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Really good young horse trainers in the SF Bay Area?

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  • Really good young horse trainers in the SF Bay Area?

    Preferably in the North Bay or East Bay, Sonoma, Solano, Napa, Contra Costa, Alameda counties?

    My friend who was supposed to help me out this winter with my coming 4 year old is unfortunately staying in Southern California Needs to be small enough for a large pony, tactful yet strong enough for a rather opinionated alpha mare. Just looking for any leads and suggestions I may be missing.

    On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

  • #2
    Chelsey is super with young horses to GP and she is located in Sonora, CA


    • #3
      Yeah, Chelsey is good, but Sonora is about three hours away in the foothills now.


      • #4
        Matt Brown is in Sonoma County. I think he's awesome with mares - he 'gets' them. He used to be known mostly for eventing but he teaches/trains dressage really well.


        • Original Poster

          Chelsey is way too far. I have actually thought of Matt, not sure how big he is for a pony though! The more I think of it, someone with a jumping or eventing background might be a better choice anyway.

          I did find one person, but I'm not sure if I want to spend $1700 a month for her to stand in a stall most of the week at 3 years old.

          I have to say, for this busy and populated area there are so few trainers that are actually trainers..
          On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog


          • #6
            well i can only highly recommend my trainer Marc Rijpens. He is *fantastic* with all horses and rides my pony no prob

            he doesn't have a barn tho so you would need to board at a local place.....


            • #7
              You MAY want to try Kismet Farm in Martinez. http://www.kismetfarms.net/

              Tracy and Randy own it, but Tracy has been in a wheel chair for a long time, so doesn't ride. Her rider is Jolie, who was down to the last cut for the eventing Olympic team. I don't know if they take in horses for this kind of training, but it might be what you're looking for.


              • #8
                You might also look into Poplar Place (Chris Bearden): http://www.poplarplace.com/index.html
                Redbud Ranch
                Check us out on FB


                • #9
                  he may be too far away for you but Michael if super with all horses - young to GP - especially spicer ones.


                  • Original Poster

                    Thanks everyone. I know Tracy and Jolie, unfortunately all they have is a 12x12 stall and I am not ready to put her in that 23 hours a day. Chris Bearden no longer rides and they also have no turnout, so there's no young horse trainer there. Mike Etherly is 2+ hours away and really, really, really expensive to send a 3 year old pony to. I'm also looking for someone slightly smaller than the average man.

                    She really just needs a "jockey" that will stick and kick her in the butt. I really did have the perfect person but she's not coming back. The other one I knew of moved to Montana She doesn't even have any recommendations. If there are really good young horse trainers around they sure are hiding.

                    I do have a good place for her 2.5 hours away, I'm just trying to find a place a bit closer than that.
                    On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog


                    • #11
                      Any USPCs near you?? Maybe a good Pony Clubber??


                      • #12
                        what about megan?


                        • #13
                          Alicia Swinton at Panoshe ranch in elk grove is an eventer, very thin/light, and knows how to ride a "strong personality". She uses good basics to get horses going. Not a big name trainer, but has good basics and a nice way with horses.


                          • #14
                            Kelly Prather, hands down. She used to be at Chocolate Horse/Petaluma, just returned from a year in England with William Fox Pit and is now setting up her own training barn. Not sure if she's settled on a place yet. You can find her on FB under Kelly Prather Eventing. The folks at Choc Horse also always do exceptionally well with young horses.
                            "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht


                            • Original Poster

                              Originally posted by mbm View Post
                              what about megan?
                              Megan was supposed to ride her over the winter. She has taken a job in Temecula. Although I could send her down there and just not see her for a few months.

                              I may call Chris Beardon and see if he has a pony clubber that wants to ride her there. Never thought of that.
                              On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog


                              • #16
                                I just took a 13 hand hunter pony into my barn in Brentwood. And will use one of my pony clubbers who owns a Haflinger to show him....I do the riding/training, I also am in San Ramon....right near the park for lots of trail riding....
                                Bethe Mounce
                                Head Trainer, AmeriCan Romance Equestrian
                                Brentwood CA


                                • #17
                                  my only suggestion would be to make sure she goes to someone who will instill the correct basics - forward, supple, response to the aids (including working over the back and to the bit) .... once those are in place then every thing else is easier.

                                  from my recent experience with my 4 yo i would not try to do it "alone" again until i had a few more "assisted" ones under my belt. The difference between Rebel 6 months ago (when i was fuddling along with 1x/week lessons) and now (in full training being watched like a hawk and my trainer riding him as needed = maybe < 10 x's so far) is like night and day. its pretty mind blowing.

                                  i *highly* recommend a good - no the best - trainer you can find for the first 6 months of her riding life.

                                  not sure i would put a pony clubber up unless they knew how to instill the correct basics.

                                  also want to say that i would rather a taller well seated guy riding my youngster than a smaller person that didn't have a perfect seat. my trainer (guess is 5'10" maybe 5'11"?) rides my 14.3 - 15h pony no problem. his feet dont even go below his belly and the pony works far better under my trainer than me - because well my trainer is a much better rider than me.


                                  • #18
                                    Choc Horse people are awesome. Beautiful facility too. An old student of mine ended up going over there and she loves it. She has a young horse, too, and he's doing fantastic with them.

                                    Matt Brown started my horse Shorty, I don't have too much experience with him other than that, as I didn't own Shorty at the time, but he seemed to have done a good job!


                                    • #19
                                      I know nothing about Chocolate Horse - but anyone with a name like that must be OK


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Thanks everyone. I actually had a really fantastic ride today. She really just needs someone who can ride her out and about this winter and some time living in pasture so she can grow up. I know where to take her, I'm just really sad that it's nearly 1.5 hours away
                                        On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog