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Waldenbrook Farm moving to Seattle!

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  • Waldenbrook Farm moving to Seattle!

    Watching the pro ring at horse shows in the Pacific Northwest is about to get a lot more fun! John French is joining Lauren Crooks in Seattle. Is there any chance top talent will improve the quality of the shows?

  • #2
    Wow, you guys are very lucky.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat

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    • #3
      Because there are no talented pros and amateurs in the PNW. Yes it’s exciting news but really?
      Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

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      • #4
        With all due respect, I think John French has fabulous track record. I can't think of anyone in the PNW who can match it. That might just be me. But can you?

        No need to get butt-hurt if a big fish chooses to come to your pond. Rather, gain some humility and learn from him!
        The armchair saddler
        Politically Pro-Cat

        Comment


        • #5
          I think the PNW is very lucky to get a professional of John French's caliber as an addition to the horse show community.

          Comment


          • #6
            If he brings 20 or more new horses to the shows it might but reputation of trainers really doesn’t stimulate class sizes, well managed shows often will though.

            Some of the worst in the business fill the most stalls and enter the most classes therefore endearing themselves to show management.

            IMO.
            When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

            The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mvp View Post
              With all due respect, I think John French has fabulous track record. I can't think of anyone in the PNW who can match it. That might just be me. But can you?

              No need to get butt-hurt if a big fish chooses to come to your pond. Rather, gain some humility and learn from him!
              Yes, there are plenty of top pros/barns who can and do match him either historically, regularly, or both - Brass Ring, Parkside, Aleron, Thumbs Up, Oz, Thunderbird, just to name a few.

              That's not to say that it's a bad move....I'm always excited when a big name moves into the area. But we are not short on hunter (and hunter ONLY) focused barns/trainers/programs. And very good ones at that. I get a lot more excited when big name jumper people join us.

              In fact, I would say that the PNW has been the proving grounds for how celebrating only the hunters is a quick path to killing state/region shows. IOW, it has been a literal science fair-esque project about what happens when a state organization backs up several of the local barns and focuses solely on the hunters (spoiler: all your horseshows die) and repeatedly gives a big middle finger to the jumpers who wind up traveling out of state/country for any/every opportunity to show.

              And I doubt that he will be bringing anyone new to the horseshows. From what friends have said, a lot of his business involves flying to meet his clients at shows already. I'll be curious to see how much time he spends at local horseshows (other than maybe Tbird) versus how much time he spends (still) in FL/CA. The clients that move to him (as many undoubtedly will want to do, because, as already pointed out, he is a brilliant rider/trainer with a long track record of success) will move from other local barns. So to findeight's point, if 20 horses move to him, they will be 20 horses that are already showing in the NW under other trainers. So unless he brings a stable of horses with him (which doesn't seem likely), it's not going to change much.

              And man does Tbird not need more out-of-region horses at their shows. They already have a 400-500-horse waiting list for the big shows. Entries for May are due on Feb 1, and for August are due on Mar 1, (and the show sells out before noon those days for both shows). It's already chock full of CA horses. So to the OP's point, with Tbird likely being the only "local" show he will support, no, he will not improve the quality of the shows.
              __________________________________
              Flying F Sport Horses
              Horses in the NW

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              • #8
                Anyone know why he's moving? Obviously with his talent clients will follow wherever he goes, it just seems so much more remote from a lot of the bigger shows he goes to.

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                • #9
                  Is he joining Lauren at the Clearview facility? I used to ride there when I lived in the PNW. I *dream* of those turnouts now that I'm back in Northern California where a small dry lot is considered a luxury.

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                  • #10
                    Hope he likes rain and snow!
                    kenyagirl

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                    • #11
                      John? Moving? I was the one who brought him out to California, lo those many years ago. And now he is going to move again? He will rock your world up there. No one has a feel for softness like he does.

                      I know you have some top riders who will not give up their top rides easily, so it may take John a bit to sit on some of the top horses, but he is special.
                      "He lives in a cocoon of solipsism"

                      Charles Krauthammer speaking about Trump

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                      • #12
                        Cara Anthony's Potcreek Farm is for sale, maybe he is moving in there? (Also, if anyone has a cool $5 million lying around, it is a GORGEOUS facility! I keep wondering who will end up with it.) https://bit.ly/2HfBgBT

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ilovetheadd27 View Post
                          Cara Anthony's Potcreek Farm is for sale, maybe he is moving in there? (Also, if anyone has a cool $5 million lying around, it is a GORGEOUS facility! I keep wondering who will end up with it.) https://bit.ly/2HfBgBT
                          Hold that thought while I buy a lottery ticket...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by PNWjumper View Post

                            And I doubt that he will be bringing anyone new to the horseshows. From what friends have said, a lot of his business involves flying to meet his clients at shows already. I'll be curious to see how much time he spends at local horseshows (other than maybe Tbird) versus how much time he spends (still) in FL/CA. The clients that move to him (as many undoubtedly will want to do, because, as already pointed out, he is a brilliant rider/trainer with a long track record of success) will move from other local barns. So to findeight's point, if 20 horses move to him, they will be 20 horses that are already showing in the NW under other trainers. So unless he brings a stable of horses with him (which doesn't seem likely), it's not going to change much.
                            From what I've heard, the California barn is not closing, so my thoughts echo what PNW said. While the program may be opening a branch up here, it will be very interesting to see just how much he's spending in the area.

                            But the barn is 3 miles from where my horse lives, so selfishly I'd love the opportunity to trailer in to take a lesson from the legend himself

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                            • #15
                              Butthurt I am not, but neither will I sit by when we our area is needlessly insulted. I pointed out that we do indeed have some of the top hunter trainers on the west coast here (country?) here. And we produce some excellent pro and amatuer horses and riders. I've seen John over the years at Bend (it's been awhile) and he's fantastic. But to assume that we need "bettering" is a bit insulting. I concur with PNWJumper that he'll most likely open a branch "campus" and continue to ride his client horses in other locations. It's what he does now. As I said, it's exciting and will bring new energy to our corner of the world. Let's hope a great jumper trainer joins in soon... though we clearly can hold our own when we travel to the hallowed land of CA and mix with John French's of the world.
                              Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
                                John? Moving? I was the one who brought him out to California, lo those many years ago. And now he is going to move again? He will rock your world up there. No one has a feel for softness like he does.

                                I know you have some top riders who will not give up their top rides easily, so it may take John a bit to sit on some of the top horses, but he is special.
                                Indeed. And I didn't know you brought him! Was that when he was at Pat Warren's barn on La Cañada?

                                All I can say is that it was great to get to watch him ride a lot when I was a kid trying to learn way, way above my tax bracket. That's what I meant by folks in the PNW being lucky to have John French up there. And you can pay *nothing* not lose anything but time if you want to watch him ride at the shows.
                                The armchair saddler
                                Politically Pro-Cat

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Calvincrowe View Post
                                  Butthurt I am not, but neither will I sit by when we our area is needlessly insulted. I pointed out that we do indeed have some of the top hunter trainers on the west coast here (country?) here. And we produce some excellent pro and amatuer horses and riders. I've seen John over the years at Bend (it's been awhile) and he's fantastic. But to assume that we need "bettering" is a bit insulting. I concur with PNWJumper that he'll most likely open a branch "campus" and continue to ride his client horses in other locations. It's what he does now. As I said, it's exciting and will bring new energy to our corner of the world. Let's hope a great jumper trainer joins in soon... though we clearly can hold our own when we travel to the hallowed land of CA and mix with John French's of the world.
                                  Just to be clear, I was the first one to post and I said nothing about the quality of PNW trainers lacking. Your second quote shows that you ASSuMed I had. And that right there is the very definition of butt hurt.

                                  If you keep reading, you'll see that I have no opinion about the well-respected California pros that were around NorCal when I was there. Did you see me, for example, saying that Carlton Brooks was bad in comparison to French? Nope, didn't happen. That's not how i roll and, again, I made no such comparison.

                                  But you can read what I did say, and I think others concur about his riding talent.
                                  The armchair saddler
                                  Politically Pro-Cat

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Madison View Post
                                    Anyone know why he's moving? Obviously with his talent clients will follow wherever he goes, it just seems so much more remote from a lot of the bigger shows he goes to.
                                    He follows a lot of his clients though, being on the road so much, sometimes meets them at shows as do many really BNTs. No need for clients to follow them 1k miles to a new barn when they’ll be at the same mega circuit shows where the weather is better and there are big money Hunter classes.
                                    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      The quality of training in the PNW doesn't need bettering, with the exception of TBird, the quality (and quantity) of the shows does. Many of the large barns opt out of the WA shows and head to CA or even CO, which is great if you have the time and money. I'd love to see shows in WA have more entries, more interesting courses, more prize money, better prizes and more social events. Bigger rings and better footing would be great too, but that may be asking a helluva lot.

                                      Hopefully John is looking to spend less time on the road and more time training, doing clinics and showing in his new hometown. Having had the opportunity to clinic with him and observe his coaching at shows, there is no doubt he will be an asset to our area. Don't get me wrong, I'm not leaving my exceptionally talented and successful trainer for him, but I certainly appreciate his talent and success.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I wonder if he's looking for an opportunity to slow down a tiny bit and know his horses a little better. After two very bad accidents in one year, I sure would be considering a change.

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