By Jan Westmark. Olympic show jumper Nona Garson has competed all over the world, but her career with horses began on the farm she still calls home. Nona owns and operates The Ridge in Florida and New Jersey, and moved to The Ridge Farm in New Jersey when she was 5. On her 6th birthday, Nona got a Shetland Pony named Maple Sugar.
By Jan Westmark - Jimmy Torano has been part of the horse world his entire life. Growing up in Miami, Florida, he started lead line classes with his mom as his trainer. His last year as a junior, he rode with Don Stewart before going to work for Jane Ebelhare as a rider and trainer at the Palm Beach Polo and Country Club. “I got a great start there, riding many different horses and eventually grand prix horses,” Jimmy said. “After working there for several years, I decided to go on my own and start my own business. I went with Jane’s blessing. She gave me a real leg up, and I owe her a lot.”
By Jan Westmark - Debbie McDonald and Brentina, a chestnut Hanoverian mare, spent years setting the dressage world on fire. Together, the small rider and big horse brought home Pan Am team and individual gold medals, an Olympic team bronze medal and World Equestrian team silver and bronze medals, and Debbie became the first American to win an FEI World Cup Dressage Final.
By Jan Westmark - Kat Fuqua was destined to be a rider. Growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, with grand prix dressage parents and a barn filled with talented horses, Kat started her riding career when she was only 1 year old. “My mom and dad got me miniature ponies and after that I just kept on riding,” she said. Now 12 years old, Kat has reached a level of accomplishment in her riding that keeps her in the winner’s circle, all while traversing the world of middle school. At the 2019 Pony Finals, Kat and Prestige, her 8-year-old Belgian Riding Pony, captured the Marshall & Sterling/USEF Pony Medal Finals. Not only is she a pony wonder-kid, Kat has also moved into the equitation and junior hunter rings with trainer Jimmy Torano. Sidelines had a chance to catch up with Kat at her Collecting Gaits Farm outside of Atlanta to find out more about her ponies, her horses and her life.
By Jan Westmark Richard “Woody” Wood has been a staple in the South Florida equestrian scene since 1987 when he opened Woody’s of Wellington, a boot repair shop located in the original Wellington Mall. Armed with a razor-sharp sense of humor, Woody has not only kept his customers laughing but kept boots repaired, polished and
By Jan Westmark When Jennifer Glass hands out ribbons at shows, her smile is as big as the riders’ receiving their awards. “I have the best job at the horse show,” she said. “I love the smiles of the riders when they’re accepting their ribbons.” While Jen is primarily the awards and sponsor relations director
By Jan Westmark Melanie Smith Taylor is well known in the equestrian world for her legendary partnership with Calypso, for her team gold medal in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games and for being one of only two riders to win the Triple Crown of Show Jumping. Despite all of her accomplishments in the saddle,
By Jan Westmark Philip Richter’s full-time career in finance keeps him busy, but not too busy to keep him from spending time with his wife, horses and cars and enjoying the outdoors. Philip is the chairman of the Lake Placid Horse Shows in Lake Placid, New York, as well as a board member of US
By Jan Westmark Rider Michael Morrissey grew up in Bradenton, Florida, and horses were a part of his life from the beginning. With his father a show manager, his Uncle Jimmy Morrissey a trainer and rider, and his Great Uncle Gene Mische the show producer, Michael was traveling to shows his family produced even before
By Jan Westmark Eventer Boyd Martin is a fan favorite who draws a crowd wherever he goes thanks to his great riding, quick wit, easygoing personality and charming accent. Boyd grew up in Australia as the son of winter Olympians Toy and Ross Martin and believes it was an ideal environment for him as the