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Team #612 Carol Schmickrath and Ramiros

Team #612: Carol Schmickrath and Ramiros
From: Georgetown, Texas
Ages: 77 & 26
Combined Age: 103
Test: Third Level Test 1
Date: December 3, 2022

Growing up on a farm and ranch in South Texas I was on a horse with my dad before I could walk. Riding working cow horses taught me to be loose in the saddle and feel the rhythm of the horse. I first sat in an English saddle when I was in graduate school in Denver, CO.  A generous German lady, Elizabeth Wolf, let me take lessons on her jumpers and introduced me to dressage. She took me to see a dressage show which was only to Second Level and I was hooked.

My husband and I moved to San Diego, CA, in 1973 where he adopted my passion for riding.  We were able to meet Hilda Gurney and Keen at a demonstration ride at La Jolla Farms and later watch Lilo Fore teach.  By the time we moved to Midland, TX, in 1977 we owned six horses.  By good fortune, Franz Rochowansky, (“Rocky”) came to Midland several times a year.  We received our foundation for dressage from Rocky and were also able to import Dutch Warmblood breeding stock.  While in Midland we were able to train with Jeff Moore who also sent Baron Von Blixen Finecke to us.  Walter Zettl came several times a year to train. Then Michael Poulin took over as our main trainer.

Our next move was to purchase our Brookstone Farm in 1984 in Georgetown, TX, just north of Austin.  We were intending to move there with our breeding stock but took a detour to Maine to train with Michael Poulin at his farm for six years.  Michael campaigned one of the horses we bred, Lighten Up Jack, at Intermediare Horse of the Year. Also, Michael made the 1992 team as an alternate on Bombadier, a wonderful black beauty that we bought from Canada.  In 1996 another horse we bred, Duke of Earl, was long-listed for the team with Michael aboard.

In 1995, we moved permanently to Brookstone Farm to continue our breeding and training.  Over the years I managed to earn my USDF bronze, silver, and gold medals and have coached four students to earn their gold medals.

Ramiros, my Century Club mount, came to me via a student, Karen Holmes, who had to retire from riding due to a neck problem.  He was imported and shown by Floridian, Heide Degele, before Karen bought him.  I showed him at Prix St. Georges and Intermediare 1 before he retired as a schoolmaster.

 It was such a pleasure to ride in the Century Club Show with three other riders.  It is a testament to dressage training that horses in their 20s and riders in their 70s can perform so well.  Thanks to The Dressage Foundation for sponsoring the show.