groom Alex Van Tuyll Shares Top Tips at IEF

What’s the secret to perfect quarter marks? How do you get every last speck of dirt and hay out of a barn aisle? British super groom Alex Van Tuyll, who spent a decade working for William Fox-Pitt, shared her secrets with Ellie Kelly in this video.

Alex was a presenter at the 2017 International Eventing Forum, held yesterday at Hartbury College in Gloucester, England. The annual forum aims to deliver insight, opinion and knowledge beneficial to riders and trainers seeking to up their eventing game. Britain-based California eventer Sophie Hulme was in attendance and will be bringing us a recap on Thursday so be sure to check back.

For more “Tips from the Top” videos, featuring advice from leading riders and professionals in all equestrian sports, visit Ellie’s website here. And be sure to follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

Go Eventing.

Why SpectraVET?

Reliable. Effective. Affordable.

SpectraVET is committed to providing only the highest-quality products and services to our customers, and to educating the world in the science and art of laser therapy.

We design and manufacture the broadest range of clinically-proven veterinary therapeutic laser products, which are represented and supported worldwide by our network of specialist distributors and authorized service centers.

Eventers Dominate 2017 Thoroughbred Makeover Trainer List

Lindsay Gilbert, shown here competing Rebel Annie in the 2016 Thoroughbred Makeover, has a 2017 entry as well! You can follow the journey of Lindsay and her new OTTB, Hot Java, via their Lindsay Gilbert, shown here competing Rebel Annie in the 2016 Thoroughbred Makeover, has a 2017 entry as well! You can follow the journey of Lindsay and her new OTTB, Hot Java, via their "Making It to the Makeover" blog on EN's Bloggers Row. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Gilbert.

A total of 578 trainers will contest the 2017 $100,000 Thoroughbred Makeover, including a hefty contingent of eventers, according to a list released today by the Retired Racehorse Project.

Of that 578, 182 trainers cited eventing as their primary discipline, with another 40 listing it as their secondary discipline, for a potential total of 222 entries. Eventing was followed by show hunter (126), show hunter (126), show jumper (77), dressage (63), barrel racing (31), competitive trails (27), field hunters (20), polo (19), working ranch (17) and freestyle (16).

The event, which this year will take place Oct. 5-8 at the Kentucky Horse Park, had a huge number of trainer applications. Approval was based on skill, experience and demonstrated ability to introduce a fresh-off-the-track Thoroughbred to a new career.

“We were overwhelmed, not only by the number of applications, but also by the quality,” said RRP President Steuart Pittman. “The performances on the first weekend of October could be more awe-inspiring than what we saw last year, and the selection of carefully chosen, well-started Thoroughbred sport horses for sale will be vast. People should pencil this weekend in on their calendars now.”

The eventing entry list ranges from talented young riders to four-star eventers and stars from other disciplines, such as top female jockey Rosie Napravnik. The field of trainers is comprised of 49% professionals, 39% amateurs, and 12% juniors hailing from 44 states, two Canadian provinces and England.

A few upper-level competitors and trainers that jumped off the list: Cathy Wieschhoff (KY), Mandy Alexander (KY), Jessica Bortner-Harris (NC), Jennifer Coleman (KY), Dorothy Crowell (KY), Elissa Gibbs (KY), Brittany Kart (GA), Emily Kocubinski (PA), Nick Larkin (KY), Clare and Tom Mansmann (VA), Julie McElhaney (OH), Susan Moessner (MI), S. Kelly Plitz (ON), Tate Reynolds (PA), Ian Roberts (ON), and Elisa Wallace (GA).

Two hundred-thirty trainers have registered their horses already, which means there are still more than 300 trainers shopping for horses to use in the competition.

“Everybody should attend the Makeover,” said Lauren Turner, 2016 winner on Fairway King of the dressage division and overall title of America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred. “It is the most diverse gathering of horse trainers in the competition industry. I learned so much last year from trainers in other sports and am looking forward to reuniting with them and their new horses this October.”

[$100,000 Thoroughbred Makeover Launched with 578 Trainers]

America First, Eventing Nation Second

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 10.45.29 AM

When it comes to politics, the sovereign state of Eventing Nation has no dog, er, chinchilla in the fight. We respect and appreciate the fact that our citizenship is vast and ideologically varied — we even believe that’s part of what makes us such an amazing community. Because at the center of it all, we share at least one thing in common: We’re all bananas about the sport of eventing. And in these divisive times, common ground is a sacred gift indeed.

Among EN’s founding principles, however, is a commitment to “insanity in the middle,” and maybe a splash of clear-the-air ridiculousness would do us all a little good right now. Thus, from the bottom of our hearts, we present: “America First, Eventing Nation Second.”

If we can’t be #1, at least we can be a distant #2. Here’s what the People’s Republic of Eventing Nation has working in its favor:

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.33.14 AM Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.31.25 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 10.07.54 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 1.45.53 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.21.32 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 1.58.04 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.21.57 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 1.43.21 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 1.52.17 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 1.49.12 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 10.05.48 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 9.38.37 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.44.40 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.51.45 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 2.29.28 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 11.23.05 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 9.34.34 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 2.09.12 PM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 10.56.38 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 10.42.33 AM

Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 11.30.58 AM

Now, more than ever, Go Eventing.

Meet Central Kentucky Riding for Hope, Official Charity of #RK3DE 2017

Photo courtesy of CKRH. Photo courtesy of CKRH.

In addition to showcasing top international eventing talent, the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day event is committed to showing love to charities that support equine organizations and serve the local community.

This year’s official charity, Central Kentucky Riding for Hope, is more “local” than ever. Based in the Kentucky Horse Park, Equestrians Events, Inc., producer of Rolex Kentucky, selected the 35-year-old non-profit on the basis of its strong mission: to improve the quality of life and the health of children and adults with special physical, cognitive, emotional and social needs through therapeutic activities with the horse.

EN recently had the opportunity to speak with Pat Kline, Executive Director of CKRH, about its values and what it means to be chosen as Rolex Kentucky’s official charity:

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

EN: CKRH is located on site at the Kentucky Horse Park. What is is like to be in that setting?

PK: Our location inside the Kentucky Horse Park has given our program an added dimension that goes back to our inception in 1981. The power of the horse surrounds us daily in many different formats. The environment is rich for our educational endeavors, inspiration abounds from the competitions and the tranquility of our particular setting provides the safe feeling necessary for achievement.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

EN: Does this make it special to you that you have been selected as this year’s Rolex charity?

PK: It is very special to us because of our long history with Rolex. Our organizations were neighbors for several years when CKRH was located in the black tobacco barn. Rolex and the Kentucky Horse Park have always supported our program. To be named the Official Charity for the 2017 Rolex here at the Kentucky Horse Park is a great honor. It will give awareness to the wide variety of services provided by our program. And, CKRH will be able to share the “magic” of the horse-human interaction and the difference it can make in changing lives.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

EN: What does Rolex mean to CKRH?

PK: Rolex represents a world class event to us. It gives horses, riders and the equine community a chance to shine even brighter. The level of the competition is both educational and inspiring.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

EN: What are CKRH’s goals for 2017?

PK: CKRH finished construction of our state-of-the-art facility in 2012. Thanks to many generous donors the facility is now debt free as of last year. For 2017, our number one goal is to kick-off an endowment to make sure this wonderful program will survive into the future. CKRH relies greatly on our community for donations. While we will always need and appreciate that support, an endowment is paramount for future sustainability.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

Photo courtesy of CKRH.

EN: How can people help support CKRH?

PK: There are many different ways to help CKRH. First, monetary donations are the backbone of our funding sources. Contributions can be made through www.ckrh.org or mailed to us at P.O. Box 13155, Lexington, KY 40583. Planned Giving offers many ways to ensure that your legacy enables future generations to benefit from our services. Contact Pat or Jessica at 859-231-7066 for additional information.

The gift of time is also very valuable at CKRH! If you live locally, come join our more than 500 volunteers who make our program happen daily. Or consider making a tax deductible donation of tack or equipment. A Wish List of our most needed items can be found at www.ckrh.org.

Go Eventing!