Drivers Complete USEF High Performance Para-Driving Clinic in California

Stefanie Putnam (Left) drives during the USEF High Performance Para-Driving clinic August 31, 2015. Photo by Tom Muehleisen.

ESPN and Disabled Sports USA Provide Free Para-Driving Clinic October 5-6 in Kentucky

Lexington, KY – September 24, 2015 – United States Driving for the Disabled (USDFD) Para-Equestrian drivers attended the USEF High Performance Para-Driving clinic August 31, 2015. The clinic took place in Newcastle, Calif. at Whispering Oaks Performance Horses (WOPH). Drivers had the opportunity to work with top level Swedish clinician Olof Larsson from Florida. Leslie Berndl, owner of WOPH, graciously hosted the clinic at her facility. USDFD would like to thank USEF for such a memorable event and important educational day for High Performance drivers. Following the August 31, West Coast clinic is a free Para-Equestrian Driving Clinic Oct 5-6, 2015.

The October clinic will be held at the Gayla Driving Center in Georgetown, Kentucky. Thanks to Entertainment and Sports Programming Network (ESPN) and Disabled Sports USA, individuals who are members of USDFD (or potential members) are invited to participate in one and/or two days of driving. The clinic will consist of discussions on competing with a disability, adaptive equipment, and dispensations. Experts include internationally recognized para-driver Diane Kastama with individual instruction from Sara Schmitt. Schmitt is a Grand Prix dressage rider, trainer, instructor, USEF ‘S’ judge, ADS ‘r’ judge and international combined driving competitor. Existing competitive and recreational para-drivers and new drivers are welcomed. Use of borrowed horse or stabling can be arranged. This clinic occurs just before the 2015 National Drive scheduled October 6-11, 2015, at The Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY.

For more information about Sara Schmitt, please visit

For more information about Diane Kastama, please visit

Entertainment and Sports Programming Network (ESPN) and Disabled Sports USA video:

For more information about The 2015 National Drive, please visit

Para-Equestrian Driving Clinic Oct. 5, 6 – FREE
Gayla Driving Center
3329 Cynthiana Road
Georgetown, KY 40324

By: USDFD and Lindsay Y. McCall

About United States Para-Equestrian Association:

The USPEA is a network of riders, judges, national federation board members, and equestrian enthusiasts. The association gives athletes the ability to get involved and expand their knowledge and experience in the Para-Equestrian sport. The USPEA encourages para-athletes to participate in all disciplines under the para-equestrian umbrella.

The USPEA is a recognized affiliate of the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) which serves as the National Governing Body for the equestrian sport. This relationship between the USPEA and USEF is to encourage para-equestrian competitors, leisure riders, coaches, fans and enthusiasts to network and get involved with the entire equestrian sport.

Ultimately the goal of the USPEA is to foster growth in the para-equestrian discipline. From growth in the number of participants to growth as a team, and growth in the experience and knowledge of all involved. From local horse shows to international Olympic Games, the USPEA will provide para-equestrians the knowledge of what they need to succeed. The USPEA connects with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), the United States Dressage Federation (USDF), and USEF which provides Para-Equestrians the top equestrian resources.

In June 2010, the USPEA earned its 501 (c)(3) status which has encouraged supporters to help supply funding to the Para-Equestrian Team as a recognized affiliate of the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF).

For more information about the USPEA, please visit or contact USPEA President Hope Hand by e-mail: or by phone: (610)356-6481.

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