June 2016 - DVG Show Stables
Written by Cheryl Erpelding
Wednesday, 01 June 2016 06:25

San Diego training & lesson program expands with Interscholastic Equestrian Association team.

by Cheryl Erpelding

With so many of their junior riders wanting to ride on a college team, Alixe Del Valle Garcia-Falso’s DVG Show Stables started an Interscholastic Equestrian Association team as a bridge to that next level. It is a great addition to her hunter/jumper training program located at Blue Fox Farm in Escondido.

Several of their students are working towards the USHJA’s Emerging Athlete Program along with hopes to get on a college team. Even though IEA participation is growing in California, DVG is the first barn in San Diego County to create a team.

The IEA format is similar to the college competition format. Middle and high school aged riders draw their mount randomly and can’t practice on the horse until they enter the show ring. This provides an even playing field for all participants. Many college coaches are attending the shows looking for talent to recruit to their schools and there are a lot of scholarship opportunities. The host teams provide the horses. IEA participation provides young riders with a great foundation for intercollegiate riding and the opportunity to participate in a team sport.

DVG will be traveling to Orange County and further north to compete when the shows start in September. Per the IEA’s process for having a team, DVG is required to co-host a competition next year and Alixe hopes other barns in San Diego will join them in starting up IEA teams. In their third year, DVG will either co-host two shows or host one.

The IEA has regional, zone and national finals, the latter of which were held this past April at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY. (See article, page 56, for results that reflect how much this program is growing on the West Coast.).

Last November Alixe added Brenley Allyn to her team. Brenley, daughter of San Diego hunter/jumper trainer Paul Haunert, spent seven-and-a-half years in North Carolina as the head trainer at Cedarhill Farm, where IEA is very popular.

She and Alixe decided that it would be great to introduce the IEA opportunity to their clientele in both the training and lesson programs. 

A Full Program

Alixe is also the daughter of a successful hunter/jumper trainer, and she was raised in the business in her native British Columbia, Canada.  Together as the daughters of trainers, Alixe and Brenley make a great team. Nancy and Kenny Nordstrom still own Blue Fox Farms, where DVG Show Stables is based, and are actively judging around the country.

Alixe and Brenley have put together a comprehensive curriculum for their riding school program. Not only do riders learn how to ride, they have extensive horsemanship lessons that are taught at each level. Riders have a busy afternoon when they are dropped off at the barn. Cross-rail riders learn their diagonals and horse care procedures like how to wrap their pony’s legs with polo wraps. Learning about lameness, clipping, therapies, grooming and stable management is all a big part of their equestrian education.

Students must pass a test before moving up to the next level. They test when they are ready and it is similar to testing for martial arts. It is pretty much a pass/fail test, but the riders are super proud when they know they have passed and are ready to move up from cross-rails to short or long stirrup or green rider and so on.

This summer DVG will have five weeks of day camp and extra afternoon hours available for children of working parents. Riders will get the full scope of DVG’s riding and horsemanship program and they will also have other fun summer activities to keep the campers happy.

DVG serves amateur and junior riders on both the A and GSDHJA circuits. They offer a top tier program for all of the students and have a great sales program.

To learn more about the training program, riding school, or summer camps call Alixe Del Valle Garcia-Falso at 760-745-3922 or visit www.DVGShowStables.com.