American Saddlebred Versatility Association

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News 'n Views


The appeal to VERSA resulted in over $4,000 in donations from VERSA members and from others who learned about the efforts to contribute to Saddlebred Rescue.  Many thanks to all who donated.  Our thanks again to Janet Thompson for donating her saddle as the prize going to the highest bidder.  The winner of the saddle was not an individual but rather it was won by the Texas American Saddlebred Horse Association (TASHA).  They in turn intend to use the saddle to gain additional donations in a new contest! 

Thus, "the saddle" will keep on giving!

VERSA Creates Challenge to Support Saddlebred Rescue!   Press Release, Friday May 24, 2019

In an effort to raise awareness and support the Rescue the charter club American Saddlebred Versatility Association and it's members have created a challenge with a donation from one of it's members to offer a 22 inch Whitman cutback saddle with adjustable stirrup bars (near new) to the person or group who has donated the most to SBR through the end of the Midwest Horse Show or noon on June 15th.

To begin making a donation go to this  link  for a special donation campaign designed for this event. Any questions or for further detail you can contact VERSA's chairperson Janet Thompson at 573-864-5197 or 

Thank you VERSA for your support.

From all us at Saddlebred Rescue



The links provided here will take you to an article written by Janet Thompson about a truly remarkable junior member of VERSA,                Lilly Callahan.  

"Below you will find the links for the feature (story) and also the video included in the feature. I can’t thank each of you (Janet & Lilly) enough for putting both the story together and for being a great young representative for the American Saddlebred community! I will be sharing with US Equestrian next week for their consideration to feature on their platforms or on the US Eventing platforms in the future."                             ~ Jessica Cushing, ASHA, 4/20/19

Article Link:

YouTube Link:

 News from United Saddlebred Association-UK, 01-23-19

Lots planned for the new year - busy working on our May Festival - championship show for American Saddlebreds and all Foreign Breeds (non-indigenous to the UK). Schedule is online and judges are booked - at the moment, we are working on securing sponsorship for the various classes and championships. Our nominated charity for the 2019 show is to be Saddlebred Rescue.

We also just ran a photo competition for our 2019 calendar, which was a great success and we have sold out two print runs of the calendars.

For 2019 we will be re-introducing shadow judging at our events and selected events across the UK, we will be having a training clinic on 25th May, the afternoon before our AGM & Convention and then our May Festival Show the next day.

We've secured reduced entry fees for our members at 3 other shows in the UK and will again be having our ring side gazebo at Equifest at the end of August, a large 5-day event that generates in excess of 20,000 spectators. We also host our British National Championships there, so it's a great opportunity for breed exposure.

I look forward to reading about your news in the new year,

~Lynn Jarvis,   

 AERC NEWS, 10/31/18    I am very excited that VERSA agreed to sponsor the Breed Awards that will be given out to the top mileage Saddlebreds at the AERC (American Endurance Ride Conference) this year.  We have more than 20!!!! Saddlebreds competing in endurance this year and ALL are top ten 50 milers.  You all know I lost my heart horse Tux several years ago.  I have to say that while he was special to ME, he was in fact, just another Saddlebred.  I say that because theses current competitors are A.Maza.Ing.  I suspect that I will be awarding the top prize to Jolanda Silk this year and her horse Ace's Night Hawk. She has been competing on Ace since 2010 but who knew? Only with the advent of social media did we find out about her and she learn about us.  Just this year she has completed a 50 miler and three - YES THREE 100-mile rides!  One of those she WON and received BEST CONDITION. Folks, that is just unheard of. The only horses that win OR BC are those that compete at WEG. To do both, are just, well, unicorns.  Why in the world are people riding those Arabs when every Saddlebred that is competition (that we know of) is completing 50s and 100s like they are a walk in the park.  Oh how I wish our organization valued this type of athlete!  I understand that ASBs are pretty in the show ring, but they are SO outstanding in the most tremendous circumstances!  So, I do hope that we can let our fellow ASB owners know what our horses are doing in our respective disciplines.  We are not just rejects that are making our way in my case, the endurance arena, we are the stars.   ~ Lisa Siderman

                                               alt   P.S. Ace (pictured here) is from Audrey Miles' breeding program.)


TESTIMONIAL, 10/25/18A little background on me. My first horse was an Arabian, our neighbor next door got me involved with Arabians and NSH when I was 12 years old.  I have shown dressage and eventing for the past 19 years and I have been training horses for nearly that long as well. I currently own a 7 year old ASB mare, still have the Arabian, she is now my beginner lesson horse, and I also have a 16 year old American warmblood mare that was my event horse. I was hired on two years ago to start Georgian Grandes for a local breeder and now I am head of sales as well. We have many young sport horse prospects available for sale both pure ASB and IGGHR and I hope to be a resource to you all! I love the Saddlebred breed. They are smart and love to learn and have the best work ethic of any breed I have worked with! I look forward to helping this breed grow and make a larger presence in both the dressage and eventing community!  ~ Caitlyn Rockett 

VERSA - Pleased To Be a Sponsor

VERSA is happpy to support the 4th Annual Training Classic Horse Show.  Scheduled May 11th at the Missouri State Fairgrounds, the show includes Western Dressage,  Shatner Western Pleasure, ASB Hunter Classic and much more! Check it out if you have any interest is showing there or attending. Visit their website for more info.  

Saddlebreds at Iowa Horse Fair

 I took two Saddlebreds, Sophie and Sable, to the Iowa Horse Fair and exhibited both of them as Dressage mounts. My horses did wonderful and most of the "audience" was super supportive. I guess there was one lady that said something kind of goofy on FB however. She couldn't believe that someone would exhibit a Saddlebred in dressage.....The coordinator of the horse fair was annoyed at the lady's the end we managed to get a chuckle out of it. We have a lot of work to do in terms of educating the public, I guess.  Pictured here is Sable on the left and Sophie on the right. ~ Simat Whipp


                            alt                    alt

The Mid-America Saddlebred Horse Club was proud to present top Saddlebreds in the 21st Annual Equifest of Kansas, February 23rd– 25th, 2018 at the Kansas Expo in Topeka.  This event attracted more than 13,000 people from across the United States! These horses displayed the versatility and athleticism of our breed through driving, western pleasure, 5-gaited and jumping/dressage.  The Mid-America Saddlebred Horse Club is a 501C3 Charter Club of the ASHA, whose primary goal is promoting our breed.  The club was also recognized as the 2017 Breed Ambassador by ASHA.  Mid-America Saddlebred Horse Club would like to give a huge “Thank You!” to the following donors who helped sponsor our participation in Equifest.

           Betty LaFrancis                                   Tracey Seals

Sarah Krueger                                    Linda Cozad                          

Courtney Morrill                                 Kathy Kedigh

Janet Thompson                                 Becky Yockey

Diana Ennis                                       Jan Harvey

Kristin Laufer                                       Jess & Marge Bain

Mary Zion  

Also, thank you to the following for bringing their beautiful horses!  Touchstone Farm: Greg Haston, Trainer, Michael Graham, Assistant Trainer,riders: Laura Logan/ “I Second The Motion”, Grace Linville/“Filbert”, Lily Callahan: rider/trainer,”Royal Crest’s Granite Permission” and her awesome parents Jeff & Judy Callahan, Justindeavor Stables Shaughnessy Morris: Trainer, owners: Mike & Carol Carlson, rider Rachel Kufeldt/”Ridgewood’s Birthday Party.

February 2018 - This Says It All - A Must Read!

            I am proud to be a Trainer of American Saddlebreds. This breed of horse can rack better, faster with more style than any other breed. The breed that can carry small children, pull a fine harness buggy, be the total pleasure horse plus show western, trail, jumping, hunt seat and dressage. The breed that can be so explosive looking on the rail in an equitation class and then turn around and execute a very precise pattern that it wows the hunter jumper people at Penn National (and yes, they said that to me first hand). The breed that is so smart, good thinking and brave that they are one of a hand full of breeds that are capable of pulling an Amish carriage. Now I know that no one likes that idea but when you look at what that says for our breed it speaks VOLUMES!! The breed that is kind enough to teach scads of beginner children and adults to ride.

            The breed that always draws a crowd of fans at shows like Devon back to the barns after a class to see the beautiful horse. (Yes, that happens to us a lot at Devon). The breed that is brave enough for trail riding, endurance riding and riding in parades. The breed that is versatile enough to be in the opening ceremonies of the Olympics in Japan, pull stagecoaches in the snow and sand, PLUS be show horses!! Name one breed that can do ALL of that.

            Yes, I am proud to be a trainer of American Saddlebreds, but the best part is, there are enough horses to do whatever you want to do with them. We do not have to give up the show horses to have other members of our breed do dressage! With Saddlebreds it should not be and either or - it SHOULD be they can take you anywhere you want to go. Five gaited show horses to Amish driving horses, from dressage to western, to trail horses. These horses that can learn whatever you can teach them remember Mr. Rhythm? If you do not want to show that's OK because somewhere out there is a Saddlebred PERFECT for our needs!

            You want to train your own horses, GREAT, need help JUST ASK someone who has the knowledge to help you, not someone who is judgmental and tells you negative things about Saddlebreds. The great part of the Saddlebreds is the show horses have their place and there are still many more quality Saddlebreds out there that are reasonably priced just waiting for you to give them a chance. The way I see it is, I do not have to give up what I like to do with Saddlebreds for YOU to do what you like to do with them. If we all stay positive the Saddlebred presence will be even stronger in the future!! DID I SAY HOW MUCH I LOVE SADDLEBREDS!!

                                                                                                                                                              ~ Nealia McCracken

                                                                                                                                                                Owner: North Wind Stables, Hardwick, NJ