Karin and her world famous dressage stallion – LINGH
Aboard Hexagon’s Louisville offspring, Louisville’s Merlin – her current horse in training
Karin began concentrating on dressage after a long career from coast to coast in the United States with hunters and jumpers and western. Her trainers included Three-Day Event rider/trainer Jonas Irbinskas, West Coast Horsemen – Jimmy Williams and Ken Nordstrom, Equitation/Hunter trainer – Richard Keller, Hunter and Jumper Champion Rider– Jimmy Kohn, Equitation Medal and Maclay trainer – Ronnie Mutch, Hunter Rider extraordinaire – Patricia Heuckeroth and Jumping Coach Legend Carl Knee.
Karin won regional dressage championships, including four USDF Regional Championships at FEI level. Karin began training with Mike Etherly, Steffen Peters and Michael Poulin. In 2005 Karin started training with Robert Dover on the finesse and details of Grand Prix. Her competitive years in Europe included training with Dutch Champion and three-time Olympic Gold Medal winner – Anky Van Grunsven, Belgium rider/trainer Jan Bemelmans, German success Claudia Haller of Gut Mullershof, the Swedish Chef D’Equipe of Dressage and master Long Liner Bo Jena and Scott Hassler. Her friendship with JJ Tate allows Karin to stable and work with her in the winters in Wellington.
Clinics with Maryal Barnett, Egon von Neindorff, retired Olympic ‘O’ Judge and Belgium Dressage Team Trainer Volker Moritz, USA Team rider Debbie McDonald, USA Team rider Tina Konyot, USDF Certified Instructor Heather Bender, Dietrich von Hopfgarten and Claus Bergner have added to Karin’s education, where she competed through each of the levels from the Introductory Level on pintos, paints and quarter horses on up to FEI Dressage levels, climbing the competitive ladder step by step to riding, eventually showing and owning the renown hunter breeding stallion Alla C’Zar, Olympic British reserve horse Tiamo Trocadero, International Dutch ‘B’ team’s Hexagon’s Louisville and eventually purchasing and riding the world famous Lingh in CDI International Grand Prix in the United States and Europe. She has achieved her Bronze, Silver and Gold Medal in dressage from the USDF.
Karin began teaching in upstate New York at Primrose Farm in Somers, New York. Her interest in teaching continued in riding schools she began in Aspen, Colorado and in Sedona, Arizona where she taught juniors and adults and she created successful working student programs.
Throughout the years from trail rides to roping, team pennings and cutting horse sport to reining lessons – all forms of western riding were part of Karin’s western horse history. While attending the roping events from California to OKC, Karin found young stock to bring along on the road to train. Check out www.elrojograndesedona.com
Karin’s Dressage training began at El Rojo Grande Ranch in Sedona and led her to Brek-n-Ridge Farm in Harbor Springs, Michigan, where she provides a safe, clean and beautiful private environment for horses and riders.
Andrew Figures – Barn Manager, trainer & lead instructor: Andrew has applied to become a USDF Certified Instructor. Only 6 applicants were chosen in our Michigan region, and the 2020 program involves mandatory reading, lunging, testing and instruction.
Andrew is the manager Brek-n-Ridge Farm. Andrew has been interested in horses since he was 6 years old. His mother Cheryl discovered back in the day that if Andrew earned an “A” on his spelling tests, he could take a riding lesson. Riding was his reason to knuckle down to study. Andrew has natural talent and a passion and skill in his horse care, riding and instructing. “Andrew has shown that passion and try will earn you many rewards. He has proven himself as a very capable rider with his former mount by accomplishing with his horse Twister what most riders could not. He is patient, willing to learn and has a talent for detail that enables him to be an instructor, horse trainer, excelling with YOUNG horses, ground man at the shows, our barn manager, an excellent groom and 100% horseman. His ground work skills and his study of handling horses makes him a very valuable asset to the Brek-n-Ridge team of horse trainers. He is a gifted horseman.
Michael Rosenbaum – Property Manager & Stable Hand Local Petoskey resident, Mike has been with BreknRidge for over 5 years, arriving soon after Greg left the area. Michael grew up on his grandparents farm in Bliss. As time went on, he helped his Grandfather run the farm with over 100 Herefords, goats, chickens, and horses. They had a personal garden where they raised food crops, and he eventually took over the farm care. Mike has a love for all animals, and the animals – dogs, cats and horses love him! Taking pride in the welfare of the horses, their health care and safety is his priority, and making sure the farm looks great Brek-n-Ridge-n-Ridge is lucky to have Mike as a very conscientious employee. He is is a jack of many trades. His pups name is Carlos.
Photo to follow ….
Jeff Joneson – Stableman
Jeff joins the team at Brek-n-Ridge thru the outreach of the Harbor Springs Chamber of Commerce as one of our newest stable hands. He takes care of the horses. Jeff spent his entire life in Northern Michigan. He followed his mother and several relatives into the teaching field. After graduating from Central Michigan University he was hired by Harbor Springs Public Schools where he spent 32 years teaching in the Elementary schools. Many great memories with both students and staff were had over those years.
Jeff has always loved animals and has had a special interest in horses since a very young age. Brek-n-Ridge Farm is grateful the Chamber of Commerce brought us all our new staff. We are very lucky indeed to have education and love for horses around us.
Greg Last – Retired Farm Manager Greg was the grounds manager of Brek-n-Ridge and responsible for keeping the farm in top shape. He worked with Karin for over 18 years and is still a “jack of all trades”. ” There is nothing that Greg cannot accomplish. No matter how large or small a project, Greg is able to create, fix, finish and do it all in good humor with skill. He is the reason our farm is safe for horses. With his departure we have large shoes to fill.
Kate Etherly – Retired Manager and Instructor: Kate Etherly believes that riding horses should be safe & fun. She has been riding since age 5 and has shown through USDF ( United States Dressage Federation) fourth level. An avid reader and participant in clinics with Buck Brannaman, Gerhard Politz, Steffen Peters, Maryal Barnett, Michael Poulin and Heather Bender. Kate is a firm believer that cross training with ground work and by teaching correct riding makes horses happy & strong and riders more confident. Kate has worked alongside Karin for over 18 years and loves Brek-n-Ridge Farm where the trails meet the arenas.
Elizabeth Sanchez – Retired Office Manager and Exercise Rider: Elizabeth arrived at Brek-n-Ridge Farm because of her love for riding. She had recently moved into the area to be near family and wanted to begin taking riding lessons, once again. Riding all of her life, Elizabeth has steadily proved to become a strong piece of the Brek-n-Ridge management. Organized, willing to try anything and cheerful the Brek-n-Ridge Team is better with Elizabeth at the stable. Her continuing riding skills will earn her a place in the area’s horse show championships. Riding her own Annie – a patient challenge – getting better every day!
Cecile Walsh – Retired Stable Hand & Exercise Rider
Cecile is a native to Harbor Springs and came to Brek n Ridge in the fall of 2020. She has been riding horses since the age of 4, and continued to work with horses throughout her education. After graduating from Harbor Springs high school, she made the leap to Brighton England to study Animal Osteopathy. She then went on to study at Meredith Manor International Equestrian College where she attained her Ridding Master level V, and Training level II, Certificates. Her next stop was Green Mountain College where she achieved her Bachelor’s of Science in Adventure Education, while managing the Equestrian club as its president.
In between her educational endeavors she has spent her summers working as a ranch wrangler, camp counselor and instructor, as well as work on local horse and produce farms in Northern Michigan. She has worked from the east coast to the west coast, with horses big and small and also happens to be fluent in French.