12 Riders on Track for WIHS: Part 1

The Puissance Wall.  Horses stabled in Chinatown. Super fancy vendors. The Washington International is one of the most exciting events of the fall. Carla Lake has your preview.

This year’s list of qualifying riders for WIHS has just been posted–so while not all 23 may attend, you can expect to see several of these riders in the Open Jumper division, competing for $10,000-$125,000 prizes.

Read on to learn about the first half of this year’s competitors, and stay tuned next week to learn about the rest!

BEEZIE MADDEN: Beezie Madden is an Olympic gold medalist, and a regular at WIHS,WEF, the FEI World Cup, you name it. She’s the first woman to breach the $1 million in show earnings, and she lives in central New York with her husband and trainer John.

REED KESSLER: Reed Kessler, 19, is the showjumping idol of the Tumblr age. Uncountable memes have been dedicated to her–and rightly so. She wins all the things. She’s the youngest-ever showjumping Olympian; she’s gorgeous, talented, poised and she seems genuinely nice. Can we trade lives?

KENT FARRINGTON: First place at the 2013 Hagyard Challenge Series in Lexington. First place at the Spruce Meadows Masters. First place at the $50,000 Hermès Classic. Are you seeing a pattern here? Farrington has had a stellar year with Willow, Uceko, Blue Angel and Zafira.

LAURA KRAUT: Kraut and her Dutch Warmblood Cedric have an impressive list of wins as well, from the U.S. gold in the Hong Kong Olympics to hundreds of thousands of dollars in prize money from competitions in the U.S. and as far away as Madrid, the Netherlands and Italy.

McLAIN WARD: One of my heroes. His equitation is flawless, and form equals function for this two-time Olympic gold medalist. Though I’m sure George Morris disapproves of those “gimmicky” lightweight stirrup irons.

CHRISTINE McCREA: A member of Team SmartPak and a 2011 Pan American Games gold medalist, Christine McCrea says her favorite thing to do when she’s not riding horses is “riding the couch”–just putting her feet up and relaxing. With a year that’s included the American Gold Cup CSI4*-W, HITS Culpeper, Spruce Meadows and the Hampton Classic (just to name a few) those days are probably few and far between!

JONATHAN McCREA: The Irish husband of Christine McCrea has been riding since age 8, and now this dynamic duo cleans up wherever they go. McCrea has also represented Ireland in the Dublin 5-Star International.

KATIE DINAN: She hasn’t been meme-ified to the degree of Reed Kessler, but 19-year-old Dinan’s accomplishments are no less impressive. She trains with McLain Ward, has placed in and won 3* and 4* jumping events around the world, and she’s just beginning her freshman year at Harvard.

Seriously, Reed and Katie. You’re making everyone else look bad.

CHARLIE JAYNE: Despite a checkered family history, Jayne has made his own name as a Grand Prix jumper whose stallion Chill R Z “can smell a mare from miles away” but he knows his job and brought Jayne huge success in the arena. He’s been an Olympic alternate a few times–valuable experience that he hopes will send him to Rio to represent the U.S.


KIRSTEN COE: Kirstin and Charlie Jayne have long competed in the same sphere and it looks like they might becompeting against each other again this October at WIHS. Her top horse is Baronez, a Selle Francais mare.

BRIANNE GOUTAL: Goutal is another young rider making her first steps into the open–and quite successfully. In 2005 she made history, as the first junior rider to win the USEF Medal Finals, the Monarch International Equitation Championships, and the ASPCA Maclay Finals. If she attends, it won’t be her first time at WIHS–she’s shown Onira in DC both as a junior and in open divisions.

LAUREN TISBO: Dropping soccer for horses at age 12 was a good choice for Tisbo. She now trains and teaches at her farm in Wellington, Florida where she also has a breeding program to bring along her next grand prix jumper.

Go Riding.


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