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Team #654 Mary Jago and Taseko

Team #654: Mary Jago and Taseko
From: Prince George, British Columbia
Ages: 79 & 21
Combined Age: 100
Test: Third Level Freestyle
Date: June 10, 2023

Where to begin?

Mary had a father who was a true horse whisperer. He used to break horses as a hobby. Once a horse was started, he put his four-year-old daughter (Mary) on the horse’s back and lunged them in a round pen. Hence Mary’s love of horses.

On the evening that Charles Jago proposed to Mary on bended knee in the Niagara Falls Garden she said yes on one condition: that he buy her a horse. Mary went on to have a nursing career and trained as an Enterostomal Therapist and a nurse specialist. Her career and supporting her husband’s career as he eventually became President of the University of Northern British Columbia left no time to follow her dream. At 55 years of age, she told her husband that he was not a man of his word. She asked, “Where is my horse?”

Mary began riding lessons on a school horse, and at age 57, her husband bought her an elegant dark bay Thoroughbred named Decadence. Decadence passed at 17 years old, and it was then that Tazeko came into Mary’s life. She bought “Taz,” a Trakehner gelding, on August 13, 2007, as a five-year-old, a talented but spooky horse.

Eventually, she connected with an amazing trainer, Jodie Kennedy, who stuck with the pair through thick and thin. Jodie also trained Tazeko. They traveled to horse shows where he did very well. Tazeko and his trainer Jodie Kennedy did perform at the level of Prix Saint George and placed second. He had championed there at the levels below Prix St. George and in freestyle competition. Mary didn’t want to tax his soundness, so she pulled him back at that point. Consequently, their last show was in 2023 where they completed a Third Level freestyle to receive the honor of becoming a Century Club member. 

Honorable mention to Wendy Christoff, an outstanding coach, and rider, who encouraged Mary to do the Century Club ride, provided her with the contact information, and spent a week correcting riding faults regarding her ride. It is a true honor to become a Century Club member!