SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — Anticipation was high as a crowd gathered for the CDI Grand Prix Freestyle at California Dreaming Productions Festival of the Horse CDI 3*/Y/J/U-25, held March 31-April 2.
All eyes were on U.S. Team veteran Steffen Peters and fan-favorite Rosamunde (Rheinlander mare Rock Forever x First Lady by Fidermark, owned by Four Winds Farm) as they unveiled a new freestyle, and the pair did not disappoint judges or spectators for a winning score of 76.243%. Finishing in second was Kathleen Raine and Breanna (Hanoverian mare Brentano II x World Queen by Weltmeyer, owned by Raine, David Wightman and Jennifer Mason) who earned 72.575% for their popular Michael Jackson-themed performance.
Varian’s impact on the world of Arabian breeding in the U.S. is diﬃ cult to exaggerate—70 percent of show horses winning today carry Varian blood, according to her ranch website, and according to Arabian Horse World magazine’s statistics, Varian Arabians is the alltime leading breeder of English horses as well as the alltime leading breeder of Western horses. Nine generations of Arabians have been bred by Varian Ranch since it imported *Bachantka from Poland in 1961.
Raised on the Central Coast with a strong horse interest, she was introduced early on to the vaquero, or “Californio”, tradition of western riding. A major inﬂ uence was Sid (Mary) Spencer, owner of a ranch in Lopez Canyon where Sheila, in her teens, learned from Sid about training hackamore horses and spade bit horses and how to work cattle in the mountains.
With the assistance of her parents in 1954, she started her horse ranch. By 1963, she was raising and training horses full-time, drawn to use the vaquero-inﬂ uenced methods of training on Arabians, a breed she thought required a smart yet gentle approach.
Golden State Arabs, exhibitors shine brightly in Scottsdale '16
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — The world’s finest Arabian and Half-Arabian horses and trainers come to Westworld here each year to, among other things, test the waters for the new season. And while their miles traveled may be less than their colleagues from other parts of the continent, the prospects of California competitors proved great again this year.
The 61st annual version of the show ran Feb. 11-21 and drew more than 2,400 horses in a myriad of disciplines and events. Among the thousands of entries were the likes of venerable show barns like Stachowski Farms, established in both Ohio and San Marcos, Calif., as well as individuals and smaller operations.
California champions hailed from all types of barns — big, small and in-between, and clearly the Golden State continues to be an influential force in the breed.
FORT WORTH, Texas — With two big scores in four tough events, Clayton Edsall of Oakdale earned the title of World’s Greatest Horseman during the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions event held Feb. 12-20 at the Will Rogers Equestrian Center.
Riding his own gelding, Skeets Oak Peppy, Edsall scored a 221 to lead the herd work to set his winning pace.
“We were fortunate to up earlier (in the draw), and there were still some cattle we had picked out,” he said. “Some of them got cut. Doug (Williamson), right before me, cut pretty much my whole list, so we went with some backups. Kelby (Phillips) had a good cow picked out, and it all worked out.”
The NRCHA’s World’s Greatest Horseman competition requires the same horse-and-rider combo to compete in four events: herd work, reined work, steer stopping, and fence work.
“In the reined work, he was solid,” Clayton said of “Sly.” “He was a tick better in the prelims. He let me do all the maneuvers and run pretty honest.”
With Olympic Trials approaching, Peters and Legolas appear ready
DEL MAR — As the distinctive opening bass line of “Under Pressure” rang out in the covered arena at the Del Mar Horse Park with the voiceover “Hi, I’m Legolas, let’s go!”, there was no doubt that Legolas 92 was back in top form as he and Steffen Peters posted the second-highest Grand Prix Freestyle score of their career at California Dreaming Productions’ Dressage Affaire CDI3*/Y/J/U-25, being held March 10-13.
The veteran U.S. Dressage Team pair’s winning score of 82.000% was also the best of any other American team contender in the current Olympic selection year, second only to their own career best score of 84.050% earned at the LA Winter Dressage CDI in Burbank in January.
The 'take home' for Expo Pomona attendees will be lessons learned from the best clinician line-up ever
The top equine experts grace the stages and arenas of Horse Expo Pomona each year, and this year’s line-up may be the best ever. One ticket price gets you access to unlimited learning, whether you’re a competitor looking for an edge or a recreational rider looking for insight into your human-horse relationship.
Born and raised in Australia, Clinton grew up with a love of horses, and by the age of 15, was apprenticing with the best trainers in the country. In 1997, Clinton came to the U.S. where he continued pursuing his passion for horses by apprenticing under some of America’s greatest trainers, teaching clinics and competing. Today, Clinton shares the Method all across the country and regularly hosts horsemanship clinics at his facility in Stephenville, Texas. He works hard to educate horse owners on how to be safe and effective while enjoying their horses. His training method is instructional, inspiring and innovative.
A native Texan, Craig Cameron, one of the original clinicians, is on the road more than 44 weeks a year covering 80,000 miles demonstrating the style of horsemanship he has perfected in the last 23 years. Called the “public defender of the horse,” Craig dedicates himself to those who educate their horses by first educating themselves. At an age where most have long since retired the thought of starting colts, Craig Cameron known as “The Cowboy’s Clinician,” starts hundreds of horses each year; plus his four-day clinics held at his ranches in Bluff Dale, Texas, and Lincoln, New Mexico blend education with entertainment.
From supplements to entertainment, vendors at Horse Expo Pomona would like to meet you, the Southern California horseperson. Here are some 2016 favorites.
Adeptus Nutrition, Inc.
San Diego-based Adeptus Nutrition, Inc., a provider of quality nutritional supplements, was founded in 2000 by PhD equine nutritionist and physiologist Dr. Colleen Wilson. The advanced products offered by Adeptus encompass not only every nutritional need that your horses might have, but also products for your dog, cat – and even you! Dr. Wilson has the educational background combined with horse industry experience to effectively formulate supplements that work and satisfy practical needs. Only digestible and proven active ingredients are used in Adeptus products, so your horses and pets can absorb and utilize the ingredients. Consumers get their money’s worth with Adeptus products! Dr. Wilson and her knowledgeable staff are available to work out an effective and nutritionally correct feeding program. Check out the Adeptus Nutrition Facebook page and sign up for free monthly newsletters from Dr. Wilson.
Big Mare™ skin, wound and hoof care products have it all. With its innovative new Controlled Delivery System (CDS), these solutions offer more than the “singular dimensional” benefits of micro-encapsulation by delivering a smaller molecule deeper into the skin. These combined actives working together offer time released benefits for round the clock healing. Available for both equine and canine, these anti bacterial and anti fungal formulas are available in a Body Wash, All Purpose Skin Solution, Wound Lotion, Thrush Spray and White Line Gel. Ask your store today for Big Mare™. It heals, prevents and maintains healthy skin and hoofs. Because you care…Big Mare™. Dealer inquiries welcome.
Been thinking about trying Mounted Shooting? Here are folks to help get you started in 2016.
Arizona Cowboy Mounted Shooting Assn.
ACMSA is the oldest mounted shooting club and first affiliate to our parent organization CMSA (CMSA.com). The club is dedicated to growing the sport of mounted shooting, and its members helped to develop the Royce Anderson Family Arena, the world’s first Mounted Shooting Center at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, Ariz.
This past season the ACMSA organized and held 19 shoots, including big events such as AQHA’s Sun Circuit at West World, Southwest Regional Championships and Arizona State Championships at Horseshoe Park in Queen Creek, as well as at the Arizona Game and Fish Expo at the Ben Avery venue. The group also showcased mounted shooting at Banner Ironwood Medical Center’s Roots n’ Boots event at Horseshoe Park, and at the Flagstaff Pro Rodeo.
RIVERSIDE — Six-year-old Katherine King may not have much experience in the saddle, but you can bet she’ll lead the nation in ribbons won this year.
The youngster from Placentia, known in her circles as “Katherine The Brave”, is battling a rare terminal illness, and her village of supporters has grown to include trainer Heather Spies and clients at HS Performance Horses in Riverside. After devoting themselves to give Katherine a special day with a unicorn via the Make A Wish Foundation on Nov. 28, the barn has dedicated itself to the youngster and her family.
“No National Championship moment, no Regional Championship or any ribbon will ever compare to that day,” said Spies, whose former horse, a retired Arabian now owned by Lori Chiodini, made the perfect unicorn.
Katherine has diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (DIPG), a rare illness with highly aggressive and difficult to treat brain tumors found at the base of the brain. Nationally, about 300 children are diagnosed with DIPG each year, usually between the ages of five and nine. Last year, she was given a window of less than a year to survive.
Some standout 2015 news items in – and out of – the arena
Traveler, the striking Andalusian in his 14th year as the University of Southern California mascot, returned to lead the Rose Parade to honor the legacy of Louis Zamperini and his affiliation not only with USC, but his love of animals. Zamperini, a World War II hero and former Olympian who died the previous July, is the subject of a best-selling book and the movie “Unbroken.”
Horsepeople in Lake View Terrace and surrounding areas had three words for the State High Speed Rail Authority about a revised path for the futuristic 220-mph bullet train through their community: Not so fast.
Three alternative routes surfaced in December after an original plan for the leg from Palmdale to the Burbank airport, a 51-mile stretch along the Highway 14 corridor, was criticized by residents and officials. Called the East Corridor, the newest trio of alternative routes cuts through Lake View Terrace and would impact horse ownership throughout the San Fernando Valley. Further, the redirection of the Highway 14 route would require a 35-mile tunneling beneath the San Gabriel Mountains and the Angeles National Forest, with the bullet train screaming from a tunnel and over the Tujunga Wash, an equestrian paradise.