Monte Vista IEA Show: October 2013


Team KMT had a blast at its first IEA show of the season, located at Monte Vista in Watsonville. This is our teams 2nd year showing and after learning the ropes last year, the team is looking like a well oiled machine! Kelly and Amanda were so proud of Team KMT and how well everyone did. The weather was fantastic, the horses were all well behaved and the riding was superb. Below you will find each riders point standings for the show:

Katherine Baker…5 Flat
Alexis Cristiano…7 O/F
Sierra Hoadley…7 O/F…1 Flat
Abby Pratt…1 O/F…2 Flat
Lindsey Watters…1 O/F…4 Flat
Kiera Hennigan…2 O/F
Kaitlyn Jenkins…9 O/F…9 Flat
Rouie Shue…1 O/F…4 Flat
Ali LaBadessa…2 Flat
Katherine Papahadjopulos…4 Flat
Sarah Skaff…4 Flat

A HUGE CONGRATS goes out to all the riders…a super fun show, lots of learning, but most of all…great TEAMWORK!!!

The next IEA show is the weekend of November 16 & 17. Please see our updated show schedule below. There have been a couple of changes.

Upcoming Shows:
November 16 & 17: Iron Horse (Pleasanton)
November 24: Shiloh West (home)
December 14: Athenian (Pleasanton)
December 15: Diablo (Pleasanton)
February 9: Strides (Santa Rosa)

Upcoming Practices
Sunday November 3
Sunday December 8
Monday December 30


Enjoy some FUN pics below…















Fall Festival Horse Show: October 2013

What a fantastic show! Besides one day with crazy winds, the weather was perfect! We had parents and friends cheering our team on…love that! On to the highlights of the week…

Sierra Hoadley and Vodka Orange, aka Goose had a super week! They started the week out with a bang…WINNING their .95 Jumpers…ended RESERVE CHAMPION! Sierra also rocked the $5000 Jumper Classic…FIFTH out of 25 plus riders…nice! On top of all that, Sierra had her Cloverleaf Finals along side the Zone 10 Stirrup Cup Finals. The nerves were jump’n and Sierra rode great in both…coming home SEVENTH in the Zone 10 finals with over 30 riders. Great week Sierra!!!

Kiera Hennigan and ‘Mr. Bingley’ also had a fantastic week! They looked awesome in the 2’6 Low Child Hunters…WON all three classes…and CHAMPION! They started out the week in jumper land…2 SECONDS…fun! This team also had the 4-Phase Acorn Eq Classic…they WON phase 1 and 2, but due to a couple sneaky trot steps, ended FIFTH…another huge class…great riding Kiera!

Rouie Shue and Winslow are one of our newest riders on the KMT Team…and I have to say, Rouie had a great attitude at this horse show! Winslow can be a bit of a handful, but they worked hard all week on control, smoothness and learning to communicate better. They did come home with some ribbons, but more importantly, with some good homework for next year. Let’s keep an eye on this duo!!!

Emily Johnson and ‘Tapatio‘ aka, TT, T, Tiolindo had a really fun show and Emily is learning the ropes in the Eq/Medal rings. Emily realizes the importance of mental toughness in those rings and is loving the challenge! Emily and T got lots of ribbons, but we were most proud of her NorCal Medal class…she looked great and ended SIXTH in a huge class. Nice riding Em!!!

Sierra and Emily found a new friend

Love this quote

Horse show fun!

Love the PINK

Congrats to all of our KMT riders on a fantastic show!!! And a special thanks to Dan Thib for the great pics:-)
Team KMT

KMT Tri-Valley Classic Medal Finals: September 2013

Team KMT had an amazing show this past Sunday at the KMT Tri-Valley Classic Medal Finals. A huge THANK YOU to Lexi, Sierra and Alexis for helping me school all of the horses in the morning. It was a long day, but worth it in the end. Everyone rode great and all the horses were on their best behavior.

Jessica and Belle rode to victory in the cross rail division. This is the best I’ve ever seen them look. Coming home CHAMPION and WINNING the Cross Rail Medal Final. Finishing with a no stirrup victory gallop. Way to go Jessica!

Charlotte and Sunshine were looking sharp in the 2′ division as usual. Finishing up as RESERVE CHAMPION and a Third in the 2′ Medal Final. Great job Charlotte!

Kiera and Waffle are such a lovey pair to watch. Making all of their strides, they came home RESERVE CHAMPION in the 2’3 division and received a Fourth in the 2’3 Medal Final. Kiera and Waffle were also the Year End 2′ CHAMPIONS!!!

Elisabeth and Cupcake have been working hard together and it’s paying off. These two came home RESERVE CHAMPION in the Pile of Piles Division. Can’t wait to see these two move up to cross rails next year.

Isabel and Amour were on point at this show. They have built a great relationship and I think Amour is getting used to the Livermore facility. They looked great, coming home Division and Year End CHAMPIONS!!!

Leif and Belle went in their first pile of poles classes. Leif has the most amazing heals and two point position. These two received TWO Thirds. Way to go Leif!!

I can’t wait until next year!!! GO TEAM KMT!!!

Amanda D.


Are YOU focused on the right things as a rider?

So many young, as well as adult riders, are preoccupied with ribbons, ‘how big was that jump’, what a fancy horse ‘Suzie’ has or can I go in more classes at the show. To grow as a rider it is important to redirect that energy in a positive direction.


With that in mind, recognize the capabilities of your horse. What is best for your horse? Often times we want to do more as a rider and don’t take the time to listen or recognize our horses limitations. Is your horse capable of more? It is easy to push a horse beyond its physical capability. When this happens your horse more than likely will start feeling sore, unhappy and may start refusing to do his job. Your trainer should help you out here, so, listen to your trainer for feedback and accept there input. Remember that you have hired a trainer for their expertise. In the end, if you want to jump/practice more than your trainer lets you, don’t blame your trainer, but think, maybe it’s time for a second horse. If owning a second (or more) horse is out of the question, than it is important to keep your expectations in check. YOUR HORSES well being comes first!

Next, do you hope and pray for blue ribbons? Would you rather receive a blue out of 3 riders or have the ride of your life and get no ribbon? If you just want the blue you may only be focusing on the end result. Don’t get me wrong, blues are great to get! BUT, learn to enjoy the process of riding. Riding is like playing a musical instrument. There are so many notes/details and so many pieces to put together to make your ride feel amazing. Enjoy the small moments of success; a beautiful lead change, an amazing jump, a light feel and an accepting horse.

This leads me to discuss a riders reactions to a particular ride in the ring. Just recently, I had a young rider come out of the ring miserable. She had a bad jump, yep, ONE really bad jump, but the rest of the ride was beautiful. Her comment was, “that round was horrible”! Hmmm, really? This rider could only see that one jump in her head. It is important to recognize the parts that felt amazing and remember them! Next, discuss what could have been done differently on that “horrible” jump so that you can have the tools to create a different outcome; Were you too slow? Was your horse balanced? Did you have the right amount of impulsion. After your discussion, LET IT GO and MOVE ON!

And about ‘Suzie’…you are not her! Every rider has limitations too. But, keep in mind that every rider has great qualities too, and not very often does one rider HAVE IT ALL! Some riders are calm and cool under pressure…some have an open check book…some have an amazing work ethic…some have that natural feel with a horse. Know your positive attributes and work even harder on the attributes you struggle with. I’ve had riders with amazing natural talent and no work ethic…riders that have an open check book, but struggle with a feel on the nicest of horses…and some with an amazing work ethic, but crack under pressure. Your trainer has seen it all! This isn’t bad news! I would not say I was a natural when I was a younger, but I had an amazing work ethic and a thrived under pressure! I rode every extra horse possible and with out irons. I studied the best riders when I was at shows for hours by the ring. In the end I developed a bond with horses that created a natural ease with them. Again, embrace your positives and find ways to enhance the other areas. For example, if you crack under pressure, there are several wonderful Sports Psycholgists that can give you mental strategies for mental toughness. This is a great discussion to have with your trainer, as they should really know you!

In the end, you will never grow as a rider without failure. Learn to turn failure into a positive! I love self talk. I feel like I get jumped loose…’I’m going to start doing my hacks without irons’. I go into the ring and my mind is a blank…’I’m going to close my eyes before each class and ride every piece of my course’. I rode perfect and didn’t get a ribbon…’I’m going to work even harder, cause nobody is perfect and I can always be better’.

Enjoy the process, practice, study and ask questions…and most importantly, remember that you and your horse are a team!!!

Strides & Tides: September 2013

What a fantastic week we had in Sonoma! The weather couldn’t have been any better and the competition was fierce at another SOLD OUT Sonoma Horse Show. Every time we come to this facility they have made more upgrades. On to the updates…

Kiera Hennigan and Mr. Bingley had an amazing show this week! They started out the week playing in the jumper ring…WON both classes and were CHAMPION! Then, she rocked her Eq classes…WINNING 3…and again, CHAMPION! Big congrats Kiera:-)

Rouie Shue and Winslow had their 1st rated show together and they just got better and better! They worked in control and being smooth…and they are looking good! One of my favorite rides was the Cloverleaf…ended SECOND and Qualified for Medal Finals…awesome Rouie!!!

Abby Pratt and Silouhette have been working very hard together and they really made strides at this show. Abbs came home with a bunch of THIRDS in some very big classes. Nice riding Fab Abb:-)

Alexis Cristiano and Lulu…well, the picture says it all! This team is ready for the JUNIOR HUNTERS next year! Lulu has grown up and these two look fabulous together…makes me smile. They both got great ribbons, but what I love about Alexis…she is way more excited about the feel of an amazing jump…and she had many!!!

Olivia Hill and Sensation rode in some huge classes! The competition in her AA Jumpers was awesome…and Olivia fit right in:-) Olivia received several THIRDS and FIFTHS in classes with 20plus riders…they looked great…congrats Olivia…I’m so excited for next year!!!

Sarah Levi and Finn Again had their first show together…and, they lit up the jumper ring…yep, Finn and Sarah can move! Sarah also showed in huge classes…SECOND out of 18 and FOURTH out of 27!!! So much fun Sarah:-)

Jodi Steel and CARLOS! Love this horse…and love watching him and Jodi as a team. They both had a super week…WINNING the Cloverleaf Medal, SECOND out of 19 riders in one class and SECOND out of 15 in another…such great rides and a fun week!!!


Just tak’n a little stroll…


Just look into my eye…

Never a bad pic from Olivia and Sensei…you rock!

Rebecca Heller and Utric. Utric sadly passed away last week. He was the horse of a lifetime. Utric had a huge heart and took our Becca to the Maclay Finals in New York. May he Rest in Peace, our sweet boy.

Team KMT

Wine Country Classic Mini Prix, 2013

Olivia Hill and Sensation!!! A fantastic photo from the Mini Prix at the Wine Country Classic:-)

Wine Country Classic: August 2013

We had another hot week at Brookside, but thanks to Sally (Alexis’s Mom) we had plenty of cool drinks! Wine Country had a great showing and the classes were big! Our riders and horses always make me proud:-)

Olivia Hill and Sensation left a cloud of dust in their wake this week! She was CHAMPION in the 1.10m Jumpers, WON the Pickwick Medal and made us proud in the 1.25m Mini Prix…only 4 faults and a fabulous ride!!!

Amanda Rael and Almost Famous were collecting BLUES this week in the AA’s and Equitation! They ended the week CHAMPION in the AA Eq and RESERVE CHAMPION in the AA Hunters. Congrats, Amanda, on a super week!!!

Fabulous Abby Pratt and Silouette started the week out looking great, but towards the weekend Lalya wasn’t feeling 100%, so we took her to Pioneer for a check up on Monday. Hopefully, Layla feels better quickly!!!

Alexis Cristiano and Stoneridge are looking so good:-) Lulu was FOURTH in the Hunter Derby, WON one of his Hunter Classes and had great ribbons in the others…nice riding! They ended the week FIFTH in the AA/Children’s Hunter Classic…whoop whoop!

Lexi Pandell and Hijinx had their first show after a long lay-up…and Jinx was having a blast zipping around the ring. I think Lexi was too! They received a couple SECONDS in some big classes…so much fun:-)

Party Hat had his second show experience…he is learning fast! Came home with a BLUE in his Under Saddle out of 10 horses…yeah!

Thanks for coming Edie!

Enjoying the show

Catching some shade

Love this pic Abbs:-)

KMT Tri-Valley Classic: August 2013

Another great show yesterday. The weather was amazing, with fog in the morning and sun in the afternoon. THANK YOU Alexis, Abby and Sierra for helping me school the horses in the morning:-)

Sarah and Finn were at their first show together. They competed in the 2’6 jumpers. Finn may be a little too mellow for the jumper ring. I see him doing hunters soon. They came home with two SECONDS and a THIRD. Way to go Sarah and Finn!

Rouie and Winslow looked great jumping around the 3′ jumpers. These two are so fun to watch and boy can Winslow leave out strides…hmmm. He sure can cover ground with little effort. These two were SECOND and THIRD in the jumpers and SECOND in the CCEA 2’6 medal. Great job Rouie and Winslow!

Emily and Joe were a pair to watch in the Under Saddle and Equitation flat. Emily was FIRST in the Eq. and SECOND under saddle. Who knew Joe could be a little hunter. YAY Emily!

Isabel and Amour are building quite the relationship. Isabel is learning so much with Amour by her side. These two competed in the cross rail division coming home RESERVE CHAMPION!

Jessica and Cupcake also competed in the cross rail division. Jessica really took charge of Cupcake coming home with the CHAMPION ribbon. Nice riding Jess!

Neal and Sunshine looked dazzling in the 2’3 division. These two had many great ribbons and were only one point away from reserve champion.

Kiera and Waffle moved up to the 2’3 division at this show, proving that they are ready to move on to the next level. Kiera and Waffle were RESERVE CHAMPION and WON the CCEA 2’6 medal again.

Last, but not least…our Lead Line WINNER…Brook! She is shown above grabbing a treat for her favorite horse, LOL! So cute:-)

I look forward to the next KMT show on September 22.

Amanda D.

Giant Steps Charity Horse Show: August, 2013

What a fantastic week! Giant Steps had over 800 horses…WOW! The weather was cool and the riders and horses were awesome!!! We all enjoyed the VIP table…delicious food and a great view of the Grand Prix and Main Hunter Ring. On to the highlights…

We will start with Isabel and Amour! This was their first rated show…lots of questions and many more smiles. This adorable team WON their first class and ended the show coming home with both a RESERVE CHAMPION and CHAMPION ribbon…yeah Isabel:-)

I was so proud of Alexis and Lulu! You two are growing together more each show. You ride in some of the toughest hunter divisions and you do such a great job! These two were THIRD in the Modified Hunter Classic and SECOND in the Children’s/AA Hunter Classic…with over 30 riders! A great show;-)

Fab Abby and her Layla always look so pretty! They both got some great ribbons in the Children’s and are getting to know each other a little more at each show. Hugs Abby!!!

Erika and Zen are always so much fun to watch! They rocked the 1.0m Jumpers…SECOND out of 30 riders! We then moved up to the 1.05m Jumpers, and well, as you can see in the photo…she thought they were much bigger! She was great…a little tired from all the effort, but still awesome to watch:-)

Amanda and Polly started out their week by WINNING the NorCal Medal…nice!!! They got great ribbons in the AA’s and SECOND in her Equitation Flat…love it!!!

My favorite line from Olivia riding Sensei this past week was…”he is my soulmate”. I agree! They rocked their AA Jumpers coming home with a SECOND and SECOND in the Classic…always had a crowd watching…awesome riding Olivia!!!

Next we have Emily and baby Wilbur:-) We didn’t know if we were going to show, as this was his first rated outing. But, what the heck…they decided to play in the cross rails. It was a great experience for both with a lot of confidence building. Wilbur was very brave and seemed to really enjoy himself…and Emily was smiling! We love small wins for babies!!!

Baby Albert aka Party HatCHAMPION in the Baby Hunters!

Enjoying the VIP Berm

The girls got purple bows for Isabel’s show debut

Fun times watching the 6 Bar

Great entertainment

Top 10 in the AA/Children’s Hunter Classic with over 30 riders!

Goofy girls


And again…he’s so cute

Just one more;-)

Having some fun

Nice position Isabel

I love this pic!

Happy horses looking for treats


Fancy pants Lulu

Love my horses!

Amanda loves Pollywog

Isabel is missing something…Amour!

Hugs all around

Amanda, Sierra and our barn mascot, Petunia, are up for a visit…thanks!


This is why I love my clients…SO MUCH FUN!

A HUGE thanks goes out to our barn photographer…Sally, you rock!

Thank you Alison and Amanda for coming to help out!

This was a great show and so much fun. A big thanks to my clients and their families for supporting this crazy passion of ours:-)
Congrats to ALL!!!

KMT Tri-Valley Classic: July 2013

A very successful show last Sunday for all KMT riders. Thank you to Brook for helping me throughout the day, Sierra and Alexis for schooling the horses in the morning and Abby for running around for me. You guys ALL make my day easier. All of of our riders rode fantastic and are becoming great sports -women.

Kate and Cupcake moved up from last year. Kate rode Cupcake in the pile of poles division. She is such a tough rider making Cupcake trot around all of her classes. Kate came home with some great ribbons!

Maddie and Steely were too cute trotting around the pile of poles division. Coming home with a couple of pretty ribbons!

Emily and Wilbur also debuted in the pile of poles. Wilbur was very brave, had too much fun and is now ready for the cross rail division. These pair was CHAMPION.

Ava and Lizzy looked great in the pile of poles. Lizzy was excited to be showing and thought its be a better choice to canter the course. After a jump over one of the poles, Ava got her under control and came home with a second, third and sixth…nice riding!!!

Chloe and Lizzy showed in the pile of pole as well. After getting a little lost in the first round, their second round was fabulous. Way to go Chloe!

Elisabeth and Cupcake moved up to the cross rail division. Cupcake was a little tired and lazy, but Elisabeth did such a great job at getting her around each course. They had at least one refusal in each jumping class, but I was so proud of Elisabeth for hanging in there and really showing Cupcake who the boss was!

Emily and Belle had a few challenging rides in the 2′ division. Emily was tough and handled Belle really well. I was most proud of Emily on how she handled those tough rides. Way to go Emily!

Charlotte and Sunshine were RESERVE CHAMPION in the 2′ division. These two were unstoppable and really fun to watch…congrats!

Kiera and Waffle are ready to move out of the 2′ division. They were 2′ CHAMPIONS and they also WON the CCEA 2’6 medal. Way to go Kiera and Waffle.

I look forward to the next show this Sunday, August 11.

Amanda D.

Fun times with friends!