We have had many wonderful and well-loved horses over the years. Owning as many as 17 horses of our own at one time. We are now down to 7, 3 that we bred and raised and 4 that we purchased. We often bought horses to retrain and sell for trail and endurance. Our current horses are listed in order from youngest to oldest. Some of our current horses are retired from competition, but they are still rideable and each one has their own custom saddle.
15.2 Hands, 1100 lbs., liver chestnut, bred and raised by us. Zen is sired by MW Mister Z, who we still own and is shown below. She is out of Donna Dolche a registered Oldenburg by Domiro, who is by the famous Donnerhall and out of a Pik Bube Daughter, which is a really nice warmblood cross. Donna’s dam was a thoroughbred that is a producer of show jumpers. Donna was bred for jumping and left our place to become a hunter. Zen is the last foal we bred and raised. We did all of her ground work and Travis Braden rode her the first 4 months. Her young horse training is now coming along nicely and consists of basic dressage, trail riding and working in our obstacle course. Her favorite thing to do is trail ride, but she would make a really nice western dressage horse. She has smooth gaits and her trot is easy to sit. She goes easily on the bit and is responsive to light aids. Going calmly over small jumps seems to be easy for her too. Zen went on her first overnight camp out trail ride in the fall of 2020.
15.1 hds, 900 lbs. Sired by our stallion, Envoy BBF++ and out of a mare with Padron, El Ghazi and Tornado in her bloodlines. Raised and trained by us, at 5 months under saddle, she was the highpoint sweepstakes Novice horse in her first NATRC competition. The next year she was Top 5 in the AHA Region 9 NATRC Open. She later did a few limited distance endurance rides, but it was then that we discovered she has a small amount of arthritis in her left front coffin bone, which only affects her after about 25 miles or 15 miles of fast riding on hard ground. We switched to trail riding in scenic areas then and she went to Cedar Lake, Robbers Cave, Pole Canyon, Fort Stanton NM and the Pike National Forest in Colorado. We also did team sorting for fun, which is her favorite thing. She pins her ears at the calves and really goes after them. In 2017 after a couple of schooling shows, she scored a 62% at Dressage Training Level Test 2 at the Cowtown Classic Arabian show. Selena then became interested in Working Equitation, took Encore to 3 clinics and entered her in the Intro at Haras Cup, the largest Working Equitation (dressage and obstacles) show in the US (held in Houston), with over $100,000 in prize money. She placed 5th out of 7, actually placing ahead of 2 really nice Lusitanos. After struggling with saddle fit issues for years, Encore now loves her custom western saddle by Lary Cox that fits her perfectly. At the Shootout Arabian show in December 2019 she received a 65.8% at Western Dressage Basic Test 4 and a 63.1% at First Level Test 1. In December 2020 she received a 62.9 at Second Level Test 1. We are now showing her English Dressage and she placed Top 5 at the Region 9 AHA Championships in First Level Dressage. Encore believes she is the Queen and demands respect from all other horses, so we have to be careful who joins her in the pasture. She does best with geldings that know how to say “Yes Mam”. She is also intolerant of poor fitting tack and beginning riders, but she is well trained and very sensitive to the aids which is really fun at shows.
15 hds, 950 lbs. We purchased Shooter as a yearling from an Arabian race horse breeder that had sold us 2 other horses. Shooter is very closely related to MW Mister Z and one of our best endurance horses, Mister Z’s full brother Doctor Z. He is sired by Czubuthan, the leading sire of race horses of his time and out of a daughter of Samtyr who has a chapter in the Arabian Legends book. Samtyr was the fastest son of *Sambor++, who is listed in nearly every polish race horse pedigree. Shooter is full of personality, if anyone enters the pasture he gallops full speed towards you. He loves treats and attention. He also gallops full speed to the barn at dinner time. In the pasture he can outrun every horse, including Doctor Z, Mister Z and a 15.3 hand horse called Fleet, a multiple stakes winner that raced on the track for 6 years. We never took him to a competition, but he has years of frequent trail riding. He prefers to lead and never spooks. He will walk along with the group, but is always ready to spring into action. We have taken him to overnight camping trail riding trips to Robbers Cave and Pole Canyon. He has also been team sorting. When Shooter was 4 yrs old he stuck his head under a pipe gate to reach green grass and set back suddenly fracturing his atlas and axis vertebrae. He was stalled for 8 months and it eventually healed completely. We were still able to train him and he is very rideable. However, we do not use strong rein aids or expect him to flex at the poll or carry his head in a certain position. He is very responsive to seat and leg aids. He will crow hop if his custom saddle is not in the correct spot or if he hasn’t been ridden in awhile and is excited about getting to go on trail. He is a blast to ride for someone that likes a personable, energetic horse that loves people and loves to work.
15 hds, about 900 lbs, large boned, excellent hooves, grey, Sired by Envoy BBF++ out of a Russian mare, TF Platena. TF Platena came from Bill Stokes Arabian Racing Stables. She is sired by the race horse Samborzelsta by *Sambor++, and out of a *Muscat daughter. She most closely resembled the National Champion, Muscat. Hank kept Striker as a stallion until he was 7 yrs old and we decided not to breed anymore. Hank was 68 yrs old when he started Striker under saddle. So, he did not compete him as hard as he did his previous horses. By 2014 Striker had completed 14 limited distance rides with Hank and 3 50-mile rides with Selena. Hank often rode him in the back of the pack at a slow pace when he was coaching beginning endurance students, placed Top 10 in 6 rides and in 2014 he rode him in the Blue Bonnet 25-mile endurance ride and placed 1st with a ride time of 2 hours and 38 minutes. After that we did a lot of quiet trail rides and he was Hank’s main horse for all our scenic rides to the mountains in Colorado, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. He is very sure footed and well trained, easily crosses creeks and bridges and opens and closes gates. He became the favorite riding horse of our oldest grandson after he “graduated” from riding ponies and quarter horse’s to being able to ride Papa’s Arabian. Hank has also had a lot of fun with him doing team sorting. In 2017 Selena did a couple of schooling shows in Intro Dressage with scores ranging from 64% to 67%. In 2019 Selena decided to go back to endurance and in October he completed a 30-mile ride at Pole Canyon, placing 10th out of 31 horses. She is continuing to condition him for distance riding. He was gelded late, but has no stallion tendencies. He is still the dominant gelding in his pasture without being aggressive. He rides the same alone as he does in a group. He is a great example of what Envoy produces, athletic, great mind, easy to train and fun to ride. As a bonus, he has never had an illness, injury, or lameness of any kind.
15.2 hds, 1050 lbs, Grey Arabian, sired by Czubuthan out of an imported Russian mare. We purchased him off the track. We watched him run his last race at Sam Houston race track. He was a stakes winner and raced for 3 years. He was pretty tough to ride as a stallion, so we froze semen because we liked him so much and then gelded him. He was difficult to retrain. It took us a year to get him to stop “leaping out of the starting gate” whenever you asked for canter. He also had one major accident after the next and 2 colic surgeries, which always seems to happen with the favorite horse. Hank called him the million dollar horse, due to the vet bills. He was Selena’s favorite horse of all time. Mainly because he always nickered for her anytime she was in sight and was always enthusiastic about everything he did. He gave you 110% every time you rode. Unfortunately he was so intelligent that as soon as he understood what you wanted, he often thought he knew a better way to get to the end result. In endurance he was impossible to rate and ran away in every ride, one ride he galloped for 10 miles before he could be brought down to a trot. We spent many hours trying to train him to be manageable at a ride, but unfortunately no matter what, in his mind it was a race and he was determined to win regardless of what the rider wanted. So, I decided to buy and compete on his full brother, Dr Z, instead who turned out to be the best endurance horse I every owned. I decided to try dressage with Mr Z. He was really athletic and the patterns challenged his brain. The first clinician, Sherry Guess told me he could do upper level easily. The 2nd clinician, Pamela Fowler Grace, rode him for 5 minutes and told me he could do Grand Prix and that was before we were ready for a training level test. We did a year of schooling shows because he initially thought we should outrun all the other horses at the show, in addition to big leaping spooks and bucking in frustration when he thought we did something incorrect. Thanks to Mary Mahler's coaching, we eventually showed at Sport Horse, Training Level and First Level with scores in the mid 60s. His best scores were the lengthenings of course. Our first show was my first time to show in the Open as a trainer and I was nervous about the switch from Amateur to Open. In his first class, he tied with the Regional Champion for first place and Mr Z won the tie because his collective marks were higher. If his rider hadn’t gone off course we would have won without the tiebreaker. So, I owe him that boost in my confidence. I was never nervous at a show again. I was never able to practice the test at home because he always memorized the patterns. Unfortunately, before we could show at 2nd level he tore the deep digital flexor tendon. It healed with scar tissue and he is now lame at the trot. His intelligence is amazing. I have a million Mr Z stories. Cindy Mettes bred him to her 2 FEI endurance mares because she said he was the most athletic horse she had ever seen. She has a filly and colt by him. The colt, Bantam Z was just awarded Arabian Horse Assoc. Distance Horse of the Year for 2021. He also won the NATRC Presidents Cup. I bred him once to a warmblood mare and now have Zentina, who is listed at the top of this page. I occasionally give him bute and take him on a walk trail ride which he loves, but he is now officially retired.
We have a full page on Envoy on our Stallion page. We are no longer breeding him due to his age, but Hank still trail rides him and he still looks and feels great. Please go to our Stallion Page to see him.