The Plaid Horse October 2023 - The Indoors Issue

Page 1



ELLA DALTON A love of horses brings life-long learning


TerraNova Equestrian Center, The Humble Hoof, and Emory & Henry University

$8.99 (ISSN 2573-9409)


CONGRATULATIONS TO JULIA GREENSPAN & CALVIN KLEIN on their top finishes at the Gladstone Amateur cup, CPHA Foundation Finals, CPHA Amateur Finals, PCHA Adult Finals, and THIS Adult Equitation Championship. Calvin Klein is available for lease and can be tried at Indoors.

CHAD MAHAFFEY 2200 Mulholland Hwy

Calabasas, CA

(310) 428-9253


(top photo) 2022 Zone Horse of the Year in the 3'6" AOs and High Performance. Paperboy is for sale and available to be tried at Indoors.

GOOD LUCK TO JULIA GREENSPAN & ESSIE STARLIGHT (bottom photo) in the Medium Junior/Amateur divisions at Indoors.

CHAD MAHAFFEY 2200 Mulholland Hwy

Calabasas, CA

(310) 428-9253

Holiday Happenings


“LAURACEA at Landrum” Meet the Designer A special event to celebrate the launch of LAURACEA products at the new “EquiSafe” store in Landrum, NC Friday, November 3rd - 2pm to 6pm Please submit your207 ad in CMYK color (no spot colors or RGB) E. Rutherford St, Landrum, SC

at 300 dpi resolution.

PLEASE NOTE: Any images used in your ad at less than 300dpi may appear fuzzy or pixellated when printed. December

Celebrate the holiday season with a weekly giveaway with purchase*

PREFERRED FILE FORMATS: PDFat or flattened only at our Wellington Showroom located 3500 FairlanePSD, FarmsJPG Rd, or #11,TIF Wellington, FL Please do NOT include cropmarks. Week 1 December 1st - 7th Receive a LAURACEA Envelope with the purchase of any LAURACEA bag.*


This versatile clutch is made from natural grain calf leather, is leather and features hidden magnet closure. Spread will be cutlined at this dottedaline.

This is the size of your FULL-BLEED AD.

Week 2 December 8th - 14th Receive a LAURACEA Card Case the purchase of any LAURACEA bag:*

16"W x 10.75"H

This classic card holder is handcrafted in Italy from high quality Italian leathers. It also features a brass snap closure and leather lined interior.


Week 3

Keep all text, logos andDecember important imagery INSIDE THIS AREA on 15th - 22nd each individual pagePassport and out of the thepurchase outer 0.25" of each Receive a LAURACEA Case of anymargin LAURACEA bag:* page Thesexsleek leather covers arepage handcrafted in Italy from high quality Italian 7.5"W 10.25"H per

leathers with convenient leather slip pockets for your passport and boarding pass.

(For NON-BLEED ADS, see separate template for details.)


Showroom Hours Holiday Hours 2023

Friday, Decemberand 1st - Friday, December Background color, graphics images MUST22nd extend here 9am - 5pm


January 7th measure - March 27th,16.25"W 2024 Final file size with bleed will x 11"H Sunday - Wednesday; 9am - 5pm Plus special evening events as scheduled Sunday Spritzes: noon - 5pm weekly Monday Mimosas: 10am - noon weekly

Not quite sure what all these terms mean? Here’s a good tutorial:

* while supplies last




Week 1 - Grand Opening Week January 7th - 10th; Receive a gift with the purchase of a LAURACEA bag.* Monday, January 8th; 5th Anniversary Celebration & Cocktail Reception, 6pm- 8pm Week 2 - Celebrating the Horse January 14th - 17th; View exceptional equine photography and enter to win a photo shoot. Monday, January 15th; Gallery Night with Wine Reception, 4pm - 8pm Week 3 - The Art of Safety Monday, January 22nd; A trunk show and talk, 4pm - 8pm

Learn about Safety Vest technology, the latest innovations, and safety certifications, with Guest Catherine Winter of Ride Equisafe, while enjoying wine and cheese.

Week 4 - College Counseling for the Equestrian applicant with Signature Academics. Monday January 29th; An informative talk followed by Q&A. Learn how to approach the college essay, NCAA recruitment, and IHSA. Check our website for times.

NOTE: TThis TRIM size is the size of a 2-page spread in the magazine, where each page measures 8"W x 10.75"H. Please note that this page size is NOT Week 5 - Book Week the same as letter-size which is the default size in many design programs, Monday, February 5th; Author Meet and Greet. so please double-check your document size matches the measurements here.

Celebrate books with signed copies, beautiful coffee table books and books to inform. Visit our website for details.

Week 6 - Valentine’s Week February 11th - 14th; We love our customers! Receive a special gift with your purchase.* Week 7 - How Horses Help Us Monday, introduction to The Gleneayre Equestrian Program with Bill Rube. NOTE: AnyFebruary content that19th; falls An in the outer our rafflpage e to win LAURACEA products with proceeds going to 1/4" margin ofEnter each individual could possibly be impactful cut off duringorganization. the this Visit our website for additional information. magazine production process or get lost in the gutter (where the magazine pages Week 8 - Italian Market Week meet in the center).

February 25 - 28th; Shop beautiful items, specially curated in Italy by Team LAURACEA Week 9 - Spring Break Style Monday, March 4th; Trunk Show, 1pm - 5pm

Find your perfect spring break pieces at this special trunk show. We’ll help you style outfits for evening, travel, and all of your occasions.

Week 10 - Gift with purchase all week long. March 10 - 13th; Receive a LAURACEA card case with the purchase of any LAURACEA bag.* Week 11 - Gift with purchase all week long. March 17th - 20th; Receive a LAURACEA passport case with the purchase of any LAURACEA bag.* QUESTIONS?

Week 12 - Backpacks and Bellinis Email Monday, March 25th; A sip and shop to celebrate the close of the Winter Circuit, 12 noon - 5pm

* while supplies last

Best of luck Violet Tatum at Indoors





For Fun

SISTERS whoride ridetogether together who 2-PAGESISTERS SPREAD FULL-BLEED AD SPECS

In In addition to to being thethe fifth anniversary of of LAURACEA, thisthis FallFall also brings usus thethe fifth and final addition being fifth anniversary LAURACEA, also brings fifth and final installainstallation of our campaign, Sisters Who Ride Together. This campaign has meant so much to Ime. am tion of our campaign, Sisters Who Ride Together. This campaign has meant so much to me. am Igrateful grateful that we able weretoable to document these sisters together. I think can’t of think of a appropriate more appropriate that we were document together. I(no can’tspot a more totime share Please submit your these adthan insisters CMYK color colors or looks RGB)back totime to this share this fi fth and fi nal installment on our fi fth anniversary. This fi nal ad where fifth and final installment than on our fifth anniversary. This final ad looks back to where LAURACEA atbegan, 300 dpi resolution. LAURACEA with my two daughters - sisters rode growing togetherup, growing up, and to continue to ride as began, with my two daughters - sisters who rode who together and continue ride together PLEASE NOTE: Any images used in your ad at less than 300dpi may appear fuzzy or pixellated when printed. together as adults. adults.

PREFERRED FILE FORMATS: PDF or flattened PSD, JPG ordriving TIF to to LAURACEA exists because I have two girls who ride. Over thethe years I was often driving thethe barn, or or to to LAURACEA exists because I have two girls who ride. Over years I was often barn, thethe shows, and over the years I ruined a lot of of bags and I lost a lot of of things - lots and lots of of crops. This Please do NOT include cropmarks. shows, and over the years I ruined a lot bags and I lost a lot things - lots and lots crops. This eventually compelled me to create a better option. One that is functional, made with lasting quality, and eventually compelled me to create a better option. One that is functional, made with lasting quality, and is also beautiful. I wanted a bag that could hold everything at the horse shows, but it also needed to be is also beautiful. I wanted a bag that could hold everything at the horse shows, but it also needed to be able to to gogo outout to to dinner, and travel as as well. I wanted a bag that could gogo from work, meetings, or or lunch, able dinner, and travel well. I wanted a bag that could from work, meetings, lunch, to to thethe barn. I also needed a bag that could spend time at the barn, or a horse show, and still look good barn. I also needed a bag that could spend time at the barn, or a horse show, and still look good (hello waterproof leather). And soso the LAURACEA Convertible Tote was born - because I have Spread will be cut atthe this dotted line. Backpack (hello waterproof leather). And LAURACEA Convertible Backpack Tote was born - because I have two girls who ride. two girlsThis who is ride. the size of your FULL-BLEED AD.


16"W x 10.75"H

Over thethe years, they went to to thethe barn together, sixsix days a week. They drove to to shows together; they gotgot Over years, they went barn together, days a week. They drove shows together; they upup at at 4am together. They shared a common bond. When the girls were young and the short and long 4am together. They shared a common bond. When the girls were young and the short and long stirrup classes were combined, they sometimes found themselves competing against each other. And stirrup classes were combined, they sometimes found themselves competing against each other. And that was hard. But when my older daughter fi rst left for college, and my younger daughter went to herher that was hard. But when my older daughter first left for college, and my younger daughter went to first show without her, there was a void. The younger one realized that herher older sister had always been first show without her, there was a void. The younger one realized that older sister had always been there, alongside the trainer, to send her into the ring. there, alongside the trainer, to send her into the ring.


Keep all text, logos and important imagery INSIDE THIS AREA on each individual page and out of thedaughter outer 0.25" margin ofto each page The girls are grown now. OnOn Friday nights, my younger heads downtown to her sister’s The girls are grown now. Friday nights, my younger daughter heads downtown her sister’s apart-

7.5"W x 10.25"H per page

apartment. sleeps up Saturday on Saturday drive to the barn together. They continue ment. SheShe sleeps overover andand theythey get get up on andand drive to the barn together. They continue to to share share time, time, and and stories, stories, experiences experiences and and challenges, challenges, as as riders. riders. II hear hear about about what what they they had had for for dinner dinner (For NON-BLEED ADS, see separate template for details.) together onon Friday night and how things areare going at at thethe barn. AsAs a mother I am soso thankful forfor thethe many together Friday night and how things going barn. a mother I am thankful many lessons this sport has taught my girls, but most of all I am thankful for the bond that they share because lessons this sport has taught my girls, but most of all I am thankful for the bond that they share - because they ride together. they ride together.


This series is comprised of of various sisters who ride together. They may bebe in diff erent stages of of lifelife and This series is comprised various sisters who ride together. They may in diff erent stages and Background color, graphics and images MUST extend here levels of the sport, but they all share an exceptional bond because of this sport. This series is dedicated levels of the sport, but they all share an exceptional bond because of this sport. This series is dedicated to to ALL thethe siblings and families who share thisthis bond. ALL siblings and families who share bond.


Final file size with bleed will measure 16.25"W x 11"H

Tamara Makris Tamara Makris Creative Director Creative Director LAURACEA LAURACEA

Quality. Quality. Function. Function. Beauty. Beauty.

Not quite sure what all these terms mean? Here’s a good tutorial:

@shoplauracea @shoplauracea


The Makris Sisters

NOTE: TThis TRIM size is the size of a 2-page spread in the magazine, where each page measures 8"W x 10.75"H. Please note that this page size is NOT the same as letter-size which is the default size in many design programs, so please double-check your document size matches the measurements here.

NOTE: Any content that falls in the outer 1/4" margin of each individual page could possibly be cut off during the magazine production process or get lost in the gutter (where the magazine pages meet in the center).


No. 5 in a Series

The Makris Sisters

The TheHarris HarrisSisters Sisters

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amara TamaraMakris Makris 0.125" ON ALL 4 SIDES OF THE SPREAD Creative CreativeDirector Director LAURACEA AURACEA BEYOND THE TRIM SIZE

Final file size with bleed will measure 16.25"W x 11"H

No. No.44ininaaSeries Series

Emily EmilyHarris Harris(L) (L)Sarah SarahHarris Harris(R) (R)

Not quite sure what all these terms mean? Here’s a good tutorial: Learn Learnmore moreabout aboutthe theHarris Harrissisters sistersatat


The The Redman Sisters The TheRedman Redman RedmanSisters Sisters Sisters

NOTE: TThis TRIM size is the size of a 2-page spread in the magazine, where each page measures 8"W x 10.75"H. Please note that this page size is NOT the same as letter-size which is the default size in many design programs, so please double-check your document size matches the measurements here.

NOTE: Any content that falls in the outer 1/4" margin of each individual page could possibly be cut off during the magazine production process or get lost in the gutter (where the magazine pages meet in the center).

No. No.33ininaaSeries Series

Maggie MaggieRedman Redman(L) (L)Sarah SarahRedman Redman (R) (R) QUESTIONS? Email

Stoeckel Sisters SISTERSThe who ride together The Stoeckel Sisters SISTERS who ride together


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mara Makris or eative Director AURACEA

Not quite sure what all these terms mean? Here’s a good tutorial:

Quality. Function. Quality. Beauty. Function. Beauty.

n a Series Britta Stoeckel (L) Stoeckel Olivia Stoeckel (R)Stoeckel (R) No. 2 in a Series Britta (L) Olivia Learn more at @shoplauracea Learn more at @shoplauracea


The McFadden Sisters The McFadden Sisters

NOTE: TThis TRIM size is the size of a 2-page spread in the magazine, where each page measures 8"W x 10.75"H. Please note that this page size is NOT the same as letter-size which is the default size in many design programs, so please double-check your document size matches the measurements here.

NOTE: Any content that falls in the outer 1/4" margin of each individual page could possibly be cut off during the magazine production process or get lost in the gutter (where the magazine pages meet in the center).

No. 1 inQUESTIONS? a Series No. 1 in a Seri Email

Cara McFadden (L) Cara McFadden Lily McFadden (R) Lily McFadden

Build them a place to remember. You deserve far more than just the standard horse barn. B&D builds luxury equestrian facilities meant to last for generations.


AMERICAN STALLS Luxury Stabling Equipment & Hardware | (855) 957-7255 |

AMERICAN STALLS Luxury Stabling Equipment & Hardware


Jessie & Juniper

Kids Competitor Koat

Kids Affinity® Aero Show Coat

YOU BELONG HERE Whether you’re trotting into the show ring, moving to a new barn, or taking your first lesson, remember this—you belong. Regardless of your discipline, body shape, show record, or breech size, Kerrits is committed to helping you feel as good on the outside as horses make you feel on the inside. Shop your local Kerrits retailer or online at

LESSONS • TRAINING • REHAB/LAYUP SALES • RETIREMENT BOARD STATE OF THE ART FACILITY including: Large Ebb and Flow Arena, Euro Sizer, Riding Track, Spacious Turn outs with Shelters & Nelson Waters High class facility with openings in our show training program for horses and riders. Space and barn available to established trainer. Full board and dry stall options available.

Carrie Montgomery • 951-834-2499

Murrieta, California

OCT/NOV 2023

The Indoors Issue 28






Do you have to be inherently selfish to be a great rider?

Purina: Getting to Know the Microbiome

80th Annual Ludwig’s Corner Horse Show







Ella Dalton: A love of horses brings life-long learning

Rider to Horseman Presents: How the Pros Keep Their Horses Happy at the Horse Show

Virginia Festival of Champions



TerraNova: Relax, Enjoy, Show



Emory & Henry College: Providing exceptional support to college equestrians



October/November 2023


The Plaid Horse Questionnaire with Nick Haness

VC Breeding & Sales: “When We Know Better, We Do Better”





It Happens! With Margo Thomas, Havens Schatt, Danny Robertshaw


The Humble Hoof: Hoof Injuries and Long-Term Success

FACEBOOK: THREADS: @theplaidhorsemag INSTAGRAM: @theplaidhorsemag TIKTOK: @theplaidhorsemag


CREATING ARTWORK WHILE RAISING MONEY FOR CHARITY Help raise $5,000 for charity at the Washington International Horse Show, Oct. 23-29 at the Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, MD. Make a $75 donation and receive a complimentary white background portrait session at the show for your horse or dog. These 15-minute sessions take place in a horse-sized studio at the show. Your $75 goes straight to FETCH a Cure, an organization helping pet owners pay for cancer treatments for their pets, as well as furthering pet cancer awareness, education, and treatment.

Publisher & Editor-in-Chief

Managing Editor

Art Direction

Senior Editor


Subscriptions & Plaidcast Manager

Plaidcast Production

Web Manager



M A K E Y O U R L I S T. A D D I T T W I C E . | O U G H T O N . C O M


Do you have to be inherently selfish to be a great rider? I LOVE THIS TIME OF YE AR because it is such a privilege to see

the level of competition we have coming up in our schedule—to watch the best hunter and equitation riders all compete under the same roof, and to watch the most magnificent horses tackle every challenge Indoors throws at them.

A couple years ago I was sitting in the stands at Harrisburg admiring every hunter that walked in the pro divisions when I started to look at the in-gate. In the class I was watching, every single rider had a significant other who handled many parts of their daily lives for them. I kept watching and thinking about this. Showing at the top level is such a team sport—of course, it is rider and horse first, but then it also takes so many people to handle the complications and logistics of today’s horse show world. Down to the most basic, all of these

horses needed to be entered immediately on a certain day when their riders were probably competing at another horse show. Every show required a myriad of hotels, flights, and arrangements for riders, staff, clients, and horses. To peak at any time, but especially in a certain moment, you have to say no to so much. No to yourself, no to those around you who you love, and no to outsiders. And you do need to be selfish and put yourself first because you have so many who are counting on you and depending on you doing so.

To be at the top of the game, this is a necessity. To be the best at anything, you are asking all those in your life to support you. You have to be selfish. If those in your life agree to sign up for that experience, there is nothing inherently wrong with this. It breaks down in two forms. 1. This is a lifelong sport. There is no time to take your foot off the gas of being selfish unless you consciously choose to. 2. This behavior trickles down into the rest of our community as juniors and amateurs emulate the professionals. I don’t have any answers and I struggle with all the same things. Last weekend I volunteered at a horse show rather than practicing my own riding. It will have consequences next time I show. Earlier this summer I spent two weeks riding and let other things in my life suffer. Balance is something that most of us need, but balance cannot exist at the elite or top of any sport. Those who make the most sacrifices tend to end up on top. As we go through Indoors, let’s think about what we want our lives to look like in 2024, what fills our cup, and how we keep ourselves sustained to have the energy to do the best possible job for our horses. Let’s think about how we acknowledge who is doing their part so that we can go out and accomplish great things. Let’s celebrate those who are all-in for the sport, and spend other parts of their lives being great friends, great caretakers, and integral parts of our community. Let’s celebrate giving and everyone’s role. Let’s all give just a little bit more of ourselves to the common good. Let’s all have a great Indoors!

Piper Klemm, Ph.D. TPH PUBLISHER Follow me on Threads at @piperklemm



October/November 2023

Simple Elegant Durable Sliding Doors Dutch Doors Windows Stalls

Mud Control T&G Lumber Custom Fabrication Dealers and Partner sponsorships welcome

ʶˢˡ˧˔˖˧ ˨˦ ˙ˢ˥ ˠˢ˥˘




Women In Business Spectacular JULY 12-16, 2023 STILLWATER, NY

Saratoga Horse Shows hosted the Women In Business Spectacular, held in collaboration with Equestrian Businesswomen, which offered a wide variety of educational opportunities for exhibitors, spectators, and riders alongside the competition itself. The Women In Business Spectacular is unique in that it is run by an all-female staff including jump crew, in-gate, office staff, course designers, and judges. This year, the show featured World Championship Hunter Rider competition for the first time and the educational opportunities for attendees included a US Equestrian panel discussion as well as additional equestrian businesswomen spearkers eager to share their perspectives.

FROM TOP: Course designer Hailey Rogge

discussing the track she created during the course walk for the $5,000 1.30m Welcome Stake; Sonja Keating, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel at US Equestrian, and Vicki Lowell, Chief Marketing and Content Officer at US Equestrian, during the panel discussion



Dressage at Dunmovin & Amateur-Only Dressage Show SPONSORED BY DOVER SADDLERY AUGUST 24-26, 2003 • DEVON, PA



3 4


1 Rosalie Juliano and Quantam Royale • 2 Ana DiGironimo and Lindehojs Zaki • 3 Jennifer Chaki and Degas • 4 Megan Pifer and Mai Tai • 5 Sally Lofting and Gigi • 6 Kim Ashbach and DEM Lucia PHOTOS: BETHANY P PHOTOGRAPHY / BETHANY PASTORIAL



October/November 2023


Healing horse power. WITH

Three advanced devices that use a horse’s own blood or bone marrow for healing

Autologous Protein Solution System Restores the healthy environment of the join with natural anti-inflammatories and healing growth factores.1


Stall or horse side


<20-minute processing

Platelet Concentration Kit Enables improved quality of tendon fiber regeneration during the healing process.2

Convenient Easy to use

Learn more at

1. Bertone, Ishihara, Zekas, Wellman, Lewis, Schwarze, Barnaba, Schmall, Kanter, Genovese, et. al. Evaluation of a single intra-articular injection of autologous protein solution for treatment of osteoarthritis in horses. American Journal of Veterinary Research. Feb 2014. 2. Bosch, Schie, Groot, Cadby, Lest, Barneveld, Weeren, E ects of Platelet-Rich Plasma on the Quality of Repair of Mechanically Induced Core Lesions in Equine Superficial Digital Flexor Tendons: A Placebo-Controlled Experimental Study. Journal of Orthopaedic Research. Feb 2010. 3. Alvarez, Boone, Braim, Taintor, Caldwell, Wright, Wooldridge, et. al. A Survey of Clinical Usage of Non-steroidal Intra-Articular Therapeutics by Equine Practitioners. Frontiers in Veterinary Science. October 2020.) All trademarks are the property of Zoetis Services LLC or a related company or a licensor unless otherwise notes. © 2023 Zoetis Services LLC. All rights reserved. PRS-00006

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ELLA DALTON A love of horses brings life-long learning WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU



competing at the top of the circuit have followed a specific plan: Start in the Pony Hunters, then move up to the 3’ to 3’3” classes, followed by the 3’6” equitation and beyond. But for 15-year-old Ella Dalton, that path looked a little different. In 2017, she attended her first USEF rated horse show, showing in the Walk-Trot aboard a pony named Prince Charming. Her next rated show wasn’t until 2021 where she competed in the 2’ equitation and hunters. While attending HITS Thermal, Dalton was exposed to just how much opportunity there was for her in the horse world.



October/November 2023


“My advice to all riders would be to go to the barn as much as they can, even if they aren’t riding.” —ELLA DALTON October/November 2023




“It’s when I see her finish last and congratulate the winner, or when she wins and supports those that finish below her, that’s what makes me the most proud.” —MATT DALTON

Ella Dalton and her friend Violet Tatum

“Going from the smaller shows on the west coast to Thermal was an eye opening experience,” Dalton tells The Plaid Horse. “It really showed me just how many fantastic events these upper level horse shows have.” So with the support of her father, Matt Dalton, they made the decision to pursue a more serious path as a junior rider—and on a fast-tracked timeline. “We would walk into these arenas and we just never knew anything like this existed,” says Matt. “It was really exciting for us to see all of the possibilities.” Dalton began riding at Granite Bay Farm in Thousand Oaks, CA, in May 2022. Under the training of Katie Hauss, Lindsay Stefanko, and Alex Dirickson, Dalton has made her way up the divisions and started showing in the 3’3” hunters, equitation, and 1.20 m jumpers, even showing at Capital Challenge in



October/November 2023

2022 aboard her horse Cristageno. After attending her first major final, she set the goal to qualify for more indoor finals in 2023. With that goal in mind, she began showing almost every weekend, rotating divisions and horses for each show.

FROM THE WALK-TROT TO THE BIG TIME Today, Dalton owns seven horses, each one serving a certain purpose for her riding. During the week, she will go to school and then ride the ones who are at home for the week, taking the ones at the show into the ring on the weekends. Her hard work and dedication has paid off as she placed third overall at the 2023 Adequan/USEF Junior Hunter National Championship - West in the Large Junior Hunter 3’3” 15 and Under division. In the fall, she plans to compete at Capital Challenge, the National Horse Show, and

Harrisburg. She is also qualified for the The Hamel Foundation NHS 3’3” Medal. In the equitation, she’ll be showing her horse, Vondel DH Z. In addition to her third place ribbon at Junior Hunter Finals, she also won the Sportsmanship Award. “I was equally as proud of that as I was of the third place,” says Lindsay Stefanko. Dalton’s longer-term goal is to qualify for the 3’6” equitation finals, and she hopes to compete in college as well. Post-graduate, Dalton hopes to open up her very own barn.

GRATITUDE FOR HER TEAM While Dalton naturally possesses talent and dedication, she and her father are quick to recognize the many people that stand in her corner and make it all possible. “It’s definitely a team effort,” says Dalton. “I don’t do this on my own.”


Ella Dalton with Gable Gering (left)

She and her father express great appreciation to her trainers for not only their tutelage but also for giving up most weekends to be up early at a horse show. The veterinarians, grooms, horse transporters, and braiders have all made it possible for Dalton to succeed in the way that she has. To repay those that give her so much, Dalton tries to do her part around the barn by helping out and learning wherever she can. “I try to be involved as much as possible,” says Dalton. “My advice to all riders would be to go to the barn as much as they can, even if they aren’t riding. Just to help and bond with the horses is great!” Trainer Katie Hauss has taken notice of her student’s hard work. “She’s really dedicated to the sport and very passionate about it,” says Hauss. “She knew that at her age she was a little behind the curve PHOTOS: JULIE AHN PHOTOGRAPHY (TOP AND RIGHT)

with the “A” circuit shows, so we put her on a fast track and she committed to it.”

PARENTING ON THE CIRCUIT Before Dalton was involved with horses, her father, Matt Dalton, didn’t know much about them. “Originally, I got into it because I love my daughter and I love spending time with her,” says Matt. Quickly, he recognized the less apparent benefit of the horses. “I love animals, but I never spent much time with horses,” he says. “They’re just such fantastic animals.” Now a regular attendee at almost every one of Ella’s horse shows, Matt appreciates watching his daughter learn and develop not only as a rider but as a person. “These are life-long lessons that she’s learning. She’s learning the value of

courage, personal responsibility, and accountability,” he says. “Personally, I couldn’t care less about the blue ribbons. It’s when I see her finish last and congratulate the winner, or when she wins and supports those that finish below her, that’s what makes me the most proud.” “I encourage her to be just a little bit better each day in all aspects of her life,” he adds. “I believe these small, incremental changes have a large cumulative effect over time. This is a commitment in both time and finances, but the experience it provides our children is invaluable, at whatever level is feasible.” “There are great people and families involved in the sport,” says Matt. “They are good, like-minded, family-oriented individuals who want the best for their sons and daughters. What better environment for your children?” October/November 2023















Discover Florida’s premier equestrian destination. 2024 Hunter/Jumper Calendar JANUARY 3-7 Sarasota Winter Classic Week I National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/Level 4 Jumper JANUARY 10-14 Sarasota Winter Classic Week II National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/Level 4 Jumper JANUARY 24-28 Split Rock Jumping Tour Sarasota FEI CSI 2* FEBRUARY 14-18 TerraNova Winter Series Week I National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/FEI CSI 2*/Level 5 Jumper FEBRUARY 21-25 TerraNova Winter Series Week II National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/FEI CSI 2*/Level 5 Jumper MARCH 13-17 TerraNova Winter Series Week III National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/FEI CSI 2*/Level 5 Jumper MARCH 20-24 TerraNova Winter Series Week IV National ‘A’ Hunter-Equitation/FEI CSI 2*/Level 5 Jumper INFO@TERRANOVAEQUESTRIAN.COM

31625 Clay Gully Rd. Myakka City, FL 34251 Photo by Jessica Buehler

Seasonal stalls & tentative schedule now available!


RELAX, ENJOY, SHOW TerraNova Equestrian Center offers competitors a luxurious home-away-from-home experience with top tier competition WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU



October/November 2023



Show Barn; Fountain; Kent Farrington meets leadliner Lena Mae on Mare E. Poppins owned by Laurie Birnbach; Competitor stabling

THE WINTER SHOW CIRCUIT is something countless riders as-

pire to do. But with so many options around the country’s southern half, it can be hard to choose where you want to show. TerraNova Equestrian Center is working to make that choice a little easier. Located in Myakka, FL, just a short drive from Sarasota, the show park boasts unique, thoughtful amenities for both horse and rider, among others (like your dog or child!). The equestrian center, which held its first event in 2021, is a family-run operation. The owners were heavily involved in the creation of the grounds as well as the day-to-day operations. The goal was to build a show park that appealed to everyone, while offering an unparalleled experience to all exhibitors. “Everything here was thought through so carefully,” Hannah Herrig-Ketelboeter, Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer at TerraNova Equestrian Center, tells The Plaid Horse.

ALL THE AMENITIES TerraNova Equestrian Center boasts six arenas equipped with GGT footing, as well as a cross country course. State-ofthe-art, permanent stabling is available for all horses. All stalls are 12x12 in size with stall mattress systems. In addition, each stall has a fan and each aisle has TV monitors so that even back at the barn you can stay informed with each ring. Turnout is also available for horses as an added feature. While they currently have over 250 permanent stalls available, they have plans to expand with a goal of over 600 stalls. “One thing everyone remarks on is how relaxed the horses are here,” says Ruby Tevis, Marketing Director at TerraNova

Equestrian Center. “One braider remarked on how comfortable the horses were, which we loved to hear!” While horse comfort is top priority, the creators of the equestrian center have also added the comforts of home for every family member. A VIP pavilion and spectator viewing area feature details that rival home decor from a magazine, while the TerraNova Tiny Town gives children the chance to stay busy and play during long horse show days. The team at TerraNova even has a park for the horse show dogs equipped with agility obstacles. Outside of the show grounds, Lakewood Ranch has all the shopping, dining, entertainment, schools, healthcare, nature, and recreational options you can imagine just a short drive away. Nearby Sarasota has beaches, restaurants, and shopping.

SOMETHING FOR EVERY RIDER TerraNova Equestrian Center offers eleven weeks of showing throughout the October/November 2023




year for most disciplines of riding. October starts the season with TerraNova Dressage, followed by The Event at TerraNova, an FEI 4* three-day event. In early January, the Sarasota Winter Classic holds their hunter/jumper shows, shortly followed by a week of the Split Rock Jumping Tour for their 2* championship. While the team co-manages with WEST Show Management and Split Rock for these weeks, they also have four weeks of hunter/jumper shows between February and March that they manage on their own. Towards the end of spring, they round out their season with another three-day event and a dressage show. During their hunter/jumper series, the prize list offers hunter derbies, national

grand prix classes, and an FEI 2*, as well as several lower level classes so that there are options for everyone. Competitors from around the country are noticing the equestrian center and are beginning to make it part of their winter showing, including top hunter rider Jennifer Alfano of Next Chapter LLC. “I loved it, honestly,” says Alfano. “We did two weeks in January. The facility is fantastic, the stabling is great, the rings were great. It was just a really nice place to take horses. It’s really thought out.” Another perk to the location is that it is equidistant to Wellington, FL and

Ocala, FL, making it the perfect place to stop no matter where you go for your winter circuit.

SEE FOR YOURSELF Whether you’re traveling down to TerraNova for the week or for the whole winter, the team makes entering and reserving easy. You can order hay and shavings from their on-site feed store, TerraNova Feed and Fence. For more details or to enter for the 2024 winter circuit, please visit Seasonal stall reservations are now open.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: VIP Pavilion; SRJT 2022; Jennifer Alfano on Next owned by Jean Edwards

“The facility is fantastic, the stabling is great, the rings were great. It was just a really nice place to take horses.” —JENNIFER ALFANO, HUNTER RIDER



October/November 2023

BREAKTHROUGH MENTAL STRATEGIES with Nancy Dye Free Mental Skills Coaching

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EQUESTRIAN ROCKSTAR BRAND AMBASSADOR, KATE EGAN, on her coaching sessions Before coaching; a.) I was a perfectionist. b.) I was an overthinker. c.) I was stressed.

How were the above problems impacting your life?

a.) If something was not perfect in my round, I would beat myself up about it. It would be hard for me to turn around my emotions for the next round. b.) I would think things I said or did would cause others to dramatically change their viewpoints about me. Additionally, I would think if someone saw a mess up in my round they would believe I was a bad rider or not worthy of a catch ride. c.) I felt that I had many responsibilities that I could not handle. I felt that I was unable to get them all done, and that idea scared me.

What finally had you say “enough is enough” that inspired you to work with Nancy Dye? All of my problems started to affect my mental state and riding in the show ring. I felt less confident, I was always crying, and I wasn’t feeling myself. I knew I needed to get back to who I truly was and become the strongest rider I knew I could be.

Photo by Andrew Ryback

One of my favorite aspects of coaching was not only learning the mental skills to be an equestrian rockstar, but also learning to have the time management and dedication I needed to achieve success. Now I feel unstoppable. I feel strong and empowered enough that no tasks or challenges are too much for me to do. I can balance all aspects of my life and execute everything with success. My show and academic results have improved, and my confidence in and out of the show ring is at its peak. Nancy’s peak performance coaching has transformed me to be an unflappable equestrian in and out of the ring. I am no longer unseated in high pressure competitions – rather, I use the pressure to work for me.”

Nancy Dye, a Tony Robbins trained strategic interventionist and breakthrough mental skills coach, shows you how to transform your riding and your life. Become an Equestrian Rockstar with her unique and powerful tools and techniques for achieving emotional strength, resiliency, and peak performance.

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1 Jamie Sailor, winner of the USHJA National Hunter Derby • 2 Showing off her ribbons • 3 Camilo Rueda, winner of the $15,000 Land Rover Defender Grand Prix 2 • 4 A grateful hug PHOTOS: LINDSEY LONG PHOTOGRAPHY



Providing exceptional support for equestrians during their college careers WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU

RIDING IN COLLEGE has grown in popularity in recent

years, offering something for everyone no matter what discipline you choose. Many colleges offer riding as an extracurricular activity for students, but Emory & Henry College places it at the forefront, demonstrating to their students that the sport matters and they’re willing to support riders in every way possible. The current state-of-the-art equestrian center sits fifteen minutes from the Emory, VA, campus and offers two indoor arenas, a 350x200 foot outdoor arena, a 40-acre cross country course, fifteen large paddocks, four tack rooms, and a classroom with a view of the riding arena. Emory & Henry College competes in the Interscholastic Horse Show Association (IHSA), the Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA), and the American National Riding Commission (ANRC). The program consists of 130 students and 70 horses.



October/November 2023


The Emory & Henry Campus in Virginia; Championship rings from the 2019 IHSA Nationals and the 2018 IDA Nationals; Kendall Madison at 2022 IHSA Nationals MIDDLE ROW:

Various trophies; Abby McCoy and Be Bravo BOTTOM:

2023 IDA Zone Championship team who qualified for the 2023 IDA National Championship

October/November 2023




With a total of 22 national championships across divisions, Emory & Henry ’s equestrian program is a proven force in collegiate riding.

2022 IHSA Champions

STUDENT LIFE “One of the unique things is that the riding classes are a part of your weekly schedule, just like every other class,” Odessa Thacker, Associate Director of Admissions and Equestrian Recruitment Specialist for Emory & Henry College, tells The Plaid Horse. “It helps students a lot with time management as it’s not just an after-school sport.” Aside from regular lessons, each day there is a list of horses that need to be exercised made available to equestrian students, offering students the opportunity to ride additional horses at no cost. The college offers majors in Equine Studies, Pre-Veterinary, and Equine Assisted Therapy. The Equine Studies program offers students the unique experience to not have a concentration within the major but instead to take a variety of classes that offer hands-on experience for students. These classes include Methods of Teaching, Breaking and Training, Judging, Horse Show Management, and Course Design. The college also assists in placing students in positions with riders, trainers, farms, and more to offer opportunities in their field of interest. Graduates of the program have gone on to successful careers in the equine industry, such as Margo Thomas, who went on to be the head groom for Laura Kraut, and Emily Trice, a 2020 graduate who rides for Greg Crolick. “The Equine Studies program at Emory & Henry shaped me as an equine professional and a person, and gave me invaluable opportunities and connections in the horse industry,” says Trice. “The riding program undoubtedly made me the rider I am today, and the coaching staff at E&H are absolutely incomparable. I am so thankful for everything the program taught me, and highly recommend it to others every chance I get.”

2019 IHSA Champions

“Our goal for the program is to make the industry available for the full four years that students are at school so they can do things that they never really imagined that they could do.” —ODESSA THACKER, Associate Director of Admissions and Equestrian Recruitment Specialist

RECRUITING PROCESS The program recruits hunter, jumper, equitation, eventing, and dressage riders. “Some riders are very advanced when



October/November 2023

they come to college but we also need beginners to round out the team,” says Thacker. “We try to recruit students from all backgrounds. You don’t have to be riding at the rated shows to get recruited to come to college.” Thacker prefers to meet potential students face-to-face and attends horse shows to connect with potential recruits, as well Pony Club meets and Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) shows. The college offers scholarships to equestrian athletes with the typical amount ranging anywhere from $500 to $5,000 per year. “Students do not have to major in any of the equine programs to ride on the team or get a scholarship,” says Thacker. “Our goal for the program is to make the equine industry accessible for the full four years that our students are with us, so they can learn about and experience parts of the industry that they may have never had the opportunity to before.” Equestrian athletes are considered members of the varsity sports community

at the college, therefore they receive perks such as team apparel in addition to having all of their show costs, including travel, covered.

BIG THINGS TO COME While their current facility may rival the average barn, in March 2023, the college’s Board of Trustees voted and approved to have a new equestrian facility built on campus. While the college is still in the fundraising phase of the project, the new facility is slated to build 90 stalls, a derby field, additional classroom spaces, and locker rooms. “We’re excited for our new facility, but more importantly we are not totally leaving our current facility,” says Thacker. “It has a lot of history and we plan to keep it as an additional space for students to continue their education in the equine industry.” To learn more about Emory & Henry College, visit For recruitment questions, please reach out directly to Odessa Thacker at


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The new home of Whitethorne LLC in Aiken, SC

WHITETHORNE LLC Georgy Maskrey-Segesman opens a second location in Aiken, SC GEORGY MASKREY-SEGESMAN’S business is growing. In addition to Whitethorne LLC’s original location in Somis, CA, she is opening a second location in Aiken, SC. “It’s always been a dream for me to expand to the East Coast, and I’m fortunate enough to do so now,” she tells The Plaid Horse. An active member of the Southern California equestrian community, Whitethorne has spent the last decade building up equitation classes. “I want to join in my new community and do whatever I can to be a positive influence,” she says of the expansion to South Carolina.

The American Tradition of Excellence Equitation Challenge, held each June in San Juan Capistrano, CA, was the brainchild of MaskreySegesman and brought to life by Blenheim Equisports. The 3’3” class on the Grand Prix field is a highlight in many riders’ calendars and draws around 100 entries annually. The innovative class offers judges’ feedback and seminars discussing the day from the judges, Tonya Johnston, Mental Skills Coach, and other featured speakers. “I learned so much building equitation classes and top level sport in California and I look forward to helping

bring that to Aiken, SC. “I believe young riders develop when given the opportunity to expand and challenge their skills and I look forward to being active in a new community.” Whitethorne LLC is known for having a string of quality, safe, and lovely horses—most of which shine in the equitation ring. “My business has always been to give back. I always think about whether I would put my own child on a horse and I believe we can work together to make this sport available to as many people as possible,” she says. Maskrey-Segesman looks forward to the upcoming move with her husband and 12-year-old daughter, Sophia Segesman, a top equestrian herself. Visit for more information.

October/November 2023



Performance Line

©Erin Gilmore Photography

Where Each Girl Can Pursue Her Passion for Riding Imagine taking a riding lesson in between science and English class. Whether a beginner or competing on a national level, Foxcroft School supports every girl’s passion for riding. Riders of all skill levels can find joy in our top-tier equestrian program and 500-acre campus. Girls new to riding will have an exciting world of horsemanship to explore under the guidance of our expert instructors. Experienced riders can qualify for our Exceptional Proficiency (EP) program and train for greatness while receiving an outstanding education.


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“I would’ve never imagined that I’d grow my riding abilities to the extent that I have at Foxcroft and with the help of my amazing trainers.” — Valeska F. ’26

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GETTING TO KNOW THE MICROBIOME Purina Animal Nutrition is on a decades-long mission to define the equine microbiome to help horse owners support their horses’ health, performance, comfort, and wellbeing while including and educating horse owners along the journey WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU PHOTOS: ROBBIE McCORD


Morghan Bowman, MS, works in the Emerging Technology Lab at the Purina Animal Nutrition Center Dr. Robert Jacobs and Wrangler at the Equine Research Unit at the Purina Animal Nutrition Center



October/November 2023

October/November 2023





CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Dr. Jacobs and Morghan work together to extract DNA from samples submitted by horse owners around the country; Dr. Jacobs and Morghan discuss research findings

S HORSE LOVERS, we know so much

about our horses. Their routines, what they like, what they dislike, what tack suits them best, and so much more. While all of these factors are important in the overall picture of keeping our horses happy, very few people understand exactly what goes on inside the horse to keep them healthy. This is where the experts at Purina Animal Nutrition are there to help. While the respiratory, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems are all critical to maintaining the health of your horses, there is one thing that connects all of them in ways that we are just scratching the surface on understanding. The microbiome. WHAT IS THE MICROBIOME? The microbiome is defined as a community of microorganisms which includes protozoa, bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Every living thing has a unique and purposeful microbiome. In the horse, the key responsibility of this community is the digestion of fibers that the horse cannot digest themselves (think of the hay and forage that we feed our horses every day). The bacteria (predominantly) ferment these fibers to produce volatile fatty acids that the horse uses as an energy source, along with key vitamins and other factors required by the horse. But, in addition to this primary function, we know that the microbiome plays a major role in regulating immune function, inflammatory health, and overall gastrointestinal function. Each section of the horse’s GI tract has its own unique microbiome with a distinct purpose and function. From the horse’s mouth through the end of its large intestine, the microbial inhabitants work hard to support your horse’s health. Researchers continue to investigate the microbiome in all areas of the horse’s GI tract, but special focus has been placed on the microbial community in the hindgut (cecum and large intestine). What makes a horse unique is also what makes their individual microbiome unique. Different breeds, sexes, diets, lifestyles, and even geographic locations play a role in the diversity of the microbes



October/November 2023

that make up the microbiome of the horse. “What’s really fascinating is the microbiome of a specific horse is optimized to the needs of that unique individual,” Robert Jacobs, Ph.D., Equine Innovation Manager at Purina Animal Nutrition tells The Plaid Horse. “For example, horses consuming primarily pasture have a more diverse microbiome than those that consume larger quantities of feed. Neither one is better or worse, rather the community is optimized to meet the needs of the horse.”

EXPLORING THE MICROBIOME The microbiome is made up of trillions of microorganisms that live all throughout the horse’s body. It is so large and diverse that the number of bacteria in the GI tract of the horse actually outnumbers the cells that make up the horse itself. Not only is the microbiome different throughout the GI tract of the horse, but when taken as a whole, the microbial community of one horse is rarely the same as that of a different horse. In fact, a horse’s microbiome is as unique to them as your fingerprints are to you. For example, two horses living at the same facility may have totally different microbiome characteristics. While experts are still learning more about the microbiome as a whole, one thing that everyone can agree upon is that it’s an integral part of the horse’s health and performance. The bacteria that make

up the largest portion of the microbiome can interact directly with the horse, affecting the immune function, exercise performance, and even the behavior of the horse. These bacteria are typically classified as either good (probiotic), or potentially bad (pathogenic). The balance of good bacteria to bad bacteria may be responsible for whether or not a horse stays healthy during times of stress. For example, when horses undergo stressful exercise, they often experience a decrease in immune function. Horses with more beneficial bacteria in their GI tract may be less susceptible to illness or disease than those with an imbalance of good and bad bacteria.

WHAT WE KNOW Even as research in this area progresses, there are more questions than there are answers when it comes to the microbiome of the horse, but there are some things that experts know for sure.

“Everything is a chicken and egg type of question with the microbiome. We still have a lot to figure out and explore.” —MORGHAN BOWMAN

Consistent feeding practices that prioritize high-quality forage are critical to the maintenance of a healthy microbiome. There are many probiotics marketed to horse owners with wide-ranging claims of efficacy. However, the research into these specific products is often inconclusive. “Identifying not only the right bacteria, one that will provide a benefit to the horse, but also ensuring that it is delivered to the horse alive are key factors in the development of efficacious probiotics for horses” says Dr. Jacobs. Just like other supplements that we feed to our horses, it is important that probiotic products are evaluated to ensure they are backed by equine research and provide the correct amount of a specific bacterial strain. “Not all probiotics are created equally. By definition, probiotics need to be delivered to the horse while they are still alive, which is often a challenge with typical

supplement manufacturing processes” says Dr. Jacobs. “Research in this area is moving quickly, but the marketing is moving even quicker” adds Jacobs.

WHAT’S LEFT TO LEARN “Everything is a chicken and egg type of question with the microbiome”, says Morghan Bowman, M.S., Equine Microbiome Scientist at Purina Animal Nutrition. Attempting to alter the microbiome of the horse without first understanding it’s full complexity may result in decreased horse health and performance, which is why the research that is ongoing at Purina Animal Nutrition is so important. “We still have a lot to figure out and explore,” adds Bowman. Microbiome research is an exciting science, and one that offers up researchers, nutritionists, and veterinarians unique tools and insights into the health of our equine companions. Purina

Animal Nutrition is at the forefront of this research with dedicated facilities, equipment, and people that are working hard to evaluate the effect of the microbiome on equine health and performance. “Through our research, we are striving to develop science-backed supplements to help owners support the overall health of their horses”, says Dr. Jacobs. Until then, Jacobs and Bowman advise horse owners to carefully consider what they are feeding their horses and work with a veterinarian and a nutritionist to optimize the diet of their horses. “We are learning so much every day about the equine microbiome that is helping us make unique recommendations to horse owners around the country,” says Morghan. And most importantly, they urge everyone to keep an eye on the great research coming out of Purina Animal Nutrition so you can learn in real time more about the microbiome! October/November 2023




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Author Katrina Balding Bills in 2010


The Story of a Fiery Thoroughbred and the Girl Who Loved Him BY KATRINA BALDING BILLS Reprinted with permission from the author


Fella Stumps The ‘Expert’ The commentary from my classmates swirled over my head like the steam from our dinners. My closest pals kept their mouths shut, not only to chew politely, but because they knew I accepted Fella’s quirks, lock stock and barrel. But there were days when our challenges at the barn had zoomed to main campus faster than the old barn van. “I swear you like it when he’s like this.” Yup, you’re right I do. I love his zest for life. “It’s a little embarrassing, I mean with you being on the Varsity team and head of Riding Council and all.” Just goes to show everyone how secure and unflappable I am! “You’re going to give everyone a heart attack one of these days.” I’m not worried, why should they be worried? “What, do you think you’re better than the professionals?” ouch. No, no I don’t. but I do know my horse better than they think they do. As I laid on my dorm room bed that night, trying to no avail to finish my dense Economics reading assignment, I replayed the last two days in my head.



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The intense clinic sessions with Mr. Horseshow Fancypants had not gone terribly well. To say the least. Then again, they weren’t a complete disaster. I’d not been made into a lawn dart, nor was I wearing a sling or bandage or splint on any part of my body, nor had he scattered the lacrosse team from their field. Other days had those kinds of results. Fella had not broken anything nor bitten anyone, which I felt was a huge win. My standards weren’t low, but I was realistic. I knew Fella was different from day to day, season to season. He looked like a million bucks, having gotten rounder with more turnout time and more hacking out. Fella was very aware of changes in surroundings, the jumps that were set up and even the voice of the person teaching the lesson. His misbehavior during the clinic was subtle. A little lead swap out before jumps because he was anticipating being balanced for the turn ahead. Then cheeky moments where instead of shortening his strides, he simply collected his body, tucked his head and neck in, and flung his legs further out so as to do the same number of strides between jumps. He showed he was

quite adjustable, just not the way we’d been instructed to be. When poles were added in a V shape, to give our horses focal points to jump over the middle of each fence even more dramatically, Fella felt the entire structure should be leapt. He bucked and squealed in celebration of not touching anything. His long full summer sunset tail swished and snapped in the air like a long whip tassel. I think he may have been above the jump standards while in his supersized flight path. I chuckled when I thought about the ‘professional’ wanting to get on Fella to “make him behave.” “Really, momma?” Fella’s side eye was plain and clear, irritated that I dare let anyone else put a leg over him. Rarely, only if I was sick or had too much homework, would Cassie ride him for me (and I would ride Beamer for her). I watched the professional adjust the stirrups longer and climb aboard my long-legged boy. I thanked God that Fella stood still at least. Small favors. Like a petulant child, following teacher’s orders, but with a growl and scowl while doing the task, Fella carted Mr. Fancypants around the course of PHOTO: ANNETTE DUSENBURY

The author in 1997 at Sweet Briar College

“Fella felt the entire structure should be leapt. He bucked and squealed in celebration of not touching anything.”

jumps. I smiled and bit my tongue as I watched him jump around brilliantly – and swap his leads when he felt like it, flat out refuse to shorten his extravagant step, and again leap the entire V formation over the jumps, jostling his very accomplished rider with enormous bascule. His knees were up around his muzzle and his bright eyes told me he was enjoying himself. Granted he did not buck or squeal that time, but saucily shook his head, swished and snapped his tail again and refused to slow down or stop until he got within two feet of me. Then he halted like an actor making his mark, and immediately pushed his stripey face into my shoulder. “See, I behaved. I should get an A+”

Fella demanded a forehead scratch and I added a big pat and rub to his long neck. Slowly dismounting, shaking his head and regaining some color to his cheeks, our clinician said, “Well, Miss Balding, you have quite the challenging horse. And talented. I’m not so sure you’re showing him in the right division. I’m not so sure there is a right division.” Fella clacked his teeth and ground them on his bit as the reins were passed to me. He calmed as he tucked my shoulder into the crook of his neck and head and lightly rested on me. We took our final instructions from the clinician and then went for a cooling out walk around the riding center with our classmates. On his points, I agreed whole heartedly. The show hunter divisions praised a calm, smooth way of going, with plump obedient horses jumping the same jumps, in the same order, week in and week out. Fella clearly thought that was boring. And his relatively lanky lean look stood out like a sore thumb. Sometimes we’d luck out and the judge of the day would like Fella’s classic look. The equitation classes, judged on rider’s position and proper execution of tasks, asked more difficult questions that we both enjoyed and excelled at, but my position was not nearly as stellar as his jumping form. But often enough, we were the most accurate around the course or during the flat tests and scored well. The jumpers seemed promising— all we needed to do is clear all the jumps and go fast. We had solid skills to do both and the more challenging courses


would be fun on Fella, who keenly went wherever I looked and rarely met a jump he didn’t love to soar over. But neither the college’s program nor Beth’s back at home wanted us to go straight there just yet. Everyone thought he needed to learn to listen to me more. Begrudgingly, I did, too. How could I get him to listen, without breaking his spirit, his joie de vivre? Would that up our chances on more good days than bad? And how would I become a hunter trainer with a horse that was so clearly out of place? Mr. Horseshow Fancypants was one of several clinicians who had come to Sweet Briar and Fella had stumped them all. Male and female, much sought after, wise and well-respected trainers, professional riders and judges from all over the country who couldn’t get through to him any better than I did. My professor and I agreed, no one else needs to get on Fella. Fella is just Fella. I’d used up all of my homework time re-hashing the clinic in my mind. Great job chickadee. I closed my book and grabbed my towel and shower kit for the stroll down the hallway. Once back in our room, I re-set my alarm for an hour earlier, so I could catch up on my reading before heading out to the barn for my student worker hours. Maybe widgets would make more sense in the morning. It seemed we both still had a lot to learn. Books are available to purchase at

October/November 2023





How the Pros Keep Their Horses Happy at the Horse Show WHETHER YOUR HORSE competes in the occasional

local show or they live their life on the road, the stress of travel and being in a new place can take away from your horse’s overall health and happiness. We chatted with ten top professionals in the industry and asked, “How do you maintain your horses’ happiness on the road?”Here’s what they had to say:

JENNIFER ALFANO We keep our routine the same. Other than being in a different place, we try not to change anything else. We try to go to horse shows with paddocks, especially if we are going to be somewhere for a couple weeks.

AMANDA STEEGE When we are traveling with our horses, we take a lot of steps to keep them as happy as possible. We put a lot of thought into the trailer ride to the show. We always use our own trailer, or if we are shipping commercial,



we rent the entire truck so that only our horses are in the trailer and so that they have a direct route from our farm to their destination. We also know at this point which horses get along with which other horses and we try to pair them up accordingly so that their neighbor on the trailer is somebody that they tend to get along with. We also try to look at the weather forecast and make our travel arrangements accordingly. For instance, if it’s going to be very hot, we try to travel early in the morning. We want the travel to the show to be as stress-free as possible so that

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they arrive happy and healthy. Once we arrive at the show, we put a lot of thought and care into choosing which stall each horse will live in. We have some horses that don’t do well with neighbors so we try to pick a stall for those horses where they have the least amount of horses around them. We have other horses that do well with particular neighbors and not with others so we spend a lot of time picking out who is going to live where. Oftentimes they live next to the same horse that they shipped next to. Also, if we are at a show for more than one week, we usually get enough extra stalls to make each one a stall and a half or double stalls so that the horses have plenty of space to lay down and move around. We bring fans to hang in the stalls to keep the horses cool and comfortable, and to help keep the flies off of them. While they are at the show we try to keep their schedule

as consistent as possible. We bring all of our own feed and supplements, and we make sure to purchase hay that is the same type that they eat at home. My horses are used to a lot of grass turnout at home, so when we are at the shows, we try to get them out multiple times a day for hand grazing. We monitor them closely for any signs of stress, check often to make sure that they are drinking plenty of water, monitor their manure, and make sure they are eating well.

GEOFF CASE Most of what we do involves keeping the horses as entertained as possible. We take them for hand walks and grass whenever there is an extra minute. Normally in the stalls we always try to keep a haynet and a toy (each horse has their own stuffed animal) in front of them. Here in Europe it’s nice that most of the stalls have an outside window so they can

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always keep their heads out and check out all the goings on. If we have to ship for a long distance, we will feed a mash the night before and another on arrival. They always have hay in front of them in the truck and water stops as much as possible. We will also give them the gastro paste from Enviro Equine.

NICK HANESS Hunterbrook horses thrive at competitions because we really believe in happy horses. Each horse has their own favorite regimen to get prepared to perform at their best. Understanding each and every single horse’s preferences is key to providing happy, healthy, thriving, winning horses. That’s how we do it!

ALLYSON COLUCCIO I think it’s very important to keep the horses’ diet as similar as possible. We try to bring our own hay. I find when at all possible, shipping horses during the night seems considerably easier on them. Less traffic, temperatures, rest time, etc. Also, getting them out of their stalls as much as possible with grazing and hand walks whenever available.

ABBY BLANKENSHIP I think the key to happy horses anywhere—at home or on the road—is who they are interacting with. Whether it’s the grooms, riders, trainers, vets, or farriers, the horses react off of your energy. I feel it’s so important to have caring people around them and really make sure they trust you. Of course, we always give treats and pats, but I think it goes beyond that. We have a bond with these horses similar as we have with our dogs or our cats. And what do we do with them? We constantly tell them they are good or how much we love them. So as corny as it may seem, I always try to verbally tell them


The first thing is your attitude in the barn. The horses can feel it. Second, do not expect too much from your horses. Third, make them comfortable. And fourth, simplify everything. how great they are. I really think they respond and feel good about themselves, which keeps them happy!

When we are on the road, we try to stick to our ponies’ regular routine as much as possible. At home, they get a lot of turn-out in paddocks so we do a lot of hand grazing and walking around the showgrounds. The kids are very good about taking their ponies for a walk and hand graze. It becomes a social event for both ponies and people. We also try to stable each pony next to his or her paddock mate from home and we do this in the trailer as well. It seems to keep them calm and secure!

in trying to keep the horses happy. We make sure that the horses feel well by getting the right nutrition, keeping them on their regular grain and hay so they have the same diet on the road. The stress of traveling can cause stomach issues and stress, so we provide our horses with Perfect Prep, GastroEase EQ, and electrolytes, to name a few, if we feel they need additional support. As far as the training is concerned, when I’m at a show I’m not drilling and jumping a lot. I try to keep my horses fresh so that they are expressive, calm, and relaxed. If the facility has grass fields, I’ll hack my horses out on the fields while we show. Every horse is different, so it’s important to find what works for yours.



It is important to keep your horse happy on the road and in the shows, but I think that’s our job to do no matter what. We try to keep our horses happy so that they like their job and want to perform for us. There are many different factors

As a barn run by two international event riders, Tik and Sinead Maynard, Copperline Equestrian horses are often traveling to competitions for multiple days at a time. One of our favorite ways to help our horses feel confident and


ease any stress that may arise is to keep things as familiar as possible. What I mean by this is that horses thrive on consistency—grooming them and tacking them up with the same process every time and keeping their feeding times as close to normal as ride times allow are easy ways to stay consistent. Another great tool is having a skill set or a game they can recognize in an unfamiliar setting…this can immediately help their brain focus on something familiar. Some examples we use often are things like target training/clicker training, teaching them to back up to the end of the lead rope, having them lower their head just by gentle pressure from the lead rope, etc. We do a lot of work at home training these games and skills so it’s very clear what the “answer” is, and the horses can feel really confident that they have the response we are asking for. It’s amazing to watch them go from anxious, stressed, and overwhelmed, to feeling calmer and more relaxed just by having a simple question that they can answer with certainty.

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As a horseman, I am most proud of owning my farm and giving each horse the best home possible. • As a horseman, I would most like to improve on understanding more methods and ways to help horses’ soundness, physically, the old-fashioned ways. • To me, horsemanship means every horse is different; understand them the best you can and do whatever it is in your power to make their worlds go ‘round. • One thing I haven’t yet conquered in my career is barrel racing—that would be fun! • I’d be lost without candy in my tack trunk and boot polish in my ring bag. • The best part about riding so many horses is getting the experience and opportunity to solve the mystery puzzle to make each different horse go in the best way possible.



October/November 2023

When running your own business, you absolutely need to understand the meaning of hard work. • My best piece of advice for young riders is never lose sight of your goals, don’t let anyone ever tell you that you can’t reach them, and visualize every day how to achieve them. • The part of riding I’m best at is the handy hunter rounds. • My favorite meal is lasagna. • I’m a sucker for a beautiful horse with a big, slow gallop and a round jump. • On Mondays, you’ll find me playing with my menagerie of zoo animals at my house. • The horse person I most admire is there are too many I admire to name just one.. • One of my greatest show ring victories was winning a Grand Prix in Spain on my birthday. • One of the best horse names I’ve ever heard is “Britney Spurs!” • My absolute favorite show is Capital Challenge. • My motto is: “Work hard, play hard!” PHOTOS: LINDSEY LONG PHOTOGRAPHY




1do get nervous for big classes

and basically become a mute person for the hours leading up to it, trying to focus and visualize my path and outcome.

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It Happens! We all make mistakes. But horse people, as a group, aren’t always the best at handling them. So TPH reached out to some top riders to share their own show ring bloopers to prove, once and for all, that mistakes really do happen to the best of us!

Hear more It Happens moments on the #Plaidcast at



October/November 2023



At WEF we had a mare who had hit herself with a stud while we were jumping on the grass. We never use bell boots for jumping, but we were at the ring and Laura [Kraut] suggested to put bell boots on her so she didn’t hit herself again. I took off running back to the barn, and I always make sure I am as nice to everyone around me as possible, because you never know when you’re going to need to ask a favor. I had no bell boots in FEI, so I had to find someone who had a set sitting out and ask to borrow them. The ‘It Happens’ moments do happen, so I try to keep extra things that I might need on hand, so when emergencies happen, you have those things. Also making sure you’re making friends wherever you go, in whatever country you’re in, and to always have a smile on your face so when you have those moments you can ask for favors.”

Horse showing is such a mental game. If you’re not mentally prepared to go and do it, then you’re already behind the eight ball. Two years ago, we were in Kentucky and it had been a really long two weeks. The National Derby was on the last Sunday morning, I think. I was tired, and I had three horses in it. The first round went fine, but not how I really wanted it to go, and then I was the first one to go back in the handy. They took 20 back instead of just 12, which was almost the whole class. I missed five lead changes and I went off course after looking at the course right before I went in. I guess I just decided I wanted to make up my own! When they called me off course I was like, ‘Seriously? I just looked at the course!’ And that totally happened just because mentally I was not really in the game that day.”

DANNY ROBERTSHAW At the old arena in Washington, they gave numerical scores in the stake class at night. Protocol really did not like the ramp down into the arena. When there were just five horses left, I led him down the ramp. Somebody had crashed when we were down there, so it was taking much longer for them to get the ring back up. It was a waiting game of nerves. I sent everybody that was there to help me to the stands. I finally decided to jog this tiny X just to remind him that we’re here to jump. He stops and I slide right over the braids and over his ears. Nobody’s there but one jump crew guy and he said, ‘Buddy, what do you want me to do?’ I said, ‘Can you brush me off and then help me get on again?’ He did his best to try to brush all the dirt off of me. Then he said, ‘You want me to fix that jump for you?’ And I said, ‘No way. I’m not about to attempt that again.’ I went in the ring and Protocol picked up a gallop and did what he did best, and got the high score of the evening, won the class, and was champion. It was kind of an exciting last 10 minutes.”



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With homegrown horsemanship and personalized care, Isabel Sempe is changing the supplement game WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU

WITH SO MANY supplement companies available to horse owners, it

can be difficult to choose the right one for your horse. To make that decision easier, Isabel Sempe, owner and founder of Natural Equine Essentials, has spent several years researching and developing which all-natural supplements work best for common equine ailments. Sempe descends from a multigenerational horse breeding family from Honduras. Her father bred Quarter, Andalusian, and Peruvian Horses and is one of the founders of the Peruvian Horse Association of Honduras. “My dad was one of the first to import world class horses from South and North America into Honduras, for breeding and competition purposes,” Sempe tells The Plaid Horse. “He was very involved in the daily care, making his own bran mash and growing his own grade “A” Alfalfa hay for the horses.” She spent her childhood on their 2,000-acre equine breeding, agriculture, and dairy farm. She observed and learned the inner workings of the farm and gained firsthand knowledge of the many issues regarding raising, breeding, and



October/November 2023

caring for horses in the family business. With 80 horses on the property, their vets were always there, and their farrier lived on the property. With this set up, she was able to absorb information from experts in their field through out her early years. Sempe has been riding horses since she was six years old. Competing internationally in show jumping, dressage, eventing, and Peruvian Paso Horse competitions. At an early age she learned English riding through her aunt, Titi Mills, a well-known trainer who represented Honduras in the Central American and Caribbean Games in show jumping, winning two silver medals. “Titi showed me horsemanship, discipline, and how hard work and attention to detail pay off in the long run for your horse and yourself as a rider,” she says.

STRICT AND DISCIPLINED Sempe married and, through her husband’s job, moved and lived in four different countries in the span of 15 years. She was able to make friends and train with various Olympic trainers, well-known veterinarians, and farriers who are still close friends and parts of her vast equine network. This network and experience in different regions has expanded her knowledge and provided support from accomplished equine professionals around the world. “One of my trainers, Oswaldo MendezHerbruger (three time Olympic rider) was really intense,” says Sempe. “He said to me: I am going to train you and take you to the Central American Games on your mare in three years.” Sempe describes herself as disciplined and strict, but Mendez-Herbruger’s training program was one of the most intense she had ever gone through—and almost wore her down. “I was crying all the time,” says Sempe. “It was very hard work.” But that hard work paid off and in 2013, she was a member of the first eventing team to represent Honduras in the Central American Games. “At 35 years old, I learned that it is never too


Isabel Sempe on Galant in Santiago, Chile 2014; Sempe, CEO of Natural Equine Essentials; Sempe on Doris in the 2013 Central American Games in Costa Rica; Juilette Richmagui Sempe on Matrix Z, WEF

late to start something,” says Sempe. “When you work hard and that horse is your partner, you understand each other. You learn to read each other. What they’re thinking, what they’re feeling, it impacts you.” Soon after, her husband’s job took their family to Wellington, FL. While it was a very different environment than what she was used to, she was introduced to the world of supplements…and hasn’t looked back since.

CREATING A PRODUCT A couple of Sempe’s personal horses made the move from Chile, South America, to Florida with her, including her daughter’s horse who had a tough time with the change. “He had allergies, got a colic from eating sand, had summer sores; you name it, he got it,” says Sempe. She tried popular supplements, including natural supplements that were available at the time, with no results. This led her to dig into her network and research what natural ingredients would help her horses. Among those she consulted was a good friend of the family and renowned Veterinary Pharmacologist and toxicologist. She consulted certified labs and various

“It’s not work for me, it’s my passion.” -—ISABEL SEMPE, OWNER/FOUNDER OF NATURAL EQUINE ESSENTIALS

FEI veterinarians. She was able to create products that not only helped her horses recover, but made them healthier and more responsive. Her close friends witnessed the quick and amazing change in her horses and asked if they could try her products on their own horses. They were suffering from digestive issues. They started a trial supplement program under the close supervision of their veterinarian who evaluated their horses on a monthly basis. After a trial of 25 of their horses, all their coats were now shiny, and the horses with leaky gut now had normal stool. All the horses looked healthier, behaved better, and had noticeable improvements in gut health. To date they remain loyal clients and friends.

GROWING HER BUSINESS Since the creation of her first product, Sempe dove into discovering other needs in the market and filling them with


natural supplements and products that focus on those needs. Her products range from complete gastric health to joint support to electrolytes, to fly control to grooming products. Sempe works with FEI vets to ensure that all products have no banned ingredients and are FEI and USEF show-safe. Sempe prides herself in creating strategic partnerships with all her clients, making sure that she listens to their needs and helps their horses through her supplements to become healthier, happier, and stronger through her unique understanding and lifelong experience with horses and the equine world. “It’s not work for me, it’s my passion,” she says. Natural Equine Essentials is a proud member of the renowned National Animal Supplement Council (NASC). All their supplements and grooming products are 100% natural and are made in Natural Equine Essential’s warehouse facilities in Kentucky.

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“WHEN WE KNOW BETTER, WE DO BETTER” Every day, Victoria Charmoli is striving to learn something new about breeding and apply it to her business, VC Breeding & Sales WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU PHOTOS: CIRCLE B RANCH

VICTORIA CHARMOLI started out like most

horse-crazy kids. She was constantly begging her parents for riding lessons and to ride the ponies at local fairs. The riding lessons turned into leasing a horse, and once she got older, she began showing. In high school, she attended a boarding school that gave her the opportunity to assist with breeding and raising young horses. While she didn’t ride much in college, after graduation she started buying, retraining, and selling off-track Thoroughbreds to suitable homes. An unexpected diagnosis of Lyme disease hit Charmoli hard, which prevented her from riding, and forced her to consider other career options in the horse world.



October/November 2023

“Without breeding, we wouldn’t have the sport.” —VICTORIA CHARMOLI

October/November 2023




A PIVOT IN PLANS Due to her health, Charmoli was forced to take a step back and reevaluate how she could continue to be involved with horses. Remembering how much she enjoyed learning about and watching the foals develop in high school guided her to a career in breeding. In December 2022, she started VC Breeding & Sales, a small, hands-on breeding business based in Wisconsin. When she opened her business, she leased six stalls at a small local farm, but in four months, she outgrew that facility and expanded to her current facility. Charmoli has four broodmares: a Trakehner, a Holsteiner, and two Thoroughbreds that are both approved in Warmblood registries. She had one foal last year that was sold shortly after birth. Currently, she has one mare in foal due in spring 2024.

“In the horse world, no matter what level you are at, everyone is still on a level playing field because everyone has something to learn.” “People forget about the breeding side of things,” Victoria Charmoli tells The Plaid Horse. “They want the quality horse that they can show and win with. But without breeding, we wouldn’t have the sport.”

MAKING MATCHES While eventually she would like to add a couple more mares to her herd, as well as a stallion, Charmoli prefers to keep her business small so she can continue to provide not only the best care to her mares and foals, but also to her selection process. “I put so much work into choosing the right stallions for my mares,” says Charmoli. “I choose a stallion not just because I like the horse, but because they are a good fit for my mare.” The same effort she puts into matching a mare to a stallion is put into selecting the right homes for the foals. “People come to me and will specifically list what they are looking for in a foal,” says Charmoli. “From there, I evaluate if I have the right match. If I don’t have it, I look to see if we can make that perfect match in a future foal. I like making things happen for people.” Charmoli also provides flexibility during the sale process of her foals. “I love to get creative,” says Charmoli. “Quality foals are expensive, so I always



try my best to facilitate an easy sale that favors the buyer so that they can get their dream foal.”

FUTURE GOALS Due to the smaller size of VC Breeding & Sales, Charmoli is able to take a personalized approach to her program on a daily basis. Custom plans are provided for each mare and when there is a foal on the property, they are not only handled daily but they are also groomed, blanketed, and haltered on a regular basis. That way when a customer buys a foal from Charmoli, they are sure to receive a well-handled horse. In the future, Charmoli’s goal is to have her own private facility and partner with a local vet to open up a reproductive clinic so that proper breeding and foaling can be more accessible in her area. Charmoli encourages other young horse enthusiasts with a passion for entrepreneurship to get out there and start their own business. While she admits it can be difficult, she looks at every day as an opportunity to learn and get better at all aspects of the business. “I think it’s really important that young horsemen and women understand that as long as you have a drive and a passion to learn and grow, you’re going

October/November 2023

to do just fine,” says Charmoli. When it comes to breeding, Charmoli says it’s all about bettering the breed. “I try to learn everything I can about the markets, how things fluctuate, different breeding protocols, embryo transfers, anything I can,” she adds. “When we know better, we do better.”

CAREER PARALLELS Outside of the barn, Charmoli is a nurse in the cardiac/neuro wing. “It’s a fast paced environment,” says Charmoli. “No matter how long you’ve been a nurse, there are still opportunities to grow, and that’s why I love the equestrian world so much… because I respect and embrace the concept of continuous education and learning.” Her work at the hospital has proven to have many parallels to her life as a horsewoman and breeder. “In the horse world, no matter what level you are at, everyone is still on a level playing field because everyone has something to learn,” says Charmoli. “Even the best have opportunities to learn and grow every day. I try to remember that.” For more information about Victoria Charmoli and VC Breeding & Sales, visit


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THE HUMBLE HOOF Alicia Harlov is changing the way we look at hoof injuries for long-term success WORDS: APRIL BILODEAU


no horse.” And while every animal’s feet are going to have their individual needs, without a healthy hoof, a horse cannot function at their whole capacity. Alicia Harlov of The Humble Hoof is on a mission to take each individual horse’s needs into consideration for optimal health. As a hoofcare provider certified with Progressive Hoofcare Practitioners, Harlov focuses on the whole horse, specializing in long-term hoof care plans for horses with injuries. “There’s such a high rate of re-injury to soft tissue injuries because there isn’t enough focus on the long term support,” Harlov tells The Plaid Horse.



October/November 2023

Harlov grew up as a dressage rider but never competed in the discipline. After college, she became a public school teacher in Amesbury, MA. To continue her love of horses, she bought a BLM Mustang named Vinnie. Shortly after, he was diagnosed with navicular disease—consisting of bone changes, enthesiophytes or spurs, and soft tissue injury involving the tendon and ligaments within the hoof capsule. “The advice I was given was to manage his hoof issues until I couldn’t manage them anymore and then retire him,” says Harlov. She wasn’t satisfied with that advice, which led her to do extensive research on hoof rehabilitation, ultimately connecting with Nic Barker at Rockley Farm in Exmoor, England.


Alicia Harlov; the grass track next to the rehab barn; the 21-acre property’s two track systems; one of the 9 horses that resides at The Humble Hoof rehab facility

was kind of ambitious,” says Harlov. She applied what she learned to her own horse, and soon others were taking notice. Friends began asking her to start trimming and rehabbing their horses, which turned into her traveling the world to became more educated on barefoot trimming and the benefits that it can have in rehabilitation to the hoof. When it came time to decide between continuing her work as a school teacher or becoming a full time hoofcare provider, the choice seemed obvious. After trimming part time for a few years, Harlov stepped away from her teaching job of nine years and to go full time with The Humble Hoof in 2019.

THE DREAM FARM In January 2023, Harlov and her husband purchased Harlov Farm, a 21-acre facility in Amesbury, MA. She immediately began implementing her takeaways from her time in England, building two track systems, one known as the metabolic-friendly track due to its minimal grass as well as a retirement/ grass track. Both paddocks are in the range of 1/3 of a mile and are corner free. The system guarantees movement as their shelter, feed, and water are all at different stations throughout the track, forcing horses to walk to what they need, when they need it. The property also consists of a five-stall barn, and lit outdoor riding ring, a heated tack room with a full bathroom, and a hay loft that stores 750 bales at a time, with hay being tested regularly. Currently she has nine horses on the property. Harlov’s long term goal is to extend the metabolic-friendly track and include a wooded part of the track. There is also a two-acre field on the property that Harlov plans to host events such as clinics on hoof care and soundness.

“I want to educate owners so they’re able to do what needs to be done to keep their horses in work comfortably.” —ALICIA HARLOV

Barker’s farm is known to have an 85% success rate with horses who have soft tissue injuries. Those horses return to their activity at the same or higher level than prior to their injuries. After some conversation with Barker, Harlov got on a plane to England to learn the ins-and-outs of rehab so that she could apply them to Vinnie’s routine. “The hypothesis that I adopted from

Barker is that we look at soft tissue injuries in the wrong way,” says Harlov. “We need to look at it not as an acute injury, but a biomechanic issue. Over time we can develop the horse’s body to correctly handle loading and landing.” Harlov learned that during recovery, rather than stopping all movement, the answer is to correct the movement. After learning about what Barker did for horses in her program, including the farm’s track system and dietary requirements, she began thinking about how she could implement the experience for her own horse. “My first thought was oh my goodness, I could totally do this at home…which


LONG-TERM GUIDANCE Harlov has many goals on her list that she plans to accomplish in both her hoof care and rehab businesses. Her ultimate goal, however, is to send her rehab horses home, knowing that the owners have the tools and know the steps to keep their horses sound for the future. “I want to educate owners so they’re able to do what needs to be done to keep their horses in work comfortably,” says Harlov. “I want people to be able to enjoy their horse and accomplish their riding goals, knowing their horses are moving in a way that will keep them sound.” For more information on Alicia Harlov’s services and The Humble Hoof, visit

October/November 2023



US Equestrian Leading Pony Owner 2022

TI P S F O R R I D I N G S U C C E S S: B E A G O O D L I S T E N E R Good listeners can tune out distractions. They pick up the things said around the barn, in other lessons, between the trainer and the grooms, between the vets and carriers. Good listeners learn to pay attention to what is being said and not being said. This applies to the horses, who don’t talk in words, but have so much to tell us. Good listeners pay attention to how their horse is feeling. They know when he is calm and happy, or nervous and upset.


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Best of Luck to all SWF Sales Graduates in 2023!

TI P S F O R R I D I N G S U C C E S S: B E B R AV E Bravery is trickier to define. Not everyone is inherently brave. Some people are brave until something goes wrong. Others ride like they are infallible. But to me, bravery is the willingness to keep trying—to keep stretching. To do the hard things even when you think you can’t. To trust the people around you to just do it. You might fail. You might fall. But that is how we grow and learn. It’s ok to be scared, but that fear doesn’t go away by not doing it.


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“Traci and Carleton offer a look into what a power couple in the equestrian world is all about. They are not only amazingly talented, they are so kind and both willing to offer advice and support anytime it’s asked. I’m lucky to have the opportunity to learn from them firsthand, and I am so excited for everyone to read this book and gain some insight on this amazing duo!” —Nicole Bourgeois, trainer at Imagination Lane LLC


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From The Plaid Horse managing editor Rennie Dyball, a picture book that encourages kids to accept and celebrate ALL bodies …

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Rennie is the co-author of Show Strides with Piper Klemm, competes in the adult amateur hunter and equitation divisions, and is a passionate believer that all bodies are good bodies.

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