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The National Reining Breeders Classic Recap p. 22


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

MAGAZINE Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011

At The

TOP p.14

A Horse


Horse Show




OPENING 2011-12




Raising $15 million to build our first hospital outside the Texas Medical Center, bringing world-class care for childhood illnesses and injuries to one of Houston’s fastest growing communities

Raising $200 million to launch the first multidisciplinary pediatric research institute for brain disorders like autism, epilepsy and cerebral palsy

Raising $85 million to create a new standard of familyfocused maternity care, providing mothers and their babies with access to the world’s finest physicians and state-of-the-art facilities

Inpatient and emergency center facilities to open in Spring 2011

“At Texas Children’s, it’s more than our job to heal sick children; it’s our calling and the inspiration behind the largest expansion effort in our history.” — Mark A. Wallace President and CEO of Texas Children’s Hospital

Currie Equine Clinic Proudly Supports the Great Southwest Equestrian Center!

Serving the equine industry for over 40 years with innovative skills and compassionate care. From the world champion to your grandchild’s pony...

Your horse matters to us! Andrew K. Currie, VMD Gustavo DeCillo, DVM

Veterinar y Products


Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Ca hl a enngde a r o f E v e n t s



Britannia Farm Mo Hot Daze

Southwest Showdown

GSEC Open Show Series

GSEC Fall Classic

GHHJA Show Sept. 10-11, Main Arena

Sept. 17, All Arenas

October GSEC Dressage Platinum Classic I & II Oct. 8-9, East Arena

GSEC East Meets West Reining Show Oct. 7-9, Main Arena

Clinton Anderson Walkabout Tour

USEF “A” rated Sept. 22-25, Main Arena

USEF “A” rated Sept. 29-Oct. 2

Events Britannia Farm

USEF “A” rated Oct. 20-23, Main Arena

IS P.R.E. USA National Championships

Oct. 28-30, Main Arena

Oct. 15-16, Main Arena

Photos by Shawn McMillen, John Kral & PWL Studio

November Great American/USDF Region IX and Southwest Dressage Championships and HDS Autumn Classic Nov. 3-6, All Arenas

GSEC Autumn Classic

USEF “AA” Show & Zone 7 Finals Nov. 9-13, Main and East Arenas = Great Southwest Equestrian Center Event


For Those Who Live and Ride Well


The Final Chase

USEF “AA” rated Nov. 16-20, Main Arena

Fall Harvest/Fall Finale GHHJA Show Nov. 26-27, Main Arena

Co hn an te gn et s

F a l l 2 0 11

Show & Tell MAGAZINE

For Those Who Live and Ride Well


Features 14 18 22


Victoria Mattson reaches saddle seat milestones By Alexandra Beckstett


The National Reining Breeders Classic Recap By Savannah Howell



10 12

Getting to know... Taylor Kraft

Photo Gallery


Shawn McMillen Photo Gallery

32 34 38


Real Estate Roundup

Circle C Ranch By Deitra Robertson

26 30



Tracy Fenney is a force to be reckoned with By Erica Larson


Pin Oak Charity Horse Show Spring Gathering Horse Show Cause for Applause

Horse Tales Literacy Project By Anne Stone and Laura Graves

Healthy Horses

Horse Show Biosecurity By Andrew Currie, VMD

Money Matters The Retirement Salary® By Heath Hightower, CFP Texas Children’s Hospital

A Walking, Breathing Miracle By Kevin Harwerth

In the News

New Management for 2012 Pin Oak Show and more...

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Show & Tell MAGAZINE

Volume 2

Issue 3

MANAGING EDITOR Alexandra Beckstett, 281-543-6198

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Alexandra Beckstett, Dr. Andrew Currie, Laura Graves, Kevin Harwerth, Heath Hightower, Savannah Howell, Erica Larson, Deitra Robertson, Ann Stone

ART DIRECTION Equine Originals ART DIRECTOR Suzy Brown, 971-678-3694

• • • • •

Brokerage Services Capital Markets Corporate Services Global Consulting Valuation and Advisory Services

CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Mike Ferrara, Jon Kral, A. Kramer, Paul Mattson, Casey McBride, Shawn McMillen, Osteen-Schatzberg Photography, PWL Studios, Waltenberry Photography Inc., Penelope Cain Williams

ADVERTISING Great Southwest Equestrian Center 281-578-7669

Moving with confidence….since 1971. Confidence is leading Houston for forty years with real estate solutions founded on experience and skill.

Moving with confidence.


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

PUBLISHED BY Great Southwest Equestrian Center 2501 S. Mason Road, Katy, TX 77450 281-578-7669

© Great Southwest Equestrian Center. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without the written consent of Great Southwest Equestrian Center. SHOW & TELL Magazine is published 4 times a year by the Great Southwest Equestrian Center, 2501 S. Mason Road, Katy, Texas 77450. Opinions and editorial expressed herein in are those of the experts consulted and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the editors, advisory board or staff of the Great Southwest Equestrian Center.


Nancy Cahill

Joan Cantrell

Chris George

Kate Gibson

Hollis Grace

Kathy Jones

Marilyn Kulifay Patty Roberts

• •

Colleen McQuay Deitra Robertson

• •

Peter Pletcher Christian Rogge

Pauline “Cookie” Cook EQUINE MANAGER

2501 S. Mason Road, Katy, Texas 77450



Cover Photo: Tracy Fenney riding MTM Timon Photo by Shawn McMillen Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Unique sporting events with southern hospitality


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Great Southwest Equestrian Center proudly presents

The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show Presented by


& Spring Gathering Charity Horse Show Presented by


March 21 - April 7, 2012 Over Half a Million Dollars in Prize Money $80,000 in Hunter Derby Money Six Grand Prixs All shows are USEF AA, THJA A, 4 Star Jumper, WCHR EVENT, NAL/WIHS

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


R e a l E s ta t e R o u n d u p

WHO: Deitra Robertson Real Estate, Inc. 979-921-9470

WHAT: Behind private entry gates sits this 3-bedroom, 2-bath, 1,500-squarefoot ranch style home on 9.5 acres. A center-aisle barn with modular stalls, swing-out feeders, insect system, and a climate-controlled tack and feed room. Four-board fenced paddocks with loafing sheds and access lanes between turnouts.

WOW: Large porches and wrap-around deck with outdoor kitchen and Jacuzzi.

WOW AGAIN: An 80 by 120 covered riding arena, covered round pen, covered open stalls, horse walker, RV hookup, and more.

9.5 acres Crosby - Harris County


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Environmental Due Diligence For Farm Acquisitions By Deitra Robertson, ALC

Accredited Land Consultant Member: REALTORS® Land Institute


ou are looking at a great ranch property—it seems to be everything you and your family want. In the process you notice an abandoned pipeline, several aboveground gas and diesel tanks, and a shooting range on the property. At this point your agent should suggest conducting a Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) inspection. Well, what does that mean? What is a Phase 1 ESA, who performs it, and what are the possible consequences? Today in nonresidential land acquisition it has become common practice to conduct a Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment prior to acquiring that property. If you unknowingly purchase contaminated property, despite the conduct of good pre-acquisition diligence, the Federal (and many state) Superfund statute provide only certain narrow defenses to liability. If a party conducts a Phase 1 ESA that meets all Superfund statute requirements you can be deemed an “innocent landowner” if there is a latent discovery of hazardous substances released prior to your (the innocent landowner) purchase. Also, the Superfund statute limits a party’s liability for the knowing purchase of a contaminated property as long as the purchaser conducted the prescribed pre-acquisition diligence and agrees to address the problems after acquiring the property without the threat of government enforcement action. Your Phase 1 ESA investigator will look for contaminants such as lead-based paint, leaking underground storage tanks (that you weren’t necessarily told about), abandoned drums of waste, and much more. Phase 1 is a noninvasive investigation to identify the

general development and usage of the property. The investigator will conduct targeted interviews of property owners and operators, look for obvious spill sites, and determine water drainage patterns, soil types, wetlands, and unique habitats. So when you receive your report, what do you do? Your report will characterize environmental findings of potential concern as “recognized environmental conditions” (RECs), business environmental risks (BERs), and possibly “suspect conditions” that are not as bad as an REC. As a potential buyer, you must evaluate whether further investigation is warranted or whether you will choose to not move forward with your purchase. If you are uncomfortable with the REC findings then you might decide to proceed to a full Phase 2 Site Investigation, which usually consists of taking soil and groundwater samples. The Superfund statute, amendments thereto, and statutory diligence factors provided by Congress have developed clear standards for assessing potentially-contaminated property set forth in the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). It is incumbent upon the buyer that his/her diligence is as thorough and complete as one directed under the ASTM guidelines and standards. It is at this point I tell my buyers to consult an attorney well-versed in environmental law. Their dollars will be well spent for guidance through previously unchartered waters. And yes, we can recommend to you attorneys familiar with this law and the procedures for environmental assessments.


Deitra Robertson is the president of Deitra Robertson Real Estate Inc., specializing in farms, ranches, and equestrian properties. Deitra showed horses (hunters) coast to coast for almost 20 years. She rides and trains using natural horsemanship principles with all her horses.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011



Getting to Know... Taylor Kraft T

aylor Kraft stumbled into the world of Arabians and half-Arabians by chance. She began taking horseback riding lessons at a Western “play day” barn at age 5, and her parents bought her first horse when she was 10. What they thought was a Western mount turned out to be a half-Arabian Park horse. Kraft’s family quickly got in touch with the horse’s former owners and trainer, and the rest is history. Now the 17-year-old Cypress, Texas, native has a reserve Youth National Championship under her belt, not to mention countless other titles in the Arabian ranks. She recently graduated from Cypress Woods High School

“I enjoy buying the young ones at age 5 when they’ve only barely been broke and working with them from the beginning with my trainer.” and plans to begin taking classes at community college this fall while she continues to pursue her equestrian goals under the tutelage of The Brass Ring farm’s Gordon and Wendy Potts. Kraft’s current horses include her 7-year-old half-Arabian country horse Tempting Fait, who she has ridden and driven in three youth national championship competitions. She also has an upcoming star in her 5-year-old purebred Arabian country horse, Bentley, who took home the Region 9 purebred country reserve championship in June. The Lexington, Ky., event was his second career show.


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Photo by Osteen-Schatzberg Photography

Show & Tell magazine caught up with Kraft to talk to her about her horses and her goals:

QUESTION: What is it you love about the Arabian breed? ANSWER: I really like how versatile they are. Last year I even did

reining, and I have a few half-Arabians at home that I jump around on. I just really enjoy how many different things they can do.

Q: Explain to us what Country classes are? A: Country is one of the English divisions. These horses have lots of ac-

tion with their legs, and this class just kind of showcases that. And then they have an English pleasure class where their front feet trot above level. There’s no jumping, it’s just rail work.

Q: Is it difficult to transition from discipline to discipline? A: It’s a little bit challenging when you’re going from class to class at

a show because you kind of have to regroup your brain a little bit and think, “OK, this is something completely different.” But I’ve really enjoyed having the opportunity to do so many different things.

Q: A:

What is your main show horse, Tempting Fait, like?

She is a princess, an absolute princess, but she really enjoys showing—she likes to be the center of attention. She’s definitely one of the most challenging horses I’ve ever ridden. She has a lot of energy, but I enjoy that—especially because when we get to regionals or nationals and the classes are 25-30 minutes long, she never runs out of gas.

Q: What are your upcoming goals? A: One of my biggest goals is to make the saddle seat World Cup team. The USA has a team, and they compete every two years either in South Africa or somewhere in the U.S. And this fall is another tryout year so that’s what I’m really aiming for.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not riding? Photo by Mike Ferrara

Regional Champion in Hunter Pleasure aboard CA Hermano at the 2010 Region 9 Championships.


East Platinum Classic East Arena & Otto Sport Arenas USEF & USDF Approved


I’m also the Region 9 Arabian Youth Director. So between managing that and the showing and the riding, I don’t have time for much else!

Taylor and Tempting Fait at the 2010 Youth National Championships

MEETS O ct 7 - 9 , 2 0 1 1


West Fall Slide Main Arena

NRHA & TRHA Approved

���.GSWEC.��� Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 2 Spring 2011




By Erica Larson


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Photos by Shawn McMillen

Texas jumper star Tracy Fenney reflects on how she got to where she is today


ne of the biggest names you’ve never seen on an Olympic, World Equestrian Games, or World Cup Finals roster is Tracy Fenney. The Flower Mound, Texas, rider has been cleaning up at top hunter/jumper shows across the South for years and is doing the same this year. She fits in comfortably with the world champions she competes against. The Beginning Fenney, who owns and runs MTM Farm with her husband and partner Mike McCormick, began riding at a young age when her father, a land developer, made an offer on a piece of property.

Eventually, Fenney’s parents bought their eager daughter her first horse and not long after purchased her a nice second horse. As fate would have it, a tragedy with the latter would prove life-changing for the young rider.

“The next thing he knew it was an equestrian center so he said, ‘Why don’t you take some riding lessons?’ So I started riding,” she recalled.

”Tracy’s a very

“I did all kinds of other things like tennis and gymnastics, and my dad said, ‘Just pick one thing that you really want to excel in,’ and I picked the horses,” Fenney explained. “Of course, he said, ‘Oh great … the most expensive one! You could have all the tennis rackets and tennis outfits and a private instructor, and that’s nothing compared to horses.’ “

horses love her—

Fenney began her career in the saddle with Colonel Don Nance, whom she describes as her “up/down teacher.” Margo Foley followed in Nance’s footsteps as Fenney’s second trainer.

backs.”— Will Roberts

“Margo gave me fabulous basics,” she recalled fondly. “We barebacked and played egg-and-spoon, which I think is great for kids to learn how to do. It’s just riding and not so structured. We got all our own horses ready. I braided all my own horses. I just learned how to do everything.”

instinctive rider. The they don’t know what they can’t do without her on their

“The second horse my parents bought, we bought from Mike McCormick, and they gave it to me for a birthday present,” she explained. “He was really expensive back then, and he ended up dying of cancer. My parents thought, ‘We can’t do this …’ Back then you didn’t really insure them or anything, and (my parents) had spent about $10,000 (on the horse).

“After the horse died, (Foley) took me over to Mike’s and said, ‘If you really want to do this,’ and she saw that I had some talent, ‘you really need to ride with him. He’ll go to bigger shows and teach you more things,” Fenney relayed. She explained that McCormick, rather than taking on the role of an “up/ down” trainer, develops the skills riders already possess. In an effort to help Fenney’s parents regain some of the money they invested in her ill-fated horse, McCormick devised a plan that would, in addition, help Fenney develop the skills that have taken her to the top of the hunter/jumper world. “Mike helped me out,” she explained. “We bought and sold a bunch of horses so I could recoup some of my dad’s investment. I think that’s how I learned to ride. I just rode whatever was around. I rode every horse in the pasture … I didn’t care what it was.” Years of riding whatever she could get her hands on coupled with instruction from McCormick allowed Fenney to develop and fine-tune the skills she needed to catapult into the spotlight.

The Horses Fenney credits her junior hunter, Coyote, for being her first “nice” horse, followed by her first jumper until she

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


met Blackie Marteen, a big black gelding that took her up the levels. “The other ones were just horses,” she said. “We got him in 1983, and I rode him through 1986. He was the first nice jumper I had and the first I won a Grand Prix on.” Blackie Marteen was also the horse Fenney piloted to a third place finish in a $250,000 class in Culpeper, Va. Despite having a laundry list of favorite horses (Fenney rattles off names like Infinity, Naboo, and S&L Wille), she says no one show, moment, or horse has defined her career. Rather, the combination of horses and experiences she’s had have kept her in the spotlight. “I think every little thing you do makes a person better more than one specific thing,” she said. “You have to have the horses to do well and have any kind of notoriety. Each individual horse helped. I don’t think there was one big break … it was more the whole thing in general.” Looking back, she explains that she’s learned a little something different from all the horses in her life. “I had some really bad ones that taught me a lot!” she laughed, adding that if she could have one horse from her past today, it would be Blackie Marteen. “I would love to have him now, when I know what I know now. I was just a kid and he was my first real jumper. I wonder now with the (veterinary) technology people have and everything to keep the horses ready … I can’t even imagine how much better some of the horses would be today as opposed to back then. Those ones were just fabulous on their own.” She said her mounts have taught her that “the horses really have to like you, and I really believe in the horses. When I had Naboo, he was never really super scopey or anything, but he just tried. I think he just tried because he knew I believed in him and he believed in me. He gave it his all every time. He was just a winner.”


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

“I like horses that are instinctively a little bit spooky or quirky. I think they have to have a unique personality to be a Grand Prix horse because it takes such a special individual to be one.” —Tracy Fenney And she’s learned that it takes a special kind of animal to be competitive at the Grand Prix level: “I like horses that are instinctively a little bit spooky or quirky. I think they have to have a unique personality to be a Grand Prix horse because it takes such a special individual to be one.” “Tracy’s a very instinctive rider,” explained fellow Texas trainer Will Roberts, who has known Fenney for about 15 years and frequents many of the same competitions as she. “The horses love her. They don’t know what they can’t do without her on their backs. The horses feel indestructible when she’s riding them.” Even today, as one of the biggest names on the hunter/jumper show circuit, Fenney tries to stay involved with her horses and encourages other trainers to have their young students do the same. “Today it’s not so hands-on,” she explained. “Kids just get off their horses and hand them to the groom. They don’t know whether (the horse is) in a crappy mood or a good mood. They have no rapport with the horse except when they get on and ride them. “I still wrap all my own horses and if I can, I clean them up and see what kind of attitude they’re in. Maybe take them for walks, but whatever I have time to do to see what kind of mood they’re in that day.” Adds Roberts, “She’s very hands-on in

the barn. It’s great to see a top-notch rider like that still practicing great horsemanship.”

The Present Fenney’s fellow equestrians typically describe her as an “extreme competitor” who has been extremely successful. However, the success has not gone to her head: “She’s a pretty laid-back individual,” said Roberts. With McCormick, her husband and business partner whom she calls her “biggest supporter and biggest pusher,” at her side, Fenney is having a stellar year in the Grand Prix ring with her current horses, MTM Timon (an 11-year-old KWPN gelding by Voltaire) and MTM Centano (an 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding by Cary). With four Grand Prix wins under their belt this season, Fenney and MTM Centano are a force to be reckoned with wherever they go. The pair started the year with a win in February in the $25,000 Grand Prix at the Great Southwest Winter Series I in Katy, Texas, and followed that up with a win in another $25,000 Grand Prix at the Ocala Tournament in March. Fenney piloted MTM Centano to two more victories—in the $30,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix in Katy and the $25,000 Grand Prix at the Lone Star Round-Up in Tyler, Texas—both in April. In March Fenney and MTM Timon won a $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix

in Ocala, and in February they placed second in a $25,000 Grand Prix at the Great Southwest Winter Series I, just behind MTM Centano. The HITS Culpeper series in Virginia are next on Fenney’s competition schedule. But what’s next for Fenney in the long run? Laughing, she explained, “Mike gets mad at me all the time because he wants me to do the World Cup and try for the Olympics and stuff like that, but I enjoy doing what we do. We show. We go to Europe and buy and sell horses. We bring them along, and I get satisfaction bringing a horse along and having an amateur or a junior show it. “We bought a horse in Europe a couple years ago, and I brought it along, then a kid showed it and it was champion at Capitol Challenge,” she recalled. “She’s done well with it. That’s a thrill for me.” Excitedly, Fenney spoke of the latest group of horses she and McCormick purchased abroad: “We just bought six in Europe about a month ago, and they’re just starting to slowly come in (from quarantine) and it’s been really fun. We just brought two of them to the horse show (we’re in Oklahoma City right now) and four got into Flower Mound today.” So for the time being, Fenney will continue to focus on bringing young horses along, selling them, and, of course, winning.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011



Horse For


By Alexandra Beckstett


t a party among friends six years ago, Katy resident Paul Mattson asked his teenage daughter Victoria if she wanted to learn to ride a horse. She seemed to brush him off—as so many adolescent girls do when they don’t want to be bothered by their parents.

A few minutes passed, and Victoria came back to her father and asked, “Can I have a black one?” So Paul and Victoria, a high-functioning autistic, ventured into saddleseat riding together, and now, at age 20 and having recently graduated from Houston’s Alief Taylor High School, Victoria has qualified for the Exception-

al Challenge Cup Class for riders with disabilities at the prestigious American Royal Horse Show in Kansas City, Mo. The horseback riding seed was first planted in Paul’s brain by Pin Oak

Charity Horse Show vice president and Saddlebred aficionado Joan Cantrell. She suggested he look into riding lessons for his daughter and thought Koren and Milo Mercer, owners of Lone Star Saddlebreds near The

Saddlebred Horses have helped high-functioning autistic Victoria Mattson grow and evolve not only as a rider but also as a young woman.

Woodlands, might be ideal instructors due to their reputable lesson program and past experience with disabled riders. Paul, too, wanted to take riding lessons to better understand what his daughter would be experiencing. At their first meeting, Koren invited the father-daughter duo out to the Pin Oak horse show to visit with and watch the horses. She led Victoria into the stall of Billy Kidd, a Texas state high point champion year in and year out. Billy lowered his head toward Victoria, grasped the sleeve of her windbreaker in his teeth, and held it there. Victoria just smiled.

that she hears what I’m telling her is with her actions on the horse.” Over the past several years Victoria has grown and evolved not only as a rider but also as a young woman—thanks, in great part, to Koren and Milo’s patience and ability to challenge and push her. According to Paul, Victoria’s social skills, interactions, and confidence have all improved.

Riding at a Different Pace

“She definitely has gotten stronger physically,” Koren says, adding that the fact Paul is a personal trainer doesn’t hurt when trying to build his daughter’s strength. “Her balance has also gotten better. Even when you watch her gait and how she walks, she’s a little bit more upright now (than when she started riding), and you can just tell she’s stronger all around.”

Most activities and instructions come as a challenge to Victoria, who, along with being autistic, also is clinically deaf, vision impaired, and communicates through sign langauge. Koren

There’s also a mental aspect to Victoria’s riding—a natural connection with the horses—that neither Koren nor Paul quite seem to be able to put into words.

A year later to the date, Victoria was riding Billy to a ribbon at the Pin Oak Horse Show.

“Every single horse that I have put her on I see a difference in the way they behave and the way they respond.” - Koren Mercer accordingly. “With her it seems to be so natural,” he explains. “It’s strange; it’s something to watch.” Adds Koren, “Every single horse that I have put her on I see a difference in the way they behave and the way they respond to her versus some of my other riders. It’s very cool.” Koren has also observed that although Victoria has to work exceedingly hard while horseback, her focus on what she’s doing is heightened. A rider with full use of his or her senses, for instance, might hop on a horse and go through the motions while their mind wanders off to think about the weather, or what happened that day at school or work. “We’re not always focused like we should be,” Koren explains. “But with Victoria she really focuses. She’s very aware of everything that goes on around her; she just doesn’t communicate it the way we do.” Victoria’s concentration and determination has led her to accolades at countless horse shows, even riding against her able-bodied peers. According to Paul, a competitive atmosphere doesn’t seem to faze Vic toria; rather, she enjoys getting dressed and made up for the occasion.

instructs her during riding lessons (“Raise your hands, keep your heels down!”) and tells her what gait to be in at horse shows via walkie talkie system and an earpiece Victoria wears in her left ear (which has some residual hearing). “She can’t respond back to me,” explains Koren. “But the way I know


“There is a connection that she has with these horses that we as riders would aspire to have,” Pauls says. “It is intuitive.” He admits that where at times he might be “fighting” against a horse subconsciously while he rides, his daughter has an effortless “feel” atop the animals, and they respond to her

“Now we both kind of train each other; we push each other,” says Paul of both he and his daughter riding together. “I started winning some classes—I won at Pin Oak this year—so she was happy I got some blue ribbons finally.” An Exceptional Challenge A major milestone in Victoria’s short equestrian career has been qualifying

An Artist in the Making? When Victoria Mattson was merely two years old and living in Dallas, her father, Paul, took her to the Barnes exhibit, a privately owned collection of impressionist art displayed at the time in Fort Worth’s Kimbell Museum.

This drawing shown above and the one displayed across pages 18-19 were both drawn by Victoria.

“I had her in my arms, and she was looking at this stuff like ‘Oh my gosh, look at this!’” Paul recalls. “It was fascinating to see her look at this work. We’ve taken her to the impressionist exhibits (in Houston), and she latches onto that.” Thus began Victoria’s love for art. Like many physically or mentally handicapped individuals, she has a knack for drawing, especially Japanese animated figures. She seemingly conjures up characters

for the Exceptional Challenge Cup at the American Royal Horse Show (the Saddlebred world’s national championship event). The class is not restricted only to saddleseat exhibitors, and to be invited riders have to participate in and complete a judged qualifying event.

as riders would aspire to have. It is intuitive.” - Paul Mattson

So this past year Victoria finally began receiving formal art training through her school and will likely enroll in drawing classes at Houston Community College this coming year. “Some of her work is really raw and elementary, childlike and innocent,” explains Paul, “but other times it’s really just incredible work.”

“He’ll adapt to a rider’s skill set,” she says. “He’s certainly not a push-button horse, but if you do the right thing and give him the right cues, he’ll respond correctly. Victoria still has to work—she has to be involved in the riding; she can’t just be a passenger.” Victoria’s next challenge is mastering riding Fizz with a full (double bit) bridle, which is required of all American Royal competitors. A few lessons in with the new bridle, however, and Victoria is laying down some of the best rides of her life.

“There is a connection these horses that we

Paul was particularly struck by his daughter’s talent when, while standing in a Memorial City Starbucks one day, a gentleman oversaw Victoria scribbling away on paper and noted how incredible she was.

plans to ride Fizz again in the Challenge Cup. Koren describes the veteran gelding as one of her most versatile school horses.

Victoria rode a relatively new mount— 22-year-old former World Champion CH So Fizzical—in her walk, trot qualifying class this past May. Because she was still slightly unfamiliar with the horse and was required to learn and perform a pattern she’d never before attempted, Victoria practiced both in the irons and on the ground from 5 p.m. until midnight the night before the class. Bright and early the next morning, before the rest of the show was stirring, Victoria and “Fizz” went out there and nailed it.

that she has with

and brings them to life on the page.

“In the class they had to do their rail work and then a serpentine pattern in the arena,” Koren explains. “That was something Victoria had never really done before, and she did that pattern like she had been doing it all her life.” Pending the chance that Victoria might soon get a horse of her own (whether it will be black remains to be seen), she

“I may be the typical stage mom,” says Paul with a laugh, “but she’s really done a great job with all of this. To watch this child with her difficulties do what she’s been able to do is really kind of remarkable. “At times you feel like she’s never going to grow up, and then she’ll turn right around and do something that will floor you.” So perhaps Victoria’s next remarkable achievement will take place in Kansas City come November.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011



MEMORIES By Savannah Howell

Photos by Waltenberry Inc.

“In 2010 we used approximately 900 stalls, but this year we had over 1,000 horses in stalls before the entry deadline and had to order even more temporary stalls to compensate for any late entries,” said NRBC show manager Mike Christian.


he 2011 edition of the National Reining Breeders Classic (NRBC) is in the books, and event organizers are saying that the show,

held April 18-24 at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas, was one of the best ever. Total entries for the event greatly surpassed the 2010 show numbers—previously the largest in history. Show staff anticipated the increase in numbers even before all the show entries were received.

After all the entries were received, the show not only surpassed the 2,000 entry mark, but did so in recordbreaking fashion: The show totaled 2,117 exhibitors. “We had an increase in entries of 269,” noted NRBC management team member Kevin Howell “That’s incredible!” And that increase in entries equated another large payout. “For the second year in a row, the NRBC awarded over $1.4 million at the event,” noted NRBC Secretary/ Treasurer Cheryl Magoteaux. “Everything about this show works together to make it one of the mostenjoyed reining events in the world.” CONTINUED ON PAGE 26

22 22

For Those Who Live and Ride Well

David Zimmerman and Jacs Lil Spook, of Newell Quarter Horses, won Limited Open and Level 1 Open.

Lance Griffin won both Non Pro Prime Time & Non Pro Reserve Championship on The Great Tag.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Shawn Flarida won his third NRBC Open Championship on Shine Chic Shine.

Shawn Flarida Wins NRBC Open Championship on Shine Chic Shine One man who surely loves the NRBC-National Reining Horse Association Leading Rider Shawn Flarida—won his third NRBC Open Championship on Shine Chic Shine after an exciting runoff with Todd Sommers, who earned Million Dollar Rider status at the 2010 NRBC.

“With this much money on the line and this big of an event, there’s no decision. You gotta run for it.”

- Todd Sommers

“With this much money on the line and this big of an event, there’s no decision—you gotta run for it,” said Sommers, who finished Reserve with Whiz It A Chic, owned by Stoney Russell. Thanks to the large payoff of the NRBC, Sommers, Russell, and Whiz It A Chic didn’t leave Katy empty-handed; they took home a cool $57,000. But the big winner was easily Flarida. He and Shine Chic Shine’s owners, the Amabile and Strusiner Partnership, received $75,000 and a wide range of Shaunda Rai Ruckman and Rufanicki won not only the Non Pro title but also swept the Intermediate Non Pro, Limited Non Pro, and Non Pro Level 1.

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For Those Who Live and Ride Well

prizes for their win. “This is the show to go to,” noted Flarida. “The payout is outstanding, and everything is set up to be good for the exhibitors, owners, horses, and spectators.”

won not only the Non Pro title but also swept the Intermediate Non Pro, Limited Non Pro, and Non Pro Level 1. That feat had never been accomplished at the NRBC.

Other Open riders won big at the NRBC, with Peter DeFreitas and Conquistadors Sandy, owned by Double Run Farms, winning the Intermediate Open. David Zimmerman and Jacs Lil Spook, owned by Newell Quarter Horses, won both the Limited Open and Level 1 Open, while Sam Smith and Chicsdundreamin, owned by Tim Roper, won the Open Prime Time.

Ruckman and Ruffanicki’s stellar performance earned them more than $60,000. “I’m so overwhelmed; this is unbelievable,” noted Ruckman. “If I had to pick one event a year to go to, it would definitely be this one—and that was before we won! This is my favorite show. The facility is phenomenal, and the sponsors are amazing.”

Shaunda Ruckman Sweeps All Four Non Pro Levels Shaunda Rai Ruckman made history when she and her horse, Rufanicki,

Two-time NRBC Non Pro Champion Lance Griffin won the Non Pro Prime Time and the Non Pro Reserve Championship on The Great Tag. “This horse is pretty special to me. I won this event twice with his sire Whiz N Tag Chex,” said Griffin.

Todd Sommers took the Open reserve championship aboard Whiz It A Chic.

“Everything about this show works together to make it one of the most-enjoyed reining events in the world.”

- Cheryl Magoteaux

Level 1 Non Pro Classic Challenge were won by William Rhoads and This Rose Will Shine, who left Katy $1,148 richer. There were also two Youth Classic Challenge divisions, with Shelby Reine and Topsail Oak winning the Youth 13 & Under, and Emily Winegar and Red Berry Wine tying Jaci Marley and Chexable for the Youth 14-18 title. Inaugural NRBC Classic Challenge Pays Big Since its inception, the NRBC has been setting the standard for reining excellence. It has long been the largest added-money reining event in the world. For instance, the event made waves when it extended the age limit of the Classic to include 6-year-old horses. This year the NRBC made history once again by adding the Classic Challenge for aged horses, 7 years old and up. “The Classic Challenge was a huge success in its first year,” noted Magoteaux.

“The Classic Challenge program was created to give our older horses more venues to compete for large payouts. There was actually $50,000 in added money in the Classic Challenge classes alone.” Earning a place at the top of the elite field in the Open Classic Challenge was Martin Muehlstaetter and Wimpys Little Buddy, owned by Madalyn Roberts. The win netted $6,147. Tami Nelson and Plus Me Big Time won both the Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro Classic Challenge, pocketing $11,915. The Limited Non Pro and

Martin Muehlstaetter and Wimpys Little Buddy won the first Open Classic Challenge for older horses.

Looking Ahead Magoteaux noted the NRBC Board of Directors and Management Team are already working hard on the 2012 event, slated for April 16-22. “We are always figuring out ways we can improve and new things we can try. The Great Southwest Equestrian Center is a great facility, our sponsors are wonderful, and of course, the exhibitors are first-class. As always, we’re hoping for another record-breaking year.” For more information about the NRBC, contact the NRBC Office at 580-759-3939, by email at, or visit

Peter DeFreitas and Conquistadors Sandy, owned by Double Run Farms, won the Intermediate Open. Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011



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Photos by John Kral & Casey McBride

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Spring Gathering





captions Jazz Hawk and Al Cantaro won the low junior/amateur jumper classic.


Mary Stone’s Enrico captured the USHJA National Hunter Classic.


Peter Pletcher takes the top three spots in the pre-green hunter classic with Bleu, Jimmy, and Enrico.


Small junior hunter Safari and Hayley Barnhill won the $50,000 USHJA Hunter Derby


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For Those Who Live and Ride Well


photos by

Shawn McMillen Photography

5 6



Hunter pony classic winners Keep A Secret and Isabel Coleman.


Sidekick and Jamie Jarvis, adult amateur hunter classic winners


Children’s jumper classic winners Andreas De Leyer and Skylark.

Cause for Applause

Horse Tales Literacy Project By Anne Stone and Laura Graves


or generations, young readers have discovered new worlds to explore as characters like Flicka, Misty, Black Beauty, and the Black Stallion leapt off the page and into their imaginations. Today, elementary students in 14 states are continuing this tradition thanks to the Black Stallion Literacy Foundation, which is now known as the Horse Tales Literacy Project. This innovative reading program combines Walter Farley’s Black Stallion books series and live horses to promote literacy and motivate children to read. Statistics show that children who learn to read find far more success in school as well as in life than children who cannot read. With that

knowledge, Farley’s son, Tim, and Mark Miller, owner of the Arabian Nights Dinner Theater in Kissimmee, Fla., conceived the original Black Stallion Literacy Foundation in 1999. So far it has served more than half a million children through both schoolbased and community programs. The program’s simple but unique approach to motivating children works by connecting children with a classic book and the magic of live horses. Using standards-based curriculum and lesson plans developed by the Institute of Education at the University of North Florida, students begin by reading Farley’s classic Little Black, A Pony and Little Black Goes to the Circus. The first graders are then introduced to live horses, some of which resemble characters from the books. Horse Tales Literacy Project also arranges for students to read to horses as a confidence-building exercise, because the hesitancy to read aloud often disappears when the audience is a live horse. By fourth grade, students are reading Farley’s novel, The Black Stallion. Again, their reading is accented by interactions with live horses, and depending on the venue, some will also enjoy an equestrian show that includes the Black Stallion character. Recently, Horse Tales Literacy Project has also implemented after-school and summer camp programs that reinforce and foster success in school and create a bridge of literacy from one year to the next, respectively. Horse Tales Literacy Project programs also take place in Texas, such as one held recently at the local library in Boerne and another at an equine fair at Crestone Arabians, hosted by Anne and John Stone. Active and successful programs also are being hosted in San Antonio. To begin a Horse Tales Literacy Project program in your area, or to volunteer for a program already in place, please visit the website at, or contact Glenda Laveck at Glenda.laveck@ or Cindy Carter at

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Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Healthy Horses

Horse Show Biosecurity By Andrew Currie, VMD


he recent equine herpesvirus (EHV-1) outbreak across the western United States and Canada has caused us to become more vigilant about biosecurity, which is essentially avoiding the transmission of infectious diseases. This highly contagious disease is typically passed from horse to horse via nasal secretions, sneezing, and coughing; however, it is not transmissible to humans.

financial and emotional impact on the owners of infected horses, it also impacted the general population of horses and horse owners by restricting equine travel and equestrian events. In my opinion the public response, the many different breed associations, the veterinarians, and the public horse and rodeo facilities stepped up to the plate and took charge to do the best

tions. Your own veterinarian also is a great source of preventive measures that accommodate your own horse. We personally fielded many questions and made recommendations that were specific to the event, discipline, and travel advisories of each owner. Now that the EHV-1 outbreak appears to be over, don’t drop your guard simply because travel restrictions have

Photos by Penelope Cain Williams

Don’t let your horse touch noses or socialize with other horses at shows. The United States Department of Agriculture and State Animal Health Commissions did an amazing job of tracking and keeping the public informed of numbers and locations of actual infectious cases and relevant state regulations. While the outbreak had a huge

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For Those Who Live and Ride Well

they could to prevent further spread of the infectious disease. There have been many biosecurity articles written and available from state animal health commissions, breed associations, and equestrian publica-

been lifted; don’t become complacent because horse shows are back up and running as usual; don’t be careless when hauling your horse to a new location; and continue to be vigilant with biosecurity concerning your horse and yourself. Some preventive measures you can take include making sure your horse

is properly vaccinated against the current infectious disease strains with your veterinarian’s advice. Your veterinarian is the best advisor as to what vaccines your horse might need and the recommended administration.

Just the stress of hauling to a new place, the late summer heat, and large numbers of horses being housed in one location can add to your horse’s risk of contracting an infectious disease. Thus, we recommend you take

“Just the stress of hauling to a new place, the late summer heat, and large numbers of horses being housed in one location can add to your horse’s risk of contracting an infectious disease.” Make sure your own horse is healthy when you leave to go to your next event. Key indicators of illness include depression and fever. Thus, have an accurate thermometer on hand and check your horse’s temperature regularly.

—Dr. Andrew Currie along your own buckets and feed when traveling. Don’t share buckets, personal grooming equipment, or tack with other horses. Make sure the stall or pen you put your horse in is clean and free of any bedding or debris from the last

horse that was in that stall or pen. Also carry a disinfectant and know how to properly clean the stall or pen before unloading your horse. Keep in mind while in large groups of horses that you don’t let your horse touch noses or socialize with other horses. These are just a few biosecurity tips— along with your veterinarian’s recommendations—that will help keep your horse disease-free. Common sense and good hygiene are paramount for a healthy horse and a great show.


A University of Pennsylvania grad, “Doc Currie” is a leading equine veterinarian as well as a team roper and all-around horseman. He has owned champion cutting and roping horses and has held prestigious industry positions in the veterinary world.

Protecting What You Value Most If you own, board, breed, train or race horses, we need to talk! I take a personal interest in protecting what you value most. For information on equine insurance solutions, call me today!

Shannon Galvin (713) 857-5554 Serving the state of Texas

Shannon Galvin

Products and services may not be available in all states and eligibility requirements will apply. Personal and commercial lines insurance is issued by American National Property And Casualty Company (ANPAC®), Springfield, Missouri.

AN9 0211

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Money Matters

The Retirement Salary® Creating an Income in Retirement By Heath Hightower, CFP


ver the last 10 years, we’ve seen two stock market free falls, a war, a falling dollar, political hysteria, the worst recession since the Great Depression ... the list goes on. These days, protecting your retirement savings and generating a predictable monthly income is no easy task. Today’s market demands a more sophisticated retirement plan than ever before. Investors who aren’t prepared stand to make some major mistakes. And if you’re retired, you can’t afford to make those mistakes.

Retirees are finding out that the traditional strategy of buying a laddered bond portfolio no longer works. The problem, of course, is that an all bond portfolio is far too concentrated. If (or when) interest rates go up, the value of the entire portfolio could go down. Others have turned to insurance products such as “guaranteed” annuities. At first glance, these products sound fantastic; however, the guarantee is only as good as the financial strength of the company. We’ve found them to be littered with upfront commissions, and they lack the flexibility that most retirees need in retirement. Their costs generally outweigh their benefits. At Financial Synergies Asset Management Inc., our approach to producing income is quite different. Investors are beginning to recognize inflation as a real threat. Inflation today is quite low; however, going forward it’s very likely that inflation will rise. As this happens, retirees will demand more income from their portfolios to maintain the same standard of living. History has shown us that if someone retired in 1980 living on $100,000/year, they would need $284,000/year to maintain the same lifestyle today. Most fixed income portfolios don’t have the ability to grow their income enough to


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

keep pace with inflation (thus the name “fixed” income). Unfortunately, growing a portfolio to outpace inflation requires investing in variable assets that can go up and down in value. But most retirees are uncomfortable investing in growth investments (like the stock market) because of their potential for loss. Michael Booker, CFP, ChFC, CFS, the founding owner of our firm, recognized this dilemma and developed a cutting edge strategy to help create predictable income for retirees while growing the portfolio to combat inflation. It’s called The Retirement Salary®.

“The Retirement Salary can provide a steady stream of income while the growth component continues to grow.” - Heath Hightower, CFP The Retirement Salary® program is designed to produce a steady income for retirees while minimizing market risk. We tailor the strategy to each client’s risk tolerance and financial objectives and then create a portfolio consisting of two parts: a Growth component and an Income component (called the Retirement Salary®). The Retirement Salary® is invested in cash and ultra short duration bonds and generally has enough money to provide more than two years of income need. That money is then sent to your local checking account on a monthly basis, taking the guesswork out of your

monthly income. The Growth component is invested in a broad basket of mutual fund strategies (i.e., stocks, bonds, hard assets, alternatives, etc.). As this side of the portfolio grows, we trim some of the earnings to replenish the Retirement Salary® component. As the market moves through its normal ups and downs the Retirement Salary® can provide a steady stream of income while the growth component continues to grow. Reallocating a portfolio is one of the most important decisions a retiree will make. As you transition out of the workforce and into retirement, it’s important to create a well-balanced portfolio to produce income and outpace inflation. As life expectancies continue to rise, the risk of outliving your money is ever increasing. The only way to ensure that doesn’t happen is by growing your money in a risk managed way. Visit us at or give us a call at (713) 623-6600 if you’d like to have a conversation about building a retirement portfolio to last a lifetime.


Heath Hightower, CFP, is a financial advisor with Financial Synergies Asset Management Inc. in Houston, Texas. He was recognized in 2008-2011 as one of America’s Top Financial Planners by the Consumers’ Research Council of America and was also recognized by Kingdom Advisors as a Qualified Kingdom Advisor in 2009.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Feeding Your Passion for Horses in College By Victoria Woods


Six years ago Pin Oak Charity Horse Show hosted an educational field trip for first and second grade school children to take a “behind the scenes” barn tour of the tradition-steeped show. Continuing its passion for education, Pin Oak has also hosted the Texas Hunter Jumper Association (THJA) College Equestrian Fair, which provides a forum to educate high school students and their parents on continuing to be involved with horses at the collegiate level. Pin Oak chooses a select group of Division I & II colleges and other schools with equestrian riding teams from around the country to promote their programs and provide aspiring riders a “onestop shopping” experience to learn about what these colleges offer and hopefully find a program that fits their goals—both in and out of the show ring. Until now, this event was open to THJA


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

and Greater Houston Hunter Jumper Association members and students associated with Pin Oak. However, the show’s leadership team realized there are many other students participating in disciplines other than English riding that could benefit from the college fair. Thus, Pin Oak extends the invitation to all equestrian-minded students to attend the third Annual THJA College Equestrian Fair Sept. 23, from 4:30–9:00 p.m., in the Texas Children’s Hospital Arena Club at Great Southwest Equestrian Center. Pin Oak’s college fair provides students with a one-on-one opportunity to meet with college representatives in a more intimate setting than at larger fairs. Following a two-hour college meetand-greet is a two-hour panel lecture and a Q&A with Intercollegiate Horse Show Association, American National Riding Commission, and Equestrian Riding representatives. A speaker from the USEF High School Equestrian

Program will also present, and a fashion show with door prizes hosted by The Lead Change has been added to the event. This is a unique opportunity for high school age riders and their parents to learn about what is available in the world of collegiate equestrian sports; speak with college representatives; and meet equestrians who share similar riding goals. As a parent, if you are wondering how your child could continue on in the show ring and earn his or her college degree, this is the perfect event to attend. For more information or to register for the fair, please visit pinoak. org, friend us on Facebook, phone us at 713.621.6290, or email info The cost is $50 per family, $25 per individual, $15 for Pin Oak Club or THJA members. Snacks will be provided.

The 3rd Annual THJA College Equestrian Fair

“Getting on Track” How to Become a Potential Candidate for a College Equestrian Team... and more!

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2011 Great Southwest Equestrian Center, Katy, Texas Texas Children’s Hospital Arena Club - 4:30 – 9:00 PM SCHEDULE 4:30-6:30 pm Division I & II Varsity Colleges

Mount Holyoke College, Randolph College, Savannah College of Art and Design, Southern Methodist University, Texas A&M University, West Texas A&M University, Sweet Briar College, William Woods and Texas Tech University. More signing up daily.

7:00-9:00 pm Speaker and panel lecture Representing Equestrian Riding – TBD Representing IHSA – Amanda Love Representing ANRC - TBD Refreshments provided by The Pin Oak Club. Speakers have been underwritten by The Texas Hunter & Jumper Assn. Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is a 501 ( c ) 3 entity, benefiting Texas Children’s Hospital and The Ronald McDonald House Houston Family Rooms

COST Family Rate: $50 Individual Rate: $25 Pin Oak Club & THJA Members $10 RSVP BY SEPTEMBER 16, 2011 Roxanne Cook, or 713.621.6290 THE PIN OAK CHARITY HORSE SHOW 2501 SouthMason Road, Suite 410, Katy, Texas 77450

Event endorsed by: The Plaid Horse Magazine The Lead Change

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


T e x a s C h i l d r e n ’ s H o s p i ta l

A Walking, Breathing Miracle By Kevin Harwerth


am a miracle of God,” 12-year-old Katherine Go recently told an audience at the grand opening of Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus. While all children are gifts from God, the fact that Katherine has beat incredible odds is just one of the things that makes her life truly miraculous. Katherine has a genetic disease called Turner syndrome (TS), which causes a variety of medical, physical and developmental complications. The condition occurs in approximately 1 of every 2,500 female births. Sadly, 99 percent of girls with TS die before they are born and account for as many as 10 percent of all miscarriages. “After Katherine’s Turner syndrome diagnosis we began our journey to and from Texas Children’s Hospital in the Texas Medical Center,” stated Katherine’s mother, Margaret Go. Living with Turner Syndrome The first three years of Katherine’s life were devoted to the diagnostic phase of TS, which required almost weekly visits to Texas Children’s. “She underwent a litany of tests, procedures, and needles—all with the inner strength and fortitude of a fighter, a survivor

and with courage that was beyond her young years,” explained Go. Katherine visited more than a dozen medical specialists during this time. She and her mother made the trip to Texas Children’s so often that even

“Texas Children’s has access to advanced diagnostic imaging equipment that is not available at other centers. And if surgery is needed, we are home to the best pediatric cardiovascular surgical care in the region.”

— Dr. Shannon M. Rivenes

before Katherine was 3 years old, she recognized the buildings. While it was a long trek from their west Houston home, Go said they were confident that Texas Children’s—with all of its nationally ranked clinics—was the best place for Katherine to receive her care. Over the next six years, Katherine received various therapies and treat-

ments to address her TS-related health issues. According to Parvin Yazdani, MD, her endocrinologist at Texas Children’s, girls with Turner syndrome can face a wide variety of medical conditions including developmental issues, kidney problems, high blood pressure, heart problems, obesity, hearing difficulties, diabetes, and thyroid problems. Yazdani, also assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine, added that it is especially common for girls with TS to be of short stature. To increase their growth rates, these girls are typically given hormone injections. “This hormone treatment requires a daily injection,” said Yazdani, “and fortunately Katherine has a family that is dedicated to coordinating all of her treatments and making sure she receives the best care possible.” A Tenuous Hold As a result of her TS, Katherine was born with a mild heart problem that required many years of follow-up visits and surveillance. But in January 2010 her Texas Children’s cardiologist, Shannon M. Rivenes, MD, discovered she had developed an aneurysm involving the left subclavian artery and aorta. “There are three types of cardiac problems most commonly associated with Turner syndrome,” said Rivenes. She explained that girls might have an abnormal aortic valve, a coarctation of the aorta and/or an aortic aneurysm. While cardiac abnormalities occur in approximately one-third of TS patients, an aortic aneurysm is especially serious because it can rupture and cause massive internal bleeding. “Texas Children’s has access to advanced diagnostic imaging equipment that is not available at other centers,”


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

said Rivenes. “And if surgery is needed, we are home to the best pediatric cardiovascular surgical care in the region.” Charles D. Fraser Jr., MD, surgeonin-chief, chief of congenital heart surgery, and cardiac surgeon in-charge at Texas Children’s Hospital, and his team performed a successful surgery in April 2010 to repair Katherine’s left subclavian artery. Katherine is doing well, but as her mother put it, “her life—medically speaking—is tenuous.” Peace of Mind Now that Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus is officially open, Katherine—along with her sister, two brothers, and more than 400,000 kids who live in the area surrounding Barker Cypress Road and Interstate 10—can receive the same world-class care that is offered at the medical center location while staying much closer to home. “When the outpatient portion of this facility opened in December 2010, we brought specialists in audiology, cardiology, endocrinology/diabetes, gastroenterology, orthopedic and pediatric surgery, hematology/oncology, neurology, ophthalmology, otolaryngology, pulmonary medicine, urology physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy to children in this area,” explained Charles Hankins, MD, chief medical officer of the West Campus. “We have some of the best physicians in their respective fields at this location, but we will form strong partnerships with doctors in the community, and we will take advantage of all of the resources Texas Children’s offers in order to make children better.”

Katherine Go has beat incredible odds while battling Turner Syndrome. opening a community hospital in west Houston, but because we are opening a Texas Children’s Hospital,” said Edmond Gonzales, MD, surgical director at the West Campus. “Patients who come to this location will receive the same quality of care that is available at the Texas Medical Center location, and we also will offer the same child life programs, adhere to the same policies and procedures, and be committed to the same quality that has allowed Texas Children’s to be ranked consistently as one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country.” Always Smiling

In March the 294,000-square-foot inpatient facility began offering comprehensive pediatric services including 48 acute-care beds, surgical suites, advanced diagnostic imaging, a neurophysiology sleep laboratory, and the area’s only dedicated pediatric emergency center—the David and Mary Wolff Emergency Center.

Fortunately, with early and appropriate medical care and ongoing support, most girls with TS can lead normal, healthy, and productive lives. While Katherine’s doctors are hopefully optimistic about her outlook, they are also vigilant about watching for signs that her health might be in jeopardy.

“I am excited, not just because we are





optimism—it’s hard to believe this warm, active, and energetic 12-yearold has TS, that doctors have told her that her blood vessels are extremely susceptible to future aneurysms, and that she faces the possibility of other serious health issues in the future. After all she has been through, her mother said she would not be surprised if Katherine wanted to avoid hospitals as much as possible. But the young girl with the big smile has found inspiration in her time at the hospital— she has dreams of returning to Texas Children’s not as a patient, but as a caregiver. “She truly is a walking, breathing miracle,” shared Go.


Kevin Harwerth is a communications professional who specializes in fundraising for nonprofit organizations.

Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


In the News

De Vita, Cook Chosen to Manage 2012 Pin Oak Charity Horse Show


fter one of its most successful years ever, Houston’s legendary Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is not resting on its laurels, but is looking to the future with a new management team. Phil De Vita will join the Pin Oak organization as Show Manager for 2012. With experience as a course designer, judge, and manager of several prestigious horse shows throughout the United States, De Vita will bring

his leadership to much of Pin Oak’s existing staff, including Peter Fenton as Breed Manager. De Vita’s career highlights include judging and course design for the ASPCA Maclay Finals at Madison Square Garden, The Capitol Challenge, the Winter Equestrian Festival for the last 17 years, and being part of the course design team for the 2008 Olympics. He has also managed the Charlotte Jumper Classic for six years, rated in 2008 as one of the top five indoor show jumping events in the world. Pin Oak’s Executive Board has also voted to promote Roxanne Cook to Executive Director. Cook began working with Pin Oak five years ago as a volunteer, progressing to Finance and Event Coordinator in 2011. Cook is credited with orchestrating the show’s financial success in 2011, which will benefit children’s charities Texas Children’s Hospital, West Campus, Houston’s Ronald McDonald House, Family Rooms, and Candlelighters. Previously, Cook was division administrator for the Texas branch of a national construction company with revenue goals of over $40 million annually. She brings her budgeting and event-planning skills to

Pin Oak with the goal of running the show like a business to maximize its charitable donation, which includes a new $400,000 commitment over five years to support Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus. The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show has raised over $5.5 million for charity since its inception in 1945. Pin Oak Charity Horse Show’s dates for 2012 are March 21 – 25 and March 27 – April 1. More “In the News” on Page 42

GSEC Winter Series Expansion Great Southwest Equestrian Center’s highly popular two-week Winter Series has been extended to three weeks of “AA” rated hunter jumper competition after entries doubled this past year. Now running from Feb. 1 - 19, 2011, the Great Southwest Winter Series I, II & III will offer:

• More than $250,000 in prize money • Three $25,000 Grand Prixs • A $2,500 Gambler’s Choice • Two National Hunter Derbies • A $15,000 International Hunter Derby

“We are very excited to announce the addition of the third week in February,” said Sean L. Brown, Great Southwest Equestrian Center general manager. “This series has proved very popular with exhibitors, and it is our mission is to improve the experience each year. Exhibitors and trainers can look forward to the latest improvements to the facility and some warm Texas hospitality this winter.” 40

For Those Who Live and Ride Well


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. 41

For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Ch M ra . n Eg d e’ s L i s t



We are proud to be part of the design team working to enhance the Great Southwest Equestrian Center

Conscientious & “A horse is a horse, of course of course, and no one can talk to a horse of course, that is of course, unless the horse, Is the famous Mister Ed! Go right to the source and ask the horse. He’ll give you the answer that you’ll endorse.”

Creativity Innovation Passion Stewardship

Confidential Service Nancy Hansen

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

The Pure Spanish Horse Comes to Houston


his fall, Great Southwest Equestrian Center will host the Interstate P.R.E. USA National Championships, to be held Oct. 2830, for registered P.R.E. horses and their owners/breeders. For centuries, P.R.E. (Pure Spanish Horse) breeders have insisted that their horses have extraordinary versatility for different equestrian activities and exercises, with a strong focus on dressage. Moreover, the outstanding performances of some Pure Spanish horses, including Evento, Invasor and Fuego in recent Olympic Games and World Equestrian Games have proved this Iberian breed’s spectacular capabilities. Pure Spanish Horses are not just gentle and beautiful but also talented sports companions. Locally, the Woodlands Equestrian Club (run by Marta Renilla, international Grand Prix dressage competitor and US Dressage Federation


For Those Who Live and Ride Well

Gold Medalist) near Houston is a big proponent of this breed, with its Spanish School of Equestrian Arts dedicated

to the dressage training of P.R.E. and Andalusian horses.


Fall / Winter



Fall Classic September 29-October 2, 2011

Autumn Classic—host to USHJA Zone 7 Finals November 9-13, 2011


East Meets West Fall Slide October 7-9, 2011


Platinum Classic I and II October 8-9, 2011 USDF Qualifiers for 2011 Great American Insurance Group USDF Regional Dressage

GSEC OPEN SHOW SERIES Paint Alternative Competition Approved Shows • Sept 17-18, 2011

• Dec 17-18, 2011

COMING IN 2012 •

Additional week added to February Winter Series

Arabian/Half Arabian Shows Proposed for September and October

The Official Arena Footing Provider

P: 281-578-7669

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Show & Tell Magazine | Vol. 2 No. 3 Fall 2011


Profile for Great Southwest Equestrian Center