Dreamland is Grand at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show

Dreamland is Grand at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show

When Dreamland was called in as Grand Pony Hunter Champion at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show (Harrisburg, PA) in October, it was the biggest win to date in the career “Cinco” has had with owner, trainer, and breeder (and often braider, photographer, groom), Linda Evans. With Emma Kurtz aboard, Evans found herself in the limelight yet again with Cinco, a place that ponies she has started, bred, and trained appear in frequently

Evans’ Orion Farm used to breed every year and in one year, seven colts arrived. She explained, “we had seven colts one year that the vet was coming to geld. They called me and said, ‘we were gelding the pony and there was an accident.’ They had cut about ¾ of the pony’s penis off and he was rushed to Tufts Equine Medical Center and didn’t make it. We were rushing the pony there, the vet was distraught, and it was really traumatic. In all the confusion, they forgot to mention that one of the pony’s tesicles hadn’t dropped, so he hadn’t been gelded. That would be Cinco’s father.”

She continued, “the following spring, he was turned out with all the babies and he bred a 2 year old warmblood mare. He was a small pony and she was a beautiful warmblood mare and now we have Cinco! When Cinco was born, he was special from the beginning. He has always had that ‘check me out’ attitude. We bred him, raised him, broke him, and now here he is.”

Cinco was the last baby she bred, so Evans decided to keep him and enjoy his show success. She explained, “all my life, I’ve done green ponies. We got or bred young ponies, broke them, got them in the greens and sold them. We never did the big shows because we were always bringing along the next pony and sold them when they started to get good. I enjoyed watching them with someone else, but we always had to sell them- that’s how we did our business. I decided to keep a pony and show him and have fun and that was Cinco. I’m going to do that for as long as I can!”

She said, “Cinco has always been fabulous when it comes to ride- once you get the saddle one, he’s great. He loves getting ready for a show- he loves being body clipped- he leans into them and thinks it is a massage. He’s tough in the sense that he has always had attitude on the ground. He thinks we belong to him and we’re his pets- he’s always playful on the ground. When you get on him, he’s all business.”

Cinco had done a couple local shows and headed to Florida with the intention of doing the Green Pony Hunters starting in December 2010. Evans said, “we went down in November, but when we got there, he got shipping fever and almost died. He spent 10 days at the clinic and we finally got his temperature down and got him stable. He recovered and started showing in the greens in March and we started him there. He was going so well that we started in the Larges in April and went to Devon the next year. We didn’t show much before the greens- he didn’t need it- we got to the Larges and just kept going.”

Choosing riders has also been integral to Cinco’s success. Evans uses it to support young riders she wants to help succeed in the industry. She said, “I like picking nice kids who are working for it to show him. Hayley Iannotti started him in the greens and is a working student at Carriage Hill now and is doing wonderfully- she won the THIS Medal at Capital Challenge this year; Abigail Brayman has ridden a lot of young and green ponies and it’s been really fun to watch her show a consistent one; Ali Tritschler has ridden all types of ponies, but never had one she could stay on for a long time- as a catch rider, she rode them and they were sold or moved on; and Emma Kurtz has also been on him as a long-term ride.”

Orion Farm is there to cheer on all these girls as they advance as well. Evans said, “we enjoy watching these girls move on too- we watch them show now as much as we can- Emma in the Equitation and Ali Tritschler with 4th in the Maclay and 6th in the USET this year. It’s been good for all of us- the kids, the pony, us- we all have a really good time with it!”

Success is extra sweet for this team because of the behind the scenes work they do themselves- from driving the trailer to care to braiding- it is totally worth it for results like this!

A version of this article can be seen in the November/December 2014 Holiday Issue of The Plaid Horse- view that issue here: http://issuu.com/theplaidhorsemag/docs/tph_holiday