Have you ever seen someone who is so "with" their horse that it sort of reminds you of butter melting on toast? Well, that's what we thought the first time we saw Courtney Bolender riding. Courtney is an absolutely stunning rider who is so beautiful on a horse that it give us ultimate rider goals. However it's her personality that we love the most - Courtney is always smiling, so kind, and very thoughtful.
Courtney has been riding since well, forever, thanks to her father, who is a real horseman through and through. A pony clubber, Courtney is well versed across all horse disciplines. This shows in her training approach, as she considers cross-training, varying activity, trail rides and ground work to all be integral to every horses education. She often brings in clinicians - Henk van Bergen, and Lars Petersen are some of the regulars that Courtney has out to her Bedford Hills, NY facility. Courtney also trains with Scott Hassler.
Sydney Collier's accomplishments to date include competing in the 2014 World Equestrian Games and the 2016 Paralympics in Rio De Janeiro - and she was just born in 1997! We met Sydney at the Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Annual Horse Show. We support Pegasus by donating our products for their horses, and it turns out Sydney is a big supporter of Pegasus as well by volunteering with their programs.
Sydney is well, to put it plainly, an inspiration for pretty much anyone on the planet. At the age of 7, Sydney was diagnosed with Wyburn-Mason Syndrome, which is an extremely rare congenital birth defect. She’s been through a lifetime of the medical world already - multiple brain surgeries, lots of radiation, loss of vision in her right eye as well as half of the vision in her left eye, and unfortunately, a stroke at the age of 11 that left her without the use of the left side of her body. She has multiple strokes since the first, and these have further affected her left side. Despite all of this hardship, Sydney has never missed a beat. She has been riding since she was 7 years old, in fact, she attributes her health improvements to her drive and desire to get back into the saddle after her first stroke. Currently, Sydney trains very seriously, riding two horses a day, plus her Equicizer, and also does Pilates twice a week. She is continually adapting to her ever changing medical condition. Her next goal is to compete in the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo, Japan. We are thrilled to be able to support Sydney!
Sydney’s smile is contagious. She’s warm and friendly, albeit a little sarcastic with her sense of humor... in only the best of ways of course! However, the thing that stuck with us the most was something Sydney said the first time we met her, "In sharing my story, I really would like people to realize that if I can do it, then anyone can!” Sydney’s desire to spread the work hard, try hard, never give up, no matter what you are faced with mantra, is what is truly amazing. It’s this positive attitude that we admire SO much.
Sydney is available for motivational speaking to groups or individuals facing adversity. If you would like to contact Sydney, even just to chat, you can reach her through: Instagram @sydsparaquest, Facebook: Syd's Paraquest or Email: email@example.com.
We met Rob a few years ago while on a trip visiting old friends in London. We instantly new that Rob was someone we wanted to get to know more. He is cheery but serious, a dedicated and accomplished rider and trainer, and most importantly loves all types of horses.
We told Rob about our natural grooming products for horses, and he was immediately interested in what we might have to offer. On a subsequent trip, we brought Rob samples of our products to try, and it wasn't more than a few weeks before he was emailing us to discuss a sponsorship.
Rob can boast many accomplishments, from a 2014 National Title in England at the elementary level, to a 2017 Gold Medal in Paris at the MCI European Championships where Rob represented Great Britain in the Small Tour. He also has numerous regional titles under his belt.
Rob is the envy of many of us - he not only trains with Lisa Hopkins, but is also regularly trained by Carl Hester! We think that's a good thing though, as Rob's dream is to someday represent his country in the Olympics. The Simple Equine is very excited to support Rob towards this goal.
In Buckinghamshire, Rob runs his own busy training and livery yard. We've had the opportunity to visit this top notch training facility and loved it - a peaceful place with superb care, great facilities, beautiful green fields, and most importantly, lots of friendly equine faces to greet or have a cuddle with.
Are you interested in having Rob come to teach a clinic with you? Or perhaps you are interested in livery and training with Rob? You can contact him here - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Social: @robwainedressage