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Adrienne Sternlicht

Her incredible jump-off at the Winter Equestrian Festival went around the world. Trained by Mclain Ward, Adrienne Sternlicht gave us a beautiful riding lesson! After learning her classes in the ponies division at the renown Heritage Farm and training with Laura Kraut or Nick Skelton, Adrienne is at only 25 at the gates of the World Games of Tryon2018.


I think it really depends for each horse! Typically I like to take my time particularly with a horse who is very careful - the more patient you can be the better! I would say when a horse is consistently jumping well at one height, day to day and week to week, you’re probably ready to move up. Be mindful of the venue that you are moving up at, it’s important not to overface your horse! I’d also move up the second day of jumping at a new venue rather than walking straight into a bigger class.


Hi! Yes, Emily and I both rode with Nick and Laura at one point in time. I worked predominantly with Laura though, while I think Emily got more help from Nick. I don't necessarily see similarities between our styles -- though Emily is a great rider! Emily grew up riding in the English system and I grew up in the American system which laid the foundation for our riding styles :)

Hi Alexia,

I'm not totally sure! I never thought I'd be riding full-time as I have for the past year and a half. I work for a nonprofit too and that provides me with a really nice balance. Horses will always be a huge part of my life and perhaps my greatest passion but I plan on doing humanitarian work full time at some point.


Hi Elliott,

Either Holland or the Dutch part of Belgium! The only reason I specify the part of Belgium is because I like the food better :) Holland and Belgium are super convenient in terms of transport when competing in Europe, which makes the trips less onerous on both my horses and grooms. Producing horses is also a lot less expensive in Europe, and there are a ton of shows at diverse levels nearby.


Hi Philippa!

Yes I did. Since I train with Mclain, we discussed the interview extensively before he responded. I am of the same opinion as Mclain. I think to truly have longevity and success at the top of the sport there are no shortcuts. No matter who you are or what your background is you have to put in the time, effort, and have the grit to truly be successful. With the way many show barns are set up in the US, riding is an after-school activity and many don't learn the basics of horse care etc until they progress in their riding. At the higher levels, however, I am in awe of how industrious and talented so many of my peers in the US are - there are a lot of us vying for spots on teams alongside our idols like Mclain, Beezie etc.


Hi Melinda!

I think Patricia Griffith, who trained myself, Lillie Keenan, and Reed Kessler (to name a few) on ponies is absolutely amazing! She is very detail oriented and had high expectations of us as pony riders with set us up beautifully when we transitioned to horses. She taught us how to be effective in the saddle, improve our pony's shape, and created challenging courses at home. Andre is also brilliant horseman, who teaches style and finesse in an unparalleled way. Between the two of them any passionate young rider has a great chance at achieving success.


Hi Mark!

Thanks so much! I actually jumped the bush upon my entrance to the ring - I galloped straight in and rode aggressively over the hedge. Had she not reacted so well I probably would've been more tentative in my jump off. We don't train over natural fences but I've jumped her at Spruce Meadows and several other intimidating venues so I wasn't too worried! We really trust each other which definitely helps when jump off plans go awry.


Hi Laura!

I love to do gymnastics! I always use draw reins and a collar when jumping gymnastics at home. We always jump a triple or quadruple of verticals with 9-foot ground pole between the fences and sometimes use v-rails on the verticals.


Hi Abby!

That's a great question, I'd probably say some of the derbies I've jumped - the Spruce Meadows derby sticks out in my mind. The course is long and the hill is very intimidating! In terms of career advice, I'd say the harder you work, the luckier you get :) Most of the professionals that I've worked with in the industry are alway looking to advance the careers of young riders like yourself, offering working student positions. My best advice would be to identify several riders/trainers who you'd like to learn from and to approach them about a working student opportunity. A lot of times opportunities to ride arise in those situations or open doors to similar situations.


Hi Kim!

In Europe the level of competition is quite high - there are so many incredibly talented riders! When I first competed in Europe it was definitely a wake up call and really motivated me to improve my riding. The level and intensity of competition can only strengthen you as a rider and give you a new perspective on what it takes to be at the top of the sport. I think the more experiences you have as a rider in a diverse set of venues, the better off you are. Competing in Spruce Meadows, for instance, has been a hugely valuable experience for me.