Category Archives: JRPR

Johnny Robb

Jacksonville Equestrian Center Hosts Special Olympics and Dressage Event

Jacksonville, FL (February 14, 2019) – The Jacksonville Equestrian Center has a busy weekend planned as it welcomes 3 events to the facility. The Area 5 Special Olympics and First Coast Classical Dressage Showposium return for their 3rd and 5th years, respectively, with this weekend being the Heartland Farms Obstacle Course Competition’s first event at the Equestrian Center.

The 2019 Special Olympics Florida Area 5 Equestrian Championships will bring over 20 athletes to compete on Saturday. The event, which will begin at 2:00 pm and conclude around 5:00 pm, is part of the Special Olympics program, which provides an opportunity for children and adults with disabilities to compete in a wide variety of sports including figure skating, swimming, Judo, and equestrian. Area 5 consists of 7 FL counties, with the largest participating counties being Duval and Clay. The athletes, who rise above their disabilities to display skill, determination, and passion for their sports, compete in English and Western Equitation, Working Trail, and Showmanship. The top 5-6 placing equestrians will be eligible to compete at the Special Olympics State Equestrian Championships in Weirsdale, Florida in March of this year. This event welcomes and encourages spectators to come watch the competition and cheer on their enthusiastic participants. The Special Olympics has a wide array of volunteer opportunities available. Please contact Kate Breese for additional information on how you can get involved: 352.255.8275, katebreese@sofl.org.

The First Coast Classical Dressage Society hosts its first of 5 annual “Showposiums” at the JEC on Saturday and Sunday. This unique schooling show format has been recognized for its focus on education, engagement, and progression of horse and rider. Each Showposium weekend features lessons on Friday with the weekend’s Judge and test rides with verbal instruction and feedback on Saturday and Sunday.

Last, but certainly not least, is the Heartland Farms Obstacle Course Competition. This event, which was previously held at the Clay County Fairgrounds, is in its 10th year of competition. Nearly 100 horses will compete over a wide variety of challenging scenarios ranging from natural water obstacles to manmade situations like curtains, blow ups, and gates, which are potentially spooky or scary situations to horses. The horses are judged on a scale of 0-10 on how they maneuver the obstacles and a perfect score is awarded when they proceed without hesitation.

All three of these events welcome spectators free of charge and leashed dogs are permitted.

For up to date event information, follow the JEC on Instagram, Twitter & Facebook and visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
tjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Betsy Steiner and Swiss W Win the Blue in Prix St Georges at AGDF Week 3

Betsy Steiner and Swiss W. (Photo courtesy of Besty Steiner)

Wellington, Florida (February 4, 2019) – Week 3 of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) brought more spectacular performances, tough competition and some of the best dressage found anywhere in the world. Triple Crown Nutrition is excited to continue to recognize the top, high performance riders who have gathered in Wellington, FL for this world class international dressage show series. Coming in first in the CDI 1 Prix St Georges was Betsy Steiner, aboard her lovely mare, Swiss W, who is owned by Whitney Bailey. This outstanding blue-ribbon performance not only earned the pair a score of 71.681, they were also presented with the Triple Crown Excellence Award. This prestigious prize is given to a horse and rider team that demonstrates exemplary achievement within the equestrian community, as well as showing exceptionally good health and fitness.

“She is the most amazing horse,” said Steiner. “She’s all mare and all princess! She is very, very particular, but very correct. She makes me a better thoughtful, thinking rider because she wants me to really take good care of her, and when I do that, she delivers 200%. She is extraordinary!”

Steiner goes on to explain how she felt during their winning ride. “It was amazing because she was just so ‘on’ and so focused. It was sort of like time slowed down and I could really think about riding into absolutely every corner, setting her up. She waited for me, was beautiful in my hands, was forward on my leg – I couldn’t ask her for anything more.”  This was the first time Swiss rode the CDI in the Global Stadium. “She was so ready to work and so ready to listen,” Steiner describes. “She was just in a great place!”

Steiner is based at White Fences in Loxahatchee, Florida during the six-month winter show season, and spends the other six months at her farm in the middle of horse country in Pittstown, New Jersey.

Contact: Kelly Payne
kpayne@triplecrownfeed.com
800-451-9916
www.triplecrownfeed.com

Jacksonville Equestrian Center Races into New Year with Timed and Championship Events

No Bull Grand Slam competitor showing her speed at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center. (Photo courtesy of SD Photography)

Jacksonville, FL (January 11, 2019) – The Jacksonville Equestrian Center rang in the New Year with a dash for cash that attracted the country’s top barrel racers. The No Bull Grand Slam barrel race was held January 4-6, 2019 and paid out more than $100,000. Entries totaled 1,000 for the weekend-long event.

Teenager Michael Duffie was crowned the Open 1D Champion riding Reclaim Fame. The 13-year-old rider also finished fourth with a second horse, JJ Three Famous Bars. The young rider, who has also won a youth world championship through the National Barrel Horse Association (NBHA), outran a field of tough competitors.

“Some of the top barrel racers in country were there,” said Kyle Rictor, who maintained the footing during the show. “Anita Randle won the Grand Slam’s short-go and she is a NBHA World Champion. Brett Monroe finished third. He’s won over $1million in barrel racing.”

This was the third year the No Bull Grand Slam returned to the Jacksonville Equestrian Center.

“This is a full-service facility with the best staff that we see throughout the year,” said Jamie Cagle, the event secretary.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center staff quickly stowed the barrels and reset the arenas to welcome the Florida Feathered Horse Classic January 11-12, 2019. The show is the longest-running Gypsy Vanner breed show series and has been held at the Jacksonville Equestrian center for eight consecutive years.

“It is a great location, with a nice facility that continues to evolve as the needs of its exhibitors grow,” said Gail Shrine, owner of the Feathered Horse competition series.

The Jacksonville Equestrian Center wraps up the first month of the 2019 with another action-packed, timed event — the National Team Roping League Finals scheduled for January 24-27, 2019. More than $500,000 is paid out each year at the finals, which has been held at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center for 14 straight years.

“We really love having our finals here,” said Katie Smith, No Bull Barrel Race competitor. “There are plenty of stalls and RV hookups to accommodate everyone. The whole facility is top notch; the location is central and great for us.”

For more information and to find out about other upcoming events, please visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
timjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Victory Comes in Many Forms for Mother-Daughter Barrel Racers Angela and Jackie Ganter

Jackie Ganter and Howes A Tycoon at the 2018 WPRA World Finals. (Photo courtesy of Phifer Photography)

Abilene, TX (December 19, 2018) – When faced with setbacks like Angela Ganter and her daughter, Jackie, have experienced recently, most riders would simply hang up their cowboy boots and call it a day. But for this mother-daughter duo of barrel racers, victory comes in many forms simply because they refuse to give up on each other. 2018 has proved to be a great year for both women, in spite of the challenges thrown at them. Angela is back in the saddle after a long and rigorous battle with breast cancer and Jackie is racing to the top of the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association (WPRA) after a very rough start to the year.

For Angela, the thought of being a top-rated barrel racer after 8 years of battling breast cancer seemed pretty far out of reach.  However, with the help of her daughter, Jackie, and an awesome new horse, Angela has found herself back in the rodeos and riding better than ever.  “I bought a horse in February of 2017 after trying to put myself back together from being sick,” she explains. “Then, in March of 2017, Jackie told me one day that she didn’t think I was trying hard enough to fix myself – my balance and my nervous system. So I hired a trainer and got my balance back and I also found another horse who taught me how to run barrels again.”  Angela continues, “Then, about January of this year, I decided I was ready to have a better horse.” She describes how she found and bought a horse named Bogie French Bug after riding him for about 20 minutes at the stock show in Fort Worth. “Since then I’ve won six pro rodeos in Canada this year on him and made the Canadian Finals.  It was just kind of a dream come true and he’s just kind of a miracle for me!”

Looking forward, Angela says she has her sights set on making it to Calgary in 2019. “I’ll probably ride better now than before I got sick,” she explains. “After being sick for eight years, I guess you wake up and kind of decide that any day can be your last day, so you better make the best of it.”  She goes on to say that her main focus, however, is to help Jackie get to the National Finals Rodeo (NFR). “Whatever that takes, that comes first,” she insists.

Angela and Jackie have been traveling together for the last several years since Jackie has been in the WPRA. They usually haul 4 or 5 horses to each rodeo. Jackie explains, “We get to travel together, we get to compete together, and it’s fun when we can win together!  That’s something that a lot of people don’t get to experience.”  Jackie says that this year started out with a much different story than others. In only her second rodeo of the year, a horse fell on her and broke her ankle. She was out of the saddle all winter, and then explains that she tried getting back on too soon and couldn’t ride to the best of her ability. To top it off, two of her horses were injured and so she was down to only one main horse. “Then, in July,” she continues, “I got a phone call asking me to ride a horse in one rodeo.”  Jackie ended up winning the first round on him, and then, after the short round, she and her mom asked the horse’s owner, Gayle Howes, if they could buy him.  “She thought we were a perfect match,” Jackie smiles. She was definitely right about that.  Since then, Jackie and the 10-year-old gelding named Howes A Tycoon have been an unstoppable force. “I placed everywhere I took him,” Jackie remembers. “He got me in the top 50 for the year end, and then, when the new year started, we went to the WPRA Finals and won, which got us a spot in the Houston Rodeo next year.  So he’s been a huge blessing,” she adds. “He’s just amazing!”

Contact: Katie Stevenson
kstevenson@central.com

December Fun at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center

Amy Speck-Kern and her Grand Prix mount Amadeus earning their USDF Gold Medal. (Photo courtesy of Harry Furey)

Let It Show, Let It Show, Let It Show

Jacksonville, FL (December 18, 2018) – The holiday and school vacation season is here and the Jacksonville Equestrian Center has promised to let it show, let it show, let it show.

For horse lovers, Dressage on the First Coast, December 1-2, brought more than 50 skilled riders and horses together to compete, delivering performances that suggested future international champions may be in their midst.

Among the top riders that weekend was Germany’s Franziska Seidl, who posted one of the highest scores of the show (74.750%) while winning the 2018 FEI Freestyle, as well as the FEI Grand Prix (68.913%), on her 16.3-hand Brandenburg gelding, Romano K. Seidl then won the 2017 FEI Grand Prix and Freestyle tests, riding her 16.3-hand bay KWPN gelding, Sigalia.

“We had an exciting but wet show in Jacksonville,” laughed Seidl. “Romano won his classes and was Reserve Champion in their level. Sigalia is still very fit (almost too fit) and won his Grand Prix. Overall, it was a special weekend because my parents, who were visiting from Switzerland, enjoyed being with us in Jax!”

Amy Speck-Kern from Loxahatchee, FL scored a new personal best, earning her final score for her USDF Gold Medal while riding her 16.3-hand, chestnut KWPN gelding Amadeus (Welt Hit X Fleming) to reserve honors in the 2018 FEI Grand Prix. “We had a great weekend at Dressage on the First Coast,” she added. “It’s been quite the journey from the first time Gwen Poulin and I saw him in Holland as a three-year-old to becoming a real Grand Prix horse!”

Show manager Carlie Evans said, “There were nice scores all around and lots of riders earning their first qualifiers of the show season. The Jacksonville Equestrian Center is a great place for a show. It has a great arena and good footing. Since it rained that weekend, it was nice to have the indoor arena, and covered warm-up rings.”

December 7-9, the Jacksonville Equestrian Center bow-wowed visitors with more than 100 dogs competing over three days in the USDAA Pals and Paws Dog Agility Club Show, one of four such trials held annually for canine sport enthusiasts from the Jacksonville, Orange Park, and surrounding areas. The US Dog Agility Association (USDAA) was formed in 1986 and serves members in the US and internationally, and sets the rules and standards that ensure that all competitions (such as those held at Jacksonville Equestrian Center) abide by the same rules.

“We have been using the Jacksonville Equestrian Center for several years and love the facility. It provides protection for our dogs, our competitors and spectators from wind, rain, and sun,” said Pals and Paws organizers, who added that the December show marked the 25th anniversary of the club hosting USDAA trials, and marked the retirement of a local canine competitor and one of the top Belgian Tervuren dogs in USDAA history.

Demonstrating their own degree of agility were the horses and riders competing December 8 in the Dixon Arena at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center in the third and final Holmes Ranch Jacksonville All Breed Open Horse Show of the season. The series, presented in September, October, and December by the Lawtey, Florida-based natural horsemanship and foundation training facility, offers more than 50 classes at each show, with year-end awards in halter, hunter, western, gaited, and trail divisions.

“This is the kind of great facility that helps horse shows grow. We’ve seen firsthand the popularity the show has gained since adding jumping classes,” said All Breed Open Show organizer, Ruth Holmes, who also credited good footing, and the all-weather accessibility of the Jacksonville Equestrian Center indoor arena and warm-up rings, with encouraging the show to expand and offer more over fences classes, including a Hunter Hack division for beginners (one jump) through seasoned hunters (four jumps).

Up next at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is the Youth Equestrian Development Association Show (December 15), No Bull Grand Slam Barrel Racing Show (January 4), Gypsy Vanner Show (January 10-13) and National Team Roping Finals (January 24).

For more information and to find out about other upcoming events, please visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
timjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Angela Langen Honored with Sportsmanship Award at IALHA National Championship

Angela Langen and Gabarito Da Cerca. (Photo courtesy of Genie Images)

Katy, Texas (November 6, 2018) – Angela Langen showed judges why she and Gabarito Da Cerca were the most suitable choice to become the Dressage Suitability Amateur National Champions at the International Andalusian & Lusitano Horse Association (IALHA) Nationals, October 9-13 in Katy, Texas, and the German rider (now based in Napa, California) showed such generosity of spirit among her fellow baroque breed lovers that it also earned her the Jacksonville Equestrian Center Sportsmanship Award.

Angela also rode the seven-year-old Lusitano gelding, owned by Marilyn Hite and trained by Carlos Carneiro (who trained and rode IALHA Horse of the Year and Grand Prix National Champion, Andiamo 2005), to second place in Lusitano Saddle Geldings.

“We were nervous. It was only our second competition, but we felt like a good team. I’ve been in the United States for about a year and a half, so I really appreciate meeting other riders, spending time with them, and competing here. I enjoyed this show and my horse was perfect.”

The optimism that won Angela the JEC Award is reflected in her outlook with her striking bay partner with his big white blaze and socks: “We have only been riding together since May. My goals are to keep feeling this trust between us and go on this adventure together. I’m not about the ribbons but about getting to know each other better.”

Now that’s the kind of winning attitude that can contribute to success in horses, riders, and shows.

For more information, please visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
timjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Sportsmanship Takes Center Stage at Arabian Horse Association Sport Horse Nationals

Hillary Boothe at the AHA Sport Horse Nationals. (Photo courtesy of Sarah Boothe)

Nampa, ID (October 4, 2018) – The 2018 Sport Horse National Arabian and Half-Arabian Championship Show held in Nampa, Idaho is known for its glitz, glamour, and high spirited horses. This year one young lady outshined all of the sparkle with her outstanding smile and sportsmanship. Hillary Boothe, of Lompoc, California, competed two horses over the weekend and greeted everyone she encountered with warmth and sincerity.

Boothe was overjoyed that her outstanding sportsmanship was recognized during the show. The Sportsmanship Award is presented to one competitor at the National Arabian Championships who displays exemplary sportsmanship during the competition. Boothe was presented with a tri-colored sportsmanship ribbon and a silver engraved tray presented by the Jacksonville Equestrian Center.

Boothe owns and runs Promises Ranch LLC alongside her mother, Sarah. Together, they have built a strong presence on the Arabian horse scene and have won countless Champion and Reserve Champion titles along the way. Boothe competed in a wide variety of classes over the weekend with her mounts. My Khinda Party, a six-year-old stallion, was bred and raised by Boothe herself. This made his stellar performance that much sweeter. She was thrilled with his performance the entire weekend. Boothe’s second mount was Susan Claycamp’s six-year-old Khiamo Ko, who stole the show.

For more information, please visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
timjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Jacksonville Equestrian Center Kicks Off Busy Month with Ride Lite Dressage Show

Jodie Kelly-Baxley and Grayton Beach. (Photo courtesy of Katelyn Omas)

Jacksonville, FL (September 7, 2018) – With the summer months coming to an end the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is gearing up for the fall schedule which started out with the Southeast Horse Shows Ride Lite Dressage Show on September 1st and 2nd. The Jacksonville Equestrian Center offers everything aspiring dressage riders and their equine partners need to have an enjoyable competition experience, including well-groomed outdoor rings, a 123,000 square foot indoor arena, and over 400 permanent stalls.

Over the two days of competition, rider Jodie Kelly-Baxley had stand out performances, earning scores of 70.152% and 72.692% at Third Level. Kelly-Baxley rode her own mount Grayton Beach to victory. Grayton Beach was one Kelly-Baxley’s ten horses at the show with her over the weekend. “We love coming to the Jacksonville show! We make our show schedule around it… it is a convenient location for most of my clients and me, and the stabling is good,” said Kelly-Baxley of her experience at the Southeast Horse Show Ride Lite Show and the Jacksonville Equestrian Center.

Kelly-Baxley was quick to note just how wonderful show manager Carlie Evans is. “The main reason we are attracted to this show is because it is run so well. Carlie is a scheduling genius, and I had ten horses here – pretty amazing.” Show Manager Evans was busy over the weekend but was very complementary of Jacksonville Equestrian Center Executive Director, Tim Jones. “The footing was great and Tim Jones is very professional and he really knows footing and how to work it.  We are very excited for the future expansion coming to the equestrian center.”

Riders of all disciplines have come to love showing at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center. Show management enjoys working out of the venue largely due to the efficient and effective staff that keeps it in good order and running smoothly. Up next for the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is the Jacksonville All Breed Horse Show on September 8th, an Open Schooling day on September 18th, First Coast Classical Dressage Show on September 22nd, and the Country Boy Olympics on September 29th.

For more information about the Jacksonville Equestrian Center, visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4215
tjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Quality Girl the Clear Winner

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl. (Photo courtesy of Team Minikus)

Tryon, NC (July 24, 2018) – Todd Minikus tackled the courses at the Tyron International Equestrian Center on five different horses during week six of the summer circuit.  However, Minikus’ standout performance on long time partner Quality Girl took top honors in the $70,000 Ingles Grand Prix CSI2*. Besting a field of twenty-four other horse and rider combinations, Minikus and Quality Girl took the win by a solid two seconds in the jump off.

“She knows how to come into the ring and go fast. She’s good in every ring and atmosphere, and she jumped fantastic tonight,” said Minikus of the mares’ incredible efforts in the ring. USA’s Oscar Soberon designed the course, and only seven horses bested it to make the jump off round. Minikus has been bringing along a few sale horses and new up and coming mounts at Tryon, while he aims Quality Girl, his longtime partner, at some high-level classes both at Tryon and further north. “There are some big money classes in the fall and hopefully we can grab some of that. I’ll probably target her for the Saugerties $500,000, and she goes well in that ring, so that’s probably where we will focus her next,” Minikus remarked with a knowing twinkle in his eye, probably remembering his Million Grand Prix win aboard Quality Girl at HITS Saugerties in 2013. To top it off, Quality Girl’s groom Cory Singleton, who helps get Todd and Quality Girl in the ring, received the Absorbine Groom’s Award and a check for five hundred dollars.

In addition to Quality Girl’s success in the Grand Prix, Minikus rode Chaco 34, who is owned by Maidensway, to first and second place in the $1390 1.40m Open Jumper and $5390 1.40m Open Jumper Stake. Minikus took home the win in the $1390 1.40m Open Jumper with Julesraimus De Barisy owned by Erin Rorabaugh.

Team Minikus continues to be a family affair after Minikus’ daughter Langley had back to back winning Tryon weekends. This week Todd’s wife, Amanda Minikus, came home with two top five finishes in the Low Amateur division collimating with a win in the $500 Low Amateur 1.20, while student, Zachary Yariv, also enjoyed three top five finished in the Junior Jumper division.

Next stops for Team Minikus after the Tryon Summer circuit is Balmoral Park, Chicago for the end of their HITS summer series, then Saugerties Hits- on-the-Hudson VIII for the FEI CSI5*, followed by the Hampton Classic in late August.

To catch up with FEI Nations Cup veteran and U.S. Pan American Games Team Bronze Medalist Minikus and his team, follow on Facebook and Instagram @Todd_Minikus, visit Team Minikus on Instagram, or visit www.ToddMinikusShowJumping.com.

Two More Exceptional Weeks at Tryon for Team Minikus

Todd Minikus’ Exceptional “being exceptional” (Photo courtesy of Team Minikus)

Tryon, NC (July 11, 2018) – Todd Minikus and his team wrapped up two more successful weeks at Tryon, NC with more than a dozen wins in the jumper, hunter, and yes, cross rails divisions!

During the Tryon Summer 3 CSI2*, Todd Minikus once again showed his exceptional versatility for winning on numerous fronts by winning the Green Hunter 3’6 and the Green Hunter 3’6 Handy Hunter Class on Exceptional, owned by Todd Minikus, LTD.  The pair then raised the bar to the 4’ Hunter Performance Division winning first and second over fences and first in the under saddle class and a Division Championship. “Exceptional just keeps doing the job,” said Minikus after winning the $15,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby the week prior. “Exceptional is, well, exceptional!”

Also during Summer 3, Minikus enjoyed some top finishes in the jumper ring culminating with double wins on Maidenway’s Chaco 34 in the 1.35m Open Jumper and the 1.40m Open Jumper.  Team Minikus super star Victoria Zelch rounded out the week three winnings taking top honors in the NAL Low Junior Classic aboard Sniper.

It should have been a tough act to follow, but not so for Team Minikus.  At the Tryon Summer 4 CSI3*, Exceptional delivered a repeat performance winning the 3’6 Green Hunter and the 3’6 Green Handy Hunter.  Then Todd rode three horses to wins in their respective 1.40m Open Jumper classes. The triple threat included Minikus’ own Juju VDM, Erin Rorabaugh’s Julesraimus De Barisy, and Melissa Bilodeau’s handsome stallion, Lord Calador.

But the biggest celebration of the show was for Team Minikus’ littlest rider, Todd and Amanda Minikus’ 7-year-old daughter Langley. Despite a rain out on day one, Langley Minikus took to arena on day two riding Reagan Thoennes’ pony Love Bug and showed her jumper linage by winning both Cross Rail classes.

It made the winning weekend just a little bit more special. “We love showing at Tryon,” said Amanda Minikus. “It’s beautiful here, the facility is awesome, the horses love it, we love it, and my kids love it.”

Next stops for Team Minikus after the Tryon Summer circuit is Balmoral Park, Chicago for the end of their HITS summer series, then Saugerties Hits-on-the-Hudson VIII for the FEI CSI5*. To catch up with FEI Nations Cup veteran and U.S. Pan American Games Team Bronze Medalist Minikus and his team, follow on Facebook and Instagram @Todd_Minikus, visit Team Minikus on Instagram, or visit www.ToddMinikusShowJumping.com.