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Stepping up at Scottsdale

California Arabians shine in thriving desert spectacle

From Horsetrader staff reports - March 15th, 2012 - Cover Story, Show & Event News

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Jonathan Ramsay could very well be the youngest ever to experience riding to an Arabian U.S. National Championship, were it not for a technicality — his mother, trainer Cynthia Marlow Ramsay, was six months pregnant with him when she won.

Twenty-eight years later, the Canadian native is making headlines of his own in California, where he is training and managing at Stachowski West, a San Marcos-based extension of the venerable Stachowski Farm in Ohio, headed by Jim and Peter Stachowski. Ramsay, a third-generation Arabian horseman with a sterling resume, opened Stachowski West last May in the facility vacated by reiner Andrea Fappani, now in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Fittingly enough, it was in Scottsdale where Ramsay-trained horses made impressions under the Stachowski banner, adding to a list of California-trained or owned Arabians who shined in the desert spectacle.

This year’s 57th Annual Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, held Feb. 16-26 at Westworld, continued it’s rising trend of the last couple years. The 11-day show featured 2,106 horses and 8,359 entries competing in 731 classes.

The turnstiles were impressive this year, too, as more than 300,000 people attended, an increase of more than 22 percent from previous years.

Highlighting Ramsay’s Scottsdale campaign this year was winning the Half-Arabian English Pleasure Championship with Lady Ava Isabela (Baske Afire x Captivating Style), owned by Helen Lacey Reed of Rancho Santa Fe. It was one the bigegst classes in a show of big classes.

Other highlights for Ramsay and Stakowski West came with RA Alliza (Allience x CF Night View) unanimously winning the Half-Arabian Country English Pleasure class for owner Marleen Liechtfuss, and rider Hannah Belle of Encinitas riding her family’s Hot Wheelz GM (Unquestionablyhot x Beaulieus Tapestry) to the Half-Arabian English Show Hack 17-under championship. Bell also took her Johnnie Quest (AA Apollo Bey x SMS Forever Bay) to the Native Costume Championship, 17-under.

“This Scottsdale show was a good one for me,” said Ramsay. “I work with Jim, but my horses — the ones I’ve personally trained — are doing quite well.”

“I am so grateful to Jim and Peter for this opportunity,” he added. “They are the backbone of Stachowski Farms. For Jimmy to want to step out and send me to do these things here is real cool.”

Ramsay had only been with Stachowski Farms six months when he was relocated west, first to Scottsdale to spearhead the Farm’s sales and marketing canter there, then to San Marcos to start a West Coast barn that could better cater to Stachowski Farm’s western clientele.

While the contrasting climates of San Diego and Ohio are obvious, Ramsay has seen a different climate, too, in the western clients’ outlook of their horses.

“Here, a lot of my clients are very localized and very active with their horses,” said Ramsay, whose Stakowski customers visit from Coronado to Temecula and as far east as Mesa, Ariz.

“They like to come out and spend time with their horses. Back east, I have clients who come in once a month. Here, I have clients who come in every day to see their horses. It’s a lot of fun.”

RESULTS ONLINE: See website http://bit.ly/23Barab

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