Sargent Equestrian Center prides itself in providing services worthy of the beautiful facility we occupy. Our trainers specialize in the training of horses, ponies, and their owners to drive, from initial exposure to driving confidently and safely for pleasure, and if interested, into competition.
We will evaluate your horse to judge his/her appropriateness for driving, and help deal with problem horses should that be the situation.
One of the founding partners of Sargent Equestrian Center, Jeanne has been involved with horses since the age of six. She started running the barrels, and went on to jumping and eventing. The fascination and challenge of working with young and problem horses led her to focus on starting and training horses of all breeds for the last 20 years.
Through an impulse buy at a local draft horse auction, Jeanne and her late husband Curt became enthralled with the Clydesdale Horse and began to drive, at first for pleasure and then competitively. Jeanne has been driving ponies and competing in combined driving events in the past couple of years.
She is quiet and responsive when interacting with the horse and the owner, focusing on deepening the interaction and communication between the client and their horse. She is aware of the importance of potential problems between horse and rider and endeavors to create a partnership between the horse and owner based on respect, in which both feel safe and secure. Her background as a physical therapist gives her a deep understanding of the bio-mechanics of the horse and gives her a unique perspective on the physical and mental development of an equine athlete. With her eclectic approach to training, and warm and compassionate nature, Jeanne approaches each training situation individually, combining her understanding of the horse, its background and physical abilities with your goals and desires.
Sargent Equestrian Center is proud to welcome Clay Maier to its Staff. Clay is well known by reputation to all of you. We are excited to have been able to attract him here to Sargent so you can get to know him and benefit from his teaching personally.
Clay has a unique and eclectic history. Growing up on the Riata Ranch in Three Rivers California, an equine educational foundation founded and managed by his family, Clay was exposed to the foremost equestrian experts in a variety of disciplines throughout his childhood and youth. When Clay was about 10 years old a program designed to attract more boys to the ranch was established at Riata, led by a local teamster and cowboy named Clark Nysewonger, to teach interested kids the skills of an old time cowboy, even then a vanishing breed. The skills taught included riding and driving, cattle work including roping, herding and branding, rodeo events, and training horses to drive and to ride. Emphasizing starting the horse with long lining and ground driving, then hitching and driving, the Ranch gave an excellent start to up to 20 new driving horses per year. These horses were highly sought by such venues as Disneyland, Knots Berry Farms and Wells Fargo.
After high school Clay left the Ranch, and for several years attended Junior college and later Fresno State where he took animal science courses but preferred classes on Cinema and Music. During the summers and then full time he pursued his real interests; rodeo where he was a saddle bronc rider of note, ranking third in the US in 1975, as well as bull riding and roping events. He performed in Wild West Shows here and abroad, and drove stagecoaches, including in Yosemite. During this time he first became acquainted with Friesian Horses through Frank Leyendekkerr, a native Friesian who was one of the first people to import Friesian Horses to the US and who established the Friesian Horse Association of North America (FHANA). It was at this time Clay started competing in pleasure driving and CDE’s. Throughout this time he trained horses, becoming a clinician of note in driving and long lining/training. He worked further with Friesian horses through his association with Judy Knapp of Oregon, culminating in the creation of the Friesian Spectacular, which he took on the road for many years. Prior to his joining us here at Sargent, Clay was a trainer, consultant and manager at the Kentucky Horse Park where he, among other things, helped organize and produce the World Equestrian Games in 2010. This in turn led to a request from the British people for him to create the American contribution Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee. It was fitting that one of the highlight’s of that performance was given by the Riata Ranch Cowgirls, an amazing stunt riding group that comes out of the same Riata Ranch in Three Rivers, California where he grew up.
This broad education and wide experience, combined with hard work and a warm and gregarious nature, have made Clay a well rounded horseman with a knack for teaching others and earned him a place as one of the most respected horse clinicians in the country. Clay looks forward to contributing to the vision of Sargent Equestrian, and enhancing the training and development of horses and their humans by sharing what he has learned over the years.
Sargent Equestrian Center was pleased to welcome Carola Slater-Diener from Germany, to our training facility for a limited time. We look forward to her return in 2017! Check back for dates.
Carola began driving at 5 years old with her two ponies and entered her first competition in 1997 at age 9, with a pony pair.
From 2004 –2007, training under Steffen Scholz, Carola became State Champion in 2004 and 2007 in both pair and team driving, and earned a sixth place in the Pony Pair German Championship in 2007.
In 2007 Carola started working as Stable Manager for one of Germany’s top drivers, Christoph Sandmann. In 2010 she became the Youth German Champion in Pair Horses and at the young age of 23, won the German Championships, qualifying for a spot on the German team for the World Pairs Driving Championships in Conti, France. In Conti, Carola wowed the crowd with her performance in Horse Pairs where she won Dressage, and went on to became the Individual World Pairs Driving Champion.
Also during this time she also trained Christoph’s daughter Anna, who at age 15 was the youngest competitor at the World Championships in Conti.
Carola continued her successful driving career by placing 2nd in the 2013 German Championships for Pair Horses, Placing 1st in Dressage at the Worlds Pairs Championships in Topolcianky , Slovakia, placing 4th Overall, and was in integral part of the Silver Medal winning German Team. For her accomplishments, she was awarded the Master of Dressage Award 2013 by Hippoevent, with a score of 32 in Riesenbeck, Germany (best score of all International events in Europe)
With nearly 20 years’ experience in dressage and combined driving, Drew Callahan has earned notoriety as a competitor, trainer and coach. Drew, who began competing at the age of 11, earned his stripes working with some of the world’s greatest equestrians. In 2002, Drew began working with Lawrence Poulin, an 11-time National Pairs Champion who competed at nearly every World Championship event from the mid-80’s until his retirement in 2010. Drew served as navigator for Larry during the Cross-Country Marathon at the 2003 World Championships in France. Drew also worked full-time for Nags Head Farm, where he gained invaluable knowledge while working with Shirley Rector, a highly-respected judge and coach in the ridden dressage arena.
As a driver himself, Drew has proven to be a formidable competitor. In 2002 – the first year he competed at the FEI level – Drew was long-listed for the World Championships. He continued to be long-listed until 2009 with two different horses. Among dozens of regional and national awards over the past 12 years, Drew earned numerous distinctive honors at the May 2012 Vineyard Classic. He was awarded 1st Place Intermediate Single Pony, Best Dressage Score of the entire show, Best Intermediate Marathon and Best Intermediate Cones. In Shady Oaks’ 2011 event, he won the Intermediate Single Pony division and Intermediate Dressage and placed second in Intermediate Cones. He also won first in Preliminary Multiples at Arizona HDT in 2011. Also in 2015 Drew tied for the West Coast Combined driving Triple Crown Preliminary Championship with a young horse he has been working with.
As a trainer, Drew is well-reputed for his ability to develop horses and their drivers rapidly and dramatically. He provides training at every level, teaching beginners the basic mechanics of riding and driving and helping experienced riders to attain the ultimate performance from their horses. He is also skilled with horses across the spectrum, from even-tempered, compliant breeds to temperamental and sensitive animals. This rare ability to work with horses and owners alike has helped his students win significant accolades in Dressage and Combined Driving.
While his training facility, Chaparosa Ranch, is based in North Phoenix, he is often hired to lead training clinics in Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Texas and California. He currently sits on the Single Horse Criteria Committee for the United States Equestrian Federation. He is also a member of the American Driving Society, United States Equestrian Federation, United States Dressage Federation and Arizona Driving and Carriage Association.