By Deanna Hertrich-Nelson
Pik Me, is a 7-year-old American Warmblood who stands 17.3 hands tall. He is sired by Pik Ravenclaw and is out of Izabella, and he is owned by Deanna Hertrich-Nelson of Salem, WI.
Pik Me, affectionately known as “Olaf,” just completed his first year at Training Level in 2021, earning two High Point ribbons at Silverwood Dressage, two High Point American Warmblood Society & Sporthorse Registry (AWSSR) ribbons at the Illinois Dressage and Combined Training Association (IDCTA) Summer Dressage Show, and qualifying for the Great American Insurance Group/USDF Regional Championships. Pik Me was the Adequan®/USDF All-Breeds Training Level Champion for 2021. Olaf was also named a 2021 AWSSR Ambassador. Off to a solid start in 2022, he has secured another High Point at Sorensen Dressage and qualified for the Regional Championships.
“Olaf is a very easy going horse – a joy to be around,” said owner Deanna Hertrich-Nelson.
“Olaf has an amazing presence, simply huge in both body and spirit. He is special to me because he was bred and foaled by my late husband, Kevin Nelson, DVM. I know Kevin would be extremely proud of Olaf; how he has developed and matured – especially being selected as an AWSSR ambassador.” At seven years old, Olaf has hit the 17.3 mark and is still growing; time has been taken to ensure his large physique develops correctly, with longevity being the main goal of his career.
Deanna comes with a solid background in eventing, competing through the Preliminary level. “Dressage has always been my love; I focused intently on it at every level and I always respected it as a high art form.” After managing some private farms and an FEI dressage barn, she switched her focus to straight dressage. “ I always knew it was my calling. You get older, wiser – I had a family… I always described eventing as hard work; dressage is just HARD!” Deanna has competed in the USEA American Eventing Championships as well as the USDF Regional Championships with the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan® as a goal. She has earned her USDF Bronze Medal, and has earned scores towards her Silver.
Deanna said owning an American Warmblood makes her proud. “I am excited to have picked the breeding of my AWSSR registered horse, having owned the mare and chosen a stallion to accentuate her qualities. Having the American Warmblood Society and Sporthorse Registry enables such horses to be included and celebrated,” Deanna said. “These horses might not have a ‘traditional’ or ‘classic’ breeding, however that doesn’t take away from their ability to perform – and in many cases, outperform!”
Deanna said being an AWSSR member allows her to be part of an organization that promotes excellence in horses and celebrates their athletic ability.