Horse & Style Magazine May/June 2017

Page 1









Saut Hermès Part Deux





Congratulations Conformation Hunter

High Performance

Amateur Owner Hunter 3'6"

Low Children's Jumper

Adult Jumper

Young Jumper 5 Year Olds

Little Boy Balou | Ashely Hurteau C. Theodore | Cannon Thomas

Boss's Bentley | Ashely Hurteau Little Manhatten | Fairy Tale Farm

Tobasco | Stacey J. Oppermann Chawa | Mihkayla Shetterly

Zyminka | Lisa A. Baker Attack | Andrea A. Simpson

Green Hunter 3'

Performance Hunter 3'3"

Just Ask | Yellowstone LLC The Girl from Ipanema | Caron L. Stucky Belunga | Nancy L. Wanty Quinaro | Carl E Perry Bel Ami | Lauren Robishaw Rio Ruisseau | Ellen M Jennings

Hero | Aliboo Farm, Inc. Zinnia Z | Aliboo Farm, Inc.

Amateur Owner Hunter 3'3"

Low Jr/AO Jumper

Young Jumper 6 Year Olds

Ciro | Kate Shaughnessy Cypress | Kristen Franz

My Pride Z | Melissa A. Hirt Calano Z | Aliboo Farm, Inc.

(Presented By: Custom Fox Tack Shop)

Green Hunter 3'3"

(Presented By: Robert Mendoza)

(Presented By: Milestone Equestrian)

Snowbird | Sofia Roberts, LLC Kingston Lane | Sofia Roberts, LLC

Low Adult Jumper

Full Count | Shaunnah Anderson Et Voila | Twining Court Ltd.

Arturo | Abby Wagner Even So | Laura A. Hauser

(Presented By: Robert Mendoza)

Performance Hunter 3'6"

Junior Hunter 3'6"

Medium Jr/AO Jumper

Young Jumper 7 Year Olds

Young Hunter 7 Years and Under

Junior Hunter 3'3"

1.25m Jumper

High Jr/AO Jumper

(Presented by: Just A Folly Farm)

1.30m Jumper

Green Pony Hunter

Children's Jumper

1.35m Jumper

Open Jumper by Money Won

Intermediate Children's/Adult Jumper HJ Adelle | Jessica L. Stitt Silvio B | Elizabeth Casserly

Green Hunter 3'6"

Arturo | Abby Wagner Ivy | Hilary Vollmer

Novice Children's/Adult Jumper (Presented By: Nick Novak)

Cool Girl | Vanessa R. Mazzoli Desert Rose | Roberts Stables, LLC

Green Hunter 3'9"

Corlando 49 | Elizabeth M. Becker Eastwood | Hallie Heggeness Forever and Ever | Vanessa R. Mazzoli Photobomb | Annalice M. Weithofer

Full Count | Shaunnah Anderson Bon Vivant | Lauren Robishaw Peninsula Emerald Lass | Melissa A. Hirt Byolga | Emily Reder Rule The Air | Melissa A. Hirt Louboutin | Melissa A. Hirt Ekon | Grant Field F 16 | Punchestown Stable Canta | Dorothy W. Campbell Byolga | Emily Reder Alastar | Redfield Farm Rumorosa | Harlow Investment Ent. LLC

Mango | Caroline Kahn The Huntsman | Fox Meadow Farm Ferragamo | Jennifer A. Daulton For Sunday | Harlow Investment Ent. LLC Fanfare | Natalie Hershenson Corlando 49 | Elizabeth M. Becker Mach 5 | Dana E. Wille Winkleman | Erin E. Haas Animal Crackers | Francesca P. Peters Foxmor Power Play | Spencer Ranch (Presented By: Keystone LLC)

Johnny B Good | Summer K. Hill Vendome DH Z | Andrea A. Simpson

Horse| Owner


World Equestrian Center SERIES

of the


2016 - 2017 Champions Small Pony Hunter

(Presented By: Rinehart)

Weebiscuit | Izzy J. Beisel Forget Me Not | Pamela H. Blossom

Futures Prix

(Presented By: Dandy Products)

Cooper 152 | Freedom Woods Ammeretto | Equine Holdings LLC

Medium Pony Hunter

Rock Star | Roberts Stables, LLC Blu Ray | Sofia Roberts, LLC

Large Pony Hunter

Dreamsicle | Hannah A. Hoch Rivaldo | River Edge Farm

Children's Hunter 14 & under

Dakapo | Henry Healy Kingston Lane | Sofia Roberts, LLC

Children's Hunter 15-17

Face Value | Andrew ElHindi Cappello | Linden Knoll Farm, LLC

Adult Hunter 18-35

Beau Solei | Stacey Butler Fine Date | Lauren L. Newmeyer

Adult Hunter 36 and over

Muse | Laura A. Hauser Czac Brown | Sugar Run Farm LLC

Baby Green Hunter

Kashmir | Yellowstone LLC Bricken | Susan R. McCarthy

Children's Pony Hunter

April Rose | MTM farm Spot On | Joziemae P. Syroka

Non Thoroughbred Hunter

Daphne | Barbara Herberich Steel The Dream | Kendall Sturgill

Thoroughbred Hunter

Fan Favorite | Katie Myers Patrick Henry | Louise Riggio

Intermediate Children's Hunter

Short Stirrup/Limit Equitation Rider

Peyton N. Kuntz Katelyn Jasky

Equitation 11 and Under Rider

Katelyn Jasky Grace Defoe

Pharm It Out | Claire A. Healy Falene | Alaina Schwartz

Equitation 12-14

Intermediate Adult Hunter

Jada Fuleky Christopher Coberley

Bel Ami | Lauren Robishaw Dressed to Impress | Jane Branch


Equitation 15-17

Short Stirrup Hunter

(Presented By: Olive Hill & Diana Conlon) Rider

Limit Hunter

Adult Equitation

Steeling Home | Hannah Hitch Forte | Julia Greenspan Gizmo | Woodrun Written In the Stars | Johanne Lavigne

Special Hunter

Kashmir | Yellowstone LLC Just Ask | Yellowstone LLC

Non Professional Hunter

Jessica Stone Isabela H. De Sousa Rider

Hannah M. Satterlund Shaunnah Anderson

Children's Equitation Rider

Jada Fuleky Elizabeth M. Becker

Overjoyed | Sierra Meyer Falene | Alaina Schwartz

Intermediate Children's Equitation

Hunter 2'

Hannah A. Hoch Alaina Schwartz

Pink Magic | Meg McTiver Cherrybrook Just Blue By | David Dowler

Walk, Trot Equitation Rider

Madyson L. Schuh Taylor A. Schuh

Crossrails Equitation Rider

Madyson L. Schuh Taylor A. Schuh


Intermediate Adult Equitation Rider

Kim Mccrea Earnest Catherine DeMane

Children's Pony Equitation

(Presented By: Custom Fox Tack Shop) Rider

Joziemae Syroka Ella Kirby

Quality. Class. Distinction. Photo: Andrew Ryback

Wilmington, Ohio

Spring in New York never looked so good. Don’t miss what everyone is talking about! the competition • the grounds • the prize money


9-14 csi2*

USEF Jumper Rating 5 USEF Premier Hunters

$130,000 Empire State Grand Prix presented by The Kincade Group (May 21)

$50,000 Old Salem Farm Grand Prix

presented by The Kincade Group (May 14)

$35,000 NY Welcome Stake $35,000 Welcome Stake of North Salem


$35,000 Old Salem Farm Jumper Classic

16-21 csi3*

USEF Jumper Rating 6

$35,000 Old Salem Farm Speed Derby $15,000 Under 25 Grand Prix $10,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

USEF Premier Hunters

tickets, prizelist, sponsorships, vip table reservations, & event details at


Wine Country Equestrian Estate Bordering Wild Oak Saddle Club | $17,000,000 | Visit


WINE COUNTRY BROKERAGE | 25 EAST NAPA STREET SONOMA, CA 95476 | 707.939.2288 | SOTHEBYSHOMES.COM/NORCAL Sotheby’s International Realty and the Sotheby’s International Realty logo are registered (or unregistered) service marks used with permission. Operated by Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc. Real estate agents affiliated with Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc. are independent contractor sales associates and are not employees of Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc.





Alli Addison brings the digital to the printed page in this article about the engaging intersection of social media and equestrian culture. She shares the pictures and stories of eight of her favorite Instagram accounts and gives insight into social media as a marketplace, how to curate amazing content, and the impact social media has on the equestrian community.


Kathrin Birk, designer of Manifattura VALOR, combined her love of animals with her love of textiles to create a line of equestrian products that are ethical and beautiful. Her line includes pure wool felt saddle pads, blankets, hand-woven apparel and accessories, all crafted with high quality materials and a European look. In this Behind the Seams, learn details about her products and the inspiration behind the brand.

30 OUT


CHI Al Shaqab in Doha, Qatar, is the first equestrian competition of its kind in the Middle East to be sanctioned by the FEI and is one of only 4 CHI equestrian events in the world. H&S covered this incredible competition and shares pictures of the facility, the five-star riders, and the special aspects that make this horse show so exceptional.





HORSE & ST YLE IN THE HEARTL AND This winter, Omaha, Nebraska, hosted the exceptional Longines FEI World Cup™ Finals. It proved to be an unbelievable weekend that ended with America’s favorite, McLain Ward, as the winner. Giant Steps auction winners, Dawn and Hannah Klinedinst, attended as guests of H&S and experienced the competition and the shopping, as well as chats with five-star riders. RIDER SPOTLIGHT: SALIM EJNAINI

Salim Ejnaini wowed the crowd at the Longines Masters of Paris when he demonstrated his ability to jump a course blind. Hear about that experience, the amazing partnership he has with his horse Rapsody, and why he believes everyone should work on getting out of their comfort zone. This Rider Spotlight definitely puts the meaning of “impossible” in perspective.

52 ON

THE COVER: CURATED CRAFTSMANSHIP: THE SAUT HERMÈS PART DEUX H&S Owner and Publisher, Sarah Appel, was fortunate to be

invited to the Saut Hermès for a second time. Read about her experience and enjoy the incredible pictures of the Grand Palais, the competition, the evening entertainment, and all of the distinctly Hermès – and wonderfully orange – details.

8 | FROM


I’ll always have Paris



12 | PRO


16 | OUT


WEC Winter Finale



Follow the Sun with These Polo Hits

24 | OUT


LGCT Mexico City

25 | OUT



LGCT Miami


38 | OUT


Longines FEI World Cup™ Final

Blenheim EquiSports Spring Series

46 | H&S HOME

The Style of the Sporting Life

50 | LIFE


60 | OUT


Know When to Walk Away

Saut Hermès au Grand Palais

62 | ST YLE


Galloping Gala

66 | TREND


Crossed and in Love


Nic Roldan’s 2nd Annual Sunset Polo & White Party


BY AN EQUESTRIAN Tyler Robertson

75 | HORSE





The Milton Inn

83 | ASK




Kate Houlihan



Danielle Demers E D I TO R I A L CO N S U LTAN T

Jackie McFarland Laurie Berglie


Pam Maley INTERN

Kelsey Langsdale CO N T R I B U TO R S

Alli Addison, Jackie McFarland, Laurie Berglie, Pam Maley, Erinn Lew, Larissa McCalla, Kelsey Langsdale, Jana Cohen Barbe, Terri Roberson Psy.D., Dr. Carrie Wicks, Ph.D., Ashley Neuhof P H OTO G R A P H E R S

Ashley Neuhof, Kate Houlihan, Lucio Landa, Jonathan Cherry, Amy McCool, Sarah Appel, Will Draper, Larissa McCalla, EqSol, Jeff Rogers, Beverly Funkhouser, Jeremias Morandell, Jump Media, Anwar Esquivel, PSV Photos, Alex Pacheco, 3rd Shutter from the Sun, Phelps Media Group, Enrique Urdaneta, Diana De Rosa, Lili Weik Photography, Stefano Grasso/LGCT, Alejandro Palafox, Joseph Mixan, Samantha Moray, Bruce Weber P R I N T E D I N C A N A DA ON THE COVER: Edwina Tops-Alexander on her way to the Grand Prix win at the 2017 Saut Hermès; photo © Lucio Landa Horse & Style Magazine is an equestrian lifestyle publication that is published bi-monthly and available at participating tack shops nationwide for $10, and while supplies last at large training centers and hunter jumper horse shows. The written and visual contents of this magazine are protected by copyright. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is legally prohibited. Copyright © 2017 Horse & Style Magazine LLC. TM




Equestrian Expression

may/june ·




88 | CAN


Emily Pollard



68 | OUT

Sarah Appel


37 | OUT

44 | NEW




Karen Polle


10 | 10




Emily Pollard

Jackie McFarland

Danielle Demers

Pam Maley

Emily Pollard uses her BA in English from Saint Mary’s College of California to teach, write, and edit. She has worked in the equestrian industry for the majority of her life, as a groom, assistant trainer, barn manager, and everything in between. She trained and competed her horse, Skyler Ace, to the FEI level. She now enjoys sharing her passion for horses with her husband and two young daughters.

Jackie and Duncan McFarland own EqSol, a marketing solutions company. After spending a decade in Southern California, in 2010, just in time for WEG, they moved to Lexington, Kentucky. Amazed at how time flies, the EqSol Team has grown, now reaching from CA to the UK, with exciting projects knocking at the door.

A lifelong equestrian, Danielle Demers has always been inspired by horses. After graduating with a BFA in Painting, she worked to find a way to combine her passions for art, design, and the equestrian lifestyle. As a member of the EqSol Creative team since 2013, her interests have been melded together more perfectly than she could have imagined.

An avid former foxhunter, Pam knows well that special bond between horse and rider. With her husband she was co-owner of Dunford Farm, a Thoroughbred farm in Lexington, Kentucky, where she was involved in every aspect of the horses’ lives. Her journey with horses continues as a member of the EqSol Team.

Alli Addison

Laurie Berglie

Larissa McCalla

Terri Roberson, Psy.D.

Alli was born, raised and still lives on a ranch that has been in her family since 1837, located north of Santa Barbara, CA. Alli holds a BS and MS in Business Marketing from California Polytechnic State University. A lifelong equestrian, she has a passion for riding hunter/jumpers, loves art and the equestrian lifestyle. Alli also enjoys spending time with her husband and children.

Laurie Berglie was born, raised, and currently resides in Maryland. She enjoys renovating her fixer-upper farm, reading horse books, and training and competing her two OTTBs, Misty, her wild mare, and Bailey, her easygoing gelding. Laurie began her blog, “Maryland Equestrian,” an Equestrian Lifestyle Guide, in 2011. She has a BA in English from Stevenson University and an MA in Humanities from Towson University.

An equine enthusiast, entrepreneur, and attorney, Larissa has a passion for all things equestrian. As owner of Equuleus Designs, she combines her love of horses, design, and photography to provide a personalized experience that delivers custom-made fashion, accessories, and décor that reflect a customer’s individual style and passion. Equuleus Designs also offers curated collections from partner photographers and artists.

A licensed clinical psychologist, Terri Roberson combines her passion for horses with her clinical work in equine-assisted psychotherapy. She currently sits on the board of Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center. Over 25 years on the show circuit has given her an eye for equestrian style and provides constant inspiration for her frequent contributions to H&S.

Kelsey Langsdale

Erinn Lew

Jana Cohen Barbe

Ashley Neuhof

Kelsey competed in her first horse show while attending UC Davis for Political Science. After completing her degree, she turned her back on politics and headed to the barn. She has worked as an assistant for Dressage and H/J trainers in CA. This fall, she started an internship with Horse & Style Magazine and has enjoyed blending her love of horses and writing, and experiencing the best in international show jumping.

Erinn is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College, where she completed her degree in journalism and sociology, and rode for the IHSA. Although a Bay Area native, she got her start riding on the East Coast and competed as a junior on the Los Angeles circuit in the jumpers and equitation. She brings her experience in journalism, fashion, and online media to Horse & Style as a contributor.

Jana is a Partner and Global Vice Chair of Dentons, the largest law firm in the world. A foremost authority in real estate law and business management, Jana is a frequent author and speaker on leadership, crisis management, the role of women in business and professional advancement. An avid equestrian who owns a working farm in Kentucky, Jana examines the interplay between business and riding.

A former three-day event rider, Ashley’s love of horses runs deep. Her photography has taken her around the world and her images have been exhibited in New York City galleries and major magazines. When she is not behind the lens, Ashley can be found riding her Thoroughbred mare and enjoying the outdoors.


· may/june


I C ON I C NEWPORT BEACH EQUESTRIAN PROPERTY w w w. M y R e d B a r n R a n c h . c o m

JODY CHAPMAN C 949.689.8594 BRE#01338862 Surterre Properties®, Inc. does not guarantee accuracy of all data, including all measurements and calculations of area. Information is obtained from various sources and has not been, and will not be, verified by Broker or Agent of MLS. All information should be independently reviewed and verified for accuracy. Surterre Properties BRE#01778230

F R O M the


I’ll always have Paris

My trip to the Saut Hermès this spring marked my tenth trip to Paris, and in a way, each trip is always more special than the last. When I’m in Paris, the present and past have a way of blending together – filling my mind with fond memories and thoughts of new adventures. I feel like I get to experience all the significant stages of my life again. I remember my first trip just after high school graduation, my semester abroad one summer at the Paris-Sorbonne University, my time honeymooning there with my husband, and the three Paris horse shows I have covered for Horse & Style. Each trip adds a new layer to my Paris memories, making the city even more special. In Paris, the familiarity of smells and sights, walking along the Seine river where I have walked so many times before, I feel at home. If my life were a movie, there would be a slow montage of me walking down the Champs-Élysées, first as a young wide-eyed teenager, then as a twenty-something dressed up for the Parisian night clubs, who thought she had it all figured out, then as a newlywed introducing her husband to her favorite city, then as a very pregnant mother stopping at every crepe stand, and finally, a combination of all the above. I don’t know when my next trip to Paris will be, but I know this most recent one wasn’t my last. Our cover story, The Saut Hermès Part Deux, on page 52, features one event that draws me, and thousands of others, to Paris. I may have taken one or two selfies while in Paris, but mostly I focused on shooting the Saut Hermès for print and social media. Like so many equestrian brands, our Instagram account is one of our thriving media outlets. Read about other popular equestrian Instagram accounts, and the impact social media has on the industry, on page 19.

Horse & Style publisher and editor-in-chief Sarah Appel at the Tuileries Garden in Paris this past spring while covering the Saut Hermès; photo © Samantha Moray

The World Cup™ Finals were back on American soil this year, and as if it were written in the stars, American rider McLain Ward and his horse HH Azur (Annie) were the leaders from day one. A mother and daughter duo bid on and won a trip to the WCFs during the Giant Steps Charity Gala and had an incredible time. Read about their Omaha adventure on page 33. H&S contributor, Laurie Berglie, got an inside look at the home of Rebecca Ray Designs owner, Rebecca Yuhasz Smith, in this installment of Horse & Style Home. See why her home is the epitome of equestrian style, on page 46. If you’ve never been to Paris, you must go. Forget your gluten-free and Whole30 diets for a few days, and devour all the crepes, baguettes, and French wine that you can. Afterwards, walk the streets of Paris and feel the magic of a city that is second to none. My favorite French term is à bientôt, which means see you soon. So, à bientôt, Paris! Cheers!


· may/june



by Emily Pollard

…you might not know about…

Karen Polle

Arguably, one of the biggest breakout moments of this year’s Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida, was on Saturday, March 11th when twenty-four-year-old Karen Polle and her star mount, With Wings, won the $380,000 Douglas Elliman CSI5* Grand Prix. This is after she won the $130,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup only two days before! Competing alongside McLain Ward, Eric Lamaze and Margie Engle to name a few, it was a week that certainly proved this pair is making great strides in the international arena. Polle was born in Japan, and though she grew up in New York City, she holds dual citizenship in Japan and the United States. She purchased With Wings in her last junior year and in their seven years together they have progressed from the Low Juniors to jumping a ‘meter-sixty.’ She credits the horse for changing the course of her riding career. Polle was thrilled about their victory at WEF because she “always felt like he [was] a real winner.” Polle now rides for Japan and has set her sights on competing in the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.


Polle uses Pure Barre and Vinyasa Yoga to help build better balance and a tighter position for when she rides.


She graduated from Yale University with a major in Economics. Originally interested in Chemistry, Polle realized that the four hour labs on Friday afternoons were too difficult to balance with her riding.


Polle and Wings each wear lucky ‘things’ – she has a ‘W’ ring, he has a bonnet with a flag of Japan.


While growing up she played soccer competitively and admits she was “pretty good.”


She loves her pet fish and has a fish tank built into a wall in her house. Her favorites are exotic types like angelfish, blowfish and lionfish.


· may/june


Her other favorite pet is her rescue dog Minnie, an eleven year old Chihuahua-Jack Russell mix she has owned for about four years.


She describes going to Europe to train with Paul Schockemöhle last summer as an experience that totally changed her riding.


Polle speaks fluent Japanese.


Along with the Olympics, Polle has set her sights on competing at Aachen, With Wings, of course.


Polle loves how her Samshield helmet can change ‘looks’ – and changes it in subtle ways on different days. But on grand prix days she always wears her Miss Shield!

Photo © Ashley Neuhof

A REVOLUTION IN FLY SPRAY OutSmart® Fly Spray Powered by Nature’s Technology



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P R O pop


Frank Madden with students; photo © Jump Media


What are important elements to consider when developing the talents of young riders? What can the United States do to make the sport accessible and to connect young talent with good opportunities? Each issue, a new question is answered by an industry professional. Have a question you want answered? Send it to


· may/june

“You could write a book on this subject! I think for developing young riders there are two avenues to consider. First, you have what the federations are trying to provide us with at the horse shows. One of the major initiatives we have seen is the addition of the Under 25 division. We have added U25 classes to our Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows, and they have been very well received and a great addition, for not only the show, but also the riders at that age. There is also the Emerging Athletes Program (EAP) through the USHJA, which helps riders gain the knowledge and experience they need to excel. The other avenue you have to consider is how an aspiring young rider gets ahead in the sport, and I think that comes through individual help. Most importantly, seasoned professionals in our sport need to be constantly aware of the young talent coming along and do what they can to help further their education. At Old Salem Farm, we have developed a working student program to give young riders opportunities to gain experience with professional trainers, and to compete quality horses, while also contributing to the farm itself. It is a complicated question, and it seems that the sport has grown so much from when I was a kid. The demand for the top horses that young riders and young professionals need to ride in order to advance in the sport is bigger than ever. That increases the value of those horses, which in turn makes them difficult to obtain. However, the good news is that the sport is booming and when the right horse comes along, there are many exceptional shows, and good prize money to be won. This attracts the best talent and contributes greatly to developing a rider’s aspirations of moving up in the industry.”

— FRANK MADDEN, head trainer at Old Salem Farm in North Salem, NY  Old Salem Farm |  @oldsalemfarmny  @oldsalemfarmny |  @frankmadden618 

Spring Summer 2017






1. 5.

6. 7. 4. 1. Richard Reinhart and Seasoned, who are frequent competitors in the weekly WEC Grand Prix, compete in the indoor arena during the WEC Winter Finale, April 5th–9th 2. The stunning WEC circuit champion ribbons are one of a kind 3. Izzy Beisel and her adorable little pony, Weebiscuit, share a fun moment after their class 4. Robert Mendoza and Elise Mendoza watch big sister Nora riding toward her dream of going to Pony Finals this year 5. Horse show dads are the best! 6. A rider appreciates her horse’s hard work after a round in the Jumper ring 7. Trainers Patty Rogers and Jeff Gogul coach junior rider Hannah Eddlemon before a big class


· may/june

Photos © 3rd Shutter from the Sun

B E T W E E N the


by Laurie Berglie

Follow the Sun with these Polo Hits Polo Life, Adam Snow & Shelley Onderdonk, D.V.M. Players, E.H. Humphreys

This month we bring you two polo books – one fact and one fiction. Polo Life: Horses, Sport, 10 and Zen is a memoir that showcases the real lives of 10-goal polo player, Adam Snow, and his wife, an equine veterinarian, Shelley Onderdonk, D.V.M. This honest narrative details the good, the bad, and the ugly of the polo world. While Snow achieved his goal of being a professional polo player with a 10-goal ranking, he is the first to admit that, “following the sun,” (continuously traveling to warmer climates throughout the year to play polo), drastically affected his personal life. While Snow crisscrossed the globe with his fleet of ponies, his wife stayed behind to raise their three sons, and cared for and trained their large herd, preparing them for the physical demands of polo. But despite the hurdles that a long-distance marriage created, the family has remained together and still happily resides on their farm in Aiken, South Carolina. Players: A Game of Grit and Glory gives us another in-depth look into the world of polo, yet this time through the eyes of fiction writer, E.H. Humphreys.Victoria “Vic” Blake is the leading female polo player in the United Kingdom and, arguably, the world.Vic, too, follows the sun playing polo in Argentina, California, and England, her home country. This book accurately portrays the life of a polo star and follows Vic’s team on their quest for England’s prestigious Gold Cup. But all the victories they desire will only come after they learn how to play and communicate as a team, which, with the various personalities of each member, is something that takes quite a bit of work! Read about the stellar horses and the talented riders that make up the glamorous world of high-goal polo by picking up copies of both of these books in print or online. Paperback & Kindle formats available at

FEATURE by Alli Addison

Two major events took place for me at the turn of this New Year. First, I succumbed to increasing my data plan after several months of overages and arguing with my husband regarding who consumed more data (turned out to be me). Secondly, I acquired new (and very chic) eyewear to assist in my eye fatigue, from, as embarrassing as this sounds, staring at my phone too often. In the words of Gaga, “I confess, I am lost, in the age of the social.” I find it wildly entertaining, inspiring, and informative, and I have a strong appreciation for the social types that offer an artistic eye, original content and loads of decorum. Equestrian culture is no stranger to this data-consuming universe, and the hordes of popular culture folk are no stranger to loving the equestrian aesthetic. Why is this? Is it the properties, the locations, the sport, the travel, the attire, the tack, the lifestyle? Is it the horses, the greys, blacks, chestnuts, and bays, in all shapes and sizes? The movement of them, the athleticism, the elegance? Or is it a known fact that regardless of your discipline, skill set, training and backing, it is the love of the animal and the sport that binds us all? It’s everything. And it’s intoxicating. So whether you make a living in the horse business, own a horse or just dress like you do, there is a wide, wonderful, social world of equestrianism just waiting for your prying eyes and twitching fingers. A platform at your disposal that is primed and ready for you to offer the world original, artistic and witty content on the things you love so dearly, horse included. Some of these you may know, some may be new to you. Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and beyond – here’s how to navigate the best of it all, learn a little along the way and get involved in The Age of the Equestrian Social.

THE BUSINESS OF SOCIAL MEDIA The revolution has begun. Well, truthfully, it began quite some time ago. Businesses have evolved over the last decade and have transitioned from contemplating the importance of a social presence to fully immersing themselves in these marketing Goliathlike tools. And the equine industry has followed course. Horse & Style Magazine sat down with brand marketing consultant/entrepreneur/hunter circuit regular Kristin Thornton of Street to Stable® to discuss the importance of the social world in the marketplace. So where does a business begin, be it an equestrian clothing brand, a tack store, a show barn, a photographer? And what is the best social platform to consider? “Each client needs to look at their ideal demographic, specifically age, to best connect with their preferred followers,” says Thornton. Kristin goes on to say that a business can have great success in utilizing filters, graphics, and a tone of voice that resonates with their target group, regardless of the platform. Consistency, consistency, consistency... Whatever social media platform you choose to be a part of, make sure to post content on a consistent basis. “Two of the biggest components to building a successful social media presence are consistency and communication. Exposure is key for getting sponsors or, if you are a sponsored rider, it is imperative to mention sponsors consistently within your posts. The use of video, images, tags, and shared posts is a great way to let your followers know why you love the brands and products that sponsor you,” says equestrian social media consultant Jenna Rae Dana of the California-based firm J. Mac & Co. “Lastly, utilize the ‘insight’ tools to review your page analytics. These tools can tell you which of your posts have spoken to your audience, when your fans/followers are online, and detailed data on your audience (i.e. location, age, gender, etc.). This information can help you tailor content to match your targeted audience more efficiently,” says Dana. T H E A RT O F C U R AT I N G G R E AT CO N T E N T This seems to be the big x-factor question. How do you curate quality,


· may/june

Virginia Varinelli, The Fashion Blogger |  @virginiavarinelli Italian fashion blogger, social influencer, model, editor, digital consultant and equestrian Virginia Varinelli is one of those fashion bloggers that ‘does it right.‘ But she is one of the only high fashion bloggers with a true love for the equestrian lifestyle. In fact, she is so deeply committed to the lifestyle, sport and her passion, that she even launched a ‘Horse Edition‘ of her popular blog, The Ugly Truth of V.   The Ugly Truth of V.  @Didi1311  @didivarinelli

Eloise Stevenson, The Lifestyle Gal |  Slow living and speedy hooves in the stunning countryside of New Zealand. The family lifestyle-oriented account of UK-born and NZ-based Eloise Stevenson is an elegant reminder of the beauty and simplicity in a life spent with horses, and will likely make you want to pack your bags and take a holiday.

engaging content? “We like to combine sharing images of our artists, paintings and sculptures, exhibitions, and events at the gallery, with complementing artistic images, which we feel will appeal to our followers,” says Emma North of Osborne Studio Gallery. “All of these images and artistic collaborations encompass the art world and equestrian lifestyle, providing the underlying theme,” says North. Social platforms offer users the ability to curate a true gallery, one that evolves from a blank canvas. It is the ultimate digital expression of an inspiration board, and a look at the overall gallery can make quite the impression and tell a story.

Osborne Studio Gallery, The Art Gallery |  @osbornestudiogallery For an entirely artistic, engaging and contemporary equestrian social experience, one should look no further than Osborne Studio Gallery. The UK-based gallery represents the world’s leaders in equestrian art alongside names in figurative, landscape and bronze work. The curation of their Instagram account, where they creatively combine represented works with various lifestyle images, is on-point.  The Osborne Studio Gallery  @osborne_studio

Julie Ferris, The Artist |  @julieferris_equine_artist Julie Ferris, no stranger to Horse & Style readers, creates breathtaking works influenced by the symbolism, power, history and beauty of the horse. As Ferris states, “Something worth doing deserves to be done excellently,” and her social media presence mirrors that statement, filling our feeds with light, airy glimpses into her daily life as an artist.

“When creating content there are multiple rules that I recommend, but three stand out. The first is to have an objective; the second is consistency in look, feel and voice; and the third is to make a personal connection with your audience. As an example, a highend retail client should be posting products that they have in stock or can easily access from their vendor. Additionally, their pictures should always be crisp and clear and when possible demonstrate their product in use by a client or displayed in their boutique,” says Kristin Thornton. Southern California retailer Valencia Sport Saddlery adds, “be inspired, tell a story, and always proofread.” Amateur Swedish photographer Annika Holtz reminds users to capture, share and engage in the things they are passionate about. “If you love horses, try to capture your best moments with them,” says Holtz. “Determine a theme or color scheme, add humor in with your photos and captions, and be yourself. Consider the meaning of your posts – why are you doing it and for what purpose? Posts with meaning are more relatable and show depth. Get creative and interact with your followers by asking questions and engaging them. Have a variety of things you like to post and find a way to link them together. Having an Instagram is like a virtual gallery of your life or business and you are the curator,” says equestrian artist Julie Ferris.

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SHOWING A LITTLE DECORUM If Emily Post were alive today, she would be having a heyday with social media protocol. But at the end of the day, the general rule is to keep it clean and keep it civil. Always take the high road. “The lack of face-to-face interaction allows others to be brazen in comments. The advice I would give the corporate e-commerce team that reported to me was to respond politely. Occasionally, I send a direct message requesting more information if it is a serious issue that could potentially harm your brand or image. This might be poor customer service from your business or someone commenting about an action of one of your sponsored riders. It is important to have the necessary facts when it comes to the reputation,” says Kristin Thornton of Street to Stable®. Stay positive. “Kindness feels good. In this world right now there can’t ever be too much love and compassion. The old saying, ‘If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all,’ still is the best advice. I am a mother and I know that a lot of my followers are young girls, like my daughter. Everything I post or comment on is being seen by young, impressionable eyes,” says Jennifer Sims of the @styledequestrian. C U LT U R E I M PAC T The impact of social media upon the equestrian culture is one of unity; bringing together communities and disciplines from all around the world – helping riders keep in touch, providing a source of equestrian news, and assisting in equestrian related businesses. “One thing that was beautiful and united the equestrian community worldwide was when equestrians came together under the hashtag #rideforolivia to show their support and to honor Olivia Inglis and her family when tragedy struck March 2016. The movement spread so quickly that within a few days after the accident, thousands upon thousands of equestrians all over the world were posting images of themselves and their horses in her honor and memory, sharing her story. This sort of beauty through


· may/june

Christoffer Adriansson, The Rider |  @christofferadriansson Is there such thing as an equestrian heaven on earth Instagram account? Yes, there is, and it belongs to Swedish-born, currently US-based rider Christoffer Adriansson. With a keen eye, a sharp tongue and working alongside famed equestrian photographers such as Philippa Davin, Christoffer takes followers into his world of being a freelance rider for some of the sports biggest names. And it is heaven on earth.

Annika Holtz, The Photographer |  @annikaholtzphotography Annika may refer to herself as a self-taught amateur, but her photography is nothing short of impressive, artistic and skilled. Based in Sweden, Annika finds herself traveling across the globe, with a camera always in hand. From sun-drenched California ranches to Sweden's moody, classical streets, her photographic depictions of the horse are artistically spellbinding.

connectivity and sharing would not be possible without social media platforms in the equestrian community or beyond,” says Julie Ferris. Change is created by culture influencers. “Kate Kosnoff, the founder of Riders for Well-Being, recently expressed in an interview that she would like to see the young competitive equestrians with large fan bases use their accounts to help other riders. I believe that all influential equestrians can use social media in demonstrating that if you want to succeed in this sport, it is possible, regardless of the amount of financial resources that are at your disposal. This sport is ultimately about passion, hard work and dedication,” says Kristin Thornton.

Valencia Sport Saddlery, The Retailer |  @valenciasaddlery Quality, choice and for the fun of horses – of the many equestrian retailers using social media, Southern California-based Valencia Sport Saddlery is one that implements social media campaigns with elegant, engaging content, all while not becoming too ‘commercial.’ From their own private labels, to their premier Butet offerings, to highlights of clientele, to the latest in equestrian style, Valencia Sport Saddlery’s social presence is consistent, well-curated and inspiring.  Valencia Saddlery  @vssadlery

Jennifer Sims, The Clothes Horse |  @styledequestrian Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who has the most stylish equestrian clothing of them all? That would be rider and US Equestrian Ambassador Jennifer Sims. With a keen sense of style, and the largest riding gear-filled closet in all the land, Jennifer excels in showcasing a range of equestrian fashion inspiration on a daily basis. The @styledequestrian Instagram account is your one-stop-shop, daily dose of eq style.

“Social media has given a voice to many brands and individuals who would otherwise be unheard. The deep pool of equestrian content is a great way to discover news, products, manufacturers, and services. It’s totally awesome how expansive the worldwide equestrian community is, yet bound closely by a true passion for all things horse. Equestrian culture is driven by passion. Social media is extremely influential in the horse world, bringing equestrian sport photos, equine products, and lifestyle images directly to the horsecrazed public,” says Ecole Lathrop of Valencia Sport Saddlery. THE FUTURE OF THE EQUESTRIAN SOCIAL More coverage, more eyes, more learning, more interjection into popular culture. The future is equestrian. Ok, that’s a pop culture reference and perhaps a stretch. But there is a future for the equestrian in the mainstream. No doubt. “The use of YouTube is a terrific learning tool. Riders now have the opportunity to watch winning rounds without the expense of travel and to learn new techniques from coaches they might not have access to,” says Kristin Thornton. She continues, “We will see more and more professional photography from world-class events around the globe. This is an exciting step in exposing equestrian sport to spectators internationally and encouraging growth.” All photos courtesy of account holder.

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1. Donning the traditional celebratory sombrero, Martin Fuchs showers everyone with champagne after his LGCT Grand Prix of Mexico City victory 2. Lorenzo de Luca wins the Trofeo Banorte Cup on the gorgeous Halifax van het Kluizebos 3. Special sombrero centers decorate the ribbons from LGCT Mexico City 4. This skillfully designed skull is one example of the uniquely made in Mexico items available for purchase 5. Eric Lamaze and Fine Lady had a fabulous 1st place finish in the Trofeo Massimo Dutti 6. Gonzalo Azcarraga exhibits stellar jumping style aboard Quite Nice 5. The pair were 2nd to Bertram Allen and Quiet Easy 4 in the Trofeo GNP Seguros 7. Everyone loves Pedro Cebulka, five-star Ringmaster extraordinaire


· may/june

Photos © Alejandro Palafox (1, 3,4,7), Anwar Esquivel (2,5,6)





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6. 1. An aerial shot of the impressive venue for the Miami Beach leg of the Longines Global Champions Tour 2. Just two beachgoers, out for a morning jog 3. Lorenzo de Luca and his stallion Halifax van het Kluizebos win the Miami Beach 2017 CSI5* 1.45/1.50m 4. Jérôme Guéry of Belgium gives a thumbs up after winning Saturday’s LGCT Grand Prix of Miami Beach on Grand Cru van de Rozenberg 5. Riders enjoyed perfect beach weather the entire show 6. How often can you hack your horses while watching the sunset over Miami Beach? 7. After a blazing fast Speed Class win with Creedance, Kent Farrington and Ben Maher (with Don Vito) of the London Knights also earned the GCL Miami Beach team victory

Photos © Stefano Grasso/LGCT (1,3), Ashley Neuhof (2,4,5,6,7)

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B E H I N D the by Erinn Lew


Manifattura VALOR

At first glance, Manifattura VALOR products are striking – clean, elegant and distinctly European designs with tasteful details. A closer look at their line of pure wool felt saddle pads, blankets, hand-woven apparel and thoughtfully crafted accessories reveals a “metaluxury” brand deeply committed to quality, sustainability and the needs of the horse.


· may/june

Photo © Jeremias Morandell


ounder Kathrin Birk was born with a love of horses and dogs and an affinity for textiles and materials. As a child, she sewed leather saddles for her toy horses – since in her opinion, the plastic ones had too little detail. This passion for natural fabrics and craftsmanship carried her through her luxury fashion studies in Italy; however she emerged somewhat disillusioned with the industry. After spending time in the Italian luxury fashion industry, Kathrin teamed up with a friend and associate to create products that benefitted the animals she adored, researching allergies caused by pollutants and issues arising from bio-mechanical functions. Kathrin had noticed that although most European riders utilize sustainable fashion and living products, unfortunately, many textile horse accessories are not sustainable and are often produced at a low quality level. She wondered why horse owners chose synthetic and rubber materials for the sensitive backs of their equine partners. It seemed to her that many riders hadn’t considered alternatives, since synthetic products were often mass produced.With industrial saddle pads, for instance, she found that many styles looked the same and needed to be changed or replaced often. As she sought to create a sustainable and highly functional replacement, Kathrin spoke

first to riders, who made her realize that the industry sometimes forgets the demands of the horse, and that many products have the same defects and trouble spots.

discover a tiny splash of color on an off-white pad. This comes from the marking of the sheep – and is further proof that the natural felt is not chemically treated or bleached.”

“We saw that horse rugs always slip over the back and that they are often electrostatically charged. So we developed a tailored fit with clever stitching, made out of 100% pure wool with an internal strap.”

Whenever possible, Kathrin and her team use only local raw materials, which are often limited and therefore precious. For example, the German deerskin trim used on several products is tanned for more than a year before it is ready for use. Manifattura VALOR also associates with the UNESCO World Heritage Sheep Migration, using the wool from around 6,000 sheep who participate in an ancient spring migration through the Italian and Austrian Alps to their summer pastures. Textiles made from this wool are produced in the Alps by village craftsmen who possess traditional knowledge and an unparalleled attention to detail.Their dedication to the craft has yielded completely unique textiles rich with color, history and care.

Together, the two partners contacted numerous suppliers, tested materials, samples and prototypes, and searched for additional partners. After almost eight years of research and countless discussions with suppliers, saddleries and physiotherapists, Manifattura VALOR launched in 2012. Manifattura VALOR’s saddle pads, a staple in their range of equestrian and canine-focused products, are all one-of-a-kind.The pure wool felt is manufactured by hand, often on machines that are more than 100 years old. Each pad is visibly unique due to the differing colors of sheep born in that particular year. For example, more brown sheep one year will make for silver-grey felt that will have a slight brown tinge.These differences are minimal and hardly noticeable, yet lend depth to the range of neutral shades. “We think that these are the most beautiful and noble colors because they come directly from nature. Sometimes our customers are very lucky and

Even before the sewing process begins, eight individuals will interact with the product, including shepherds who tend to the freeroaming sheep who lend their wool. Once sewing and manufacturing begin, there are 26 individual steps, and 40 in total that are required to achieve a finished product. It is abundantly clear that each item is made with love and an astounding dedication to detail. Unlike many companies who may also tout their wares as “handmade,” Manifattura

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VALOR rarely manufactures products in series. In the same way that Kathrin created handmade saddles for her horses as a child, each saddle pad is made as a unique piece for each client. This high quality, however, requires a longer production period than a factory-made product, a feature that Kathrin thought would be an obstacle at first. On the contrary, her experience has been nothing but positive – clients are usually aware and accepting of the production time, especially as they receive one-of-a-kind products that have undergone stringent inspections and are highly durable. The labor and time-intensive process also results in another crucial difference: price point. “We cannot compete with the price of most brands, however we don’t even want to,” says Kathrin. “We want to pay all of our craftsmen for their excellent work. The production chain consists of entirely handmade processes which involve many people, so a lot of time and effort has gone into the products.” With deerskin trim, hand-manufactured wool, fine cashmere and gold accents, Manifattura VALOR’s pieces qualify as near treasures. The brand’s founders were inspired by natural materials, colors, shapes and timeless designs. Kathrin notes that designer inspiration can come from anything, whether it be the shape of a flower or the course of a river seen from a plane. Aesthetics, however, are second to function.

“Our philosophy is to respect the needs of the horse first,” says Kathrin. “This is the most important starting point. We ask ourselves questions like: What is the real function of a saddle pad? What were the original demands of use from the cavalry time to today? We don’t focus on what we can put on the market in a new design or special price range. We think back to the origin of the product and transform those features to meet today’s demands.” “I think we are the only meta-luxury brand in the world that concentrates on accessories for horses and dogs,” says Kathrin. Once the main functional requirements of a product are met, she and her team often customize and create new products for their clients. Recently, they designed fly sheets made with bobbin lace and natural yarns. The pieces took a total of three years to complete. “We have a lot of sustainable ideas that are also a bit crazy,” she admits. Today the brand aims to demonstrate that real luxury involves both knowledge and time, as well as to showcase the benefits of natural and sustainable materials for horses.There are still great strides to be taken before a high level of sustainability and mindfulness can be achieved in the use of textiles in horse sport. Kathrin points out that although the equestrian sport is fast paced and performance-oriented, as horsemen and consumers, we need to consider the functionality and origin of our equipment more critically.   @manifatturavalor


Product photos courtesy of Manifattura VALOR

· may/june

Starting mid-May, Manifattura VALOR products will be available through their online showroom; however the best way to purchase is to contact them directly. In Kathrin’s opinion, this is the ideal way to interact with customers – getting to know their needs, visiting them at home and helping to select the best product. The brand is also available at select international events throughout the year. Brand ambassadors come from a variety of disciplines and regions, including professional dressage riders Julia Ellsässer and Alexandra Stadelmayer, and show jumpers Tina Deuerer, Sophie St. Clair and Antonia Sabathil. The journey each product takes, from conception to the back of the horse, is thoughtfully engineered to benefit all parties involved, from the sheep of the Alps, to the skilled craftsman, to the discerning customer. Though they may have a business model that differs from others in the industry, Manifattura VALOR prides itself on doing the right thing by their suppliers, craftsmen and customers. Their enterprise is one of patience and trust; Kathrin doesn’t hesitate to call them a “family” with an appreciation for the knowledge and experiences of others. With an immense dedication to quality and a refreshing standard for sustainability and tradition, Manifattura VALOR products inspire a consciousness in their owners – one that is both stylish and ethical.


CAMILLE LEBLOND on an amazing HITS Desert Circuit

Best Junior Rider Award: DC VIII



Reserve Champion, Large Jr Hunter 16-17: DC VII Third Place, $50,000 International Hunter Derby: DC VIII -

Champion, Maclay: DC III

with Alexis Taylor-Silvernale


GRAFFITO Champion, 16-17 Equitation: DC III, DC IV, DC VI, DC VII & VIII Reserve Champion, 16-17 Equitation: DC II & V Champion, Maclay: DC VII Champion, USEF Hunter Seat Medal: DC V Champion, CPHA Foundation Medal: DC IV Champion, Marshall & Sterling Jr Medal: DC IV

Champion, WIHS Medal: DC VIII Champion, Marshall & Sterling Jr Medal: DC VII Reserve Champion, Large Jr Hunter Classic 16-17: DC II & VI Reserve Champion, Large Jr Hunter 16-17: DC V Reserve Champion, WIHS Medal: DC VII

206.295.4122 | ALERONSTABLES.COM | KIRKLAND, WA Photos © ESI Photography | EqSol Ad Design





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4. 1. Steve Guerdat and Corbinian on course 2. Athina Onassis soaring over an oxer 3. Sheikh Ali Bin Khalid Al Thani prepares to start his course 4. Edwina Tops-Alexander with plenty of scope 5. Daniel Deusser and First Class van Eeckelghem in the jump off


· may/june

Photos © Sarah Appel


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10. 6. Riders from the Al Shaqab riding school participated in a jumping demonstration with helpful instruction from Daniel Deusser 7. A winner’s cooler from Al Shaqab 8. The ringside access allowed local visitors to get extremely close to the action 9. Henrik von Eckermann looking toward the next jump 10. “Where the best come together” 11. A local riding academy student and his friend enjoyed the show

may/june ·


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FEATURE by Jackie McFarland

Horse & Style in the Heartland photo © Omaha Equestrian Foun dation the Longines FEI World Cup™ Finals in Omaha Truth be told, many equestrians wondered about traveling to the midwest for the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup™ Finals. From facility to fanfare, could a group from Omaha, Nebraska host an important FEI show jumping (and dressage) championship? Would the competition be world-class? Why Omaha?

McLain Ward & HH Azur, photo © Lili Weik Photography

maha to © O s, pho oundation n e k s o ian F Lisa R Equestr

Several years ago, when the FEI chose Omaha’s bid to host these prestigious finals over metropolitan powers like Hong Kong, the small but mighty city started gearing up to show the world that it could present a top notch, world-class competition. With a fairytale finish for HH Azur (‘Annie’) and McLain Ward, it turns out that Omaha truly opened the doors to an amazing April of show jumping in North America. Ward can finally add the Longines FEI World Cup™ Final Champion title to his impressive list of athletic accolades. And Omaha can claim a successful execution of a championship equestrian event. The well-matched pair didn’t win by a hair, they led from day one, without making a single error along the way. With his wife and daughter watching every stride, Ward set an ideal stage for thousands of adoring fans of the sport. As one of America’s favorite Olympians achieving a long-awaited international goal, Ward, accompanied by his talented Double H mare and his family, represents the sport well. Charming and well-spoken, Ward sat with his two-year-old daughter Lilly at the press conference on day two, humbled yet determined. “Every day comes with challenges. I’m a little disappointed to say I’ve been to 17 World Cups and never won; for me that’s frustrating.

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I like to be able to stay focused; I like for things to go my way a little bit, and the biggest challenge for me is to keep my head up,” Ward said. “I’ve got my wife and my daughter here which always helps me. And I just stay focused, one jump at a time, one round at a time. I try not to focus on what the others are doing. I try to do the best that I can do in every situation, and that’s about all I can do. I work pretty hard at trying to keep my head right. It’s a struggle for me at times; I’ve spoken a lot about it. It’s something I try to master; hopefully I can master it soon.” So, knowing full well what it took to stand atop that podium, Ward said on the final day, “I tried to do the best I could every day. And as you saw, Gregory (Wathelet) was right on my heels with just a couple seconds difference coming into today. I think you have to go into these championships, with today’s level of riding, believing you have to jump four clear rounds to win it. It’s not like it was before, where you could make a mistake and come back; everyone is just too good. These guys don’t give you an inch.” Beyond McLain, Omaha did host a world-class competition.Welllocated and spacious, the CenturyLink Center offered everything equestrian during World Cup™ week. From a Horse Discovery Zone, Gallery of Breeds and Demo arena to the Boutique Shopping Village that surrounded the warm-up arena, there was ample entertainment to accompany world-class competition. Riders, owners and grooms praised the ample space for warm-up, the footing, the Alan Wade courses and the Omaha atmosphere. Attendees, from spectators to staff, enjoyed the size of the indoor facility, ease of access, close-by accommodations, restaurants, shops and the friendly smiling faces of the locals. Some were lucky enough to make time for the ten minute drive from downtown to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. Ranked one of the best in the country, the sprawling property houses an impressive layout of animal habitats from all over the world. For taking on the task of hosting an event of this magnitude, we tip our hats to the Omaha Equestrian Foundation and the hard-working group who made the concept of bringing this championship to Omaha an overwhelming success. Spearheading this effort from inception was a name known well in Omaha, and now also well known with the FEI, Lisa Roskens. When asked if she could think of a better American ending to the event, she replied, “No I can’t, and especially not just any American, but McLain, who is a class act. He’s been a champion at all levels and is truly a great ambassador of our sport. I’m ecstatic! I really couldn’t have asked for better sport, better spectators, or better fun.” The FEI was also full of praise. John Roche, FEI Director of Jumping, said that this year’s Finals were ‘a shining example of what a championship event should be. And anyone who was here this week would have thought that they’ve been doing it forever.’ Offering a champagne toast to all involved, Sabrina Zeender, FEI Secretary General, said, “We have set here a new standard of what a World Cup™ Finals should be, and others will need to strive to meet it.” And from the sneak peek into the Omaha Equestrian Foundation’s strategic plan, there is more extraordinary show jumping in store in this city that doesn’t ‘coast’ as their motto boldly claims. So next time we hear about the Heartland hosting a championship event, we can rest assured it will be worth a visit.


· may/june

Horse & Style Hosts Giant Steps Auction Winners in Omaha by Larissa McCalla & Terri Roberson


hat happens after you win the Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center’s Charity Classic horse show silent auction trip, which this past year was the chance to attend the Longines FEI World Cup™ Finals in Omaha? You and your daughter head to the Midwest, and as part of your winnings, Horse & Style arranges exciting adventures, and then writes about your experience, of course. Dawn Klinedinst and her daughter Hannah flew from Southern California to Omaha, Nebraska to attend their first ever World Cup™ Finals together. With American favorite McLain Ward winning each round of show jumping and ultimately crowned the champion, choosing this show proved a genius way to embark on their new experience of seeing what it means to show at the highest international levels, all while staying in the United States. Watching some of the best horse and rider combinations the sport has to offer, a quick immersion into the championship format began with Thursday evening’s speed class. In securing the lead on day one, McLain Ward and HH Azur set the stage for what would become an extremely exciting Finals. Since the next leg was an evening class, that left plenty of time on Friday to enjoy the Boutique Shopping Village. Once Dawn and Hannah spied the Sarm Hippique shop they couldn’t resist stopping to look. Their fashion experts, Lauren and Tony, assisted Hannah as she perused the beautiful selection of show apparel, and the shopping day was officially underway. After trying on several hunt coats, as much as she admired the jumper bling on a few, Hannah stayed true to her hunter and equitation roots and selected a

Dawn & Hannah Klinedinst, photo © Larissa McCalla

Dawn & Hannah with H&S cover stars Eric Navet & Karl Cook, photo © EqSol

... a fantastic trip in support of a good cause.” Shopping at S photo © La arm Hippique, rissa McC alla

may/june ·


Longines bling, photo © Larissa McCalla

, e Luca enzo d EqSol r o L g © Meetin photo

Autographs from WCF '17 Champion McLain Ward, photo © Larissa M cCalla

classic navy coat and paired it with an on-trend, super-cute, new style, pure white show shirt. Next Dawn was off to try on the lovely, classic timepieces at the Longines store. Her favorite was the Longines Symphonette with a silver dial and diamonds. At that point it wasn’t clear which were flashier, the sparkly Longines watches or the fivestar horses and riders in the warm up ring just a few feet away. Later, Friday evening’s class tested the horses and riders and resulted in very few clear rounds. It featured a jump-off between six top class horse and rider pairs, including Ward and HH Azur, who again prevailed and took the evening with a blistering fast winning time. Saturday’s adventures began with equestrian celebrity sightings and signings, which both women said was the highlight of their trip. Last month’s Horse & Style cover stars, Eric Navet and Karl Cook, both spent some time with Dawn and Hannah, helping them soak in the atmosphere. Afterward, they had the opportunity to spend time with one of Horse & Style’s favorite five-star riders, Lorenzo de Luca. His Italian charm delighted them, as he discussed with Hannah his experiences on the international show jumping stage, as well as some flatwork tips. No equestrian celebrity sighting would be complete without a signature and picture with McLain Ward, who was leading after the first two days, and whom both Dawn and Hannah were rooting for to win. Ward happily signed an autograph for each, proving once again that, with his dedication, integrity, and talent, he is the perfect ambassador for top equestrian sport.


· may/june

While this was Dawn and Hannah’s first international championship, both have enjoyed the California horse show scene since Hannah’s childhood. With mom as her biggest fan, Hannah predominantly focuses on equitation, showing with Jim Hagman at Elvenstar. They spend so much time in the hunter and equitation rings that they often do not get to watch the show jumping, so their experience in the Heartland was a fresh and exciting view of the sport. As a student at Chapman University, Hannah currently balances college with riding. She loves knowing that when school gets stressful she can go out to the Elvenstar location in Orange County and ride her horse Connor (show name Caravaggio). Being with Connor provides an escape from the stresses of college life, and offers that inexplicable bliss that only a true horse – human partnership can offer. When asked how riding has given her perspective throughout her youth, she recounted a story about a serious injury her horse sustained and the patience required during his rehab, only to suffer an injury herself as he was healing, to further prolong their convalescence. The trust she had developed and nurtured with her horse was key to the road back to success in the show ring. Wrapping up a wonderful few days, this mother-daughter duo went home to California with more than they could’ve imagined. Cheering for, and meeting, an American rider who brought home a sweet victory in the country’s heartland made for the perfect ending to a trip that ultimately supported a good cause.




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4. 7. 5. 6. 8. 1. The impressive CenturyLink Center arena, home to the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup™ Final in Omaha, Nebraska 2. An up-close look at McLain rewarding ’Annie’ (HH Azur) on a job well done 3. A foreshadowing shot of the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Champions after their victory on the first night 4. Canada’s Keean White and Freedom Z showing scope and style 5. Steffi Graf and Ludger Beerbaum sign autographs for fans 6. Kids just wanna have fun, and from a breed barn to a show jumping course, there were loads of opportunities 7. Frenchman Kevin Staut looks impressive over the 1.60m version of the Omaha Zoo oxer 8. Show jumping legends discuss the course: Germany’s Marcus Ehning (left) and Great Britain’s Nick Skelton (right) Photos © Omaha Equestrian Foundation (1,5,6,8), Joseph Mixan (2,3,4,7)

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6. 1. Beautiful USHJA International Hunter Derby award cooler and ribbons 2. Looking gorgeous in the jog 3. Kenneth Vinther and Colicchio race to the win in the first $25,000 Markel Grand Prix of the 2017 season 4. Augusta Iwasaki and Small Soldier, winners of the first USHJA Pony Hunter Derby 5. Hannah Loly rode Zafira to a win in the 1.35m Jumper Classic, and then she was 2nd in the Markel Grand Prix on Asombro 6. Caroline Spogli congratulates Zeppelin on a job well done after they won the 1.25m Jumper Classic 7. Shiloh Roseboom had a great WCHR week, winning all five small pony hunter classes and the SmartPak Grand Pony Hunter Champion Award


· may/june

Photos © Amy McCool, #1 courtesy of Blenheim EquiSports

SEE BLU E With a quarter century of experience, Neil Jones Equestrian USA and Neil Jones Equestrian Europe, sees blue in your future. Let us find your perfect match.

Neil Jones +1 (561) 762-3089 | +32 475 42 46 18 Mavis Spencer +1 (310) 569-9357 | EQSOL AD DESIGN

RIDER by Erinn Lew


Salim Ejnaini French show jumper Salim Ejnaini made waves at the Longines Masters of Paris last December when he jumped an entire course blind – guided only by voice commands – in front of a crowd of thousands, many of whom had never encountered a blind rider before.


t age six, Salim was diagnosed with retinoblastoma, a cancer that rendered him partiallysighted for much of his childhood and completely blind by age sixteen. His journey as a rider has been one of sheer determination, joy and optimism which ultimately culminated in his inspiring demonstration at Longines Masters of Paris. Today he lives in Paris, where he works as a journalist at a French equestrian magazine and trains several days a week at a stable in the south of France. Salim’s desire not only to become a skilled and accomplished rider, but to show others the possibilities for blind and para-athletes, is evident in his approach to both his sport and his life.

Salim Ejnaini and Rapsody

Horse & Style: How did you begin riding? Salim Ejnaini: When I was partially-sighted, I could still more or less watch TV, I knew what a horse, a car looked like, what colors were – I could discover the world with my eyes but what I saw was not very helpful to me. I started riding at age twelve when my mother asked me if there was something I wanted to do outside of school. At first I didn’t tell her that I wanted to ride; it was expensive and I thought she’d think I was crazy. I felt like it was quite impossible. But one day I decided to tell her; she agreed, and we began looking for a club for me to join.

After one year, we found a club and a trainer to work with me under the condition that I would take private lessons in order to learn well, to become comfortable and to determine what I could and couldn’t do. After a while they told me, “You’re a good rider and you’re not so hard to teach, so you’ll begin lessons with everyone else.” Two years after I began riding, my family wanted to return to Bordeaux, where I was born, so we had to search for another stable. I was a bit worried, but we joined the same club where Laetitia Bernard, the first blind rider in France to jump in official competitions, had ridden.When I first visited, they were very happy to meet me.They knew what a blind rider was capable of, though I didn’t.They told me, “You are going to be a champion!” So I began practicing with my trainer Tiffany Margueritat. H&S: What types of competitions do you participate in? SE: In France there are three levels, 50cm–95cm, 1.00m–1.15m, and then the professionals. I mostly take part in courses between 1.00m and 1.10m. This year I hope to participate in the regional competition, against 200 other riders.

H&S: What do you feel when you are on course? SE: There is Tiffany, who guides me, telling me right, left and straight. Near every jump there is a caller who always calls to me on the right side. He says “here, here, here,” and to go straight when I’m in line with the jump. I have to pay attention to all of that, to my next caller, and to Rapsody – to feel how he is, if our rhythm is good, if my position is right. I know him well enough now that I don’t have to think about him constantly and I can concentrate on where to go. When I ride, it is mostly the same [as sighted riders]. We are speaking the same language while riding horses. And with horses, you cannot lie. H&S: Tell us about your partnership with your horse Rapsody. SE: He’s perfect! He’s incredible! I don’t know if he knows that I’m blind, but he knows that there is something different and special about me. When he wants to make me happy, he is the perfect horse. On those days, I feel like I’m a passenger, like he does everything. It’s a real pleasure. Even when he doesn’t want to give his best or work hard, he still understands what will make me nervous or uneasy. He knows

me perfectly. I was a bit scared when we entered the Longines arena, since I didn’t know how he would act. There were 5,000 people, and even though I didn’t see them, he did! But he was calm and better than ever. He’s not a grand prix horse – he cannot jump 1.50m, but what he does, he does perfectly. I think that he likes what he does, and he likes to make me happy. I still like to ride many different horses, to feel uneasy, to get out of my comfort zone. You cannot get better if you don’t ride different types of horses. With Rapsody, though, we have a nice way together. He’s a very intelligent horse. Other horses get worried, they show you right away how they feel. He tries to understand how I feel first, and then decides whether to show me how he feels. Working with him is to be part of a real conversation. We’re talking. H&S: What has been the most challenging part of progressing in this sport? SE: Riding is a challenge. Striving to get better is a challenge. When I lost all of my sight at sixteen, it was not enough to stop me. I had to keep going. I had to continue. When we decided to change our training method, that was a challenge. I used to

Salim Ejnaini and Tiffany Margueritat give Rapsody a pat for a job well done after finishing their course at Longines Masters of Paris

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Salim Ejnaini and Guillaume Canet

compete following Tiffany on horseback. She would shout and I would follow her. I liked it, but it was not a perfect method, since if the guide has a fault, it counts against me. I also think that it’s a bit more dangerous, so I began to ride alone, guided only by Tiffany’s voice. I wanted the way I rode to be more similar to how others ride. When Guillaume Canet and the organizers of Longines Masters called me, they wanted me to be ready for the demonstration in less than a year. They didn’t pressure me, but I wanted to try to do it. We had to decide what I would be ready to do by then, and we wanted to do everything we could to show our best. I practiced step-by-step and took part in international competitions – we didn’t want to leave anything to chance. We also didn’t want to scare anyone. The organizers decided to trust me because they wanted to show the world that what I do is possible. My job was to show everyone that they were right. It went quite well, and that is the way I challenge myself, step-by-step. I didn’t


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realize that I would be a show jumper, but now I am. H&S: What are your favorite riding accomplishments to date? SE: Riding at Longines Masters of Paris, of course, is my favorite riding accomplishment so far. I met so many amazing people and really got to know Guillaume Canet, who is now a friend. I joined the Longines Masters family. [At Longines Masters] I discovered that people outside para-equestrian could see that riding is a sport. Usually when people tell me that I’m good, it’s because I’m blind. Now many people tell me that they have eyes but cannot ride the way I can ride. I don’t care about my eyes, I just want to be a good rider who can show people amazing things with my friend, my horse. H&S: What would you like people to know about what you do? SE: I would personally like to get better and better, and to show people that I can choose to do so. This is true of riding and true of my whole life. For example, I live in a place where you don’t normally find blind people, in Paris, France. Now I try

to do things before someone says they’re impossible for me. I’ve also decided to learn how to fly a plane. H&S: What are your goals for the future? SE: I would really love to help nations meet around the para-equestrian sport. I would really love to have an international competition, and I would like to be considered as a rider. If other nations could meet around the same passion, it would be wonderful. I’m looking for sponsors so that I can one day have another horse, since Rapsody cannot jump over 1.10m. I imagine that one day I could take part in international one-star events. I have begun working on this with other horses at home, and it has gone very well. I want to show that I can do better, but without scaring anyone. Even though you know that you can [ride] without danger, it’s very hard to explain to others how you feel, how you know what is around you and that you have control. People assume that because you are blind, you cannot have control. It’s an everyday fight, I think. I’m in control… I just can’t see.

Photos © PSV Photos, courtesy of EEM

QUALITY & EXCELLENCE WITHIN REACH Spruce Meadows is proud to showcase its top quality competition horses, for all levels of experience. Committed to excellence, Spruce Meadows invites you to meet our prospects available for 2017, we are confident you will find your next champion. For Sales and Information, Please contact the Spruce Meadows Horse Program at 1(403) 974-4200 or visit us at


N E W product


by Kelsey Langsdale


With the right bridle, you can make a statement with every turn of your horse’s head. Since bursting onto the French market in 2011, MY8 bridles have developed a signature avant garde style. A unique line of MY8 bridles are now making their North American debut.

Originally a luxury fashion designer, MY8 founder Yves Hanu admires the beauty of horses. His concept of making a fashionable ‘saddlery’ statement without sacrificing the comfort of the horse took the French market by storm. Using rare leathers and other materials not typically found in traditional tack, while carefully balancing creativity and innovation with quality, the richness of the brand is remarkable. From bridles to breast collars to blankets, MY8 products reflect the quality of the company with a stylish statement. It was the aesthetics of a bridle that first grabbed Hanu’s attention. Then came the focus on enhancing the comfort of both the rider and the horse. When designing a collection Hanu always goes back to his personal watchwords of “beauty” and “sophistication.” Meticulously designed, attention to detail defines the MY8 collections as spectacular. From the leather to the stitching to the buckles, nothing is overlooked. While French saddleries are known for their expertise in fine leather products, utilizing a specifically strong yet soft leather,


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MY8 takes that expertise to the next level. They utilize several different leathers when building their bridles - French full-grain, patent, galuchat, and more - which allows them to use the leather best suited to its particular function. Taking aesthetics to the next level as well, MY8 incorporates color into the noseband and browband of each piece. Chic Swarovski crystals in the browband add sparkle to some of the MY8 models. The vibrant accent colors complement the base leather colors flawlessly to make the pieces pure perfection. The design details abound. Each bridle has distinctive rounded buckles with ball ends that are infused with microns of yellow or white gold. The gold allows the buckles to avoid oxidation, which in turn enables them to look fabulous wear after wear. A happy horse remains a focus at the forefront of the design process. Alongside the coordinated aesthetic efforts, each bridle features special technology for comfort. Not only is the crown piece designed for an anatomically correct fit, so that nothing

pushes against the ears; the design spreads poll pressure over a wide area, eliminating excessive irritation to pressure points.

Taylor Harris National Children’s Medal CP National Horse Show American Gold Cup North American Riders Group Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

MY8 made its American debut in 2016 at the Longines Masters Los Angeles and has since expanded its knowledge of the market. The brand has taken measures to increase its presence through increased marketing, including a new U.S. domain to make access easier for buyers. With a U.S. team that has direct contact with Hanu, the company keeps the requests of the customers in mind. Special orders for pony products and personalized bridles are available to meet any and all clients’ needs. With the same amount of care that is devoted to the bridles, MY8 has grown its rider accessory offerings through the years. The product line includes elegant belts and bracelets that reflect the quality of the well-crafted horse equipment. MY8’s slogan is “Performance is in the detail.” Each piece embodies that phrase, with sleek, stylish yet comfortable pieces that will dazzle in the show ring. At this time, MY8 sells directly to consumers, as opposed to distributing through outside vendors. The brand is devoted to understanding its consumer base and fulfilling the needs of current and prospective customers.   @my8usa  MY8 USA Horse Equipment & Accessories



——— Founded in 1987 ———


Upperville colt & horse show Capital Challenge Horse Show Blenheim Equisports Brandywine Summer Series Plantation Field Horse Trials Live Oak international palm beach Masters Great Lakes Equestrian Festival great meadow international Jersey Fresh international three-day event Photos courtesy of MY8 US

Photography: Renea Hutchings



by Laurie Berglie photos by Will Draper

Rebecca is pictured here with Hemlock Lane Stable Lad of Chagrin Valley Hunt, "Jag," an English Foxhound

The Style of

the Sporting Life While Rebecca Yuhasz Smith, owner of the eponymous handbag and equestrian lifestyle company Rebecca Ray Designs, is only the third owner of her horse farm, the farm itself has enjoyed quite a fulfilling history. Built in the early 1920s, the farm is located in picturesque Moreland Hills, Ohio, which is part of the Chagrin Valley.


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THE EVOLUTION OF HEMLOC K L ANE AT VA L L E Y H I G H Well-known architect, Dominick Benes of the Hubbell-Benes Architectural Firm, designed and built the farmhouse to serve as his country home. His firm designed most of the influential commercial and civic buildings in Cleveland during this period, including the Cleveland Museum of Art, Wade Park Cultural Circle, and the West Side Market. Benes named his farm “Valley High,” and Smith notes that there have not been any architectural changes to the house since Benes’ ownership. “Benes was also a Master Gardener, and many of his designs and trellises are still here. We have enormous Japanese Maples that were said to have been a gift to him from the City of Cleveland,” says Smith.

After Benes’ death in the mid-1940s, the Temple family purchased the farm, and Dr. and Mrs. Temple were avid preservationists who also raised world class Arabians and show dogs. “They grew and canned most of their food on this property. We have heirloom apple, peach, and pear orchards, as well as a significant Concord grape vineyard. I can a variety of fruits each year.” The Temples kept the name “Valley High,” so Smith wanted to hold onto this historical tie. “My parents had long ago established our kennel name for the English Setters we raise as “Hemlock Lane,” so we named the farm “Hemlock Lane at Valley High” to honor the original farm, Benes, and the Temples – all who so dearly loved this property.”

ECLECTIC ROOTED IN TRADITIONAL It’s hard to believe by looking at the photos, but Smith’s house has yet to be renovated. After they moved in, they gave the interior a brief freshening up, but they quickly set their sights on the barns and outdoor living areas. The property had been vacant for twelve years before they moved in, so they began by rebuilding the pasture fencing and updating the water lines, electricity, and pumps. “We raise AKC Champion English Setter Show Dogs and show Percheron Draft Horses, so getting our animals settled and comfortable was key. The ceiling height of the original barn was a problem as every time our 18 hand Percherons walked in the barn, the hames from their harnesses knocked out every light bulb down the

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center aisle. So a new, state-of-the-art barn and kennel facility was a priority. But, we wanted them to look like they had always been here on the property, so we designed a barn with reclaimed brick floors, European stall fronts, and all in our “Hemlock Lane” colors of deep, dark green. The kennel has radiant floor heat and slate floors, and we have a fabulous tack room that doubles as an entertaining space.” Despite its lack of in-depth updates and renovations, Smith’s home is warm, inviting, and a true reflection of the family that resides within. The Smith family lives the sporting life, and the design, décor, and overall functionality mirror their love of the outdoor life. “My style is eclectic, but is certainly rooted in traditional design. I like to use the color black as a subtle anchor, and you’ll always see it in each of my rooms as it tends to give the eye something to rest on; it grounds a room. I adore mixing high and low, and I always prefer to buy vintage or antique if I can. I’ve been collecting forever, and my collections have always served as an incubator of inspiration for my designs for my company Rebecca Ray Designs.” Smith invests in sporting art that features both horses and dogs. As members of the Chagrin Valley Hunt where her daughter, Elizabeth, and her husband, Derek, are whippers-in, Smith also has a renewed interest in foxhound and foxhunting pieces. A S TORY OF W H AT M OV E S YO U Smith notes that a home should be more than just four walls and a roof – it should tell the tale of where you’ve been and where you’re going. It is a place to hold your memories. “A home should tell a story of your travels, your interests, and what moves you.” One piece in particular that does just that is the large horse weathervane that is proudly on display in her family room. “My husband and I found that piece at a flea market in France; it had been on the front of a wrought iron estate gate. At over three feet long, it is quite substantial, and we carried it all over Europe with us. I carried it home on the plane in the overhead bins. Airport security was not happy with me and debated for some time about whether or not his tail could be used as a weapon. Between my tears and our language barrier, they finally relented!” Other favorites that add equestrian character to Smith’s home are the primitive pieces of furniture and dog art that were her grandmother’s. As she was a dog show judge (as is Smith’s mom), those pieces have great

sentimental value. “I also have a bit of a problem with China and Porcelain! I adore entertaining both formally and informally, and I love to set a table. During the photoshoot for this article, I set our dining room table with vintage green American Stangle dishes, as well as antique Marguerite Kirmse Sporting Dog Plates by Wedgewood. The stemware is vintage green crystal and antique hand-painted Rose Medallion. The black and white Staffordshire Dogs are items that also came back on the plane with me from England.” Smith has a hutch full of miniature animals she’s collected since she was a child. These animals are all hand-carved and originate from England, France, and Germany. “I found the walnut and orange hutch they are displayed in at the Chagrin Falls sidewalk sale for $200. It had been last used by a florist, and it has flame orange door interiors, which I adore. If you follow my designs, you know that orange is a key color for Rebecca Ray Designs and our orange “Mary Ann Tote” with the horse head is one of our best sellers. In many ways, orange can be an anchor color like black.” BEAUTIFUL YET PRACTIC AL Smith is a self-proclaimed “detail nut,” and notes that even the smallest design aspects should not be overlooked. “The more detailed finishes and styling, the more complete your look. I worry about all of the small things like tassels and tiny pieces of art that just seem to finish a space. Layering and accessorizing is key.” Large home renovations are on the horizon for “Hemlock Lane at Valley High,” and Smith looks forward to expanding the house a bit so they have more room for entertaining. Like most equestrians who live on a working farm, however, Smith wants her home to be both beautiful and highly functional. “Our home has to be practical and stand up to kids and animals in the house. Much to the dismay of many of our friends, we built our dream barn first, before the house, but it was important to us to get our animals settled, as well as to live in the house a while to see what we really wanted. But our goal is to bring the property back to its former splendor, and utilize it once again as a family farm.” For now, Smith enjoys living the sporting life with her family, and decorating her home to reflect their outdoor adventures. She believes homes should showcase your hobbies and passions and recommends foraging for unusual things to use as décor. “Through the years, I have always told my design clients to buy what they love, and it will always fit. Always be on the lookout for things that you love.”


L I F E of


by Jana Cohen Barbe

KNOW WHEN T O WA L K AWAY “You’ve got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk away, known when to run…” — Kenny Rogers, The Gambler

Knowing when to say goodbye is an art, not a science, and it is an imperfect art at best. In a world and in a sport that prizes grit, determination, perseverance and persistence, the choice to walk away from a relationship often evokes criticisms and negative judgments. I nonetheless believe that there are moments when saying goodbye is not only merited, it is a wise and constructive course of action requiring more courage than the choice to stay. This is true of even our four-legged relationships with important lessons for our two-legged relationships as well.

“Every gambler knows that the secret to survivin’ is knowin’ what to throw away and knowin’ what to keep…” We have a horse we adore, “Z.” He lives on our farm in what we call the “cuddle paddock.” It is the paddock we go to when we need horse-hugs. He is a character with a larger than life personality. He also lacks rideability, has an awful attitude and is generally destructive. So, he is a super-cute lawn ornament.


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We first purchased Z when he was four.We put him in training and while initially, we were very optimistic, eventually it became clear that Z was not developing as we had hoped.The critical moment for us came when our hunter trainer, a true horseman, looked at us and said, “He will never help you.We can keep taking your money but he will never be there for you.” Our trainer offered us an honest assessment. He understood our limitations as riders, acted selflessly and told us the truth. So, we sent Z to a superlative dressage trainer. His dressage career can be summarized as follows: he won the first day and often never made it around the second. Our wonderful and honest dressage trainer noted for us that Z’s high score was consistently on “the halt.” Sigh.We brought Z home.We let go of any hope that Z would be our next great show horse.We understood, with the help of experts, that our relationship with Z would not develop much beyond what it was and that it was time to move on.This was not a reflection of our talent as riders, our determination to face challenges or our commitment to training. Some times it “isn’t about you” and sometimes you have to cut your losses and let go. Put simply, Z was not the right partner for me in the show ring. It took me a very long time to accept that and I learned some life lessons along the way.

It begins by asking some hard questions: •

Why are you in the relationship? Is it for friendship or for companionship? Is it to advance your career? Why is the other party in the relationship? Do you share the same goals and aspirations for the relationship and are you working toward the same end? Is the relationship truly mutual?

Have you made a real effort to make it work? Have you sought the advice of professionals, counselors or mentors and asked for their honest assessment of the potential or the state of the relationship? Are you open to listening to what they have to say even if it is not what you want to hear?

Are all parties in the relationship equally committed to making it work and able to make it work?

By walking away from the relationship, are you opening yourself up to new and better partners, opportunities, colleagues or friends? Do you need to let go of what you have to pursue what it is you need?

Can you set aside your ego and understand that the state of your relationship may have very little to do with you?

Conversely, do you believe you deserve a relationship of mutual respect that works for everyone involved?

Finding the answers to these questions is a process and the answers may evolve over time. Relationships are not stagnant either. They can change and a relationship that worked for awhile may suddenly falter. The one constant is this: you are entitled to thrive in your relationships. That is true in riding, in business and in life. You are entitled to feel supported, to flourish, to grow and to trust, and if you are not feeling those things, it may be time to ask yourself why.

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“If you’re gonna play the game, boy, you gotta learn to play it right.” I am not a quitter. I am relentless and dogged in my pursuit of goals. Some have used less flattering words like “stubborn” and “obstinate” but I believe walking away from a relationship (professional or personal) that does not serve its desired purpose, that is not mutual or is not healthy, is necessary. It takes serious introspection to assess whether the relationship is best ended and it can take enormous courage to end it. Still, limitless possibilities and peace of mind await those who find the wherewithal to “fold em.”

Jana Cohen Barbe is a Partner and the former Global Vice Chair of Dentons, the largest law firm in the world. Recognized for her transformative and pioneering leadership, Jana is a frequent author and speaker on women in business, globalization, entrepreneurship and authenticity. Photos © Jeff Rogers

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CO N G R AT U L AT I O N S Congratulations to the FIVE winners of our H&S Giveaway! Winners received premium subscriptions to Horse & Style Magazine and H&S logo hats! Thank you to everyone who entered.

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O N the


by Sarah Appel

Curated Craftsmanship:


Saut Hermès Part Deux

It could be said that attending the Saut Hermès horse show in Paris is a once in a lifetime opportunity. The historic Grand Palais venue, the five-star riders, and the Hermès culture seamlessly weave together to make it an unforgettable experience. I am fortunate that my trip this March marked my second time at the Saut Hermès, making it a twice in a lifetime opportunity for me. The Saut Hermès is such an incredible horse show that once is definitely not enough! Image courtesy of Saut Hermès

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It is almost poetic that Hermès, a brand with over a century of stylish equestrian history, would be credited for bringing horses back to the Grand Palais.

Courtesy of the Grand Palais

Courtesy of Saut Hermès

The Grand Palais

One of the most iconic horse shows in the world, the Saut Hermès never disappoints with respect to its venue.The 120-year-old Grand Palais, located right on the ChampsÉlysées (an avenue in downtown Paris famous for its theaters, cafés, and luxury shops), has been the home to the Saut Hermès since its first show in 2010. Although the Saut Hermès is the only horse show to be held in the Grand Palais during this century, from 1901 to 1957 the historic exhibition hall hosted many spectacular horse shows that served as both sporting events and social gatherings. It is almost poetic that Hermès, a brand with over a century of stylish equestrian history, would be credited for bringing horses back to the Grand Palais.

Hermès’ Rich History

To know Hermès is to know that equestrian flair and horses are at its roots.


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Above: An early 20th century horse show held at the Grand Palais; Right: Pénélope Leprevost soars over the Hermès wall in the Grand Palais

Hermès was established in France in 1837 by Thierry Hermès as a local leather harness and bridle shop. Thanks to Hermès’ dedication to expert craftsmanship and innovation, (Hermès was the first to introduce zippers in France!) the company was able to broaden its product line over the nineteenth century and expand their market throughout Europe and overseas. Today, Hermès continues to be influential and successful in both equestrian and high fashion markets. I was fortunate enough to visit the Emile Hermès Museum, which houses Hermès’ collection of equestrian antiques and original Hermès products. To this day, Hermès designers will visit the museum for inspiration. Stephane Laverrière of Hermès best explains why the museum is so inspiring. “The collection is the spirit of Hermès and the soul of the company.

The story of the company is within this collection.” Touring the museum, it is easy to see that Hermès’ best future lies in maintaining the excellence of its past. As a true Hermès devotee, being able to experience the story of Hermès through the Emile Hermès Museum’s artifacts, was an honor.

Curated Saddle Craftsmanship

True to the foundation of the company, the Hermès name is synonymous with craftsmanship. Each stitch that is sewn into a garment, handbag, or bridle is thoughtfully and scrupulously executed. The saddles Hermès designs are no exception to this rule. Hermès saddles can be custom designed to fit both rider and horse, and are meticulously adjusted to function well during movement, as the horse works under the rider. Master saddle maker Laurent Goblet describes

Courtesy of Saut Hermès

Photo © Sarah Appel

Courtesy of Saut Hermès

Courtesy of Saut Hermès Opposite: Jérôme Guery, top international five-star rider and Hermès partner rider; Above: Julien Epiallard celebrates victory; Top-Right: The entertaining evening performance of Don Quixote's Dream; Bottom-Right: Hermès stick horses

his philosophy: “I’m not a saddler for museum pieces! My job is to produce saddles that adapt to the rider’s needs, with materials [and] technologies that best meet their expectations.” Certainly, both riders and horses can appreciate Hermès’ attention to detail.

Valued Partnerships

Being an Hermès partner rider is an incredible honor and speaks highly of that rider’s talent and level of horsemanship. Belgium’s Jérôme Guery, top international five-star rider and Hermès partner rider, describes why he enjoys being connected to Hermès: “The image of Hermès is really nice. Hermès is quality. When you think of Hermès, you think of quality.” Hermès supports its partnered riders by providing products for both horse and rider. When Guery explained that he has a horse with a very sensitive back, the Hermès saddle team worked diligently to craft the perfect fit. The partnership between Hermès and its

Photo © Sarah Appel

riders works both ways. Partner riders also become technical advisors to the Hermès team which helps to ensure that Hermès continues to develop and bring to market only the very best in equestrian products. Hermès’ partner rider, twenty-year-old Laetitia du Couëdic, placed second in one of Saut Hermès’ unique classes, the Les Talents Hermès CSIU25-A class. This special class is restricted to twenty riders, from ten different countries, all under twenty-five years of age, and limited to one horse per rider. After the class, du Couëdic spoke about her success in the class and also about how honored she feels to represent a brand as prestigious and well known as Hermès. She also noted that wearing the Hermès brand inspires her to work hard everyday and to continue to strive for greatness.

Under the Grand Palais’ Lights This year, for the first time in Saut Hermès history, there was a night class.

This exciting evening delighted fans and challenged riders with a class against the clock, with no jump-off, with progressive difficulty, and a joker. In a class of thirtyfive starts, the French crowd was thrilled when their own Julien Epaillard finished first with a quick time of 42.82. France’s Kevin Staut finished second with a time of 43.28, only a fraction of a second behind Epaillard. The energy at the venue was electric and the applause and cheers in the Grand Palais were tremendous! The evening also included a spectacular performance showcasing lyrical extracts from Don Quixote’s Dream. This show was a previously unseen performance conceived by rider and stuntman Mario Luraschi, and actor Florient Azoulay. It transformed the arena into a Broadwayworthy set and included a falcon, a donkey, trick riding, and dressage. Between the international competition and the Don Quixote performance, it was a simply

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Photo © Sarah Appel

The full house of the Grand Palais crowd was on pins and needles every time a horse entered the ring. Right: Bertram Allen and Molly Malone; Opposite: Edwina Tops-Alexander, Grand Prix Hermès CSI5* champion

unbelievable evening under the Grand Palais’ lights.

Women on the Podium

Sunday’s events finished with a truly nail biting Grand Prix Hermès CSI5*. Only three riders out of the forty-seven starts finished with clean rounds. The crowd that filled the Grand Palais crowd was on pins and needles every time a horse entered the ring. Bertram Allen went eleventh and was the first in the class to have zero faults, proving to both the crowd and the other riders that it was possible to jump this course clean. However, it took thirty more rounds before French favorite Pénélope Leprevost became the second rider to go clean. In an exciting finale, the last rider


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of the class, Edwina Tops-Alexander, was not only the third and last to go clean, but with a time .08 of a second faster than Leprevost, proved to be the overall winner of the Grand Prix Hermès CSI5*. It was a tough track, and as a female rider myself, it was lovely to see women riders end up first and second on the podium. Shortly after Tops-Alexander’s win, she announced to the public that she will be taking a leave of absence from the show ring because she and her husband, Jan Tops, are expecting their first child together. This win could not have come at a better time for Tops-Alexander and her special mare, California. It was also a great reminder to me, to the moms, and

Courtesy of Saut Hermès

to the women riders in our community – we can do it all.

Second Time’s a Charm

The Saut Hermès is not your average horse show; it’s a complete experience. It is an incredible weekend that beautifully displays the shared qualities between Hermès and the sport of international show jumping: exceptional execution on an international stage, attention to detail, and brave, bold decisions that lead to extraordinary success. Having the chance to visit the Saut Hermès for a second time, and to spend the weekend with the world’s top riders and horses in the iconic Grand Palais, definitely left me feeling charmed by the experience.

Courtesy of Saut Hermès



S A U T H E R M È S A U G R A N D PA L A I S – PA R I S , F R A N C E

2. 3. 1. 4. 5. 7.

6. 1. A winning look from Julien Epaillard’s Cristallo A LM 2. “Riders” participate in a stick horse class for the audience 3. Patrice Delaveau and Carinjo HDC receive congratulations for one of their two wins 4. Alexandra Eriksson of Sweden and Liss Royal take their turn around the Les Talents Hermès for U25 riders 5. The Shetland pony races were a crowd favorite 6. Sonoma Horse Park manager, Ashley Herman, and young equestrian, Marina Mendiharat, stand outside the stunning Grand Palais 7. Edwina Tops-Alexander’s squad (Jan Tops, Sheikh Ali Bin Khalid Al Thani and Athina Onassis) watch in excitement as she wins the Hermès Grand Prix


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Photos courtesy of Hermès and © Sarah Appel, (6,7,8,9)

8. 1.

9. 10.


11. 8. Pénélope Leprevost jumps to a 2nd place finish in the Hermès GP 9. When you are John Whitaker, you can do whatever you want... even attend the prize giving ceremony sans horse 10. Hermès and orange go together like Hermès and orange 11. Simon Delestre and Hermès Ryan des Hayettes jumping with the iconic windows of the Grand Palais above them 12. For the evening entertainment, equestrian artist Mario Luraschi and choreographer Florient Azoulay, performed Don Quixote’s Dream

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by Sarah Appel & Terri Roberson

Trendy Trainer Pearl Equestrian Necklace, Favery, $375 Lucille Bow Pointed Toe Pumps, Sjp by Sarah Jessica Parker, $395 Akemi Horse-Print Silk Midi Dress, Roksanda, $3,236 Paloma Chain Clutch, Christian Louboutin, $1,150 Pearl Drop Earrings, Catherine Canino Jewelry, $98 Balcons du Guadalquivir Enamel Bracelet, Hermès, $700

Galloping Gala Now that horse show summer season is in full swing, it’s time to put on your Louboutins, grab your wallet, and get to the Gala. What’s more fun than seeing your favorite horse trainers glammed up for an evening out? Cue up your favorite party outfit and add some equestrian touches. Or you could be so bold as to wear an Equuleus Designs dress with an avant garde image of your horse on it. Anna Wintour may not grace the horse show gala scene with her presence, but remember, she’s always watching.

Ambient Amateur Modal Silk Blend Scarf, Nordstrom, $39 Horseshoe Choker, Anndra Neen, $235 Tous Silk Slip Dress, Equuleus Designs, $295 Darcey Gold-Tone Swarovski Pearl Cuff, Chloe, $570 Choca Leather Sandals, Christian Louboutin, $845 Flower-Applique Leather and Suede Clutch, Lanvin, $1,295


· may/june

Jovial Junior Swarovski White Gold Horseshoe Knot Bangle Bracelet, Kellen Silver, $39 Metal Mesh Minaudire, Barneys New York, $175 Sterling Silver Buckle Bracelet, Shinola Jewelry, $1,200 Running Horses Print Cotton-Blend Dress, Stella McCartney, $338 Diamond and Pearl Choker on White Leather, Chan Luu, $245 Cassidy Sandal, Adrianna Papell, $119

Pony Mom Dionysus Small Suede Clutch Bag, Gucci, $1,500 Sterling Silver Horsebit Bracelet, Gucci, $1,500 Lace Midi Dress, Ralph Lauren, $210 Equestrian Horse Head Slide Necklace in Sterling, Loriecce, $121 Sexy Thing 85 Suede Sandals, Aquazzura, $595 Jumping Square Silk Scarf Gray/Tan, Peter Litzau, $185

Gorgeous Gent Sterling Silver Horse Round Top Stud Cufflinks, Georg Jensen, $350 Lacquered Suede Degrade Cap Toe Derby Shoes, Jimmy Choo, $775 Anthony Cream Dinner Jacket, Ralph Lauren, $1,995 Black Satin Strip Tuxedo Trousers, Canali, $420 Horseshoe Bow Tie, Vineyard Vines, $65 Estate Slim-Fit Tuxedo Shirt, Ralph Lauren, $165

may/june ¡










Crossed and in


Those of us who secretly loved the 80s fanny pack, and it’s hands and shoulder free benefits, are in luck this spring. The cross body bag has been popping up everywhere from food trucks to farmers markets and in so many sizes and colors, there is a shoulder to hip bag for every occasion. So whether you are shopping all day, dashing to and from the barn, or spending an evening out, grab one of these trendy purses and find the fun in being crossed.


· may/june


1. Salvatore Ferragamo Sabine Small Gancio, $1,950; 2. Gucci Monogram Sylvie, $2,250; 3. Tory Burch Modern Buckle Saddle Bag, $475; 4. The Row Sideby Pebbled Calfskin, $2,550; 5. Stick & Ball Indio in Navy, $395; 6. Hermès Evelyne III 29, $3,375


STILL TO COME IN 2017... Blenheim June Classic I June 7 – 11, 2017 $25,000 & $30,000 Grand Prix WCHR Week & USHJA/WCHR Spectacular Zone 10 Young Rider Final Trials

Blenheim Summer Classic August 16 – 20, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix CPHA Medal Finals USHJA National Hunter Derby

Blenheim June Classic II June 14 – 18, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix USHJA International & Pony Hunter Derbies

Showpark Summer Classic August 23 – 27, 2017 $25,000 & $50,000 Grand Prix Sallie B. Wheeler USEF National Hunter Breeding Championships CPHA Foundation Finals

Blenheim June Classic III June 21 – 25, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix USHJA National & Pony Hunter Derbies West Coast Pony Hunter Challenge Blenheim Red, White & Blue Classic June 28 – July 2, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix USHJA Pony Hunter Derby Showpark Summer Festival July 19 – 23, 2017 $25,000 & $30,000 Grand Prix USEF Junior Hunter National Championships & USHJA Hunterdon Equitation Cup, West at the Del Mar Horse Park July 24 – 25, 2017 Showpark Racing Festival July 26 – 30, 2017 $40,000 Grand Prix USHJA National Hunter Derby Showpark August Festival August 2 – 6, 2017 Two (2) $25,000 Grand Prix

Blenheim Fall Tournament September 13 – 17, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix Interactive Mortgage Horses 10 & U Futurity Final ASPCA Maclay Regionals CPHA Green Hunter 3' & 3'3" Incentive Final BES Young Hunter Championships International Jumping Festival - Blenheim September 20 – 24, 2017 $30,000 Grand Prix USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Final, West USHJA 3'3" Jumping Seat Medal Final, West Young Jumper Championships, West Young Jumper Futurity – 4 Yr Old Regionals North American League (NAL) West Coast Hunter & Jumper Finals The Las Vegas National November 14 – 19, 2017 Longines FEI World Cup ™ Jumping Las Vegas Markel Grand Prix Series Final Interactive Mortgage U25 Series Final USHJA National Hunter Derby; WCE Medal Finals Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jr/AO Jumper Final, West






3. 4.


5. 6. 7.

1. Hannah Selleck, Alex Hamer, Paige Bellissimo and Paige Pepa at Nic Roldan’s 2nd Annual Sunset Polo & White Party. The benefit raised funds for Brooke USA, a nonprofit dedicated to alleviating the suffering of working equines 2. Professionals and amateurs took to the field for the exhibition polo match 3. Nick Roldan and Jessica Springsteen were all smiles after the game 4. The players on both teams generously volunteered their time 5. The weather at the Wanderers Club could not have been better! 6. Guests enjoyed dinner and dancing during the poolside party and auction 7. Hosts Mark and Katherine Bellissimo | @NicRoldan @BrookeUSA


· may/june

Photos © Phelps Media Group (1,7), Enrique Urdaneta (2,5), Diana De Rosa (3,6), Alex Pacheco (4)


(800) 522-2985

C URA TE D by an by Laurie Berglie



Robertson Tyler Robertson is not your typical equestrian artist. He didn’t grow up horse-obsessed, doodling ponies in his notebooks in class or sculpting miniature horses out of clay. There was nothing about his childhood that would suggest he’d become the talented equine portrait and “Super Horse,” synthetic polymer on canvas, 48"x36"

racehorse artist he is today.

Portrait of Tyler Robertson, artist

THE BIRTH OF KENTUCKY BRUSHES While Robertson wasn’t drawing every single horse he came across, he was, however, drawing. He admits he was creative as a child, and that creativity has never left. “Everyone draws as a kid; I just never stopped. I have been drawing since I could hold a crayon. While earning my bachelor’s degree in elementary education, I was offered a graphic design job for a start-up company near “Yellow Bridle,” synthetic polymer and oil on canvas, 48"x36"

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Atlanta, Georgia. I worked from home while attending class and mailed in my artwork every week. It was during this time that I saw the potential for a career in art. However, I graduated not long after, and I wanted to put my teaching degree to use.” Shortly thereafter, Robertson moved to Louisville, Kentucky, and the day he made his way into town just so happened to be the first Saturday in May. “I moved on May 5th, 2001 – Kentucky Derby day. As I was carrying my things into my apartment, the city was swarming with people dressed in their Derby attire. I was hooked from day one and have not missed a Kentucky Oaks or Derby since.” And just like that, the horse obsession began. Robertson is a fourth grade teacher by day and an equestrian painter by night. He has progressed from pen and ink illustrations

to painting, and he painted his first piece only six years ago. “My work is a mix of modern art with the classical theme of equestrian sport. My paintings are large and colorful, and they immediately created a buzz among my friends and local onlookers, so in 2014, I officially opened for business under the name Kentucky Brushes and began selling my artwork. Now my paintings can be seen in homes and businesses across the country.” Robertson is driven to capture the essence of the horse in sport, whether show jumping or racing, and attributes his success to this magnificent animal. “When I sit down and begin a painting, I recall the thrill of being at the track and the sound of thundering hooves. The horse engaged in its various sports has become the main theme of my work as I truly believe the horse is one of the most beautiful and majestic creatures on the planet.”

MERGING CL ASSICAL WITH CONTEMPORARY It is the work of a variety of contemporary artists which inspires Robertson’s abstract style. “I was influenced early on by the Austrian artist Voka. I was immediately hooked by his large paintings and vibrant colors. I am also drawn to the work of equestrian artist LeRoy Neiman. He is known for his colorful and loose style, and his style has really influenced the way I paint horses. I have merged the classical style of sporting art and given it a fresh, contemporary feel.” Robertson notes that his techniques vary from series to series, from one painting to another. “In the series, ‘Track Conditions Sloppy,’ I spent most of my efforts creating a full underpainting with lots and lots of layers. These were knifed on, washed with a watered-down acrylic, knifed some more, and even sprayed with 90% alcohol to break

Untitled II from the “Track Conditions Sloppy” series, mixed media on canvas, 36"x48"

“Red Riders,” mixed media on canvas, 36"x48"

down some of the polymers in the paint to give it an ‘aged look.’ Then, I painted my subjects. I focus on the main aspects of the horse and rider, leaving out enough information so that the viewer is still part of the creation process, unknowingly filling in the gaps. I then wash down the entire painting with several layers of watereddown paint, oil, and more alcohol. It takes a lot of work to make these pieces look like they happened spontaneously!” Robertson is cognizant of the fact that we as humans are easily influenced by the things we see, so he is constantly reminding himself to stay within his style, to stick with how he wants his work to look. “I don’t want to fall into the group of classical equestrian painters. I study and adore their work. I have great appreciation for their art, but I want to try and push the boundary and be a new face of the sporting art scene. I can really only describe my work

as contemporary because I think that it is dynamic, and it combines several mediums and methods.” DRIVEN TO PRODUCE Robertson is driven to produce his artwork with the same ferocity at which a horse is driven to win a race or to jump a fence. He has created an immense portfolio of work, especially when you consider the fact that he’s only been painting for six years. “I’d say some of my biggest accomplishments come from my live painting events. Two years ago I was given the opportunity to perform a live painting for an organization called USA Cares. This was the first of more than ten live painting events I have done, raising more than $25,000 for local charities and organizations. I am so grateful to be able to use my talents to give back.” He has also partnered with Omni Hotel by providing them with artwork to decorate

their new location in downtown Louisville. Robertson is newly represented by contemporary art gallery M.A.D.S, and he is continuing his current relationship with Revelry Boutique Gallery, also in Louisville. Additionally, he was given the opportunity to paint a house portrait for Robert Evans, the former CEO of Churchill Downs. Even with this list of accomplishments, painting is still a side gig for Robertson, but he’s hoping that will change in the future. “My goal is to become a full-time artist. I recently moved my studio from a spare room in my house to a location about a minute away. This has been amazing for my productivity, and I learn something new with every painting I complete. I want to work as hard as possible over the next few years and make the right choices to allow me to paint full-time. I love teaching, but this has been my dream since I was holding that crayon.”

  Kentucky Brushes  @kentuckybrushes Paintings photographed by Jonathan Cherry

may/june ·


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story by Pam Maley photos by Ashley Neuhof


Cornetiero “My Cornet is very special, but I love him!” says 25-year-old owner Mavis Spencer, paying tribute to famous sire Cornet Obolensky. Her ‘Cornet’ is Cornetiero: born of a champion, the gorgeous bay carries himself with all the confidence, skill, and personality that is his birthright.

2014, they took him to two shows in Austria, and to a five-star in Rome, and Spencer rode him occasionally during that summer. In December 2014, she brought him to Wellington with the Neil Jones America horses, planning to find a top rider for him so that he could do the bigger classes.

Spencer and Cornetiero began forging a connection when Italian show jumper Lorenzo de Luca was riding him. Both Spencer and de Luca were working with Neil Jones Equestrian, in Belgium. Spencer was grooming for de Luca, and Cornetiero was then an 8-year-old. In the spring of

But Jones had other ideas; Spencer had sold her horse, and he wanted her to have Cornetiero to ride. They did the Wellington Equestrian Festival (WEF) of 2014–2015, and then went on to jump clear rounds at some of the top European venues in the summer of 2015.

When Spencer returned to Wellington in December of 2015, Cornetiero stayed in Europe with Katharina Offel and Sofia Westborg, who showed him for a couple of months in the winter of 2016. Ultimately he wasn’t well suited for them, and in June Spencer got a call, asking her if she wanted him back. Her response was without hesitation. “He came back on July 4th, and now he has a forever home,” she declares happily. They went on to best a field of 27 at the Kentucky Summer Classic, winning the 1.40m Open Jumpers; picking up top placings in national grand prix classes; and by fall making their debut in the Longines FEI

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World Cup™ Qualifiers.This year at WEF, Spencer tacked up Cornetiero for their Saturday Night Lights grand prix debut on January 22nd, and to her delight, the pair placed 8th in the $86,000 Marshall & Sterling GP. That was the first of many successful Saturday night appearances for the pair. Spencer says that she never worries about Cornetiero’s clearing the course. “He’s a super horse – very brave, with all of the scope,” she says. “He doesn’t get nervous in the show ring, and that makes me feel calm and confident. I haven’t yet found a venue where he wasn’t focused on his job, and that’s great for me that he’s always fairly consistent, no matter the venue.” Like his father, he has a lot of character, Spencer says. “The biggest thing is that you have to compromise, and know that at the end of the day, he will do what he wants. He’s very willful; he likes to be the first horse fed in the morning, and the first one out of the stall. If he wants to come in, he will bang on the paddock gate until you come to get him.You have to do things on his terms.” He goes by the unlikely barn name of Mouse, often times Mighty Mouse. “There was a Finnish girl who worked with him in the early days, and she called him something in Finnish that sounded like ‘mouse,’ so it stuck.” In the warm-up arena and the show ring, you can’t miss him, says Spencer. “He goes in a hackamore, with his head in the air, and he usually has fluff all over him, from the fuzzies on his shadow roll, and his fuzzy boots. He’s very spoiled; I like to bubble-wrap him!” The hackamore was quite a breakthrough for Cornetiero. He hated having a bit in his mouth, and seemed to fight it. When Spencer was working with Laura Kraut and Nick Skelton in England, they noticed that he focused too much on what was in his mouth, and suggested that he might be happier in a hackamore. As soon as they tried it, Cornetiero relaxed, and the rest is history. After a successful season in Wellington this winter, Neil Jones Equestrian, which includes Spencer and her Gallop Apace, LLC, will head to Kentucky to do the 3* competitions in May. Cornetiero enjoys his time in Kentucky, because he can be outside all night. “Sometimes in the mornings, he doesn’t want to come in, and doesn’t want to go to work, which is his call,” says his partner. “I know that I need to keep him happy and mentally occupied, but he doesn’t need to train, really. If he gets too fit, he gets willful, so I just work on keeping him happy.” About twenty horses-in-training will travel to Kentucky, including a selection of Neil Jones


· may/june

Equestrian sale horses and Spencer’s Gallop Apace, LLC’s horses. Fortunately, Spencer and her team are no strangers to long days leading into nights! In a schedule similar to last year, next season some of the horses will go to California, meaning Cornetiero will have a little East Coast time, and a little West Coast time through the summer; and then once again all the horses in California will gather in one place come fall, before returning to Wellington for WEF 2017–2018. Both parties seem pleased with the partnership, and although the location and the time zone may change, they have achieved a balance both in and out of the show arena. “We’re a bit of here, there, and everywhere – kind of a traveling circus,” she says cheerfully, and adds, “He seriously vexes me sometimes, but he is my child. Honestly, I could go on for hours when it comes to this creature!” When asked about her plans going forward with Cornetiero, she tells us, “He’s better, the bigger the classes. If the course is too easy for him, it doesn’t hold his concentration. So he’ll have a short break, and then do the three 3* classes in Kentucky. I’m aiming him at the World Cup™ shows in the fall.”




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story by Laurie Berglie photos by Beverly Funkhouser Photography

T H E M I LTO N I N N The Milton Inn is a 276 year old fieldstone restaurant located in the town of Sparks, Maryland, in Northern Baltimore County, and is easily distinguished as one of the state’s historic treasures. Sparks itself is a small town which lies within the heart of Maryland horse country.


· may/june

A M U LT I - P U R P O S E PA S T It is believed that construction on the Inn began in 1740, and it has served a variety of purposes since the eighteenth century. Now it is one of Maryland’s premier dining spots that boasts an equestrian-themed ambience and exquisite country fare. The house was originally built as a coach stop for Quakers who had settled in this lush farm area initially known as Priceville, named after its founder, Quaker John Price. For one hundred years, the Inn served as a respite for weary travelers passing through town. The Milton Inn was then purchased by John Emerson Lamb, who transformed it into a “classic” school for boys. Sons of prominent Maryland planters and merchants attended “Milton Academy,” (named for “Paradise Lost” poet, John Milton).

Interestingly, one of the Academy’s more infamous students was John Wilkes Booth. After fifty years of operation, the school closed and the building became the private residence of William D. Hurst. In 1947, the house was purchased by Ivan Drechsler, and he restored it to its original use as a fine country inn known for exceptional food served in an elegant colonial atmosphere. Atilio and Eleanora Allori then bought the Inn in 1959, and it flourished under their guidance for twenty-five years. “The tradition of excellence has continued to grow with the current ownership, Milton Fare, Inc., who purchased the business in 1997,” says Chef/Operating Partner, Brian Boston. “Together, we continue to exceed our guests’ expectations nightly with refined ambience, decadent food, and a wine cellar which features more than 200 handpicked selections.”

Today, The Milton Inn is an upscale establishment that hosts everything from intimate dinners to weddings, corporate events to Sunday brunch. The restaurant itself is beautifully decorated, each room with its own color palette and style. There is one consistent theme throughout though, and that is equestrian. One of my favorite rooms flaunts a foxhunting scene mural which encircles the entire room. Another favorite is a dimly-lit space showcasing sporting art and photographs, with a large stone fireplace on the back wall adding to the atmosphere. And speaking of fireplaces, there is one in every room, and they roar to life during the cold winter months. A FA M I LY FAVO R I T E I must confess that The Milton Inn is one of my favorite restaurants, and my family and I dine there multiple times a year. My most recent visit was right before the

holidays, so the halls were decked in their festive Christmas finery, and we had a pleasant holiday evening. It would not be a visit to The Inn if my husband and I didn’t start with the Artisan Cheese Plate, complete with St. Andre, Gorgonzola, and aged Guinness cheddar, accompanied by fresh fruits and toasted baguette slices. Like any normal Marylanders, my sister and her husband enjoyed bowls of traditional Maryland Crab soup laced with jumbo lump crabmeat. If you’ve followed my restaurant reviews, then you won’t be surprised to learn that I chose the Heirloom Confit Salmon as my entrée. The fish was broiled and came with heirloom tomato, basil, and garlic confit, sautéed zucchini and yellow squash with pesto and black olives. I did substitute the roasted fingerling potatoes

may/june ·


for the corn and white cheddar grits, and I was in heaven. However, I must admit that I had some serious entrée envy over my brother-in-law’s Blackened Saku Tuna, which was served with cucumber and avocado relish, wilted spinach, crab and chorizo risotto, and chive beurre blanch. He was kind enough to let me have a bite, and it was absolutely delicious! Over steaming cups of coffee and tea, the four of us enjoyed our desserts. I went with another old favorite and chose the crème brûlée, which was divine. My husband, having just returned from a


· may/june

business trip to Florida and wanting to keep with the tropical theme, chose one of his favorites: key lime pie. My sister and her husband shared the macadamia torte, which consisted of a caramel-laced chocolate cookie base that was studded with macadamia nuts, covered with cream cheese mousse, and topped with chocolate ganache. It was devoured instantly. D I N I N G AT I T S B E S T “Over the years, the Inn has engendered a legacy of romance, and numerous couples have become engaged in its candlelit dining rooms and open air garden terrace. Many return to celebrate their personal

milestones. For private parties and meetings in the Baltimore, Maryland, area, The Milton Inn will help you plan every detail in keeping with its traditions of fine dining and warm hospitality,” says Boston. The Milton Inn is dining at its absolute best. The service is impeccable, and the food is as delicious as the atmosphere is warm and intimate. With traditional and refined equestrian décor, The Milton Inn is the perfect place to treat your favorite horse girl to an unforgettable meal.


Relax With Us in 2017 HUNTINGTON BEACH

Surf Classic JULY 6-9


Summer Classic AUGUST 10-13


A S K dr.



How do I keep my mind slow and focused in a jump-off? I tend to get excited and hear myself commenting in my mind about how it is going, causing me to get out of sync with my horse and potentially leading me to make a mistake.


Navigating a jumper course requires prolonged heightened focus from the moment you walk the course all the way through the jump-off. The reason you may feel jittery on show days or close to competition time is that the adrenal glands are preparing your mind and body to spring into action. Adrenaline is immediately released when the body perceives challenge or stress, regardless of negative or positive implications. The key to staying slow and focused on course and during the jump-off, is to learn to ride the waves of your own adrenaline while maintaining positive self-talk and steady oxygen intake, through intentional steady breathing. Get to know typical competition experience by keeping notes on your physiological and psychological states at regular intervals throughout the entire process. Understanding your experience in advance eliminates surprises. Break your process into approximately 4–5 chunks and name them. For example: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Stimulated (2 hours before), Jittery (1 hour before), Amplified (course walk), Heightened awareness (warm-up ring), Intentions drive actions (show ring).

Knowing what state you are in as you go through the process allows you to maximize the energy and harness the increasing adrenaline. Without this awareness, adrenaline is released in spurts and gushes – often mixing with cortisol (the stress hormone) – causing the brain to trigger fight, flight, or freeze, and disabling action from driving intentions fluidly. The goal is to have consistent adrenaline that triggers intentions into action when entering the ring. As you pick up the canter and move into ring pace, a sense of

ease joins the mind-body connection. Each step of the course inspires intention-driven actions, so that a sense of ease occurs. Keeping your respirations as steady as possible and regrouping with some deep breaths in the corners will enhance the focus, allowing intuition to increase and judgment to diminish. If something doesn’t go according to plan, the mind will continue to focus the body on the present stride, track and upcoming jumps. When the first round is complete it is important to take some deep breaths and refocus on your body in the saddle and toes in the boots. It may feel like you need to rush to the jump-off (assuming you are in an immediate jump-off class) but allow time to slow down and review the track in your head once before starting. If it is a class that requires you to return to the ring for the jump-off, follow the same plan of getting back into your body as you reset for a faster, more intuitive ride. Once you pick up the pace, let the mind-body connection take charge. If your mind gets hung up on something as you go, release and refocus. The analysis can be explored later. All that matters is the here and now. Extra Tip: Practice fast-paced focus mixed with relaxed mind states when cross training. For example, if you are a runner or cycler, get your heart rate up to a high level and maintain it for a predetermined period of time, then let your heart rate drop to half that or less for a few minutes and resume the cardio. Focusing your mind on your breathing rates and lengths of time will train your brain to do the same thing in the ring, or any other high pressure situation. Remember, brain training makes muscle memory something you can depend on in competition. Train your brain and mind-body connection to utilize adrenaline as a finely mixed fuel that propels you to optimum performance.

Dr. Carrie Wicks divides her time between her private sport psychology consulting and family therapy practice, traveling with athletes, and writing. She completed her doctorate in psychology while researching the mental practices of equestrian athletes. Her passions include horses, yoga, mountain biking, skiing, and time in nature with animals. If you would like to ask a question for this column or ask about a complimentary Performance Strategy session, please contact Carrie.

Carrie Wicks, Ph.D. | Photo © Ashley Neuhof

| may/june ·


B E H I N D the



Houlihan Kate Houlihan’s family has lived in California for four generations, and has been connected to horses for almost that long. Her mother was an avid equestrian and she grew up riding and showing throughout the state under the guidance of trainer Barbara Worth. Needless to say, with her mother’s help, Kate was riding horses before she could walk. Aside from wanting to be at the barn and riding while growing up, Kate also loved all things art: sketching, painting, and of course, photography. Art was a passion she pursued at school and in her time off, and it eventually earned her a full scholarship for a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts at the University of Oregon. After college, Kate moved to Sun Valley, Idaho, and landed a job with the internationally acclaimed photographer, David Stoecklein. With his help, she developed her skills and learned a lot about photography and the business. Kate worked as a photographer in many capacities – stock photography, styling, producing, and sometimes modeling – before finally starting her own business. Now Kate has a thriving photography business. She shoots for families, commercial companies, and of course, equestrians. Kate emphasizes that her favorite aspect of equestrian photography is finding the artistic shot: “Jumping pictures are fun to shoot, but truth be told, I really enjoy capturing the behind the scenes moments.” Kate’s work has gained notoriety and her equestrian images can be found in horse magazines, in shots for equine inspired companies, and as fine art.


· may/june

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12501 S. Shore Blvd. Wellington, FL 33414

Valencia Saddlery

11355 Foothill Blvd. Lake View Terrace, CA 91342

Photo © Andrew Ryback

Tack N Rider

VOL. 2

coming summer


C A N you

stand it ?

Equestrian Expression Versace’s SS'17 line has everything you could want from a spring wardrobe: neon colors, bold prints and asymmetrical lines. As fresh as the clothes are, it is the advertising campaign shot by Bruce Weber that earns it a “Can You Stand It” accolade. Gorgeous people,Versace dresses and happy horses make for an intoxicating mix, and seeing as you already have a happy horse, it is a mix you are only a Versace dress away from achieving for yourself.

Energy Wave – Runway Capsule Collection SS'17


· may/june



For more information contact:

(352) 629-6229 Rider: Amanda Steege