LCD happenings in July and August 2016!

It’s been one of the hottest Summers in California … and I don’t mean just the weather!  There have been so many shows and so many accomplishments from all our riders and horses at LCD, I am truly bursting with pride!

In the Show Rings:

Mid-Summer Dressage Show at El Sueno Equestrian Center

July 29 – 31

We had a truly great weekend at the ever gorgeous El Sueno Equestrian Center!

It was all blues for my students and me, excellent schooling rides, and a fun dinner with great friends.


Lehua Custer and Mielera ARM  a.k.a Mia / owned by Monica Stock

1st level- Test 2   68.12  (First place)


Laura Sweet and  Strength of Ten Bears a.k.a. Teddy Bear / owned by Laura Sweet

1st level -Test 1   67.78  (First place)

Lehua Custer and C-Max / owned by Romana Hartke

2nd level- Test 2   67.56  (First place)

2nd level-Test 3   65.85 (First place)


Lehua and C Max at El Sueno



August 25 – 28

It was an incredible time for us at Cool August Nights!

On the first day, Nicole Weston and Marshall had a beautiful freestyle for a qualifying score. I rode my horse Winter's Star in the Grand Prix and we earned a 64.3% and a 2nd place behind Jan Ebeling … with tons of room for improvement.

Day 2 was a busy but wonderful day! I rode Monica Stock's Mia to a win in 1-2 with a score of 67%. Then I had a blast showing Wendy Sasser's Ramzes in the 6 year-old talent search! We ended up winning the class with a 72%!!

I had a very exciting ride on Romana Hartke's C-max. I thought we might exit the arena when tablecloths next to the ring began to flap! Luckily when C-Max wasn't leaping through the air we were able to earn enough 8’s and 9’s to end up with a score of 66% and 2nd place in 2-1!! Our next ride together took place the following evening resulting a blue ribbon and a score of 70% in 2-2.

Ambra Bisconti was a total trooper, even though she had just broken her toes, she rode her young stallion Faroe in T-3.  He got a bit too animated and they weren't able to pull off the scores that they were hoping for but she kept a smile on her face through the pain!

Sharon and Deca braved the equidome the same evening and earned a blue ribbon in the very difficult 4-3.  What a beautiful team!

Cristina Estrada and Ramazotti had a very  nice weekend competing at First Level.

Alison Fox and Scottie had a very nice ride for a 63% in T- 3.

We ended the evening viewing some lovely freestyles and exhibitions whilst enjoying  a lovely catered dinner. I even won a helmet bag in the silent auction!!!

The Junior Championships and the final day of Cool August Nights were equally exciting!

Bryce Quinto has been involved with the CDS Junior and Young Rider program since she started riding dressage 10 years ago. She rode to victory at the junior championships  winning Second Level with 7-year-old Thoroughbred gelding Been Verified (Owned by David James) and ALSO placing third with her 11-year-old Oldenburg Djedefre! Congratulations!!!  We are all so proud of you!



I want to thank all of my lovely students for their endless support for each other and for me. You all make my days so incredible. These shows are just a blast and it's so fun catching up with old friends and cheering on fellow trainers.



There are some horses that stick out in a trainer's brain. This one has given me quite an education. She has taught me to be such a better trainer. I am always seeking that "feel" with her and it is incredibly rewarding to reach that ideal. I have truly never met a more sensitive horse and I am learning to do things her way to get exactly what I want. She is also the bravest horse I have ever ridden! There have been days where I didn't know if I was a good enough trainer for her but we have been persistent and consistent with her and we areproud to announce that we received our final qualifying score for CDS championships!!!!

Riding Mia is like a dream when everything goes right and I am truly blessed to have her at my barn. Next year her mama (Monica Stock) will take over the reins in the show ring and I will get the pleasure of watching them shine.

Mia and I at the Paddock Riding Club

Mia and me competing at The Paddock Riding Club


KWPN Inspection

We are familiar with the name, but what exactly is a KWPN Inspection and why does it matter?

Every September the KWPN-NA organizes and holds its inspections throughout the U.S. and Canada. The KWPN-NA has a license agreement with the KWPN and operates from its own office in the state of Oregon.

Young and mature horses are evaluated by a judging committee led by a KWPN inspector. The jury looks at foals, yearlings and two-year olds for premium grading, as well as horses three and older for acceptance into the studbook. There are also performance classes such as the IBOP, the DG Bar Cup for young dressage horses and the Claybrook Farms Cup free jumping competition for young jumpers and hunters. In addition to the Riding type horses, Gelders and harness horses are also judged.

To award breeders of horses bred and born in North America, Iron Spring Farm sponsors the Keuring Championship Awards, These awards will distribute prize money and recognize the Champion and Reserve Champion Foal and Mature Horses (3-7 year-old stallion, mare or gelding) in each of the breeding directions—dressage, jumpers, hunters, harness and Gelders.

Depending on interest in attending an inspection, the KWPN-NA office, Jury and Board of Directors decide the dates and locations of the inspections across the states and provinces of the U.S. and Canada. Inspections are open to eligible KWPN horses and those registered with an ‘Erkend’ studbook, that are owned by KWPN-NA members.

Different from inspections in Holland is that it is possible to present foals through 2-year olds, mares and geldings for studbook and predicates, as well as the initial inspection of stallions for approval – plus performance classes such as the IBOP for keur or the IBOP predicate, the DG Bar Cup (comparable to the Pavo Cup) and the Claybrook Farms Cup – at the same location on the same day. In effect it is possible for a prok mare to be accepted into the studbook, earn her ster predicate, become keur eligible (voorlopig keur) and pass her IBOP at one keuring – thereby going from foal book to Elite in one day.

We attended the event at the prestigious DG Barn.

F.J. Ramzes was second place in the DG bar cup with a 75.5 and got a qualifying score in his IBOP test, another 75.5. The inspectors really really like Ramzes as a dressage horse and made lovely comments about his rideability. Ramzes and I ended up in 5th place overall in North America in the 5-6 year old division. 


Photo Credits: Tamara with the Camera

Irredecence (Barn name: Black Betty. Owned by: Katy Wanner) was PERFECTLY behaved and she earned a 65 in the DG Bar cup!! (See photo below) She was such a good girl and I can't wait to get home and get Katy ready for the next season showing!


Photo credit: Edyta Grant


Kristin Kruse Madsen and IM Starlord (barn name: Quill) had a beautiful ride with a 70 in the DG Bar cup after a very nerve racking warm up! They got 5th place in the 3 year-old division. It was very tough competition and she truly rocked it with him!


Kristen and Quill. Photo Credits: Tamara with the Camera


Other Highlights:

  • I am so pleased to announce that F.J. Ramzes (KWPN gelding by Juventus, owned by Wendy Sasser and bred by Cornell University) and I will be riding with the legendary Charlotte Dujardin next month! We are so grateful to have been selected!! We will keep you updated with all the details in our next newsletter. You can also follow us on Instagram and Facebook for regular updates.
  • Congratulations to Bryce on the perfect first ride on her beautiful mare! She and Dendera got off to a seamless start with their first ride. It was so wonderful to be a part of this momentous highlight of their journey together.


New Horses:

●     Real Erbeo: barn name “Royal”

Alanna Flax-Clark has overcome a great deal to finally buy her own first horse and is now boarding with us at Lehua Custer Dressage at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center!


“I was with Lehua in New Jersey for the Oldenburg inspection for her new baby horse, Fortunato (“Tuna”). Kendra Hansis, Tuna’s breeder, was generous enough to ask around about any horses that would be a good match for me. That’s when she introduced us to Molly Bye. Molly wasn’t planning on selling Real Erbeo, but after seeing what a good match we were and knowing that he’d have a loving home with me, she offered him to me.” – Alanna 

We are so happy to welcome your magnificent steed to the barn!

●     Irredecense:  barn name “Black Betty”

Katy Wanner has found her dream horse!


“This adorable mare had some pretty big shoes to fill. Cypress was my beloved TB mare, who we jokingly called the ‘Sainted Mare’. After she passed, I was looking for a youngster who could take care of me up the levels. In typical type A fashion I tried to turn horse hunting into a science. I had excel spreadsheets, lists of requirements, research on appropriate bloodlines …. and none of it was working. Then Betty’s (previously Ebony) breeder/trainer Anita Hitchcock of Kamloops B.C. contacted me through a Facebook post  … and the rest was history!  She has been a blast to ride and I truly think there is no limit for my gorgeous girl with the big feet !” -Katy

A heartfelt Welcome to LCD!

Instagram Photo of the Month:

Do you follow LCD on Instagram? You can find us by clicking this link: 

We encourage you to share any great photos you have taken of any of us at LCD (Lehua Custer Dressage) and it may get featured! Post it to our Facebook page (Lehua Custer Dressage) or to Instagram. Please add the hashtag  #LehuaCusterDressage to it.

The photo post that got the most likes this month was this one of Lehua riding C-Max.

This was from a photo shoot for Style Stock, her incredible sponsors and was photographed by the very talented Gina Falcone!  Gina has an Instagram account under: glfPhoto

Which photo will win next month?




As always with gratitude to my amazing sponsors: Custom Saddlery , Style Stock , Goode Rider and Grand Meadows!



Until next time!






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