The Equestrians is about The Quest within each of us for prestige, power, purpose, glory, beauty, prize money, adventure, learning, compassion, equality, spirituality, and love.
The Equestrians series will launch with eight episodes about the exciting and diverse equestrian lifestyle. Each episode will include eight to ten related stories, for a viewer experience that be enjoyed in bite-size chunks or binge-watched with a bowl of popcorn like a season of House of Cards.
For viewers, The Equestrians will combine music, fashion, and lifestyle to increase awareness and interest for this fascinating yet often exclusive world.
For sponsors, The Equestrians will be a showcase for prestigious brands that customers desire and aspire to have.
The Equestrians will provide a dynamic form of entertainment where brands, locations, and events are integrated into the content.
“These are drab materialist times. Drab!
Surely, if we can let into them one beam of elegance, of splendor, of glory,
from the ancient classical world…that would be worth a man’s life, no?
When I am tired, I tell myself, yes, it would.”
Most non-equestrians probably don’t begin to realize the extent of communication that happens between horse and rider. The Olympics may be one of the few opportunities they even see competitions. Though jumping can be relatively easy to understand, the discipline of dressage can seem abstract. Why are the horses dancing? Why is the rider not doing anything? Episode One explains the origins of dressage with the cavalry, where precise footwork and movements were critical to survival on the battlefield. This episode will explore and feature the classical training of The Spanish Riding School, how U.S. General George Patton helped saved the Lipizzan horses during WWII, noted trainers who train horses for movies, the impact of horses on warfare (and vice versa), and how the Comanches became arguably the greatest horsemen ever.
When the difference between winning and losing is life or death, there is no second place ribbon for The Equestrians.
“You become responsible forever for what you’ve tamed.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince
Just as race car drivers need a pit crew, crew chief, and mechanics, horses need a stable of full-and-part-time specialists each and every day: Trainers, grooms, handlers, vets, farriers (horse shoers), and a whole list of suppliers. Unlike cars or even pets, they demand constant attention. They need to be exercised, fed, cleaned, shoed, stalled, and transported. For their relative size, horses are also quite delicate, and susceptible to sickness and injury. In many ways, domesticated horses are more dependent on human care than even infants or the elderly in nursing homes. This episode will feature people at top equestrian centers and equine medical facilities that provide better care for horses than many of us might receive from our own doctor or hospital.
A healthy horse sure does wonders for the well-being of The Equestrians.
“Some of my biggest friends are big time horse owners.”
“The hardest thing about learning to ride is the ground.”
It’s easy to see why owning horses is a romantic dream for so many people. But it can be a gamble. The newbie who jumps in with blinders on is likely to be saddled with expenses and headaches never anticipated nor imagined: Huge property, trainer, grooms, handlers, stables, vaccinations, dental, deworming, farrier, vets, breeding fees, hay, grain, bedding, utilities, manure removal, property maintenance, riding lessons, equine insurance, association fees, truck, trailer, and tractor payments, insurance, tack and supplies, riding apparel, show fees, boarding, travel, and transportation (for you and the horses). It’s why there are equine industry business majors at schools such as the University of Louisville. This episode will feature equestrian real estate companies, breeding farms, private jets (for people and horses), equine insurance, betting (including design, equipment and IT for casino booking rooms), and other cottage (and mansion) industries that cater exclusively to The Equestrians.
It’s hard to separate business from pleasure for The Equestrians.
“One reason why birds and horses are not unhappy is because they are not trying to impress other birds and horses.”
“People on horses look better than they are.
People in cars look worse than they are.”
A video for co-sponsors MINI and Ox Ridge Hunt Club, featuring apparel from Cavalleria Toscana and boots from Parlanti Roma, available at Beval Saddlery.
The equestrian world is kind on the eyes. It’s fashionable, on the trail and the model runway. Even the horses are sexy. It’s a lifestyle of luxury and adventure. Where celebrities sip champagne as they watch Argentine studs on million dollar horses play polo and then star in cologne ads. The average equestrian is a clothes horse. The leather, silk, stretch-fit pants — all smell like money. What’s ugly to witness about this world are its excesses, while it often puts blinders on to the staggering number of unwanted, neglected, and abused horses, and horses headed to slaughter. Certainly so many wealthy who rely on their equine friends can take better care of their own.
A video for JOTT (Just Over The Top) jackets, extremely popular with equestrians and other active people.
Knowing how to balance fashion with compassion always looks good to The Equestrians.
“My horse’s feet are swift as rolling thunder
He carries me away from all my fears
And when the world threatens to fall asunder
His mane is there to wipe away my tears.”
“All I pay my psychiatrist is the cost of feed and hay,
and he’ll listen to me any day.”
How does the equestrian world reconcile its extreme differences, where for every horse in the winner’s circle there are 600 more headed to a slaughterhouse? Where there can be a $70 million horse and yet 170,000 unwanted horses? It does so with compassion. Because for every selfish owner, there are many people at horse rescue operations and therapeutic ridings centers who understand horses have healing powers of their own. This episode is more about saving ourselves. This episode will feature organizations like Bravehearts, Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Center, Save The Horses, Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center, Pure Thoughts Horse Rescue, and others who show how horses can help us overcome physical, cognitive, and emotional challenges such as autism and post traumatic stress disorder. Horses can be mirrors for us, revealing our deepest emotions, and helping us to overcome our deepest troubles and pain.
Never underestimate the heart and soul of The Equestrians.
“Who among us has not as a child asked Santa Claus
to bring us a pony on Christmas day?”
“What the colt learns in youth he continues in old age.”
Parents of a young amateur equestrian jumper noted with amusement how their daughter won’t clean her own room, but will spend hours grooming and cleaning the stables of her horse. Riding and caring for horses can teach young people valuable life lessons. So why shouldn’t every young person have the same opportunity to pursue equestrian interests as, say, soccer? It can be an expensive pursuit, but judging by the results, perhaps worth every penny. This episode will feature college and universities representing some of the more than 400 schools of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association, teams from the Interscholastic Equestrian Association, which makes riding accessible nationwide for those in grades 6-12, teams from the National Collegiate Equestrian Association, including the 2016 National Champion Auburn Tigers, and the Time To Ride program facilitated by the American Horse Council.
More may be learned in the saddle than in school for The Equestrians.
“I think it was much better when you got on your horse
and rode two miles to talk to your neighbor.”
“The history of mankind is carried on the back of a horse.”
We’ve come full circle. China and Mongolia, where horsemanship evolved thousands of years ago, now host some of the most exciting equestrian events in the world. In South Africa, a black jockey wins the Derby, 125 years after the first Kentucky Derby, where 13 jockeys were black. What other sport allows men and women to compete against each other at the same time? Where amateurs can compete against professionals? Where teens compete against senior citizens? Where even straight people can play for The Gay Polo League? This episode features people, places, and events that give the equestrian world such universal appeal.
With their passion their common bond, all are equals amongst The Equestrians.
“The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us
into the rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit and fire.”
Sharon Ralls Lemon
“A man on a horse is spiritually as well as physically
bigger than a man on foot.”
“If heaven don’t have horses, I ain’t goin’.”
“I grew up in New Mexico, and the older I get, I have less need for contemporary culture, big cities, and all the stuff we are bombarded with. I am happier at my ranch in the middle of nowhere, listening to silence, riding my horse, and being in open space.”
“That’s why God gave us horses. He wanted us to see how their beauty, courage, and especially forgiveness, is a reflection of Himself. Remember that God loved you enough to give you the horse, and He loves the horse enough to give you insight into how to treat and care for him.”
What other creature but a horse could carry and be completely in step with a human? What other creature but a human could be as wild and tame as a horse? Maybe the connection we have with one another is meant to be. To help us re-connect with ourselves, our origins, our earth, our hearts, and our souls.
Maybe we’d all have our feet more firmly on the ground if we lived like The Equestrians.