Submitted by Sandi Spellman: 68 and showing my 28 year old Thoroughbred!! He is one in a million 💕 (he’s 27 in this photo).
USDF is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year! In November & December, we are going to spotlight riders who have also reached this milestone. We recently asked our social media followers who are over the age of 50 to share a photo of themselves and their dance partner, and we’ve put them together here.
Follow along all through November and December for inspiring and heartwarming stories of trials and triumphs, and fabulous photo galleries!
JF Blackjackman and I – Cindy Y.
My borrowed dance partner Finn. I have been riding 43 years (52 now) started as a brave eventer but a few tumbles put some fear in me. Refocused on dressage the last few years and love it!! – Jenn T.
Age 67, riding my Arabian stallion Legacys Renoir+ age 21 at training level here in southeastern Arizona. 💕 Our combined age is 88. 😊 – Janet M.
My two amazing boys who helped me earn my bronze medal at 53 years old. Now working towards Sliver with the palomino. The bay is currently enjoying his retirement hacking out around the property. – Shannon L. Read Shannon’s story, The Unbreakable Spirit!
This is Remy and I riding our first PSG. He’s 17 and I’m 55. He’s brought me on an amazing journey. We continue to have fun and prep for our next show. – Donna L.
Coming up the centerline with my beloved mare Waimea. It’s a while ago now. I was 52 in this picture – Margo M.
At 56 I competed in my first CDI-AM this summer *and* it was a tiara-themed show (with horse cookies for the champ). All my childhood dreams realized! – Kristen G. Read Kristen’s story, FEI For My 50th Birthday!
My TB River and I competing in six feet on the ground I’m 55 he is 5. – Monica F.
This past July I placed second in the USDF Benefit class riding 2nd-3 on my 8 year old Hanoverian mare Rhapsody SCS. It was an honor to receive it in the awards ceremony at the Good Horseman Summer Show in Conyers, GA. I was also on the bronze team for the Team Challenge at the same show with two great friends. I’m 61 and shooting for my USDF bronze medal next year. 🥰 – Katie P.
After supporting my riding for 20+ years, my mom started riding as a beginner in her 50s and competed in her first USDF show this past spring! 😄 – Hannah K.
Today I am 67, riding my best partner of 9 years, Zeus, an 18 yr Lipizzan gelding. We are training Level 1 Dressage, ride trails, long rein and in-hand ground work. He is kind and honest, sweet with old and young alike. Best partner I can imagine for my equestrian journey as a woman of a certain age. We hope to achieve admission to the Century Club in 8 years. – Dianne S.
My dream horse Gitano an 8 year old pre just starting third level. I’m 51 and I’ve been competing my whole life but he’s the one I’ve been waiting for! He’s going to go all the way I just know it! – Tonya S.
Me and my beautiful mare Mia; her being very bratty during our freestyle ride. What can you do but laugh, at 57 I try not to sweat the small stuff and try to enjoy every ride! – Corinne V.
56 and enjoying my First Level horse. I have loved dressage for 40 years but didn’t declare as my major until I gave up eventing. I have never looked back! – Deanna H. Read Deanna’s story, Pik Me!
After an almost 25 yrs break, I started riding again two and a half years ago. Meet my sweet baby, Odie! – Sheldon K.
54! Was a hunter/jumper rider for 37 years. Don’t believe in regrets but my only one is not starting dressage sooner. I once thought I knew how to ride but this humbling discipline proved me wrong! My 9 year old dressage partner, my best friend and teacher of patience and gratitude. – Cathy P.
This is my 16 year old Oldenburg Redford. I am 69 and have been riding for 60 years. Did hunters as a child then on to eventing for 20 plus years and only dressage for the last 24. We compete at first level and schooling second level. You can never stop learning in dressage and each horse has something to teach you as well. I will keep riding as long as my body is willing. It makes my heart sing!!❤️ – Lisa S.
Retired and moved to Florida my first show at the Fabulous WEC – Dorie F.
I bought this lovely boy as a 4 year old with two rides on him. I was 65 at the time and sure that I was insane. He had pulled a plow for the Amish but it was not working out. Seven years later we are schooling 2nd level. We were 1st level year end champions in one of the circuits we rode. I love this horse. His name is Levi. – Susan R.
I am 61 years old and I absolutely adore my 9 year old Andalusian Armas Juncal ❤️🐴🥰🤩 we debuted recently at West World in Scottsdale, AZ he is pure joy ❤️🐴🥰🤩 – Julia H.
We won the I1 at region 9. Duke is 12 and I am 51. Duke is a New Forest Pony. Probably the first New Forest Pony that won a Regional Championship class at FEI. – Jennifer R.
I’m 81 years old. This year completed my third Century Ride on my half Arabian/Oldenburg mare Imnaha. I also show her half brother Rocky and rode my Century Ride on him last year. I bred and raised both of them. Next year hope to show Rocky Second Level when he is 23! – Sarah A.
Bentley at a recent show – Sue M.
This is me and my first horse, Carter, at regional finals at training level. I bought him at 3, lost him at 11. I’m now 58 and working on my last score for my Bronze with my new partner Bentley (pictured above). I started riding when I was 46 and love every second of it! – Sue M.
My sweet 15 year old Arabian Plaudit. Getting to compete in FEI finally at 51! – Tonya S.
THIS IS 60! I checked a box this year and completed a small tour CDI. Trained my horse to this level. A dream come true. From the day I met and purchased him 12 hours old to age 17. Adult Amateur and so proud of what we have accomplished. – Leslie L.
I’m 53 years old and this is my handsome Section D Welsh Cob, Tegwyn, who is 11. I’ve had him for 3 years, and we have gone from very basic WTC to 3rd level at schooling shows in that time.. We have some of our USDF Bronze scores, working on the tools to get the rest. He is so talented and sweet, and I am the luckiest girl to have been blessed with him. I am an AA and I do all of the training myself with weekly lessons. – Michele M.
All smiles as we canter down the long side in TR 2 test in my pony’s first canter show this year. With years of dressage from Pony Club, eventing and getting my USDF Bonze Medal on a self-trained Half Connemara about 20 years ago, I’m back in the sandbox bringing up a Connemara Pony, Rosewood Whisper. She turned 5 this year and is a rock star. – Sharon J.