2016 Honors, Recognition, & Awards
       After a 2 year absence Sjaantje and my showing year could not have been more phenominal! We wintered and showed in Florida and came north to Pennsylvania in April, showing in carriage pleasure driving on the east coast and mid-west IFSHA and ADS circuits. Click here for 2016 show results
    Every year, the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) solicits input from equestrian fans across the country to name the winners of three of its highest honors: International Horse of the Year; National Horse of the Year; and Equestrian of the Year. Dreams Come True Farm had a the finalist for both 2016 Horse of the Year and 2016 Equestrian of the Year! Voting ended January 4, 2017, and the Equestrian was named January 13th at the USEF Pegasus Dinner and the National Horse was named at their January 14th Awards Banquet in Lexington, KY. Sjaantje was a Horse of Honor and I, an Equestrian of Honor. Who would have thought???
Horse of Honor

Sjaantje & Gail's Pegasus Trophies
Equestrian of Honor


   One of the 3 national nominees is Sjaantje, 2005 Friesian mare, owned by Gail Aumiller, Carlisle, PA,and driven by Suzy Stafford and Gail Aumiller
   The lovely Sjaantje was born in the Netherlands — birthplace of the Friesian breed—but found her calling on the American show circuit. She was imported to the U.S. as a foal and started making a splash in the International Friesian Show Horse Association at a young age. In 2016, Sjaantje scored three regional IFSHA champion titles, as well as a decisive nine World Champion titles at the association’s World and Grand National show. Sjaantje was also a force to be reckoned with at American Driving Society events, and dominated in her driven dressage classes. 

   Gail Aumiller and her 11 YO mare, Sjaantje, swept the JD Massey Regional Show Friesian Carriage Pleasure division with wins in working, reinsmanship, and turnout. Their butter yellow 1890s Studebaker ladies phaeton was a judge's favorite in turnout and concours d'Elegance classes.

   Whip Ringmaster, Gail Aumiller, and circus horse, Sjaantje, won driving costume classes by bringing the Dreams Come True Farm circus to town. Jodi VanSprang, trick rider, Emily Williams, fortuneteller, and clown, Sue Williams, completed the entry.
   Previous Equestrian of the Year winners include Olympians like Beezie Madden and Steffen Peters. But in 2015, the title went to longtime American Saddlebred exhibitor Elisabeth Goth, and reiner Tom McCutcheon became the first reiner to win the award in 2010, so it’s really an award that any finalist can win. This year, nearly half of the nominees come from the Arabian horse show world, which could mean that segment of the industry has a better shot at the title--or it could mean the votes from Arabianland will be split, leaving room for someone else. It all depends on how the equestrian public votes.

   One of the 9 nominees was Gail Aumiller, Carlisle, PA. As the owner and one of the drivers of Horse of the Year nominee Sjaantje, Gail Aumiller earned a place as an equestrian of honor by being named the recipent of the Bill Robinson Perpetual Award. Together, Aumiller and her mare earned USEF Friesian Driving Championship titles this year in three different regions as well as top placings in several divisions at American Driving Society competitions. Passionate about driven dressage, in 2016 Gail won 15 of her 16 classes. Gail is proud of winning both of her 2016 Old Guard classes, open to whips 65 YO+. A high point of the season for Aumiller and Sjaantje was the IFSHA World and Grand National Championship Horse Show where the pair earned championship titles in Carriage Pleasure Driven Dressage (Training & Preliminary), Driving Costume, Reinsmanship, and Amateur Scurry.

Thomas & Gail
Murray Kessler, USEF President, posed with Thomas & Gail, who holds Sjaantje's 2016 Horse of Honor trophy Thomas holds Sjaantje's 2016 Grand Champion Carriage Driving trophy, while Gail holds Sjaantje's 2 National Championship (Friesian Driving & Driven Dressage) ribbons and a Reserve  Championship (Pleasure Driving) Ribbon
Judy Warner presents the Equestrian of Honor Trophy
Sjaantje's 2016 Horse of the Year Report

2016 USEF Grand Champion: Carriage Driving

Misdee Wrigley-Miller
presents the Grand Champion trophy
2016 USEF Carriage Driving
National Champion: Friesian Driving
National Champion: Driven Dressage Training
National Reserve Champion: Pleasure Driving: Single
National 3rd: Driven Dressage Preliminary

Cecil Hetzel-Dunn presents the Friesian Driving ribbon
2016 USEF Regional Friesian Driving
Region 2: Champion: Friesian Driving
Region 4: Champion: Friesian Driving
Region 5: Champion: Friesian Driving
Region 1: Reserve Champion: Friesian Driving
Region 3: Reserve Champion: Friesian Driving

USEF Regional Championship Medallions

2016 IFSHA Awards 2016 FHANA Awards 2016 Brandwine Valley Driving Club
Friesian Driving Champion
Friesian Open Pleasure Driving Single Hitch Champion
Friesian  Open CDE Single Champion

Performance Driving Award (4th time winning)

President's Award

  Suzy Stafford Performance Cones Award

Awarded in 2016 to Dreams Come True Farm,
Thomas holds FHANA's
President's Award Perpetual trophy.
Sjaantje and her 6 USEF National
Championship Ribbons


Sarah Medler and I are very proud
of our 2016 USEF
Driven Dressage Championship Ribbons

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Created by Gail L. Aumiller on December 31, 2016 and last updated on April 4, 2017.