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When Margaret Go’s children need care, sometimes the biggest challenge is getting from their West Houston home to a worldclass pediatric hospital. By giving to the Heal Sick Children Campaign at Texas Children’s Hospital, you give families like the Gos peace of mind—and a way to avoid traffic when the health of their children is at stake. That’s because your donation will help build Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a brand new facility bringing superb care for childhood illnesses and injuries to one of Houston’s fastest growing communities. It’s part of the largest expansion in our history and one that will help us provide unsurpassed health care to more and more patient families in West Houston.


Spring 2010


Featured Articles THE BRUHEIMS ENJOY AN EQUINE LIFESTYLE Meet the Family and the Riders Behind Nordic Lights Farm By Alexandra Beckstett


MILLION DOLLAR MANDY Mandy McCutcheon Takes Reining Industry by Storm By Savannah Howell


Departments 5



Facilities Manager

Saddlebred Owner Chris Tresten

By Sean Brown





Marta Renilla Delgado Bringing Spanish Flair to the Southwest

MESSAGE FROM TEXAS CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL Getting Care Closer to Home By Sandra Bretting






The Market, the Recession And What the Future Might Bring

Staying Informed About Equine Medications and Diseases

By Michael F. Booker

By Dr. Andrea O’Connor

JUNIOR COLUMN “The Place You Call Home” By Caroline and Carson Gibson


ARTIST BIO Olva Stewart Pharo

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


Marketing Director

Great Southwest Equestrian Center 2501 South Mason Road Katy, Texas 77450 Phone: 281.578. 7669 Fax: 281.578.6651

Elise Beckstett 281.543.1910

Editor Alexandra Beckstett 281.543.6198

Design/Layout Suzy Brown 971.678.3694

Advisory Board Nancy Cahill Joan Cantrell Kate Gibson Hollis Grace

Marilyn Kulifay Colleen McQuay Christian Rogge

service•integrity•passion ON THE COVER

Portrait by Olva Stewart Pharo

The Exhibitor is published 4 times a year. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is strictly prohibited. Opinions expressed herein are those of the experts consulted and do not necessarily represent the opions of the editors, advisory board or marketing director of Great Southwest Equestrian Center. The information in this publication is for educational purposes only.



here has been a whirlwind of activity at Great Southwest over the past months. In preparation for our busiest time of the year, innumerable projects were put on a deadline to make the facility ready. The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, The Spring Gathering Horse Show, and the National Reining Breeders Classic are our premier events in the spring. We are excited to welcome thousands of horses and exhibitors to the Center.

The changes are almost too many to list but the most visible are: • • • • • • •

Outdoor ringside viewing areas with seating Judges and officials huts New road access for south-side parking Improved signage throughout the facility Great Southwest logo and flag in Main Arena Improved food service Arena Club renovations

We are excited to have everyone enjoy the improvements. We also ask that you take the opportunity to fill out our Service Survey, which is available on-line as well as in the show office. We appreciate your feedback. While change takes time our goal is to continue to enhance the quality of the show experience for everyone. Your input helps us understand what we are doing well and where we can improve.

Take time to enjoy our new official publication, The Exhibitor. It is available throughout the facility at all equestrian events. We welcome suggestions for future articles about Texas equestrians and the horse industry that you would like to read about. We thank everyone for their support in making this venue a premier equestrian event facility that will continue to support equestrian activities in Texas and the Southwest. Sean Brown Facilities Manager

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010



Equine Lifestyle The Houston family of five stops at nothing to support their two household equestriennes. By Alexandra Beckstett


jarte and Elisabeth Bruheim tried to steer their horsecrazy daughter, Eirin, away from her equine passion for as long as they could. Not two months after she celebrated her tenth birthday at a farm, however, she was the proud owner of her first horse. The rest is history.

Fast-forward eight years and today the Bruheim family has shaped their life around horses. Their two daughters, Lene, 15, and Eirin, 18, are garnering tricolors and accolades in hunter and jumper rings coast to coast. The Bruheims built their state-of-the-art Nordic Lights Farm from the ground up and have been dedicated to developing Lene and Eirin as riders and to helping them achieve their individual goals. They constructed their 70-acre Tomball facility three years ago with only the horses in mind.

“Our farm is very new and modern with a huge indoor arena and outdoor arena and an 18-stall barn. It’s just a lovely, lovely place,” said Elisabeth. “It should be good for the horses, and as a result it’s usually good for the people as well.” Houston-native Sherre Sims manages Nordic Lights and has trained exclusively for the Bruheims for five years. She has known the family, however, since Lene and Eirin were pigtailed pony riders at Kate Fifteen-year-old Lene Bruheim is establishing herself in the junior hunter and children’s jumper divisions.

Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Photo © Connie Kelts


Photo © Dikka Afidick (PWL Studio)

Lambert-Boone’s Irish Day Farm. When the Bruheims branched out to build their own equine establishment and asked Sims to sign on with them, she couldn’t say no.

“I just loved the kids,” she explained. “I still have a picture of Eirin in little jodhpurs hanging in my kitchen … now she’s a young woman doing the grand prixs. And Lene has just blossomed as well.”

An exhilarating eight months after construction began in the summer of 2007, Nordic Lights Farm was complete. Nationally-renowned course designer Blake Alder helped with the arenas and the all-weather footing. Fifteen pastures provide ample grazing space for 18 horses.

With two daughters competing at the highest levels, however, more often than not the Bruheim family takes their show on the road. Eirin and Lene are both enrolled in online classes with Kaplan College Preparatory School, which allows them more time to dedicate to their string of 12 show horses. It also means they can spend six weeks at a time competing at such events as the Gulf Coast Winter Classics in Gulfport, Miss., and Spruce Meadows in Calgary. Elisabeth and the two girls always travel together, with Bjarte and son Kenneth, 20, joining them on weekends.

Kenneth, who has Down Syndrome, loves being around the horses as much as his younger siblings, but is content to enjoy them from the ground. “It’s really nice having my family around because I always know they’re going to be there for me,” said Eirin. “If I’m having a rough day I can always go to them.”

Natural Talent

The Bruheim girls, particularly Eirin, who is wrapping up her last year as a junior, have set some lofty goals for themselves as of late. Lene is stepping up to establish a name for herself in the junior hunter division aboard her two hunters, NLF Casabella and NLF Relantir et Lisser. She is also focusing heavily on the North American League children’s jumpers and steering toward the bigger jumper classes. Eirin, meanwhile, has begun competing in grand prixs with some early success. She has won $10,000 and $15,000 classics, ribboned in the prixs, and in January competed in her first World Cup qualifying class in Jacksonville, Fla. But her biggest goals for this year are qualifying for the Prix des States in Harrisburg, Pa., the Young Rider Championships Continued on p. 8

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


Photo © Connie Kelts

Eirin Bruheim has found success in local and national jumper classics with such horses as Cicero 75, above. in Lexington, Ky., and the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games. She currently sits atop the qualifying list of the latter. Of Eirin’s four upper-level jumpers, her superstar mount is the 11-year-old Oldenburg gelding Cicero 75. She also has her veteran 17-year-old Belgian Warmblood, Qarko VT Merelsnest, a full brother to McClain Ward’s Olympic partner, Sapphire; her 2009 Prix des States horse NLF Trans Atlantic; and her up-and-coming Felix das Pferd (German for “Felix the horse”).

“Cicero is full of energy — it seems like I have to hack him for hours a day,” Eirin said. “‘VT’ is an old pro, but sometimes still gets set in his ways. ‘Atlantic’ is a little trier and ‘Felix’ is still just learning.”

Eirin also dabbles in the equitation ring aboard Say No More, who Sims describes as the rider’s “old pair of blue jeans horse.” “Eirin’s strength is that she has many different horses that are very different to ride,” said Sims. “She’s very versatile.


And her sister Lene is very focused and very driven.”

While the sisters differ in many ways, their trainer notes that their riding style, natural talent, and competitive nature are very similar. They both are adept at thinking things through, and once they figure something out it becomes almost second nature.

“This is all Eirin has ever wanted to do. It’s a good thing we can support that and can do it as family. It’s all by choice — there is no pushing.” — Elisabeth Bruheim

Sims will soon have some company, however, training at and managing Nordic Lights Farm, for Eirin is beginning to take on more responsibility in hopes of turning her pastime into a career.

Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Continued on p. 9

“The Bruheims do a lot for charity and a lot for the horse industry. We’ve been friends for a long time, I look at the girls like they’re my kids, and I’m just proud to be affiliated with them.” — Sherre Sims

haven’t seen everyone for a while, we just start right where we left off.”

“Eirin is going to start taking a more active role in training and trying to learn the business,” said Sims. “She has already started doing a lot of her own training of the horses.”

“The Bruheims do a lot for charity and a lot for the horse industry,” said Sims. “We’ve been friends for a long time, I look at the girls like they’re my kids, and I’m just proud to be affiliated with them.”

“This is all Eirin has ever wanted to do,” added Elisabeth. “It’s a good thing we can support that and can do it as family. It’s all by choice — there is no pushing.” The Bruheims may be jet setting around the country from horse show to horse show, but the Texas show scene they’ve grown up around still remains near and dear. Each event, from Houston to Tyler and everywhere in between, is like a homecoming for them. “We know everybody at the shows in Texas — it feels like being at home,” said Elisabeth. “It’s like family. When we

The Bruheims show their appreciation for the Texas horse industry every chance they get, from sponsoring grand prixs to hosting grooms’ parties. Elisabeth makes sure her kids know how lucky they are and the importance of giving back to support the community and the sport they love.

Topline Ink Equestrian Journal Magazine Devoted to the Dressage & Sporthorse Rider

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


G E T T I N G T O K N OW. . .

Chris Tresten Saddlebred aficionado Chris Tresten is having a great year with her family, her superstar gaited horse It’s Wing Ka Hammer, and her brand new farm. The former Pin Oak Charity Horse Show president rides and trains in Houston with Dan Flowers, and, when she’s not at the barn, she is actively involved with the Ronald McDonald House and Texas Children’s Hospital. Photo © Don Stine photography

Question: What drew you to Saddlebred and gaited horses? Answer: Well it was actually a coincidence. When I was very young and growing up in New York I was addicted to

horses. Even at age 5 I was playing with horse statues — it’s one of those addictions that started from birth. When I was in junior high there happened to be a Saddlebred stable very close to my school. I started riding there and my mom decided it was a good idea, that it would get me involved with horses instead of boys! I’ve been doing it ever since.

Q: How many horses do you currently have? A: I have three gaited horses right now. My five-gaited amateur horse is It’s Wing Ka Hammer. There used to be a champion Saddlebred many years ago called Wing Commander, and the name is kind of a play off that.

And then I have my five-gaited pleasure horse, Life’s a Dance. He’s been wonderful to have, he’s an older gelding. And then I have a young up-and-coming star. His name is Jack Hammer and he is 5 years old.

Q: What can you tell us about your new farm? A: Last year my husband, Bill, who has a stainless steel company, built me a riding facility here in Houston. We built 30 stalls, I

can be there in 10 minutes, and all my show horses are over there. It’s great! I have a fulltime trainer, Dan Flowers, and we have a riding instructor that just started about a month ago, her name is Lesley O’Connor. Dan is also bringing up the offspring of It’s Hammertime, a stud from Augusta, Ga., and training them for show horses. So the barn is filled.

Q: What have been some of your recent accomplishments? A: This year has been outstanding. I just started showing It’s Wing Ka Hammer, and I won the Arizona horse show, the Baton Rouge horse show in November, won the Texas American Saddlebred Horse Association holiday show at Great Southwest, and we were reserve champion in San Antonio. The Del Mar show is my favorite though — you get to be by the beach!

Q: What are your plans for the coming year(s)? A: I would say to get a lot of horse showing in, travel a lot, and do as well as I can with Wing Ka Hammer. I’m excited about the potential for him because I just started showing him in the fall.

I call Wing Ka Hammer my Ferrari. He is lightning fast, and a lot of times I can’t even keep the grin off my face when I’m riding him. It’s like an adrenaline rush. Actually, my mom visited me not long ago and she said to me, “My gosh, you still get that high when you ride.” I do, it’s amazing. It’s just like driving a racecar — you’ve got all this power underneath you and when you’re racking and you’re getting it right and the horse is elevating and the crowds are screaming … To me there’s nothing better!


Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Q: Does your family share your love for horses? A: Well this is the problem: my husband who I’ve been married to for 22 years is allergic to horses. He built me this riding

facility, which is so ironic.

I have two sons, one who is in college and the other is a junior in high school. My older son is also allergic to horses. But over the summer when we were building the riding facility he hung the doors and worked out there helping put the barn together, which was very exciting. My younger son likes to go feed the horses apples and carrots, but riding is too much finesse for him!

Q: What other interests do you have outside of the horses? A: Well we are major skiers. We have a home in Telluride, Colo., and we go up almost every month, at least nine months a year. We ski and then in the summer we do lots and lots of hiking up there. We’re pretty into that whole Colorado mountain scene.

Q: How have you been involved with the Ronald McDonald House and the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show? A: I started with the Ronald McDonald House right after my son was born, about 20 years ago. I was invited to their gala and

I got so inspired by the children over there that I started doing a lot of fund raising for them.

In 1998 I was asked to be the president of Pin Oak. I said I would be president, but I wanted the Ronald McDonald House to be the beneficiary of the money we made. So I went to the Ronald McDonald House and I did artwork with the children. I asked them to draw horses and I got some amazing, cute, adorable artwork — horses with long eyelashes, horses with purple feet… So we decided we would use the artwork as our program cover and I’ve been doing that since 1999. I love doing that with the kids. The artwork is a way for them to escape what they’re going through.

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


We are proud to announce OTTO Sport International

THE OFFICIAL ARENA FOOTING PROVIDER For Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Otto Sport- und Reitplatz GmbH of Germany will be the official footing supplier of Great Southwest’s arenas. The patented OTTO Perforated Mats and meticulously blended footing mixture boast high water permeability, outstanding concussion absorption, and non-slip properties to protect horses to the fullest. Otto Sport is a family-run company with more than 25 years experience in arena construction. The company has provided more than 5,000 installations in arenas throughout the world, including the stadiums and arenas at the Kentucky Horse Park, host of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

The daughter of reining royalty has made a name for herself on horseback. By Savannah Howell


he’s one of only a handful of riders to have reached million-dollar status

in the National Reining Horse Association and the only female and Non Pro. With six NRHA Non Pro Futurity Championships, she is tied for the record of most Futurity titles. As a member of the reining industry’s equivalent of the royal family, Mandy McCutcheon is a force to be reckoned with. But while most spectators only see the glitz and the glamour, they don’t always appreciate the hard work and dedication that she has put into becoming an elite competitor.

McCutcheon grew up in Maple Plain, Minn., where her father, Tim McQuay, trained reining horses and her mother, Colleen, trained and showed hunters and jumpers. In the era prior to the NRHA short stirrup division, there weren’t many opportunities for young riders to compete in reining, so the young equestrian got a lot of mileage and experience by showing in English events.

But while most spectators only see the glitz and the glamour, they don’t always appreciate the hard work and dedication that she has put into becoming an elite competitor.

“I started showing walk-trots when I was four, and when I was six I got my first pony and started jumping. Until I was ten that’s all I did, then I started showing reiners,” she explained. “There wasn’t a class for the younger kids, so I was showing against older youth, but I didn’t think about it. It’s just what I did.” In 1989, when McCutcheon was 13 years old, her parents moved their operation to Tioga, Tx. She continued to show both hunter/jumpers and reiners, and, unsurprisingly, was successful in both arenas.


Mandy McCutcheon has six NRHA Non Pro Futurity Championships under her belt. Photos courtesy Mandy McCutcheon

In the English world she won top ribbons as a junior rider throughout the country, including reserve champion large junior hunter and winner of the prestigious Winners Stake at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg as well as the bronze medal on her jumper and team silver. McCutcheon was grand amateur-owner hunter champion at Cincinnati; she was amateur-owner hunter champion seven out of nine times throughout the country her last year aboard her horse River Rhodes; and she won the Show Jumping Talent Derby in Gladstone, N.J., on Silver Spirit. McCutcheon also placed in many Southwest grand prixs and was the winner of the $10,000 Cosequin High Jumper Classic at Culpepper, Va. She earned high amateur classic wins at prestigious events such as the Indio, Calif., circuit and the Kentucky Spring show series in Lexington. In 1989 McCutcheon showed her first Futurity horse, and in 1993 she won her first NRHA Non Pro Futurity championship on Hollywood Striker. The following year

Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

she repeated that win on Mi Hollywood Darlin. It would be 11 more years before she would win the Futurity again, this time on Rawhides Banjo. In 2007 McCutcheon began a three-peat run at the Futurity with Haidachino Hollywood. She won it in 2008 on Smart Scat and again in 2009 on West Coast Mizzen — tying with NRHA Hall of Famer Bob Loomis for the most NRHA Futurity championships. But those Futurity titles are only a small part of the Aubrey, Tx., competitor’s illustrious career. She has also won the NRHA Derby five times and the National Reining Breeders Classic four times.

“My most memorable show was the 2007 NRBC, which I won on Rawhides Banjo. I knew I was very close to surpassing $1 million in earnings, and I also knew that it was the last time I would be showing that horse,” she explained. “It was a very emotional win for me. It was very special.” Despite being a veteran competitor, McCutcheon admits that she still gets nervous every time she competes. “If I didn’t it wouldn’t be as fun. I think it’s part of it — the rush before you show. I have learned to control it because I’ve competed so much, but it’s something that is there every time.”

“Doing both the hunter/jumpers and the reining definitely gave Mandy an advantage in the show pen … But the bottom line is she just wants it so badly and dedicates herself to being so good that she makes it happen.” — Colleen McQuay

Behind the Wins

McCutcheon has the NRHA’s second all-time leading rider Tim McQuay as a father; Tom McCutcheon, another NRHA Million Dollar Rider, as a husband; and her mother, Colleen, is one of the most well respected trainers in the hunter/jumper industry. Her parents owned the legendary Hollywood Dun It and currently own another reining icon, Gunner, an NRHA $2 Million Sire. Mandy and Tom McCutcheon have already started an equally impressive breeding program with Smart Starbuck, yet another NRHA Million Dollar Sire, at the helm.

With all these influences, it’s no wonder some spectators might think McCutcheon’s wins come easy. But those people who have had a chance to be around her know that, although she has had some advantages, she has also capitalized on them. Colleen McQuay credits McCutcheon’s success to a multitude of factors. “Doing both the hunter/jumpers and the reining definitely gave Mandy an advantage in the show pen. She was riding and competing at such an early age. She also has access to two breeding programs — ours and, of course, her’s and Tom’s — which helps.” McQuay paused, adding, “But the bottom line is she just wants it so badly and dedicates herself to being so good that she makes it happen.”

For years McCutcheon did double-duty between the hunter/ jumper ring and the reining world. Photo courtesy KC Montgomery

Continued on p. 16

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


In 2000 the McCutcheons welcomed their first child, Cade. In 2005 their daughter Carlee was born, and Mandy McCutcheon’s routine around the ranch began to change. “Cade is constantly busy with school and sports. Tom’s business is doing great and we work on that a lot too,” she said. “Carlee also keeps me busy — so I’m on the run constantly.”

It was that hectic schedule that influenced McCutcheon to make a decision: to concentrate strictly on the reining aspect of her career. “I definitely miss the hunters. It was a big part of my life and I love it. But my time with my kids and my husband is equally rewarding. I hope I can eventually go back to doing both, but I’m just taking it one day at a time now,” she said.

Left to right, Cade, Tom, Mandy, and Carlee McCutcheon

Even after removing the hunters from the equation, McCutcheon’s day is still full, and she admits that even now she doesn’t get to ride as much as she would like to. “There’s so much more to life now than there used to be. I have so many more responsibilities. I try to ride one or two horses every day, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen,” she said.

Photos courtesy Mandy McCutcheon

USHJA Emerging Athletes Program


he United States Hunter Jumper Association has developed the Emerging Athletes Program

as a means to develop a system of identifying and nurturing talented young riders. This national program is designed to provide the support necessary to help these young people reach their full potential, and to create a pipeline to international competition. It also creates opportunities for young riders to advance their education in their pursuit to become professionals within our industry. Great Southwest Equestrian Center has been selected as a Host Facility for an Emerging Athletes Level 1 Training Session to be held on May 15 and 16, 2010. Participants in the 2010 EAP Level I Training Sessions will be selected based on the information provided in the application, including but not limited to merit, competition record and recommendations. The Center is excited to be able to support this valuable new USHJA initiative.

For questions about the USHJA Emerging Athletes Program contact Melanie Fransen at, or call 859-225-6717.


Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Going from a full day of riding to hopping on only a couple horses a day might have taken a toll on a normal rider, but McCutcheon has continued to win. Four of her six Futurity wins even came after Cade’s birth. “I think I’m just lucky,” she said modestly. “And a lot of it is just that I grew up doing it. It’s very natural to me. It’s like riding a bike — I’ll never forget how.”

“If I win or if I lose, there is always another horse show, and you have to keep looking ahead to that.” — Mandy McCutcheon At 33 years old, McCutcheon says that the best advice she has gotten has come from her parents. “If I win or if I lose, there is always another horse show, and you have to keep looking ahead to that,” she said.

Mandy McCutcheon surpassed the million-dollar mark in earnings at the 2007 National Reining Breeders Classic. With a payout that exceeds $1.3 million at each show, it’s no surprise McCutcheon isn’t the only rider to credit the NRBC with his or her success. The NRBC began in 1997 when a small group of reining breeders, including Tom McCutcheon, Tim McQuay, Dick Pieper, Carol Rose, Pete Kyle, Robert Chown, and Gary Putman, got together. The fledgling stallion incentive program was projected to be a success if it could enroll one hundred stallions. That goal was targeted and passed and the current list of subscribed stallions read like a “Who’s who” of the reining industry. That number has steadily grown to the more than 300 stallions the organization showcases today. The program hosts one show a year, and it is now the largest added-money reining event in the world. It will return to the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Tx., in April 2010. During the extraordinary seven-day show, reiners from all over the world will compete for their share of the record-breaking payout and generous prizes. The event is like no other, with amenities designed by the organizers to make showing a fun experience. Special activities and thoughtful touches set this show apart. From poker to golf, and even impromptu basketball and stickball games, the NRBC has always boasted an aura of fun.

“The NRBC is my favorite show of the year...It’s just so fun and the Great Southwest Equestrian Center is a great facility,” — Mandy McCutcheon. Conscientious & Confidential Service 24-Hour Service Number Representing American Live Stock Insurance Co.

Nancy Hansen P.O Box 520, Simonton, Texas 77476 281-346-2667, Fax 281-533-9116

“The NRBC is my favorite show of the year. I love that show for the obvious reasons and also because it’s the most fun we have all year. If you just make the finals you know you’re going to be rewarded greatly. It’s just so fun and the Great Southwest Equestrian Center is a great facility,” said McCutcheon. “Knowing that my family was a part in making this show happen makes me proud. The NRBC has not only become a great show, it has also made the other shows around us step up and be even better. It definitely sets the standard for reining events.”

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010



Presented by Working Together For Miracles - The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show presented by BBVA Compass, is proud to support the new Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus and would like to congratulate them on their naming rights to the new Texas Children’s Hospital Arena Club at Great Southwest Equestrian Center. The Pin Oak Executive Committee - President Lynn Walsh, Vice President Elly Berman, Vice President Joan Cantrell, Vice President Amy Duncan, Vice President Sally Hundley, Vice President Patty Roberts, Vice President Eva Bisso, Treasurer Todd Shoemake, Linda Graham, Hollis Grace, Jenny Booth, Susan Pelletier, Ed Perwien Board of Advisors - Emily Crosswell, Dr. Zoanne Dryer, Flo McGee, George Pletcher, Claudine Pletcher, Dr. David Poplack M.D., Ed Perwien The Pin Oak Board of Directors - Julita Bolen, JoAnn Bunde, Kerry Ann Bunde, Rose Chambers, Marise Condonm, Laura Davis, Sherry Frankel, Malen Dell, Cathy Dougherty, Monique Dougherty, Janet Flury, Sparky Frost, Diane Garza, Jack Glaser, Becky Gochman, Ruth Hawk, Walter Henslee, Victoria Hunton, Eduardo Leon Cindy McCampbell, Maurene Moffett, Nancy Moreno, Cheri Newberry, Andrea O’Connor, Suzanne O’Neal, Ada Perwien, Ginger Rathert, Antonio Renilla, Sherry Robins, Deitra Robertson, Cheryl Rubenstein, Gail Serrell, Nancy Simonds, Edie Stewart, Rick Terry, Chris Tresten, Nancy vonBrecht, Sherry Wallace, Jim Wenman. The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is legendary within the Houston community for capturing an affluent audience and providing a timeless and rich entertainment venue. 713.621.6290

The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is a 501 ( c ) 3 entity, benefiting The Ronald McDonald House of Houston and Texas Children’s Hospital.


Marta Renilla Delgado Bringing Spanish Flair to the Southwest Name: Marta Renilla Delgado Age: 26

Hometown: The Woodlands

Profession: Dressage trainer and manager of Woodlands Equestrian Club in Tomball

Greatest Influence: “My mother, Isabel Delgado. Everything I ever learned about horses was from my mom. She also rode Spanish horses and all this — the Woodlands Equestrian Club — is because of her.”

Photo © Norine Johnson

Personal Achievements: Competing four times aboard her horse Isenbrant in the European Dressage Championships as a member of the Spanish team; winning a gold medal in the adult Grand Prix division of the Southwest Dressage Championships.

Marta Renilla Delgado, a strong advocate of the Pure Spanish Horse, has brought her equestrian passion to Texas, training at the Woodlands Equestrian Club and hosting dressage exhibitions open to the greater Houston community. Having ridden and trained Spanish horses in her native country of Spain, Renilla Delgado now aims to introduce them as sporthorses in the Southern United States. She believes their innate balance, sensitivity, and athleticism make them ideal dressage mounts. Renilla Delgado has begun educating not only the dressage community but the general public about these amazing animals through a series of exhibitions called the “Spanish Horses Dancing Show.” The exhibitions, which follow the Real Escuela standards of Jerez, Spain, vary from entertaining dressage freestyles to educational demonstrations to performances with as many as eight horse and rider combinations riding in harmony.

Enthusiastic about her horses and her sport, Renilla Delgado offers students as well as those riders simply curious about the Pure Spanish Horse the opportunity to ride and show high-quality Spanish horses. She hopes her eagerness to share the breed with others will help it gain exposure and increase in popularity in show rings across the southwest. For More Information: Visit

Photo © Norine Johnson

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010


T E X A S C H I L D R E N ’ S H O S P I TA L

Getting Care Closer to Home New Hospital Will Save Cypress Family Precious Time By Sandra Bretting

When Linda Brooks adopted her niece’s infant son in 2005, she expected the late-night feedings, endless diaper changes, and non-stop readings of Goodnight Moon. After all, the single mother had already raised a daughter, who was 12 at the time. What Linda didn’t expect were weekly visits to the Genetics Center at Texas Children’s Hospital. At 3 months, the baby’s skin grew pale, and he became listless. Physicians diagnosed the boy — named Jessiah — with hypoplastic anemia, commonly referred to as “Diamond-Blackfan anemia,” after the physicians who first documented the disorder. Jessiah’s bone marrow wasn’t producing enough red blood cells to oxygenate his body. Photo © A Kramer

“I knew his mother — my niece — had taken drugs, and then the diagnosis of Diamond-Blackfan came in,” Linda said. “On top of that, Jessiah had developed asthma, which meant that I had to start giving him breathing treatments when he was only 18 months old.” Linda and her daughter would take turns giving the baby breathing treatments at night. That was in addition to a daily steroid medicine to improve his red blood cell count and shots of growth hormone to offset the effect of the steroids and the anemia. “The steroids help Jessiah’s bone marrow to make red cells, and chronic steroids, like he receives, result in a growth failure,” said Dr. ZoAnn Dryer, medical director of the LongTerm Survivor Program at Texas Children’s Cancer Center. “The disease itself also contributes to his short stature. Patients with this disease who do not respond to steroids require monthly transfusions, but the treatment works for Jessiah.”


For Linda and Jessiah, a routine quickly fell into place: monthly visits to Texas Children’s Hospital to have Jessiah’s blood drawn and his red cell count checked, coupled with another visit every six weeks to have a physical and visit an endocrinologist, a specialist who treats disorders of the endocrine system. Fortunately, the Brooks family’s routine will simplify later this year when Texas Children’s Hospital opens a new campus in west Houston. Then, Jessiah will be able to have his blood checked near his home.

“The West Campus will offer children who traditionally have been treated at the hospital’s main campus the same quality pediatric care they’ve come to know from Texas Children’s in a location that is close to home,” said Michelle Riley-Brown, assistant vice president at Texas Children’s and project leader of the West Campus.

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By the Numbers: Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus • 55 acres of land at Barker Cypress Rd. and Interstate 10 • 221,000-square-foot outpatient building opens October 2010 • 17 outpatient services included • Early 2011, the David and Mary Wolff Emergency Center — the area’s only dedicated pediatric emergency center — opens • 294,000-square-foot inpatient facility opens early 2011, with additional beds to follow

Located on 55 acres of land off Interstate 10 in Katy, the new hospital will include more than 500,000 square feet of space when it’s completed. First up is a 221,000-square-foot outpatient facility, scheduled to open in October 2010. The outpatient facility will offer everything from cardiologists to oncologists, from urologists to pediatric surgeons. More than a dozen specialties will be offered, plus two surgical suites and a pediatric emergency center. Then, in early 2011, the pediatric emergency center will open, along with the first phase of the inpatient facility. When the campus fully opens, it will be the nation’s largest

suburban pediatric hospital and the only hospital designed and built for children in west Houston.

“Our new West Campus will provide families with greater access to the same unsurpassed standard of care for which Texas Children’s Hospital is internationally recognized,” said Mark A. Wallace, president and chief executive officer of Texas Children’s Hospital. “The West Campus will serve as a premier pediatric treatment facility and as a leading community resource center for child wellness and healing.”

For Jessiah, the addition means his monthly blood draws can now be completed close to home. Plus, he’ll have access to a dedicated pediatric emergency center nearby. That’s important because the steroid treatments make Jessiah more susceptible to infections. Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus will have the area’s only full-service, dedicated pediatric emergency center. “Because steroids reduce his ability to fight infections, Jessiah must come to an emergency room each and every time he has a fever,” Dryer said.

For Linda, the addition of a new Texas Children’s Hospital will mean less time at the Texas Medical Center and more time spent doing what 4-year-old Jessiah loves to do.

Photo © A Kramer

“He likes to go to the pond and feed the ducks,” Linda said. “Right now Jessiah’s the smallest one in his prekindergarten class, but the treatments have made a world of difference.”

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010



The Market, the Recession And What the Future Might Bring By Michael F. Booker

The Market Coming up with the words to describe the 2009 stock market has not come easy for me. I’m not complaining, mind you — 2009 will go down in history as one of the great stock market performances of all time. My favorite thing about 2009 was that it wasn’t 2008. I still haven’t come up with the words to describe that year. When I do, they may not be printable! 2009 was a year that started off like it was determined to turn in an even worse performance than 2008. Through March 9, 2009, the S&P 500 was down 24.6%. Given that the index lost an astonishing 37% in 2008, another 24.6% fewer than 90 days into the new year was tough to swallow. Indeed, had the index stayed at that level until the end of the year, it would have been the third worst market year on record. But things turned around … dramatically. From the darkest hours of the market bottom, the S&P 500 would go on to stage a comeback worthy of a Rocky movie. From March 9 through December 31, the market recovered every penny of its losses and tacked on another 26.5%. Stunning. Unbelievable. Remarkable (the words are coming now). Spectacular. Dazzling. And ... Welcome.

So, here are the official numbers for the very remarkable 2009 market. As mentioned above, the S&P 500 made 26.5% in 2009, making 6.0% in the 4th quarter. Nasdaq gained 43.9% for the year, 6.9% for the quarter, and foreign markets (as measured MSCI EAFE) gained 32.5% for the year and 2.22% for the quarter. (Source: Thompson-Reuters)

The Recession

Since the Second World War, recessions have been “inflation led.” That is, a typical recession is actually initiated by the Fed (Federal Open Market Committee) raising interest rates to combat inflation. Raising rates increases the cost of debt-financed purchases which in turn discourages people and companies from acquiring those items and creates the potential for a recession. (Examples of debt-financed purchases would be homes, autos, and equipment.) During a recession the Fed lowers rates which reduces the cost of debt-financed purchases and encourages consumption to increase, laying the foundation for an economic recovery. In the chart, you can get a feel for how this most recent recession stacks up historically. It was a nasty one, a historic one, but pales in comparison to the big daddy of all, the Great Depression of the 1930s. You can easily see why it was imprudent of the pundits to compare it to the Great Depression — the two shouldn’t even be used in the same sentence.

This most recent recession differs in that the Fed did not create an environment for recession by raising interest rates. This time around, the recession was caused by the bursting housing bubble and was exacerbated by a severe credit crisis. In my opinion, the credit crisis component has substantially subsided and is on the road to full resolution.

Typically, the end of a recession is signaled by a “V Bottom” recovery as in the sharp upward direction of the second part of the letter V following the sharp downward direction of the first part of the letter. This recession’s recovery will probably look less like a V Bottom and more like a “U Bottom” — a period where the economy bumps along for awhile as in the bottom section of the U before moving upward in recovery.


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This less robust U Recovery would result from a combination of things:

• Home Prices: Most of the home price declines precipitated by the real estate bubble bursting have occurred, but

foreclosures and their subsequent deep discount sales will keep home prices from recovering very quickly. So, while the worst is probably over, we aren’t quite done yet. • Bank Lending: Banks have tightened up their lending standards. This is prudent long-term, but the reduced loan volume will slow the recovery near-term. There will also be some further write downs as losses experienced in their real estate holdings will cause banks to play things close to their chest. • The Consumer: Income growth has been weak, and households have been saving more of their income, not spending. Given the employment environment, I expect the consumer to continue to save. Since consumption is a key component of economic growth, recovery could be slowed by the combination of weak income growth and lower consumption.

The Future

Whether it feels like it or not, the recession is over. Virtually all indicators point toward growth in the economy in 2010. Like it has in the previous 10 recessions since WWII, the unemployment rate will be the last indicator to show improvement. The unemployment rate is termed a “lagging indicator” for two primary reasons:

1. Employers of all sizes and industries had to let employees go as they switched into “survivor mode.” Having survived, they discovered that they could get business done almost as well as before, but with fewer employees. Having created new efficiencies with fewer employees, many employers will be slow to re-hire. 2. Until their respective businesses pick up, employers have no need to rehire their former employees since they are able to meet the reduced demand with fewer workers. Look for the media to latch on to the stubborn unemployment rate, even as the economy further stabilizes.

As for the market performance in 2010, that’s a short-term prediction I can’t make. But I want to answer a question clients have been asking recently: What about the drag on the market and economy that higher public debt and income taxes will pose? My answer is, Less than the financial pundits are saying. Please note that I am not saying these factors will have no effect, just that predictions of a worsening market/economy are exaggerated. Why? 1. Betting against the stock market and our economy has been a long-term losing proposition. 2. There is a tremendous amount of cash on the sidelines — over 9.5 trillion dollars. Much of this balance was frightened out of the market in 2008. I believe much of it will return as things continue to improve. That’s good for stocks. 3. Interest rates are likely to stay low in the intermediate term. 4. Investors have already begun to return to stocks. 5. The 2008-2009 bear market was overdone. The recovery is in full force, but it still has a long way to go.

Of course, the market and the economy are intertwined, but as 2009 showed us, stock market performance can be quite different than the economy’s performance. Investors should be careful not to confuse the two. I am cautiously optimistic for the market in 2010, though the economy will most likely recover only gradually over the next two years. Given what we have been through, any recovery — gradual or otherwise — sounds pretty good!

About the Author Michael F. Booker, CFP®, ChFC, CFS, BCAA, is president of Financial Synergies Asset Management, Inc. in Houston. He was named by Worth Magazine as one of America’s Top Financial Advisors (1996-1999, 2001, 2002), listed as one of the “Ten Most Dependable Wealth Managers” in Texas Monthly magazine (2006-2009), and has been featured as a guest speaker on national and locals shows including Biz Radio’s “Money Smart” and Fox network’s “Fox on Money.”

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010



Staying Informed

About Equine Medications and Diseases By Dr. Andrea O’Connor The horse show season here in Texas is in full swing. Besides keeping our horses healthy, fit, and sound we also have to keep up with all the little things that go along with competing. This includes being aware of all of the current diseases that the horse has to be tested for prior to competing or traveling.

Here in Texas this fall and winter we had to be concerned with the current outbreak of piroplasmosis (an infectious tick-born disease that results in fever, anemia, diarrhea, colic, and sometimes death) that prohibited horses from Texas to travel to Canada. Other states in the U.S. required a negative blood test for piroplasmosis within a specific time frame prior to entry. This past summer we had to test horses for vesicular stomatitis (VS), a disease that resembles hoofand-mouth disease, before entry into other states. With increased travel for competing horses comes the increased risk of foreign and other contagious diseases that sometimes cross our borders and spread to our horse population. Today, for horses to travel within Texas, only a negative Coggins test drawn within the past 12 months is required. A Coggins test tests for Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA), a chronic and incurable disease that is spread by flies. Health certificates as well have to be filled out by your veterinarian within a specified period of time prior to travel to another state. As a competitor and a trainer much of this information can be obtained by calling the state you are traveling to. You can find a list of the state veterinary offices at Checking in with the authorized animal health commission officials in the competition state for current entry requirements will make traveling easier. Leading up to the show or while at the show, your horse may have needed or may need certain medications. Many of these medications have predetermined detection times that have been studied and are currently adhered to by the USEF, AQHA, and other equestrian organizations. Detection


Photo courtesy of Andrea O’Connor

times and withdrawal times are not the same. Detection time is the period of time that the drug or its metabolite is in the horse’s system and can be detected. This is just a guide since all horses metabolize drugs slightly differently; some slower, some faster. Withdrawal time is based on the detection time, plus a safety margin that allows for individual differences among horses such as size, metabolism, and fitness level or if illness is present. Recently, the USEF has changed its position on the use of the seven approved non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). In the past, two NSAIDs were permitted for use in the competition horse with the exception of the forbidden combination of phenylbutazone (Bute) and Flunixin Meglamine (Banamine®). This usage of two drugs together is called “stacking.” The seven NSAIDs permitted for use in show horses by the USEF include: Surpass®, Naprosyn, Banamine®, Arquel, Ketofen, Equioxx®, and Bute. New restrictions are in place concerning the use of NSAIDs. As of April 1, 2010, anyone using two NSAIDs in a horse within five days prior to competition in a USEF-licensed competition will be required to complete and file a NSAID Disclosure form with the USEF Steward/Technical Delegate or Office Representative. There is a new NSAID disclosure form for this use. The old form is still valid for other

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medications. This new form is only to allow the USEF Equine Drugs and Medications Program to collect data concerning the use of NSAIDs in competition horses. You can find out more information about the therapeutic drugs changes at NSAIDDisclosureForm.pdf. As of Dec. 1, 2011, only one NSAID will be permitted in your horse’s system and no stacking will be permitted.

The goal of testing for certain diseases and medications is to help ensure the health and welfare of our equine athletes. If you have any questions regarding these or other rules and requirements for the show season, consult your veterinarian. I hope everyone has a fun and safe show season.

About the Author Dr. Andrea O’Connor is a graduate of The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. After receiving her DVM degree she completed an equine internship in Ohio where she practiced at a large referral hospital. O’Connor currently lives and practices in Montgomery with her husband Dr. Erich Miller, their three dogs and cats, five horses, and other animals. Their practice focus is performance horse medicine with an emphasis on lameness, acupuncture, chiropractic medicine, and equine dentistry.

ADVERTISE IN THE NEXT ISSUE! Contact our Marketing Director, Elise Beckstett, 281-543-1910 or

The Exhibitor - Spring Issue 2010



The Place You Call


By Caroline and Carson Gibson


he’s flying, turning on dimes, twisting in mid-air, and galloping around the ends of the ring. Her head turns toward the next jump and keeps turning.

But she keeps going. She makes a hairpin inside turn, pulls it off nicely, and finishes the course over the in-and-out. She looks back at her time and then looks to the peanut gallery of family and trainers waiting at the in-gate. “Hey, Carson, forget something?” And we all start laughing.

Organized, logical Carson did the thing Caroline usually does: she went off course. And the only people here to comment on it and laugh with us are our mom, our trainers, Peter and Danny, and each other.

No one besides us is there to hear Peter chuckle and remark about how Carson is starting to act like a “ding-dong” like her sister. Because today we’re in Florida. The sun is out, the footing is perfect, the jumps are beautiful, the horses are famous, and the palm trees are many. The faces, though sunny, are only vaguely familiar. In Florida there are fewer shouts from across the ring, saying, “Caroline!” or “Carson!” or even, “Gibbies!”

In Texas we know every rider and horse we see. In Texas people say, “You must be Kate’s daughter. Look how tall you are!” In Texas it’s hot and cold and windy and rainy, but the people are always warm. Maybe that’s why we can’t wait for the Houston spring shows every year. We can’t wait to see all the people we’ve been riding against since the medium ponies, get the same kind of smoothies we got when we were in the short stirrup division (strawberry banana), and wave at Cookie when she goes by in her golf cart. Though we’ve made friends from horse showing all over the country, the people from Texas are the ones we have the oldest memories with. Who else understands that you’re not a cowgirl when you say, “I can’t wait for the rodeo this year”?


Better yet, who else knows what a sugar-high courtesy of one of Jodi’s smoothies is like or has seen you dance the YMCA at the Texas Hunter Jumper Association awards banquet?

As a junior rider, it’s nice to come home to a show like Pin Oak where people watch the pony ring for hours as kids vie for the grand pony championship and the Dr. Zeuss Perpetual Trophy presented in honor of “Frosty,” our first pony who also took us to our first Pin Oak championships. Riding Frosty at Pin Oak was always a great affair as people we did not even know would approach us and recount their favorite tales about Frosty, a well-known pony throughout Texas during his prime. One of the favorite anecdotes involved an under-saddle class where Frosty’s young rider felt he was going too fast and pointed him at a jump in an effort to get him to slow down. Rather than respond to his rider’s incessant pulling on the reins, Frosty continued forward and jumped the jump, causing an uproar in the medium pony under-saddle.

There is a lot to be said for the place you call home, the place where you went to your first horseshow and won your first blue ribbon, where all the competitors are truly friendly and say “y’all” without a second thought. Texas may not have the same element of glamour as Florida or California, but it sure has great people.

About the Authors Caroline and Carson Gibson attend St. John’s School in Houston, Tx., and are in the 11th and 10th grades, respectively. They both train with Peter Pletcher and Daniel Arendt, compete in the junior jumper and hunter divisions, love their horses, Nutella, and showing in hunter derbies at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center. If you would like to contribute to The Exhibitor magazine’s junior column, contact Alexandra Beckstett at

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Official Publication of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

itness the speed and agility of majestic horse and rider, feel the thunderous hoofs as they pound the earth’s core. Watch players battle to attain a common goal. Experience excitement at every turn. Now everyone can get into the swing each Sunday as the Houston Polo Club dances the divots in 2010. Tickets only $20 and children are free. Visit for details. For tickets to Houston’s “King of Games” call (713)681-8571 or visit


Olva Stewart Pharo


rom an early age, Olva Stewart Pharo was captivated by the beauty and grace of the horse. During her youth the Bay City, Tx., native put her passion to work riding, drawing, and sculpting horses.

After graduating from the University of Texas, Austin, in 1969 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, Pharo worked for several years in advertising art in Houston before a brief stint in London as the art director of Stud & Stable.

She has since created logos and advertising for such Texas equine organizations as the Houston Dressage Society and the Greater Houston Horse Council. Pharo also worked as a photo/journalist for The Chronicle of the Horse, HorsePlay, Dressage & CT, and Horse Illustrated and published The Horse Sheet and the Texas Horseman’s Directory.

In 1993 Pharo decided to return to her roots and begin drawing horses again, using photographs as her inspiration. It took only one horse show competitor to ask, “Can you draw my horse?” for Equestrian Portraits by Olva Stewart Pharo to be born.

Today Pharo has completed hundreds of commissioned pencil portraits of horses, dogs, and cats. She also offers sculptural portraits cast in bronze and gives new life to old Breyer Horses by painting and reshaping them to new designs. Her award-winning work has appeared on the cover of several equine publications and resides in the private collections of top horsemen and horse lovers. This issue’s cover features a color pencil portrait of Jerry Kimmel’s champion reining stallion Dun Gotta Gun. To view more of Olva Stewart Pharo’s work, visit


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Currie Equine Clinic Proudly Supports the Great Southwest Equestrian Center!

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