Tuesday, February 28, 2012


The event and the Jumping Derby are now over. The farm is being put back together by the same great crew that built it all up for the competitions. Everything gets put back in it's place for the next one. Everything is about simplicity and saving time.I have an amazing team that proved their worth by putting up the entire event without my even being on the property.I am indebted to their dedication. Antonio Hernadez has been with me seven years and Barbie Reeser going on five.They knew the drill. Nothing was out of place. Barbie and Antonio had EVERYTHING exactly as it should have been. Barbie also managed the horses and the complete volunteer list and Antonio managed 110 acres by himself and helped build a magnificent new sunken road jump of which we are hugely proud.I must say there were many many great people that also helped and my greatest mother in the world managed to tie me in the chair for two weeks to stay the hell out of everyones way!

These two people have seen me compete at the Rolex and Fair Hill level all the way down to baby novice. They have held the farm together through broken legs,backs and now my neck.They have put down some of my finest friends and been through it all. They have never ever let me down. That is PURE DEVOTION AND LOVE.That is what Paradise is about. Yet we heal and get strong again and go on.

We love putting on the Spring event as it is such fun to see all the riders really love the courses. Everyone at EVERY level say their horses come of the courses eager for the next jump. Everyone,riders,trainers and coaches say the tracks at Paradise offer an education where the horses and riders WANT to jump better and better.The Fall event is fun too but we REALLY wish more local people would come. The quality of this event is simply too good to miss.

There are plenty of butterflies the night before but that's what makes everyone ride better.People need to be PREPARED to jump at their chosen level.Two foot eleven is two foot eleven.Hills have to be negotiated and people need to have EXPERIENCE at handing things when the plan goes wrong. Lucinda Green is a master at teaching people to ride safely when glitches happen.Lucinda is one of my biggest mentors along with Mike ES.I am very proud of my European background to our sport.

I have NEVER EVER Had a course designer,or official recommend we dummy down any fence on this course(Pardon me there was actually one that made me cut down a jump that had been on a course for years)I have never heard a peep from a rider rep.

I have NEVER had a rider complain.I have never heard an official need to change anything.Tremain Cooper my friend and long time course designer thinks like a horse and has a great feel for the land.This event is for the horses. It is early in the season but now many people are ready in January. If you are not ready. Simply downgrade to the next level below. There is no shame in that. It is called HORSEMANSHIP!

If I could put a word next to Paradise farm it would be my wish that word would be education.That is what the farm is for. Education of all sorts of horses and riders.Education of so many more things than just riding.Discipline,courtesy,sportsmanship,preparation,dedication,detail,knowledge and FUN!

We have a great time at the farm. WE laugh so hard during lessons that a quick trip behind the bush is sometimes necessary. WE teach through encouragement not intimidation. WE ask the riders what THEY WANT> It is not about what I want. BUT if they say they want to ride Intermediate there is a stiff bunch of criteria that needs to be met for sure. I do NOT teach beginners differently than I teach upper level riders,though there is a TREMENDOUS amount of talking in the beginning.There is so much theory the rider needs to understand before just riding around in circles.

I take great care in recognizing fear,or any lack of confidence. If I see something that is unsafe I explain it and WHY!!!!!I NEVER expect anyone to know things.I do my BEST to prevent injury and fear and pain. I have been hurt enough and believe it or not...that makes me a better teacher!I have not been hurt because I am not good. I am very good. But it's the luck of the dice and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

I am fit and strong and have come back from more injury than most and will do it again.I take great care in STUDYING With CERTIFIED professionals about anatomy,injury and rehab. Again I think this makes me a very knowledgeable teacher. I have rehabbed many horses back to the Olympic level as well.

I love teaching. I want to teach. That is what Paradise Farm is for. I teach beginners. I teach children on naughty ponies.I can handle tears,fear,confidence issues. I am very good at recognizing trigger points most people have. And many have the same. Riding in crowds(hunting) Thee is SO MUCH TO KNOW!!!!!!Yet people think they don't need it. My fox hunter safety clinics were so much fun and opened the eyes of many. AS a Master of Hounds with a teaching background I felt it was my duty to help all the way round. And it did.I am experience up to PSG dressage and the 1.30's in show jumping. So come on.I am excellent at teaching balance and flying changes.I have everything ,anyone needs to learn how to ride and have fun.All my staff and family here love what we do. There are no dark clouds here.There is nothing scary.

I do not limit my teaching to those that want to ride competitively. ANYONE That wants to enjoy the Hitchcock woods safely can benefit greatly from these lessons. I wish more people would come.Any person,any horse.

We NEVER over face people. EVERYTHING is done with TONS of preparation.No one is asked to do anything they can't do. If they need to be led by hand we do that too.It is about conquering fear through knowledge. Not by riding by luck.

I have often heard that people say I yell. Yelling infers anger. I do not get angry when I teach. I teach near a very busy road. I teach in a 80 acre field. It is important the rider HEARS While riding.I do not like to wait until the moment is over.Anger has nothing to do with teaching. Disciplining a horse has NOTHING to do with being mean or cruel. Depending on a situation,messages often have to be firm or sharp,always followed by praise. We love our horses.We love what we do.

I have been taught by the best in the world in the hopes of representing my country. Though I came close I never made it but now I want to give back. I still study everyday.I watch,I read,I talk,I listen ,I go to seminars, I upgrade my licences. No one in Aiken that stays here all year has more experience than me.Paradise Farm is an incredible facility for anyone that wants to ride better or learn about their horse. PLease come. Please visit and see what we do.Teaching makes me a beter rider. So please come help me!

Sit up and RIDE BETTER!

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