What's Happenin'

A Sidelines blog

Archive for November, 2010


November 16, 2010 By: Erin Category: What's Happenin'

CONYERS, GA – November 16, 2010– Daniela Stransky, the 14 year old rider with a penchant for charity work, helped raise funds for Haiti during the Atlanta Fall Classics at the Georgia International Horse Park from November 9 to 20, 2010, in Conyers, GA.

The 9th grader, who lives in Miami Beach, FL, piloted her grey Warmblood Ikarus to the Junior Jumper (low) Championship during Week I at the international equestrian venue.  She will be back to compete for charity once again Week II and her earnings will once again go to  international charity Step By Step Foundation and efforts in Haiti.  Daniela’s success in the show ring during the Atlanta Fall Classics will help raise funds to stop the spread of the deadly disease Cholera, assist the victims left homeless by Hurricane Tomas, and get much needed supplies to the area.

Daniela trains with Hector Florentino at the family’s Stransky Mission Farm in Wellington, FL.  Daniela and her mother Liliane Stransky, the founder of the international children’s charity, celebrated the opening of the Tipa Tipa Elementary School in Lahaie in October 2010.  Step by Step’s school offered 569 students a chance at an education and offered 167 families shelter after Hurricane Tomas destroyed the village.

Last fall, Daniela and her mother led a group of youths on a mission to Haiti’s less privileged precincts, distributing school supplies, clothing and 1,000 “LifeStraws” to about 500 children.  Originally from Venezuela, Daniela and her family moved in 2000 to Florida.  Liliane founded the Step by Step Foundation to help children internationally with the basic needs of clothing, food, education and medical care.

Daniela’s international work on behalf of children is ongoing. During the Winter Equestrian Festival, she served as a mentor for a group of physically challenged Haitian children.  Daniela is a junior ambassador for JustWorld International, as well as working with Operation Smile, The Chateaublond Therapeutic Riding Center and, of course, the Step By Step Foundation.

Liliane Stransky and Olympic Show Jumping veteran Margie Engle will host Step by Step Foundation ‘s second annual “All in for Charity” Poker Tournament and Benefit at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center on March 13, 2011.


SBS’s goal is to enhance the lives of underprivileged children by creating and supporting, health, nutrition, water, education and other programs that substantially impact the human rights and development of children worldwide, establishing holistic community development programs that can be replicated throughout impoverished communities around the world.  Step by Step Foundation, Inc., is a registered 501 (c) (3) not for profit organization registered in the State of Florida with headquarters at 240 Old Federal Hwy, Suite 130, Hallandale, FL 33009.

For more info, please call Step By Step at 954-455-9922 or visit www.stepbystepfoundation.com.

Pau CCI4*: William Fox-Pitt Playing it Safe

November 07, 2010 By: Erin Category: What's Happenin'

The current world n°1, British William Fox-Pitt, took the lead in Pau with the cross country on Saturday that he started off without taking any risks: “I might have taken chicken ways, but my priority was to return home in one piece.” This strategy proved to be successful as the Briton took command in this class, thus strengthening his top position in the HSBC FEI Classics.

Only one of Friday’s “dressage champions” managed to stay in the top 3 after the crosscountry: Belgian rider Karin Donckers with her « young 10-year-old » horse as she likes to remind everyone. This year’s course was a very harsh one as the statistics show: 16 refusals, 5 leading to elimination, 5 rider falls, 3 horse falls (notably Glennbury du Léou with French rider Pascal Leroy falling in the water at 26 A B C) and one withdrawal. That makes it 14 couples that weren’t able to finish this big adventure. “There were many green horses, explains the excellent course designer Pierre Michelet, and a great number of them were running their first four star event; this could explain the number of incidents.”

William Fox-Pitt and Navigator are in a strong position to win the Pau CCI4* tomorrow in France. Photo © Marianne Delleci

William Fox-Pitt knows that the course in Pau is not one of the easiest having rarely finished a cross-country here without any incidents. “That is why I didn’t want to take any risks. Even if Navigator is one of my best horses – by the way, I wondered if I should take him to Lexington, I didn’t play with fire and did often take the longer options even though I knew that he was capable of taking the direct options.” A wise decision that helped the vice-world champion to take the lead of the ranking in front of Belgian Karin Donckers (Lamicell Charizard) and the Australian naturalized American Boyd Martin for whom Pau is his first European competition. “The food is great, the coffee very strong, but, oh my God, the turnings!” This third place was somehow the surprise of the day. His horse Remington used to be a dressage horse and then hunter that an American woman gave him so he could sell it. But the horse never passed the veterinary check … which didn’t prevent him from proving today that he was one of the world’s best eventing horses.

The best French performance was realized, just like in 2009, by the surprising Gwendolen Fer who finished her course without any incident even if her saddle was dangerously sliding on the back of the horse after the breast plate, supposed to hold the saddle, broke ! What a hero! The young rider placed 8th tonight.

For more information visit www.event-pau.fr

Press release courtesy of R&B Presse, Pascal Renauldon.

Send Us Your Side Shots!

November 05, 2010 By: Erin Category: What's Happenin'

Introducing Side Shots! Sidelines’ brand new photo column will premiere in January 2011 and we’re looking for . . . you! Do you have a special moment to share from the fall circuit, your last event or polo match? Send it to Sidelines! We’re seeking your candids and jumpshots for Side Shots – a Sidelines column that is all about our fabulous readers!

Photo © Lauren Giannini

The Side Shots of the month will be featured in the next issue of Sidelines. And if your photo is picked, you win a free subscription to Sidelines!  Just email your high-res, .jpeg format photos to editor@sidelinesnews.com and remember, if you send us a professional photograph, you must also send the photographer’s written permission for use!

photo © Lauren R Giannini

A Day In the Country Continues Traditions

November 02, 2010 By: Erin Category: What's Happenin'

“Just a perfect day” was among the comments heard during the Green Creek Equestrian Park’s (GCEP) first annual A Day In the Country on October 25th in Tryon, North Carolina. With a hillside covered in picnics, horse trailers, and folks of all ages, the beautiful fall day could not have been a better start for the Tryon Riding and Hunt Club’s inaugural equine event at GCEP. Executive Director Laura Weicker said, “Today’s event was planned to be an informal, fun day with classes held in an open field setting. Any rider, young or old, whether your interest is in trails, foxhunting, showing or eventing, could join in the fun.”

Entries started arriving early as the fog lingered in the amphitheater-like setting. Participants from Converse College’s Equestrian Team, River Valley Pony Club, Green Creek Hounds and Tryon Hounds, community riders, and those from afar stood ready at the gate to test their skills through obstacles and jumps on the outside course. “We wanted the community to come out to meet the local horse groups and find out who they are and what they do for our area”, said Lewis Pack. Pack, on-site manager, built a traditional field trials-like course similar to those from an era ago with natural brush and festive pumpkins surrounding every jump.

Hunter Metcalf, a 7th grader at Polk Middle School, beamed with pride as she won second place in the first class of the day aboard her pony, JJ.  “I liked today because it was so much fun and we could ride in so many classes over fences and then ride bareback in the Ride-a-Buck,” said Hunter.  Bringing back a true class from the past, the Ride-a-Buck tested each rider as they rode with a dollar bill under their leg.  Horse show veterans, Nikki Guerrazzi of Landrum’s Clear View Farm and Sue McDainel of The Farm House seemed to take it all in stride when both were tied for the blue.

“TOO much fun,” said Nikki and she joined with Sue to return their winnings to the TR&HC as a donation.  Such was the spirit of the day.  Diane Randolph of Blacksburg, SC said, “I have ridden three times in the last 30 years and look at me today! As a trainer and breeder of ponies who have qualified for Devon year after year, today was just a wonderful way to bring my riders to something new and different.  As a child I remember making jumps out of cane and corn stalks—This type of fun has been on my “bucket list” for ages.”

The afternoon classes offered a challenge between the Green Creek Hounds and Tryon Hounds with a class for hilltoppers and first flight hunters alike.  Both hunts were represented as Green Creek took away the beautiful crystal trophy donated by the Farm House with more total points earned.  Joint Master Pat Hale of Green Creek Hounds brought hounds and puppies alike so spectators could see them up close.  Connie Brown, a Green Creek resident and Carolina Carriage Club member, brought one of her beautiful miniature horse to demonstrate great driving skills.

Mr. and Mrs. Norman Peterson of Glassy Mountain Farm in Gowensville, feature sponsors of A Day In the Country, shared their generous spirit from afar.  Ironically, their winning hunter Brunello, co-owned by Liza Towell Boyd, was invited to be a part of the Hunter Derby Demonstration at the World Equestrian Games in Lexington, KY at the very same time.  As a 3rd place finisher in the $100,000 Derby Finals in August Brunello and the Petersons have been busy representing the world of hunters.  “Knowing we can be a part of this great start for GCEP lets us help grassroots riders and international ones alike.  Riding in the field like this can help riders as they move to bigger challenges in the hunt field, trails, and shows.  We are thrilled the day was such a success!”

“We wanted today to be casual—One in which folks could just set up their picnics and watch the fun,” said co-planner Lillie Brown.  “This is just the beginning for many great days at GCEP as we look to the future.  Days like this are simply perfect to remind us all of our wonderful community and the equine heritage found here in Polk County.”