3D Horsemanship
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Lisa Gerdon, CRIS
Dr. Doug Dilworth, DVM
Western Dressage
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The Pride of Gloster
Irish Draught/Sport Horses
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Lisa Gerdon-Dilworth

Lisa’s experience ranges from starting young horses to Stewarding Internationally. Her main focus is starting horses correctly and getting them and their rider ready for the world of competition. Her dressage training is classical dressage and she uses it as the basis to train horses of all disciplines.  Since Lisa has competed in Dressage, Eventing/CT, Hunters, Show-jumping, Western Pleasure, Half-Arab Sport horses and Driving, she is able to focus on those dressage points that will help your horse the most regardless of discipline and breed. In the jumping arena Lisa will teach you that it is not the height of the fence that will matter as much as how you got there! With the right training and confidence building for both horse and rider, the sky is the limit.

Lisa grew up with horses with her mother being an exercise jockey on the race track. By 4 years old, Lisa sat on her first stallion and started openly competing at the age of 11 and competed in her first national recognized USCTA event at age 14. In her teens, Lisa focused on hunters and eventing and became well known for riding difficult horses as a catch rider at horses shows. Her mother will tell you “There was nothing she wouldn’t get on!” She showed great success with working with difficult horses and earning many year end championships. She formally improved her education with 4-H and Pony Club, as well as formal instruction with a number of trainers. Thru college Lisa rode on the Equestrian Team, and continued to work with her Hanoverian stallion Fanion as well as starting horses for others.

After college, Lisa had the great privilege of being a working student with Ron Zohar, an international GP rider and furthering her education into the showjumping arena. At the time Shining Valley Farm was importing young Dutch horses from the Netherlands and had a barn full of clients. Lisa was thrilled to school 6-8 horses a day as well as A-show competitions riding the young horses and warming up the Grand Prix horses. Lisa’s training with Ron taught her a true appreciation for working with a young horses energy and not against it, use that silly behavior to your best advantage!

 During these years she learned how important the dressage work is for the showjumping horses and how to make sure that it is applied appropriately. Ron found and helped Lisa to train the love of her life a 17.2H Dutch mare Orkney HP, who carries both Ramiro Z and Nimmerdor. Lisa has competed Orkney in Dressage, 3-day Eventing, Horse Trials and Showjumping over the years. Orkney is in foal for a March 2013 foal by the RID stallion "Its the Luck of the Irish".

In 2001, Lisa and her Dutch mare Orkney made the move for her business career to North Carolina where Lisa quickly picked up a few horses to ride, train and compete with outside of work. Quickly reviving her reputation for riding what others considered to be difficult horses. Lisa began training with Elizabeth Heber, FEI Showjumping Judge from Norway and continued her training with her until Elizabeth moved back to Norway in 2009. “I owe so much to Elisabeth and the shear amount of time that she has spent with me over the years, not just teaching me dressage and jumping, but everything in between. Beyond the art of being on top of a horse, Elisabeth taught me the importance of the finishing details.”

Since 2002 Lisa has kept a full roster of students, for many years consisting of hunter, jumper, eventing and dressage students. Going to competitions with students has taken up many of the last 7 years and earned them many recognitions from finals qualifiers to Children’s Jumper Champions. Although she gave up much of her our competition time to travel and focus on the kids, she wouldn’t trade it for the world! “I think they taught me twice as much as I ever taught them!”

 In 2007 Lisa started a company with a good friend, Christine and they went on to consult on Finncastle Farms in Mooresville, NC where they designed and oversaw the construction of the immaculate equestrian facility. Feel free to visit www.finncastlefarms.com to see what they accomplished. In that time Lisa trained at the facility with a number of her own students and horses; trained with USDF Gold Medalist Stacey Hastings; clinic’d with Olympian Michael Poulin; and focused on the Irish Sport Horse breeding program that she still continues today.

The last few years have been a great time of learning.  Lisa remained active in eventing and starting her young horses but turned her focus a little more to the Western Stock horse side.  Lisa got involved with Mark Hausman.  Mark has too many ranch horse titles to list and is nationally recognized as a guru in the world of Horsemanship.  Lisa competed in the stock horse shows and was hooked.  "There is no cross country or steeplechase fence that can prepare you for the movement a horse makes to block or move a cow!" In early 2012 Lisa and Mark competed at The Ark in Western Dressage, their 4 scores were all in the top ten of 60+ rides that day!