Arabian clinicians

davidDavid Conner

David Conner's passion for the Arabian horse began at the young age of 4. He has dedicated his life to learning and knowing every aspect of this breed. Having gained an extensive knowledge of anatomy, bloodlines and genetics, David has been able to apply this to his training methods. Knowing each horse has specific character traits and abilities is a core value at David Conner Training. Recognizing every horse has a unique personality and ability set your horse will be developed with thought and care. Keeping in mind his skill sets and your goals as an owner. He feels that each horse deserves to be happy and reach their full potential in whatever they are comfortable doing. “The horse will tell you what they are capable of.” This philosophy has garnered David impressive accolades in the show ring which consist of multiple National Championships, Regional Championships, and Egyptian Event Championships.

Being completely captivated by the ethereal beauty of the Arabian, and feeling like they are the “Super-Models” of the horse industry, David is drawn to the Arabian Halter Horse. In training and showing halter horses he believes it is paramount to showcase their movement. The thrill and excitement evoked by that “entrance” into the ring is mesmerizing! He wants his horses to want to show and trains with positive reinforcement to ensure that they are confident in themselves and feel flamboyant enough to portray that “wow factor”. While having an appreciation for beauty, David also believes in form to function and feels that all halter horses should have the ability to perform in other disciplines. He thinks that a Champion halter horse should also be able to compete and win in Sport-Horse in hand and under saddle. He has a background in Dressage and develops a foundation for his performance horses from this. With experience in training for Dressage, Hunter Pleasure, and Western Pleasure disciplines he gives every horse the opportunity to excel in an array of arenas.

Virginia GodwinVirginia Godwin
Virginia started training horses in 1975. Since 1983, through her national-caliber training facility, Chesapeake Training Center, Ltd located in Rocky Mount, NC, her devotion to the Arabian breed has cultivated a population of horse enthusiast for thirty years. Virginia takes pride in her dedication to the amateur and youth rider assuring her training program maintains a strong amateur presence in the show ring. Her training and instruction is individualized for each horse and rider depending on the needs of each combination. Virginia’s approach not only utilizes conventional methods, but also capitalizes on her knowledge of natural horse behavior and instinct to create a willingness of the horse to learn and grow. She states,” What I enjoy the most about training horses is what I learn from them, what they tell me about myself and the other people that ride them. They expose your true self and intentions. Horses carry a mystery about them the creates an eternal intrigue.”

Since 1983, Virginia and her clients have one numerous International, National and Regional titles in open and amateur English, Hunter, Driving, Western, Sport Horse and Dressage. In addition to these accomplishments, she was named APAHA Horsewoman of the Year and has become a AHA and USEF recognized judge. In conjunction with her training, showing and judging she also travels throughout the United States conducting clinics.

larryLarry Jones
Larry grew up on his family’s farm in Sherman, CT. As one of four boys, Larry’s age made him the most eligible of the kids to be his parent’s helper as they began their journey raising Arabian Horses. As Larry entered high school he was already starting horses under saddle for local owners, and upon graduation from St. Lawrence University he was running a full scale training and showing business at his family’s Memory Lane Farm.

Arnold and Audrey Fisher became training clients with their request that Larry start their black Arabian gelding, Dunabasque under saddle. Dunromin' Arabians was born of that relationship, and the eighteen year experience as Dunromin’s trainer gave Larry the knowledge and values he holds dear as a trainer and exhibitor today.

Larry and his wife Rie own a twenty two acre farm in Culpeper, VA where they operate Jonesborough Farm LLC. Training and showing Arabian Sport Horses has become Larry’s specialty. Winning National Championships in both “Main Ring” Halter and Sport Horse In Hand provides a skill set for developing a unique look with Larry’s horses. The goal is to train with emphasis on principles of traditional horsemanship while preserving the special and unique attributes that define the Arabian Breed.

gretaGreta Wrigley
Born and raised in Trinidad, W.I. to British parents, I started riding at age 12 on ex-racehorses and rode anything I had the chance to get on. My parents owned a 100-acre estate, where they raised citrus, bananas, hogs, teak and ran a restaurant. After high school, I went to England and studied for the British Horse Society exams in stable management, riding and teaching. Heavy emphasis was placed on our ability to convey information in our teaching as well as on being an effective rider and trainer. I received my BHS Assistant Instructor certificate in 1973. I then began working with Arabian horses at Calverton Lodge, owned by Mrs. Joan Ratcliff, now a British Arabian judge. During this time I earned my certificate for breeding and stud management from the National Pony Society of England.

I returned to the West Indies and worked in Barbados; taking rides out along the beaches and doing show jumping on the weekends before returning to England to further my studies in Dressage. While in England, I earned my British Horse Society intermediate teaching certificate. In the fall of 1976, I moved to the United States, working in Spartanburg, SC and then in Ocala, FL. I actively evented for many years, and continued to study and improve my riding skills in jumping and Dressage.

For the past 20 years, it has been my pleasure to train Arabians, specializing in Dressage, Show Hack and Hunters. I have earned the Bronze, Silver and Gold Medals from the United States Dressage Federation for scores over 60% from First Level through Grand Prix. I am proud to say that all of those scores were earned on Arabians. I have over 90 Regional Championships and Reserve Championships, 27 National Top Tens, 5 Reserve National Championships and 9 National Championships to my credit. Many of my students have also achieved Regional and National honors. In 1996, 1998 and 1999, the Arabian Trust named me Female Dressage Trainer of the Year.

In 1998, I started Greta Wrigley Training (aka GWT), a training center specializing in Dressage with an emphasis on Arabians, Half-Arabians and the amateur rider. We individualize our training methods to each specific horse and rider, and try to make the learning process fun and informative as well as effective. Our philosophy is that dressage is designed not only to be competitive, but also to have a good time. Our show record speaks for itself – GWT students have won at all levels of competition from schooling shows to the national level and from Introductory to FEI levels.

In addition to our training activities, we have an active clinic schedule, with clinics located primarily in the Southeastern United States. We work with a wide variety of horses and riders from beginners to Pan-Am Games competitors. I have coached the entry in the 2003 Pan-Am games and the 2010 Central American and Caribbean from Trinidad & Tobago. Clinics are 45 minute private sessions where we teach horses and riders to improve their skills by breaking things down into small steps and then showing them how to put the steps together to achieve their goals.