Rider Connect from Bit of Britain: Kailey DeMeyer

Kailey DeMeyer & Ninjutsu

 

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Rider Connect from Bit of Britain: Kailey DeMeyer

Today’s featured rider is Kailey DeMeyer, a professional rider who also works as a Registered Dental Hygenist.

If you would like to be featured in Rider Connect, email me.

 

Get to know Kailey
I am 24-years-old, and I am from southeastern Wisconsin. I am a newly Registered Dental Hygienist, and when I am not riding, I work parttime saving smiles! I started riding when I was five. I received the gift of a riding lesson as a birthday present, and never stopped riding after the first lesson! I was blessed to be introduced to United States Pony Club, and joined at age six. I am now a certified A traditional USPC member. I have competed through the Preliminary level with my Irish Sport Horse, Briar. I also have shown through 1.25m jumpers with my other horse, Ninja, who is now working his way up the levels of Eventing. I am working towards my USDF Bronze medal. I am thankful to now be able to compete as a professional, and coach a great group of children and adults, and help them and their horses reach their goals. I enjoy teaching lessons, clinics, and doing training rides.

Kailey’s horse power
Blue Mountain Briar is a 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding who lives at my parents’ farm that I manage. I purchased him as a green 5-year-old, and together we completed our first events together and moved up to Preliminary in 2014. He is a VERY quirky horse, but it only makes me love him more! He loves scratches, and will do just about anything to make sure you notice that he wants attention! He is 17.1hh, but you could never convince him that he is bigger than a dog. I think he would love to live in the house and snuggle up on the couch if it was possible. He loves pretty much all treats, but especially candy. He also most recently likes pickles and cucumbers. Briar can be a bit naughty when he chooses to be, but he is absolutely my heart horse, and I always promised that he will retire with me, and never be sold to another family.

Ninjutsu “Ninja”, is a 10-year-old warmblood who also lives at my parents’ barn. Ninja came to my family five years ago with only 180 days under saddle. He was sold to me as a jumper prospect, but I quickly fell in love with his natural talent on the flat as well. He is an amazing mover, which is part of what made me fall in love with him so quickly. Just last year Ninja filled in for Briar in a clinic with Zach Brandt, where we had our first official cross country school. Ninja left the clinic feeling more confident then he has ever felt, and I was encouraged to take him to an event. He went to his first event the next month and finished on his dressage score of 29. This spring he has finished on his dressage score in all of his events, and even won his first Training level event on a dressage score of 27 just last month. Ninja has a big personality that matches his big heart. He is such a sweet boy, and loves attention.

Training
I ride with a lot of different clinicians through our local Pony Club, as we bring in monthly clinicians. I also have trained quite a bit with Lizzy Jahnke, and feel very fortunate to have the guidance of a three-star event rider just down the road from me. I have not been able to regularly train recently, as I just graduated school, bought a house, got a puppy, and got married all within the last year! I usually train year round and try to find a few local dressage or jumper shows that are indoors throughout the winter, so that we don’t lose our motivation. My usual event season begins in May, and continues until late September or October (depending on our seasons here in the midwest!). My horses are very different in their training schedules. Briar is very difficult to condition and loses fitness quickly. He is not eventing currently, and we have been focusing more on dressage, which makes his fitness schedule a little easier. Ninja maintains fitness and has a lot of stamina naturally. Our dry summers make gallop and trot sets difficult because the footing gets hard quickly. I am thankful that Ninja is able to stay fit with a lot of varied arena work, as well as long, gentle outdoor hacks.

 


 

Influence and inspiration
My parents have been a huge influence throughout my entire riding career. They allowed me to get my first pony at 6-years-old. I’m not sure that they knew the extent of what my riding “hobby” would turn in to, but either way, they have remained supportive! They always have participated in my shows and rarely do I hear a complaint about being gone every weekend and enduring blistering hot weekends at the horse parks. My husband has also been a very big part of my riding career, and he always makes sure that I can train and ride, even if it means he is in charge of cleaning and cooking for the night :). I have learned a lot through trial and error. I spent a lot of my riding career without a set coach, and while that was difficult at times, I learned so much through watching videos of my own riding, and applying what I had learned at the previous month clinic. My sponsors have supported me in so many ways throughout the years, and I am forever grateful for amazing companies who I am passionate about, and who believe in myself and my team.

Most embarrassing Eventing moment
My most embarrassing eventing moment is when I finished cross country and my final training qualifying score needed to move up to preliminary, and forgot to unclip my new air vest before I hopped off. My vest was adjusted too tight, and when it deployed, I felt like the little boy from the movie “A Christmas Story” with my arms straight out to the side. Thankfully, my dad was at the finish line (like he always is!) and helped me unclip my vest so that I could actually catch my breath!

Most triumphant Eventing moment
I have a few triumphant moments that immediately come to mind, and always help me remember why I do what I do. Briar and I finished our first Preliminary level event at Catalpa Corner Horse Trials in 2014 with just a few time penalties and secured a 2nd place finish for our first outing at that level. The following year, Briar helped me achieve my A traditional USPC certification, which will forever be one of the most stressful riding weekends of my life!

Most recently, my newly minted event horse, Ninja, finished on his dressage score at his first training level event at FRVPC Horse trials, and WON the division! I was most thrilled with our cross-country course, because he felt confident and happy, and that is all that I want for my horses. The blue ribbon was a nice touch, but nothing trumps the feeling of coming out of an event with a happy and healthy horse.

2018 milestones
I think that every cross country ride this year has been a highlight of the summer so far. Ninja gains more and more confidence each time out, and Briar had one of the most relaxed cross-country schools of our career just a few weeks ago (he tends to get a little overly excited, and sometimes has some massive happy bucks!).

Best of luck this year Kailey! 

 

If you would like to be featured in Rider Connect, email me

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