By Jan Westmark-Allan
Sixteen-year-old Charlotte Jacobs grew up at horse shows so it seems only natural that she would follow in her family’s footsteps and become a rider. “I was always at my grandparents’ farm when I was little. The first time I was on a horse was before I could walk,” Charlotte said. “It’s always been a part of my life.”
Charlotte, who will enter her junior year of high school in the fall, is the daughter of Louis and Joan Jacobs and her family’s farm is North Star Ventures. “My mom and dad both ride as well as my aunts, uncles and cousins. And my grandparents used to ride,” she said, adding that she loves the horse show world. “You meet so many people and you become more organized and responsible with your life, both in the horse show world and in the real world.”
Charlotte showed the horse show world a thing or two at Devon this summer, dominating the winner’s circle in the equitation and junior jumper divisions. “I’ve always loved Devon,” she said. “It has so much history. My grandparents still tell me stories about coming there with their kids and my dad tells me he remembers showing there when he was my age.”
Sidelines: Who do you train with?
CJ: I ride with Missy Clark and North Run. I’ve been there for over four years now and I absolutely love it there.
Sidelines: What horses are you showing?
CJ: I have two equitation horses, Stallone VDL, and Cortes 7. I have a junior hunter named Bring It On. I also have five junior jumpers, Promised Land, Robin, Karonda, Umberto, and Kartouche VD Watering.
Sidelines: What was your experience at Devon like this year?
CJ: Devon was amazing. I won the Ronnie Mutch Equitation Championship, which is a huge deal for me. I won that on my horse Stallone VDL and I was so excited about winning that award. I won the Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior Jumper Classic on my horse Karonda. I also won the Junior Jumper championship and the leading Junior Jumper rider award. Winning the junior jumpers was so amazing and the crowd there really makes the classes special. My dad flew up for the day so it was exciting to win a big class like that with him there.
Sidelines: What do you like about Devon?
CJ: I’ve always really loved the Devon Horse Show because it’s the first big show after Florida and people come in from everywhere to show there. Devon is definitely at the top of my list for career highlights so far. Those are the first huge awards that I’ve ever won.
Sidelines: What else ranks as a top showing experience?
CJ: Finishing second to qualify for the Young Rider team to go to Leipzig, Germany that was in April during World Cup finals. That experience was amazing.
Sidelines: What are your riding goals?
CJ: In the equitation I would love to win a final in my junior career. The hunters are fun and I’d like to continue to be successful in those divisions. The jumpers are something that I would like to continue for the rest of my life and it’s definitely my favorite division to show in. I want to go to college, but take a year off before that so I can ride just for a year.
Sidelines: Do you have a favorite horse?
CJ: I don’t like to pick favorites but my horse Kartouche VD Watering has always been my favorite. He was my first high junior jumper. He’s really cute and is so much fun to ride and he always takes care of me.
Sidelines: Who has had the biggest influence in your life?
CJ: My dad. When he was younger he went to high school and rode and was always successful in both school and riding.
Sidelines: What do you like to do when you aren’t riding?
CJ: Riding really takes over my entire life. When I’m home on the weekends I’m usually with friends or just hanging out at home.
Sidelines: Since this is the Sidelines fashion issue, let’s talk about your fashion sense in the horse world.
CJ: I wear Pikeurs and they’re the only kind of riding pants I’ll wear. I like the Alessandro Albanese riding shirts and the Hadfield’s riding shirts. My favorite boots are Der Dau and Parlanti. I wear a GPA helmet and ride in a CWD saddle. I wear SSG gloves and the type of riding jacket I like is a Cynthia Munro jacket from Hadfield’s. When it comes to non-riding clothes, I wear everything. I don’t really have an exact style or a favorite store where I shop.