Gold Star Clinics Add High Performance Athletes & Top Industry Professionals

by | Nov 15, 2017 | Associations, Clinics, Young Riders

Lexington, Ky.—– Nov. 15, 2017 —–On the heels of the final qualifying event, the USHJA Zones 9 & 10 Jumper Team Championships, the USHJA announces the addition of more top clinicians at the first set of USHJA Gold Star Clinics, slated for December 27-30, 2017, on the East Coast and January 18-21, 2018, on the West Coast. Richard Spooner will lead both East and West Coast clinics with support from numerous high performance athletes and top clinicians. Each clinic will offer four days of horsemanship, stable management, mounted instruction and additional education from these top athletes and horsemen.

Richard Spooner

Richard Spooner
Photo: Alden Corrigan

Supporting lead clinician Richard Spooner is a world-class line up of USEF High Performance athletes Kirsten Coe, Rich Fellers, Anne Kursinski, Will Simpson, Callan Solem and Hardin Towell who will help educate and inspire Show Jumping’s future athletes.

In addition to High Performance athletes, the following top industry professionals will serve as workshop clinicians: Tonya Johnston, mental skills coach; USEF Youth Chef d’Equipe DiAnn Langer, Bill Leggett, USEF High Performance farrier; experts from Phelps Media; Brenda Mueller of M4Marketing and Chicago Equestrian; Colleen Reed, expert stable manager; Ed Smith of Athletes Advantage; Steve Stephens, world class course designer; and Dr. Geoff Vernon, USEF team veterinarian.

“Excitement continues to build around these clinics, and we’re pleased to have so many of our country’s High Performance athletes donating their time to provide the future of our sport the very best educational opportunities,” said Larry Langer, chair of the USHJA Emerging Jumper Rider Task Force. “The Gold Star Emerging Jumper Riders, their trainers and their parents are really in for an unparalleled clinic experience.”

These clinics are part of the USHJA Emerging Jumper Rider Program, which was launched earlier this year in conjunction with the USHJA Zone Jumper Team Championships, to identify Jumper athletes who have the skill and desire to excel in the sport. The East Coast clinic will be held December 27-30, 2017, at the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center in West Palm Beach, Florida, and the West Coast clinic is scheduled for January 18-21, 2018, at the HITS Desert Horse Park in Thermal, California.

Individual medalists from the USHJA Zone Jumper Team Championships received the designation of Gold Star Emerging Jumper Riders, regardless of age, and are invited, along with their coaches and parents, to attend one of these clinics. Additionally, USHJA will admit a select number of Wild Card participants. Any member who competed in the USHJA Zone Jumper Team Championships, the FEI Children’s Rider Nations Cup™ at Langley, or the Children’s section of the FEI North American Children, Junior, and Young Rider Championships for Jumping may submit a Wild Card Application by Dec. 15 for the West Clinic. Wild Card Applications for the East Clinic have now closed.

Each Gold Star Clinic will offer education for Gold Star Jumper Coaches to help them understand the Jumping Athlete Pathway, a joint USHJA-US Equestrian effort that identifies and nurtures Jumping athletes as they advance through the sport to enhance future success for Olympic and international teams representing the United States.

USHJA welcomes auditors to the clinics’ mounted sessions and requests that those interested in auditing RSVP to Erin Keating at [email protected] by December 20 for the East Clinic and by January 10 for the West Clinic. USHJA will be accepting donations from auditors to support the program.

The USHJA Zone Jumper Team Championships are offered at 1.10/1.15m, 1.20/1.25m and 1.30/1.35m and provide riders with a competitive team experience and an opportunity to earn Zone Horse of the Year points in their respective jumper sections. The Championships are held by zone and consist of both team and individual competition. The USHJA Emerging Jumper Rider Program uses these Championships to identify athletes and then provide them with education and guidance on their path to excellence and becoming well-rounded horsemen.

USHJA extends special thanks to the following individuals and organizations helping make these clinics possible: Desert Horse Park, George’s Jumps, Jim Brandon Equestrian Center, The Ridge, Mike Schultz and Tom Struzzieri. This program was developed and is led by the dedicated volunteers of the USHJA Emerging Jumper Rider Task Force: Larry Langer, chair, Diane Carney, Missy Clark, David Distler, Marnye Langer, DiAnn Langer and Jimmy Torano.

Learn more about the Zone Jumper Team Championships at Learn more about the Emerging Jumper Rider Program at