HH:  Tell us a little about you and your horse…

 MF:  My name is Meghan Faillaci, and I am a sophomore at Colorado Christian University studying Psychology. I am nineteen years old, and have been riding for 13 years. My horse’s name is Ezra. He is a nine-year-old Oldenburg gelding and was imported from Belgium. I have owned him for almost two years now and he is such an incredible horse. He gives me great confidence and helps me out on course all the time, I am blessed to be able to have him as my partner.  Ezra is hardworking, determined, and has a great personality. I train under Mark Mead and JJ Atkinson, they have helped Ezra and I so much, I am honored to be training with them.  This past show season, we competed in the Jr/AO jumpers, we were champion in our division and Jr/AO jumper of the year!


HH:  How has riding made an impact on other parts of your life?

MF:  Riding has made a huge impact on many aspects of my life. It has taught me to work hard, and that hard work pays off. It has taught me to persevere through the tough times, no matter what the situation may be, no matter how difficult it may be to move forward, never lose faith and never give up, there is always something positive that comes out of the darkness. For my whole life, riding has been a big part of who I am. I have had many trainers and horses who have impacted my life for the better and I have learned a lot from them all. Each one holds a special place in my heart, and I will be forever grateful to them for reminding me why I love riding. Riding has helped shape me into the person I am today, I have developed skills and characteristics that I can apply to other aspects of my life, such as school and work.


HH : What is the most important tid-bit of advice you’ve learned in a riding lesson?

MF:   I would have to say the most important piece of advice I have learned in a riding lesson would be to count (1,2,1,2…) so I know where I am and make better decisions when it comes to finding a distance while keeping a consistent rhythm. Doing this has made such a difference in my riding! When I don’t count, you can defiantly tell, but when I do, I’m usually spot on with my distances.


HH:  Is there anything you do or keep with you for luck during a show?

MF:   When competing in a show, for luck, I always wear my bracelet that has Ezra’s show name on it, “Cecarelli.” But when I am competing in a big class, like a classic, I always wear my giraffe socks. I won a classic wearing these socks before, and have since deemed them the luckiest socks ever and have never failed to wear them in all the big classes that I have entered. I can’t imagine going into a big class without wearing these socks, it’s silly, I understand that, but you gotta do what you gotta do… right?


HH:  Do you have any pre-show rituals?

MF:   I don’t really have any pre-show rituals, except that I pray before entering the ring.


HH:  What goes through your mind during a competition?

MF:   Running through my mind at competitions is everything that I have learned during my lessons. I try to remember the things my trainers have taught me so I can do my best to be successful.


HH:  How do you mentally prepare for a show?

MF:   I do a couple things to mentally prepare myself for a show: one thing is that I need to be as organized as possible, everything in my tack box, all of mine and Ezra’s stuff, etc., needs to be organized or else I feel unprepared. Another thing that I do to mentally prepare for a show is when I first get there, I go and learn my course, I go over it until I have it memorized, and while I am waiting for my class, I go over it in my head so I don’t forget it.


HH: Do you have any superstitions?

MF:  I am not really the superstitious type.


HH:  What is your favorite riding memory?

MF:  My favorite riding memory was this year at Stock Show. It was my first-time riding in the Gamblers Choice and I was so nervous! I couldn’t believe that I was about to compete against all of these incredible riders. Hearing the National Anthem play, hearing the announcer, being under the lights, and feeling the excitement and enthusiasm coming from the audience, is something I will never forget. Clearing the joker was the most incredible feeling ever! I was so proud of Ezra, he handled everything like a pro and took such great care of me. There is always a first time for everything, and I will never forget this first.


HH:  What is your favorite way to relax your horse?

MF:   My favorite way to relax with Ezra is by being at the barn alone with him either grooming him or walking him around. He loves his face to be rubbed, so usually I’ll do that for a while. He has a personality like no other, I love to just sit and watch him do super cute things. It’s probably more enjoyable and relaxing for me than it is for him, but I like to give him baths, he’s a handsome horse, so he needs to look good all the time! I could spend hours just doing nothing with him, Ezra always makes my day 10x better!


HH:  What motivates you?

MF:  What motivates me is the improvements I make in both the show ring and at home. Whether it be something small or something big, it is an improvement and it motivates me to see and know that my hard work is paying off. My mistakes also give me motivation because they are great things to learn from and give me new things to work on, in this sport, you never stop learning!


HH:  What are some goals you have for you and your horse?

MF:  My overarching goal for myself and Ezra is to step into the Grand Prix ring. I know I have the horse who has the mind, heart, and athleticism to do it, I just need to work on some things in my riding so we can consistently be there.


HH:  Do you do any supplemental activities to stay in shape for riding?

MF:  Over the years, to stay in shape for riding, I have done massage therapy, chiropractor work, and rolfing. Recently, what I found that works best for me is physical therapy and being on a regular workout routine. Riding has taken quite a toll on my back and shoulders, I was once told I have the back of a 60-year-old! The mix of regular physical therapy and a workout routine on top of my high pain tolerance, has greatly relieved my back and shoulder pain, helping me to be in good shape for riding!





Summer in the Rockies Series to Highlight Competition at

The Colorado Horse Park in 2017


For Immediate Release


Parker, CO – January 31, 2017 – The Colorado Horse Park (CHP) is pleased to announce the official dates for the 2017 Summer in the Rockies Series, which will feature seven weeks of hunter, jumper, and equitation competition. The SIR Series will begin on Wednesday, June 7, and continue through Sunday, July 23. The facility, which had one of the most successful years to date in 2016, will look to continue welcoming equestrians from across the country for exciting competition opportunities throughout the summer months. The prize list for the 2017 SIR Series will be available at the beginning of February at www.coloradohorsepark.com.


To learn more about the 2017 Summer In The Rockies Series please visit www.coloradohorsepark.com



We’re looking forward to welcoming back exhibitors to The Colorado Horse Park for an exciting and competitive season in 2017,” said Meg Krueger, COO of The Colorado Horse Park. “In an effort to provide a wider base of competition opportunities for hunter and jumper riders during the Summer in the Rockies Series, we have increased prize money for both disciplines and are bringing international competition back to the venue with the first ever FEI CSI 2* under our new ownership.”


The series will offer a $20,000 Welcome Stake, as well as $10,000 High Junior/Amateur Owner Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classic during each week of competition, creating an action-packed atmosphere at the venue for seven consecutive weeks. A $10,000 Professional Rider Bonus and a $5,000 Junior/Amateur Rider Bonus will be offered at the conclusion of the series.


SIR I (June 7-11) will host a $30,000 Grand Prix on Saturday, June 10, in conjunction with the $20,000 Welcome Stake to kick off the series with an exciting start. SIR II (June 14-18) will increase grand prix prize money, offering a $40,000 Grand Prix, alongside the first major hunter week, which will feature a $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby and $1,000 Pony Hunter Derby. The week will also host a Colorado Hunter Jumper Association (CHJA) sanctioned competition.


The series will continue with SIR III (June 21-25) and host the first $10,000 Under 25 Grand Prix of the season. A $50,000 Grand Prix on Saturday, June 24, will raise the stakes as the series approaches its halfway point. SIR IV (June 28 – July 2) will bring back top hunter classes, showcasing a second $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby and $1,000 Pony Hunter Derby, alongside a $60,000 Grand Prix.


SIR V (July 5-9) marks the continuation of the series and increase in prize money purse, offering a $70,000 Ariat® Grand Prix and secondary $10,000 Under 25 Grand Prix. SIR VI (July 12-16) is the final week of major national show jumping competition ahead of the highly anticipated FEI CSI 2* at the venue, which will conclude the 2017 edition of the series. SIR VI will host the final $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby and $1,000 Pony Hunter Derby, before welcoming an $80,000 Grand Prix.


The Colorado Horse Park will host the first FEI CSI 2* (July 19-July 23) in the history of the Summer in the Rockies Series under Krueger’s leadership, and conclude the series for the 2017 calendar year. The week will serve as a celebrated culmination featuring a $35,000 Welcome Stake CSI 2*, and $100,000 Adequan® Grand Prix CSI 2* for international show jumpers. The week will also highlight the hunter discipline, welcoming the only World Champion Hunter Rider (WCHR) Week of the series and feature a $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, complimenting what is sure to be an exciting week of equestrian competition at CHP.


The 2017 calendar year will be the first year that CHP hosts three major FEI-sanctioned competitions spanning three disciplines including dressage, show jumping, and eventing. FEI CDI and FEI CCI/CIC competition is set to take place from June 1-4, before the start of the SIR Series.


A new addition to this year’s hospitality packages at CHP will include Concierge Services, arranged through the CHP management staff that will allow exhibitors and their family members to explore the beautiful landscape of Colorado and experience all that the Denver and Rocky Mountain region has to offer. Lunch & Learn events, as well as an array of social activities on grounds, will be scheduled throughout the duration of the summer.


The VIP Pavilion at CHP will once again offer table reservations throughout the seven-week series. Please contact hospitality@coloradohorsepark.com to secure your tables reservations today!





For more information on The Colorado Horse Park please visit www.coloradohorsepark.com

 or call 303-841-5550. 



  • SHOW at the Colorado Horse Park’s Snowflake Series Schooling Show on February 18th-19th


  • HEAD somewhere warm like one of the winter circuits; HITS Ocala, HITS Coachella, HITS Arizona, Winter Equestrian Festival, Gulf Coast Winter Series or the Great Southwest Winter Series in Texas.


  • AUDIT or ride in the Pico Hannover Clinic at Plum Creek Hollow Farm


  • SHOP new spring equestrian fashion


  • READ the January/February edition of  UnTACKED Magazine, an equestrian lifestyle magazine by The Chronicle of the Horse

Frederic Bouland Show Jumping & Cross Country Clinic

April 29 & 30, 2017

Frederic Bouland will be returning to Colorado for a two -day clinic in April.  Auditors are always welcome.



Show Jumping and Cross Country


Saturday – April 29, 2017 – Show Jumping

Jill Pelzel

Fall River Farm

10405 WCR 23

Ft. Lupton CO 80621


Sunday – April 30, 2017 -Cross Country Schooling

Colorado Horse Park

7522 S. Pinery Drive

Parker CO 80134


Cost is $150.00 per ride per day.  Rider can schedule for one or both days. Fee for access to CHP will be paid to CHP directly by riders. Cost paid to CHP $45.00

Rides scheduled when registration form and payment received.

Registration for this clinic will not be confirmed until the participant’s registration form and registration fee is paid in full and have been received by the clinic coordinator. Registration participant unable to attend the clinic are solely responsible for notifying the clinic coordinator and find replacement participant for refund.  Refunds will not be given for any other reason.



Rider’s Name

Horse Name




Jumping Level

Show Jumping   – Cross Country

Emergency Contact Name / Phone



Please include registration form and check to:

Nancy Carr 14930 Orchard Parkway #O -207  Westminster, CO 80023

Contact:  Nancy Carr  303-435-0333  eenancycarr@gmail.com



Get to Know Your Committee Members:


Over the next few months we’ll be introducing our new Zone 8 Committee Members! They are already working hard for the zone. Take a minute to get to know them, and stay tuned for more introductions!


Tracye Ferguson, Chair

Tracye, of Golden, Colorado, has been involved in the sport since she was a young girl. She owns and trains at Meridian Riding Club and is also an “R” judge in hunter and equitation. As a committee member, she wants to work toward and see the zone grow. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, reading and is crazy about cooking. If she could have dinner with one equestrian, she would choose Gordon Wright to hear his insights on the sport today. Ironically, Tracye is allergic to horses.


Laurie Grayson, Vice Chair

Laurie, of Boulder, Colorado, has been in the industry about 50 years and is an “R” hunter, jumper and equitation judge, steward, trainer, rider and coach. She serves on the board of several affiliate organizations, and owns Just A Little Farm. Outside of the sport, Laurie enjoys spending time with her family, skiing, snowmobiling, scuba diving, traveling and hanging out by the camp fire. As a committee member she wants to focus on horse welfare and hopes to continue educating members about the opportunities the sport has to offer and encourage them to also focus on horse management skills.


Betsy Checchia, Member

Betsy, of Tucson, Arizona, has been riding for nearly 60 years. She is the president of the Arizona Hunter Jumper Association. Since she retired from being an Army officer in 2009, she has been showing regularly in the amateur owner hunter and modified amateur jumper divisions.  As a committee member, she wants to be a voice for riders who don’t have the money to attend many of the rated shows. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, bird watching, baseball and reading. If she could have dinner with one equestrian, she would choose Piero D’Inzeo.


Stay tuned for more committee member introductions next month! For more information about your Zone 8 Committee click here.

Congratulations Year-End Award Winners!


Congratulations to Zone 8 members who received year-end honors for 2016! Click below to view final standings for National Horse of the Year, Zone Horse of the Year and Stirrup Cup.


National Horse of the Year

Zone Horse of the Year

Stirrup Cup

*Be sure to select 2016


Good luck to members participating in these programs in 2017!

2017 Zone HOTY and Stirrup Cup 

Championships Announced


Dates and locations for 2017 HOTY and Stirrup Cup championships have been announced!


Date Championship Location
Oct. 6-8 Stirrup Cup Championship NMHJA Fall Festival, Albuquerque, N.M.
Nov. 15-19 Horse of the Year Hunter and Jumper Championship Arizona Season Finale


For more information about Zone 8 Championships, click here.

Grant Money Will be Available for Members!


Zone 8 will have grants available this year for members who are interested in participating in various USHJA Programs this year. Stay tuned for more information and how to apply for these grants in next month’s eNews update!

Register for the 2017 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge


How does your horsemanship knowledge measure up? Find out by participating in the 2017 Horsemanship Quiz Challenge, presented by The Plaid Horse.


Registration opens February 1! Register and take the online quizzes for a chance to compete at the HQC Nationals and win great prizes!


Click here for more information. Register here.

Important Dates and Deadlines


Don’t miss out on exciting upcoming USHJA programs, events and opportunities:


Date Event Additional Information
Feb. 1 Last day to enroll for $350 in the:

  • International Hunter Derby Program
  • Green Hunter Incentive Program for horses competing at 3’0″ or 3’3″

Click to enroll in the International Hunter Derby

Click to enroll in the Green Hunter Incentive Program for horses competing at 3’0″ or 3’3″

Feb. 1 Registration opens for Horsemanship Quiz Challenge Click for more info
April 1 Deadline to apply for the USHJA Foundation Gochman Family Grant for 2017 US Pony Finals Click for more info
April 30 Last day to apply for the 2017 USHJA Foundation Hamel Scholarship for Further Education. Click for more info
May 1 Deadline to apply for:

  • Zone Jumper Team Championships
  • Children’s and Adult Amateur Hunter Regional Championships
Applications to open soon.

Click for more about Zones 7 & 8 Jumper Team Championships

Click for more about Children’s and Adult Amateur Hunter West Regional Championships