Miami University Equestrian

The progress of Miami University Equestrian

Student Summer Updates

This summer, Miami Equestrian Team Members have been doing all sorts of amazing things. We caught up with a few of our team members and found out what they have been up to.

Miami Hunt Seat Rider Carlo Costanzo:

“In between lessons at home this summer I have gone to a couple horse related events.  Horsefest at Lake-metroparks Farmpark was fun.  I saw a lot of minis and carriages and I also got to meet some different breeds of horses including a Clydesdale. A couple weeks ago I volunteered at the Chagrin Valley Hunter Jumper Classic where I did everything from cut watermelons to help in clinics.  I also had a blast meeting Bernie Traurig and watching the Cleveland Grand Prix.  To cap it all off, I have the opportunity to come back to Miami for a weekend for lessons.”

Miami Dressage Rider Kirsten Drew:

She spent last semester studying abroad in Europe. She went to Miami’s Luxembourg campus, and was able to go to 14 different countries. If you want to hear more about her adventures abroad, she blogged about it! Visit her blog: Jet Set Brunette


Kirsten and Marked by Fame

Since returning to the States in May, Kirsten has leapt right back into the show ring. This summer, she got her Bronze Medal with her horse Redlight Roxanne and her trainer Karla Forrer’s horse Marked by Fame , and is spending the rest of the summer showing 4th level. She will be showing at Down Centerline 3 & 4, August 8th and 9th in Delaware, Ohio. If your in the area, be sure to go cheer her on! We are definitely glad to have her back next semester. Congratulations Kirsten!

Marked by Fame-001

Miami Western Team rider Lauren Marytn:



“This summer I studied abroad for 8 weeks in Spain. For 6 of the 8 weeks, I lived with the Castañón Aguilar-Galindo family in Gijón, Spain, where I attended classes 5 days a week. In the final two weeks, I completed El Camino de Santiago (The Way of Saint James) in which I biked and hiked 250+ kilometers from Oviedo to Santiago. I was also fortunate enough to travel to cities like Barcelona, London, Lisbon, Seville, Toledo, and Salamanca. This experience was truly unforgettable!”


Biking El Camino de Santiago


In Santiago upon completion of “The Way” with my certificate of completion, or Compostela.


Zach and Brandi

Miami Western Team Captain Zach LeCompte:

“I have spent the majority of this summer in Oxford performing undergraduate research, taking classes and working as an RA. In the near future I plan to unplug in Tennessee and Florida for a few weeks before returning to Oxford for the school year. In terms of riding I have spent the summer riding at the barn on campus, getting to spend lots of quality bonding time with Brandi as well as Tonka and enjoying the occasional heartfelt reunion with Joe and preparing to take my first full year in Intermediate by storm.”

Student Staff Leader Ethan Gaston:

A student staff leader at the Miami Equestrian Center, is spending the summer working in Colorado at a Dude Ranch as a wrangler. DSC02054DSC02053

Miami Dressage Rider Spencer Clark:

Spencer has been spending his last few summers out west working on a ranch. He has even been photographed by National Geographic.


Miami Heads to the Mid Ohio Classic

On July 11, Miami dressage rider Kelsey Poleyeff and coach Heather Pinnick made the trip up to the Delaware County Fairground for the Mid Ohio Classic with Tanner in tow. The goal of the weekend was to finish Kelsey’s First Level scores towards her Bronze Medal, an award given out by USDF to any rider who receives qualifying scores in First Level, Second Level, and Third Level. The Miami trio was greeted with a beautiful, sunny day, the first rain free day all week.


Kelsey and Tanner riding First Level Test 2

The first class of the day was First Level Test 1. The class had 9 riders, most of them Open or Amateur. Tanner and Kelsey splashed their way through a very wet arena and put in a great test. The Duo scored an impressive 78.889% for First Place!


Kelsey, Heather and Tanner after their first ride.

Check out the video of their first ride here.

The second class of the day was First Level Test 2. This class had 10 riders, with Kelsey being the only JR/YR in the class. Tanner and Kelsey did it again, and scored another amazing score of 74.531% for another First Place!

Check out the video of their second ride here.

Two First Place ribbons and  a happy Miami team

Two first place ribbons and a happy Miami team

It was a successful and fun weekend, with the Kelsey finishing her first level scores and winning both of her classes. Keep checking back in for more show results and summer updates!

Summer Updates and Exciting News for Fall

This summer, we have been hard at work getting ready for everyone to return in the fall. We have been horse showing, breaking in our new staff members, and playing around with our fun new horses. Introducing the new (and some old) editions of the MUET Family.

We have a couple of new horses that have joined us and we are excited for you to meet them.

  •  Charlie is a 12 year old Wurttenburg gelding that previously showed in the performance hunters and junior hunters.  He has a sweet personality and is very comfortable to ride.

You can always find Charlie with his head out his window

  •  Hannibal is a 15 year old Wesphalian gelding that has shown third level dressage and schools fourth level.  He is a big guy and knows his job, he is ready to show you the ropes. The dressage riders here for the summer are having a blast playing with all of his big boy buttons, doing changes and half-pass like pros.

Everything looks small compared to Hannibal!

  • Danny is also back in work, Lindsey was able to further develop him and  he is ready to begin his work as a part of the western team.

Baby Danny is ready to get to work

We are also excited to announce our staff members for the upcoming year.   We would like to welcome Amanda Wasser, Megan Perry, and Courtney Previte as interns for the upcoming school year.

  • Amanda Wasser is a 2014 graduate of Miami and joins us as a previous student lead staff member.  Amanda has instructed the KNH classes as well worked our summer camp programming for the last three years.

Amanda Wasser

  • Megan Perry is a 2015 graduate of Miami and joins us having ridden both on the hunt seat and western teams, with numerous showings at regionals and semi finals.  She is the current OQHA queen and has been training and working with clients and bringing along young horses.

Megan Perry

  • Courtney Previte is 2014 graduate of The University of Findlay with her equine science degree and emphasis in dressage.  She stayed on as a graduate assistant and taught both the hunt seat and dressage students.  She is pursuing her bronze medal and working with her own horses.
Courtney Privet

Courtney Previte

We would also like to welcome Jennifer Grant and Skip Thornbury as they will be assisting the teams throughout the year.

  • Jennifer Grant is a USDF Certified Instructor, Silver and Bronze Medalist and “L” Program Graduate.  She has been training horses and teaching riders professionally since 1988.  Her early experience includes imprinting foals, starting youngsters under saddle, versatility competitions, mounted police training and natural horsemanship.  Since 1999, Jennifer has been dedicated to developing dressage horses, ponies and riders from beginners through the FEI levels.  Jennifer has been a working student for Pam Goodrich and has also ridden with Jane Savoie, Lendon Gray, Courtney King-Dye, Michael Barisone, Maryal Barnett, Steffen Peters and Lilo Fore.  Competitive successes have included top rankings in USDF Horse of the Year and Regional Championships. Her philosophy is informed by classical principles and anchored in the reality of the unique needs of each individual horse and rider.
Jen Grant

Jennifer Grant

  • Skip Thornbury is the owner and trainer at Equisports LLC in Goshen, Ohio.  Skip along with his wife Anne have had numerous USEF national and regional award winners.    In addition to being a successful trainer Skip has been an USEF “R” licensed judge since 1984. He has officiated in the Hunter, Jumper, Equitation and Hunter Breeding divisions at shows including the “Oaks” in San Juan Capistrano, CA., Menlo, Kentucky Spring Horse Shows, Washington International Horse Show, Caledon Equestrian Park in Canada, Gulfport Winter Classic, Winter Equestrian Festival, Devon, 2013 Region 4 ” Midwest” ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Finals and numerous other shows in North America.
Skip and his wife Anne

Skip and his wife Anne

We can’t wait for all of our talented riders to return to Oxford. Keep checking the blog for more horse show results and updates coming into fall semester.

Alumni News! Congratulations Tom and Danielle!


Congratulations to Tom Schoen and Danielle Paulson on their engagement!

Tom and Danielle met through the Equestrian Team. Both were members of the Hunt Seat team, and both became President of the Equestrian Team, Tom from 2012-2013 and Danielle from 2013-2014.


Tom and Danielle at an IHSA horse show in 2013

For the past year, Danielle has been living in Chicago working for Purina, and Tom was in Oxford working as an instructional intern at the Equestrian Center.  In addition to his work at the equestrian center, Tom completed his Master’s degree in Education this spring.

The two are now moving to Nashville, Tennessee to begin their new life together. Tom will be teaching 7th and 8th grade English/Language Arts at Cameron College Prep public charter school, and Danielle will begin her career with Dell Computers in the sales department.


“I put the ring on the wrong hand”

We wish the couple luck as they take the next step in their lives, and congratulations on their new jobs and engagement! We can’t wait to see what amazing things the two of you do.

Mid Ohio Dressage at Wilmington

On June 12, Miami dressage rider Kelsey Poleyeff and coach Lindsey Carmack adventured to Roberts Arena in Wilmington Ohio for the first dressage show of the summer. The goal of the weekend was to help Kelsey begin to collect her scores towards her Bronze Medal, an award given out by USDF to any rider who receives qualifying scores in First Level, Second Level, and Third Level. Rominee Ros, known as Tanner around the barn, was the horse for the job.

Rominee Ros, aka Tanner the Cookie Monster

Rominee Ros, aka Tanner the Cookie Monster

There were many amazing horses  competing, ridden by some of the best riders in the area, but Tanner and Kelsey were up for the challenge of riding with the big boys. The first test of the day was First Level Test 1, in which they scored a 68.704% for First Place in a class of entirely Open and Amateur riders!

Happy after a great first ride!

Happy after a great first ride!

The second class of the day was First Level Test 2, in which they scored a 66.250% for another First Place! What a successful day!

It was a great weekend, both at the horse show and exploring Wilmington. The annual Banana Split Festival was in full swing, which included live music, a car show, carnival games, and of course delicious banana splits! Over the course of the weekend, Lindsey and Kelsey had seen many other guests in the hotel they were staying at carrying around animal carriers. When Lindsey inquired about why, they discovered that they needed to take a trip to the Roberts Centre to experience a different kind of animal show, the CFA Great Lakes Regional Cat Show!


Lindsey discovered her new life aspiration of becoming a cat breeder and trainer.

Overall it was a wonderful weekend full of success and fun. Stay tuned for more horse show updates.

Equivents Summer Series

The big men on campus

June 11th Miami riders Ashley Dowler, Kayla Akers, Megan O’Connell, Sydney Lewis, Intern Jackie Yeager and IEA rider Chloe Stephenson made their way to Marysville, OH to horse show at Equivents Summer Series hosted by Far and Away Farm. Head Coach Heather Pinnick took horses Thor, Carco, Maddie, Buckle and Twix to represent the University.

Ashley and Maddie aka Some Like It Hot

Ashley and Maddie aka Some Like It Hot

Debuting in the jumpers, Ashley Dowler rode Maddie in the Low Child/Adult jumpers and held their own with the big dogs.   The team was fast and zipped around the courses to many respectable 7th place finishes. Next up, Jackie Yeager and Kayla Akers rode the big boys, Carco and Thor, in the High Child/Adult Jumpers. Both pairs had clear rounds in the warmups as well as first through fourth place finishes in the division classes. On Saturday, Kayla and Thor placed 5th in the $1,500 classic, while Jackie and Carco placed 3rd. Sunday morning Jackie and Carco made their debut in the equitation ring, bringing home a 3rd place finish in the Ariat Adult Medal.

Kayla Akers and Thorwald

Kayla Akers and Thorwald

Jackie Yeager and S.F. Carco

Jackie Yeager and S.F. Carco

In the hunter ring, Megan O’Connell, Sydney Lewis and Chloe Stephenson all rode in the Limit Rider division. Chloe competed on Saturday and Sydney on Sunday  sharing Twix, while Megan rode Buckle. Megan rode wonderfully and came home with many respectable ribbons with  3rd’s and 4th’s on a new horse. Chloe won her first class and was 5th in the second round and Sydney was 3rd in the limit equitation on the flat and over fences and 5th in the limit hunter.  We are proud of all three girls as the limit division was large! Congratulations to Sydney who competed in her first Hunter Jumper show outside of the IHSA!

Chloe and Twix

Chloe and Twix

Megan and Buckle aka Buckle Down

Megan and Buckle aka Buckle Down

Sydney and Twix aka Showboy

Sydney and Twix aka Showboy

Overall, it was a wonderful weekend of horse showing despite the crazy weather at times. Stay tuned for more horse shows this summer!

Weekend At Windfall

To start the summer of horse shows off, MUET horses and riders packed up and headed to Windfall Farms, where they and four Autumn Rose IEA riders rode through the rain and shine. Miami horses Pleiades, Twix, Irish, Jack, Buckle and Larry were super stars and proved that they truly do like the horse show life.

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Jill O’Bryan and Pleiades made a wonderful pair for the Intermediate Adult Hunters. They brought home a 2nd, 3rd and a 4th over fences, with a 3rd in the hack and another 2nd in the EQ.

Jill and Mama P

Jill and Pleiades

Next up, Miami’s own Megan O’Connell and Twix made a great pair for the Limit Rider division. The pair for a 2nd and two 3rd’s over fences with a 5th place in both the hack and EQ.

Megan and Twix

Megan and Twix

During the summer horse showing season, head coach Heather Pinnick offers the opportunity to horse show to some of  IEA riders  from  Autumn Rose Farm out of Columbus, OH. This time around we were lucky enough to bring along four other riders to help them further their career and experience riding different horses.

ARF Windfall

Chloe, Sarah, Heather, Madison, and Lily showing off all their ribbons!

Chloe who attended horse shows with Miami last summer returned again to do the Beginner Rider division aboard Irish. The pair brought home a 2nd and a 3rd on Saturday as well as a 1st and 3rd on Sunday. Fellow teammate Madison who rode Larry in the Beginner Rider division came home with a 3rd, two 4th’s, two 5th’s and a 6th, while Sarah and Buckle who also rode in the Beginner Rider division came home with two 2nd’s, a 4th, and a 1st. Sarah and Buckle were named Reserve Champion of the Division!

ARF Girls

Madison, Sarah, and Lily

Lilly Johnson rode Miami’s trusty Jack in the cross rails and 18 inch division. In the crossrails, Lilly and Jack were named Reserve Champion, while in the 18 inch division, they brought home two 1st’s, two 2nd’s, a 3rd and a 5th place.

Overall, everyone had a wonderful weekend and we cannot wait to continue our summer series!

Jill and Megan had a great weekend!

Jill and Megan had a great weekend!

IHSA Nationals at the Big E

This year, MUET had two riders qualify individually for IHSA Nationals. They were held at the Big E in West Springfield Massachusetts. Sophomore Rachel McConnell qualified in the Hunt Seat Novice Flat division and freshman Lauren Martyn qualified in the Western Open Horsemanship.

The Nationals capitalized on the rich history of the eastern seaboard.  The draw table simulated the water, sand, and sea life, as students drew plush lobsters to find out their horses.

Thursday afternoon Rachel drew Remy from Cazenovia College. She rode wonderfully to a ninth place finish overall.


Next up, Lauren rode Friday afternoon on a horse named George provided by the University of Findlay. It seems that ninth place was in MUET’s cards for the weekend as Lauren finished up ninth as well.



Congratulations to both rider representing MUET in both disciplines!  We look forward to another season beginning this fall.

Dressage Takes On Nationals


 On April 25th and 26th MUET took on IDA Nationals hosted by Otterbein University. Not only did the team qualify, but individually Kelsey Poleyeff qualified as well in the lower training division. Miami horses Tanner and Butch were lucky enough to go along for the ride and represent MUET at the National level! Tanner showed upper training and received a second place, while Butch showed in the intro and received 7th and 8th place overall.


Butch and his ladies

It was a very fun weekend overall. On Friday night, the team went to a Derby themed competitor’s dinner and won a hat decorating contest with Otterbein before the showing began on Saturday and Sunday.


The results are as follows:

Kelsey Polyeff (individual) 7th place 66.8% on Shane

Elizabeth Foster 11th place 60% on Caruso

Kelsey Polyeff 10th place 62% on Kingston

Natalie Davis 12th place 63.8% on Piper

Emily Gillespie 4th place 67.8% on Cully

Overall, the team ended up 11th place. Congratulations to all on a wonderful, hard working weekend!


Kelsey on Shane


Surprise Lindsey….we’re taking a picture!

Year End Gala and Scholarship Winners

As each year comes to an end, MUET hosts an annual Gala to showcase each team and individual accomplishments. This year, MUET was lucky enough to host Bob Cacchione, the founder of IHSA, for a wonderful weekend full of fun. Although everyone finds the silent and live auctions to be the main entertainment for the night, student scholarships and awards are an extremely important part of the evening.


Bob Cacchione posing with the directors

This years recipients are as follows:
Smokescreen: Eligible to current freshman, each applicant writes about his or her personal experiences between the bonds of a horse and rider. This scholarship is in honor of Smokey who was a true athlete, a loyal partner, strong competitor and gentle soul.
This years recipient is Kelly O’Bryan.
Truman: Eligible the any hunt seat rider in the novice jumping division, each rider write about their experience in the novice jumping division and what he or she has learned from being a part of MUET. This scholarship is in honor of Truman who demonstrated dedication, willingness and enthusiasm in the ring.
This years recipient is Rachel McConnell.
Citro: Sportsmanship award given to a senior member of the team who demonstrates unwavering sportsmanship and dedication to the team.  This award is in honor of Laura Citro who demonstrated sportsmanship to her teammates each time she came down to the stables.  This individual is selected by the coaching staff as well as the executive board of the team.
This years recipient is Amy Fleitz
Scout: Eligible to any level riders in any year. This scholarship is in honor of Scout who was the perfect Miami University horse and intercollegiate draw. This scholarship is presented to a rider that shows the same positive attitude, willingness and understanding.
This years recipient is Kathleen Dodson.
Graduating Member: Eligible to any graduating members, each applicant must write about how MUET has impacted his or her life and their future.
This years recipient is Amy Fleitz.
Returning Member: Eligible for any returning member. Each applicant writes about how the skills obtained from the team will benefit them in his or her future endeavors.
The recipient of this award is Kelsey Poleyeff

Sophomore Kelsey Poleyeff

At the end of the evening, MUET’s seniors were recognized for their time with the team. Each year, seniors are awarded their senior gifts as well as one member who is awarded the graduating member scholarship. Congratulations to Amy Fleitz for the graduating member scholarship, as well as all of our other seniors for their hard work and dedication to the team!

MUET’s Seniors

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