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Dressage in Princeton, NJ? Or New Haven, CT?

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  • Dressage in Princeton, NJ? Or New Haven, CT?

    I'm looking for a dressage barn and training near Princeton, NJ (ETA no longer interested in New Haven). Likely will be moving there in August or September 2012 to attend Princeton University. Horse and rider both experienced, shown through PSG, earned 70%+ at FEI level, etc. Starting to school all GP movements, so looking for a GP trainer! Aiming to do FEI YR program. Preferably, but not necessarily, trainer with indoor and half day (or more) turnout! Location (the closer the better, 45 minutes maximum) more important than cost. Any leads would be extremely helpful! Feel free to PM, any and all information is much appreciated. Thank you!
    Last edited by hanoverianhorses <3; Mar. 31, 2012, 07:04 PM. Reason: only interested in NJ information! :)

  • #2
    Plenty of qualified folks in Princeton, NJ area . Depends mostly on what you want to spend. What you want for turnout, etc. Some BNT around here DO NOT do turn out at their farms. Some go to FL and you will be left without a trainer for 3-6 months if you do not go with them. Some are very controlling, some are not. Etc.

    I can steer you towards the right person if you provide more details.
    "Friend" me !



    • #3
      From Princeton expect to drive 30 minutes. However, there are a lot to choose from in that general radius. There are a lot of shows during the summer. In the winter, it's more of a ghost town as a lot of the bigger names go to FL. However, many of the lesser bigger names stick around and get their pick of indoors.
      Weather is okay to ride outside through December, but forget about it January and February. We had a very hot and dry summer this year but it's usually not that bad. Having lived in CT I would say the weather is about 5 deg warmer in NJ both in the winter and summer and we usually get a little less snow (although not this past winter).
      Hope that helps.


      • #4
        David Guy is in Flemington, about half an hour away, and he is excellent and VERY reasonable price-wise in comparison to some of the others in the area. You won't believe the board when you see the facility.

        His facility is breathtakingly beautiful, there is plenty of turn out, and there are acres and acres of trails right behind his place.

        He does not have an indoor but he travels to one in the winter.
        He would probably also travel to you if you found a board-only place reasonably close to him.

        He is also grooming his 2nd grader for Princeton so y'all will get along.

        The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
        Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
        The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY


        • Original Poster

          *BUMP* Edited with a few more details, now the move to NJ is extremely likely, any help would be greatly appreciated!!! (and I'm currently looking into the info that the above posters kindly provided!)


          • #6
            The Dresslers have a facility in Princeton Township - right outside the town (3miles). Hans and Barbara and their son Hans Hennig are accomplished dressage trainers and competitors.

            They have a full facility and also have a place in FL - for the winter season.

            Gabriel Armando and Suzy Ross Armando are at Diamond Creek Farm in Ringoes NJ That's about a 25 minute drive from Princeton. You can PM me for their phone #.
            Summit Sporthorses Ltd. Inc.
            "Breeding Competition Partners & Lifelong Friends"


            • #7
              Silke Rembacz is in Flemington which is well within your driving range. Betsy Steiner is a bit further (Frenchtown). Both go to Fl in the winter. There is a barn in Ringoes that is fantastic & about 30 min away but I don't know if they have any dressage trainers there currently. It's calle Black River Farm. In the past they have had several GP dressage trainers there simultaneously (including Betsy Steiner, Sahar Hirosh & Cesar Parra) although the owners do hunter/jumper. The owners & boarders are very nice & the turnout is really good. The indoor is huge & in the past they have had sand dressage arenas set up outdoors as well. There is also an enormous grass field to ride in. I would email or call & check who they have there now- it's not on their website.


              • Original Poster

                Winter Training

                Do any of you know what the people who train with these trainers - Betsy Steiner, Silke Rembacz, the Armandos, the Dresslers, etc - do for training during the winter? Are there other/assistant trainers that stay and/or does the main trainer come back at all to give lessons? I am interested in all of them, but right now a bit concerned about the winter, as the majority of college months (Sept-May) are also Florida months (approx Dec-April)! Thanks for the suggestions, keep them coming, they are much appreciated!!


                • #9
                  The Armandos actually stayed here this winter. As far as the Dresslers - I believe they and their son don't always head to FL at the same time. Silke does go to FL. Not sure about Betsy Steiner.
                  Summit Sporthorses Ltd. Inc.
                  "Breeding Competition Partners & Lifelong Friends"


                  • #10
                    Betsy Steiner goes to FL, not sure if/how often she comes back. I know a lot of barns in the area totally shut down in the winter & all the clients go to FL. Sometimes others move into the left-behind facilities for winter board.

                    Forgot to mention, the Armandos were at Black River Farm for a while too! They are very nice. Plus Gabriel is a FEI judge so you get that perspective.

                    Christina Gray is not a "big name" but she has trained multiple horses through GP. She had a 9 year old girl showing successfully at 4th level (in pigtails, on a pony!) several years ago! She worked for many years with Mike Poulin & Gerhard Politz & she is wonderful. I'm not sure if she's still teaching & training full time in the area, but she usually stays year-round.

                    If you will have a trailer, Catherine Haddad-Staller's husband lives in the area so she is doing clinics there from time to time.

                    Princeton is such a lovely area & lots of dressage nearby; I think you chose well! New Haven isn't nearly as nice or horse-friendly.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by vagabondrider View Post
                      Princeton is such a lovely area & lots of dressage nearby; I think you chose well! New Haven isn't nearly as nice or horse-friendly.
                      True. You will spend a lot more time on the road getting from Yale to horses than from Princeton to horses. And while there are some names you have heard of in the dressage world in CT, you will drive to get there. You won't find spectacular facilities if those are important to you. But you can find an eventing trainer with a beautiful indoor that's quick/easy from New Haven. I can't speak for her FEI prowess but there are things I wish were different about the management there.

                      FYI, someone like Lendon Gray in Bedford, NY will be a long commute. It will be very, very bad depending on the time of day.
                      The armchair saddler
                      Politically Pro-Cat


                      • #12
                        I board at a barn in Princeton that you could bike to from Princeton University. It has excellent care with an indoor, out door and half day turnout. Message me if you want more info and I can give you the number.


                        • Original Poster

                          Thanks again everyone! You all have been so helpful I have been in touch with most if not all of the trainers mentioned above, and am really, especially interested in two of them, and will be visiting the area soon to check them all out! You all are right, there do seem to be a number of people in the area - from my Google research, I also saw some other trainers in the area, like: Stephan and Caroline Cheret, Marcus Orlob and Shannon Stevens, Amy Howard, and Kim Herslow. Do you guys know anything about them (PM if necessary)? I really just know their names and nothing else - and I want to make sure I consider as many options as possible so I can find the training/boarding situation that fits us best!


                          • #14
                            vagabondrider, thank you for the kind words. I'm no longer in the area and have retired from the horse business for family reasons.

                            But, that all said, of all the names mentioned, I always found Silke Rembascz to be the most honest, forthright and skilled teacher/trainer/instructor in the area. Perhaps the best recommendation of her that I can give is the observation that, while students come and go, she seems have an extraordinary number of them return. I think it's her professionalism and commitment to her students. Yes, she's no nonsense and can be a task master, but results are results, and she produces them.



                            • #15
                              I sent you a PM about some of the other stables/trainers that you listed.
                              Summit Sporthorses Ltd. Inc.
                              "Breeding Competition Partners & Lifelong Friends"