Lillian began riding at the age of five and later joined the Lakeville Pony Club when I was six. At the age of thirteen, she decided to devote myself entirely to dressage after initially pursuing a career in eventing. In 2010 my family purchased Willoughby, a Dutch Warmblood gelding, who at the time was trained to First Level. Although they both started their dressage careers fairly inexperienced, they have grown together and worked their way up the levels.
In 2012, she competed both Third Level and the FEI Juniors. That year we qualified for regionals and were Champions of the Jr/Yr Third Level Division. By the end of the season she had received my Bronze Medal. In July of 2014 Lillian had received her Silver Medal and by the end of the season we were the Jr/YR Regional Reserve Champions at Fourth Level and Jr/YR Regional Champions at Prix St. George. She finished the season with a successful Fourth Level showing at Dressage at Devon.
After undergoing the qualifying process, Willoughby and I were selected to compete at the 2015 North American Young Rider Championships as the number one rider for Region 8’s Young Rider Team, invited and later participated in the USEF High Intensity Training Session in Gladstone, New Jersey and finished fifth at the USEF Festival of Champions Young Rider National Championships. In May of 2015, I was awarded the Lendon Gray Scholarship, which allowed me to participate in a clinic with Conrad Schumacher and Lilo Fore, a truly amazing opportunity that had a lasting impact on my riding and overall education. Lillian recently participated in the 2016 Robert Dover Horsemastership Clinic
Lillian has been fortunate enough to ride with a number of world-class international instructors, judges and competitors including Robert Dover, Tuny Page, Jan Eibling, George Williams, Charlotte Bredahl, Axel Steiner and Gary Rockwell.
2016 shes has had the incredible opportunity to ride and compete Havanna 133, owned by my trainer Wes Dunham, and Delila, owned by Gayle Bontecou, both of which placed extremely well at the 2016 Region 8 Championships; Havanna was Champion of the Young Rider Team Championship and finished sixth in the Fourth Level Open and Delila was Champion of the Jr/YR Second Level Championship class.
Lillian has now owned Willoughby, or ‘Wilbur’ as we like to call him, for nearly six years and he is definitely one-in-a-million. Many of the opportunities she has had would not have been possible without this horse and his incredible work ethic and kind attitude. Lillian intend to move into the U-25 Grand Prix Division next year. Overall, she expect to continue to expand my education and experience to one day own my own training business and become an international competitior as a representative of the United States. Lillian would like to send a sincere ‘thank you’ to all of the coaches, trainers and especially my family who have helped her get to where she is and she wouldn’t be here without all of your endless support.