Eventers Give Thanks for 2017 Blessings

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Allison Springer and Arthur. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

Life with horses isn’t always easy. The days are long and horses aren’t the best at letting us know all the hard work is appreciated. On those days where it seems like the stall mucking, leg wrapping, supplement portioning, and tack cleaning are endless it can be difficult to remember just why it is that we’re so in love with this crazy sport.

Allison Springer has had a roller coaster of year in 2017 — from a top placing at the Wellington Eventing Showcase with Arthur to a win at Bromont on Lord Willing, plus the announcement she will be coaching Region IV Young Riders. And who could forget that emotional farewell as she retired Arthur at Rolex. Beyond the trophies and cheering crowds, Allison finds herself most thankful for the people that she has been connected to through horses.

“This year I am thankful for horses because of the many wonderful relationships they have created!,” she says. “I am eternally grateful for my family who have always been my rock and have also always been awesome fun people who make me really happy! The horses have also brought in the most amazing crew of girls that work for me and are really an extension of my family! I am so thankful to have Sarah Zimmer, Jill Thomas, Olivia Caspers and Maddie Hogan (and all the other amazing girls that have been with us through the years).

“My students, sponsors and owners have all come to me through horses and I consider these people my family and some of my very best friends! This year very good horse friends of mine introduced me to my boyfriend and I feel incredibly blessed to have connected with this amazing person!

“And finally, I cannot thank the horses enough for all the blessings and life lessons they have taught me. Sitting on a horse’s back is my church and connection to the world; they are such extraordinary animals that remind me every day how precious life is and the many things I have to be thankful for! Happy Thanksgiving!”

Allison’s entire team all has something to look thankful for as they look forward to 2018. With plans for horses to move up through the levels and the search for a new head groom the Allison Springer Eventing crew has an exciting year as the build on the successes of 2017. We caught up with some other top riders to see what it was that horses brought them this year and asked them to send us some pictures that capture what they’re feeling thankful for.

Auburn Excell Brady of Excell Equestrian

“This year I’m thankful for horses because they help me to become my best self as a rider, trainer and coach. I love the challenges and rewards of working with each horse and rider.”

Photo courtesy of Auburn Excell Brady.

John Michael Durr of Durr Eventing & Show Jumping

“This year I’m thankful to horses for giving me a life I get to share with my wife Kimmie. I’m also so grateful for the eventing community; the family our sport creates that gives us a lot to be thankful for.”


Photo courtesy of John Michael Durr.

Jennifer McFall of Dragonfire Farm

“This year I am thankful for horses because they push you to think in new ways. Particularly about yourself and your capabilities, if you let them.”


Jennifer McFall and High Times. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Heather Morris of Next Level Eventing

“This year I’m thankful for horses because of all the wonderful people I have met along the way.”


Photo courtesy of Heather Morris.

Jenny Caras of Caras Eventing International

“This year I’m thankful for horses because they teach me something new every day.”


Jenny Caras and Fernhill Fortitude. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.


Olivia Loiacono of OKL Eventing

“This year I’m thankful for horses because they constantly humble and inspire me.”

Photo courtesy of Olivia Loiacono.

Mackenna Shea of Next Level Eventing

“This year I am thankful for horses because they have taken me places I had only dreamt of and introduced me to so many amazing people, not only this year but every year. I wouldn’t trade this year’s experiences for the world. Cheers to 2017.”

Photo courtesy of Mackenna Shea.

Cheers indeed! So grab a glass of wine, a plate with way too many carbs, and enjoy some time thinking about what makes you thankful for these four-legged creatures!