This is the second part of a series on the school horses at my alma mater Otterbein University. If you missed Part 1, check it out here.

What many people may not realize is that our school horses have been donated to the university. They are all here for a variety of reasons, with a wide range of histories. I’m here to quell any misconceptions about our donated schoolies; our horses are top-notch quality and many are still actively showing and competing outside of the collegiate ring. These horses do one of the hardest jobs you could ask a horse to do (be school horses), and I am honored to tell some of their stories.

In this post, I will be showcasing a Royal Dutch Warmblood gelding of ours, Shane.

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No…it’s Shane! This lofty-jumping machine is a Danish import by Ahorn, and out of Mariola-S.  He was imported in 2009, where he then competed in the High Children’s and Adult Jumpers, as well as the Low Junior Jumpers, Equitation and Hunters. He was purchased in 2013 by the Picciochi family for their daughter, to introduce her to the world of showing.

Shane competing in the 3'3" Junior Hunters: Garden State Horse Show 2014 Photo credits: Emily Irene

Shane in the 3’3″ Junior Hunters. Photo credits: Emily Irene

When it was time to move on, the Picciochi family “wanted to guarantee him a good home where he could help teach other riders, too.  We decided to donate him to Otterbein based on recommendations and reputation.”

Since coming to Otterbein, Shane has expanded his experiences to also include dressage, and has consistently been used as a draw in Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA) shows hosted by Otterbein.

It is easy to see why Shane is a successful jumper; he puts 110% into every jump, has an incredible hind end, and is so very careful.  He adds in a wonderful personality and work ethic, with an enthusiastic lead change.

Megan and Shane: Champions in the Low Adult Jumpers Photo credits: Megan DeMott

Megan and Shane: Champions in the Low Adult Jumpers
Photo credits: Megan DeMott

Shane was leased last year by a recent graduate, Megan DeMott. “Shane and I competed in the Low Adult Jumpers and were Champion in July. He is an amazing horse with an incredible show record as well; he always tries his hardest and love treats.”

Shane was also a part of the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) Emerging Athlete Program (EAP) that Otterbein hosted last November. Shane quickly became known as the ‘horse with the nice hind end’ for his exaggerated and careful movements over the fences.  He was praised for completing several exercises quietly and well, commending Shane’s nature as a school master to help those aboard learn new skills.  EAP culminated in a Nations Cup-style competition, and Shane was on the team that finished second. He seems to enjoy his role as a teacher, and we hope that Shane aids in the education of many more Otterbein students in the future.

If you would like to learn more about Otterbein’s equestrian program and department of equine science, click here

If you would like to learn more about USHJA’s EAP Program, click here.

To read about EAP at Otterbein, click here.

Special thanks to the Picciochi family for providing details on Shane prior to his life at Otterbein, and to Megan DeMott for sharing her experience with Shane!