Chefs d’Equipe DiAnn Langer and Anne Kursinski have assembled an impressive group of 20 promising athletes for the 2020 Palm Beach Masters Youth CSI. Langer will lead the U.S. Children’s Jumping Team and both U.S. Junior Jumping Teams, while the two U.S. Young Rider Jumping Teams will compete under the guidance of Kursinski.
Get to know more about these rising stars before competition kicks off on Saturday, February 15! Athletes listed in alphabetical order by last name.
U.S. Children’s Jumping Team
Stephanie Garrett (Wellington, Fla.) is 13 years old and has the ambition to ride for the U.S. team at the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games. In the meantime, she is committed to rising through the ranks of the youth divisions and continuing to experience new things, like riding on the grass Grand Prix field at Old Salem Farm. She loves her mares Ellertina, fondly known as Hippity Hop, and Fani, whom Garrett calls a “true unicorn” despite having some grumpy and sassy tendencies. Garrett is a student at the Brearley School where she is a member of the track and soccer teams. She enjoys math and science, watching The OC and Criminal Minds, and wants to try jumping an eventing cross-country course someday. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Margie Engle’s mount Royce.
Brooks Hull (North Fort Myers, Fla.) is 12 years old and has big plans for his equestrian career, striving to compete in and win a Grand Prix by the time he is 15! Hull has competed at the USEF Pony Finals presented by Collecting Gaits Farm and in national hunter derbies. Hull’s favorite thing about his horse is how big the stride is and how it allows him to jump big fences. When Hull is not riding, he loves mountain biking and snow skiing.
Sara Pezza (Newburgh, N.Y.) is 12 years old and simply loves to be with her horses, working on becoming the best equestrian and horsewoman she can be. Pezza has two horses, Violet and Bambino, and while they look different physically, she loves the way they both give her their all every day and their sweet, loving personalities. Pezza is a student at the Newburgh Free Academy. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would pick Kent Farrington’s mount Gazelle, and if she were not jumping, she would like to compete in dressage.
Laurel Walker (Dallas, Texas) is just 11 years old but has many wins under her belt at prestigious shows, most memorably winning the individual silver medal at the 2019 USHJA Zone 7/8 Championships. She hopes to represent the U.S. at the 2022 Youth Olympic Games in Dakar, Senegal, and strives to compete in a national Grand Prix during high school. She describes her horse, Biaggi, as incredibly sweet and very responsive and feels they make a great team because they care about one another. Walker is a student at Coram Deo Academy and enjoys science, music, art, and watching football or The Office. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would pick Andy Kocher’s mount Squirt Gun, and if she were not jumping, she would like to compete in dressage.
U.S. Junior Jumping Teams
Virginia Bonnie (Upperville, Va.) is 16 years old and is a student at the Foxcroft School. She hopes to ride professionally and compete on the senior U.S. Jumping Team. Bonnie has accomplished a lot in her career to date, including winning individual bronze at the 2019 FEI North American Youth Championships (NAYC) in the junior division and team gold at the 2017 NAYC in the children’s division. Bonnie describes her horse, Effie, as having the most amazing heart and being kind, confident, and gentle. When she is not riding, Bonnie enjoys painting, baking, and watching Bojack Horseman. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would pick McLain Ward’s mount HH Azur, and if she were not jumping, she would like to compete in eventing.
Mimi Gochman (New York, N.Y.) is 15 years old and a student at the Spence School. Her ambitions are to compete in a two-star Grand Prix, a U25 Grand Prix, and to continue competing in hunt seat equitation. Of her long list of accolades, Gochman’s most memorable moment was winning the junior individual gold medal at NAYC last year because she was able to share the moment with her family and friends. She enjoys tennis, reading, skiing, and watching synchronized swimming and Grey’s Anatomy. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Margie Engle’s mount Royce, and if she were not jumping, she would like to try competing in vaulting.
Hallie Grimes (Houston, Texas) has had great success in her youth career to date, but says her most memorable competition moment was from her first-ever horse show. Grimes remembers being 11 years old, competing in the trot poles class, and knowing right then that this was her passion. She completely trusts her current horse, fondly known as Fluffy, and appreciates his kindness. Grimes loves the way he “announces himself” when he walks into the arena and believes his hair is the best in the business. She is currently a high school senior and will attend Bentley University in Waltham, Mass., after graduation. Grimes enjoys watching The Office and says The Bachelor is her favorite non-equestrian sport. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Henrik Von Eckermann’s mount Toveks Mary Lou, and if she were not jumping, she would like to try competing in dressage.
Kathryn Hall (Versailles, Ky.) had a big competition year in 2019, racking up top results in junior jumper championships across the country. Hall was a member of the bronze medal-winning junior team at the NAYC and placed in the top 10 individually. She hopes to represent the U.S. in the Olympic Games someday and plans to ride and train horses professionally. She describes her current horse as having the biggest heart and consistently putting her best effort into every single round. Hall is currently a high school senior and will attend Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, after graduation. If she were not jumping, she would like to try competing in dressage.
Maggie Kehring (Woodside, Calif.) is 17 years old and a high school junior. She hopes to compete in the Olympic Games and the FEI Jumping World Cup™ Final, and she is consistently working on improving her skills over fences and understanding the horse’s movements on the flat. Last year, Kehring placed in several major classes at the 1.40-meter height and proudly competed in her first 1.50-meter class in 2019. Her favorite thing about her horse, fondly know as Chili, is how hard he tries. She likes watching The Good Doctor and the equestrian discipline of cutting. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Rich Feller’s mount Flexible.
Violet Lindemann Barnett (San Francisco, Calif.) is a senior at San Francisco University High School and has a long list of top results in the hunter, equitation, and jumping disciplines. Lindemann Barnett dreams of riding in a Nations Cup with the senior U.S. Jumping Team someday and recalls jumping in her first Grand Prix as one of her most memorable moments. Her favorite thing about her horse, fondly known as Love, is the mare’s sassy personality and the way everyone at the barn knows Love is the queen. Lindemann Barnett enjoys spending time with her friends, playing with her dogs, and reading. She likes watching The Good Doctor and would like to try reining. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Martin Fuch’s mount Clooney 51.
Madison Rauschenbach (Newburgh, N.Y.) is 17 years old and has proven to be a competitive force in U.S. jumping throughout her youth career. With numerous top placings in major classes across the country, Rauschenbach’s most memorable moment came in 2019 when she and her horse Gillette B placed third in the Black Barn $100,000 JR/A-O/AM Jumper Prix at HITS Saugerties. Most recently, Rauschenbach competed on the U.S. Children’s Jumping Team that traveled to Tianiin, China, and earned third place. According to Rauschenbach, Gillette B, fondly known as “Linda” in the barn, always wants to win and jumps her heart out every time they step into the ring. She likes watching Friends and would like to try cutting. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Steve Guerdat’s mount Albfuehren’s Bianca.
Learn more about Rauschenbach’s competition results.
Siena Vasan (Upperville, Va.) is currently a high school senior and will be attending the University of Virginia in the fall. Her list of equestrian accomplishments includes many top results, but the most memorable moment so far has been winning the $10,000 NAL Low Junior Classic at the American Gold Cup in her first show with her horse, Victoire Une Prince. Vasan remembers thinking that was the most fun she had ever had while riding and it was even sweeter having both her mom and her dad there to watch her win with such a special horse. Vasan enjoys travel, speaking Spanish, and writing, as well as watching Dr. Phil and learning more about psychology. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Karen Polle’s mount With Wings.
U.S. Young Rider Jumping Teams
Natalie Dean (Palo Alto, Calif.) is a junior at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where she studies marketing. Her equestrian accomplishments include winning young rider individual bronze at the 2019 NAYC and jumping double-clear at the 2019 FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ Youth Final in Belgium, where the U.S. won team gold. An avid traveler, Dean was excited to compete for the first time in Europe on that trip, as well. Her horse, Maestro, has one of the biggest personalities in the barn. Dean says he is always trying to get more attention and would be jumping the big Grand Prix classes right now, if he were making the decisions. When not riding, Dean enjoys watching Suits and basketball. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Adrienne Sternlicht’s mount Cristalline.
Daisy Farish (Versailles, Ky.) is an accomplished young equestrian, with a multitude of accolades to her name from her youth career, including a gold medal-winning performance at the NAYC in the young rider division. Farish dreams of representing the U.S. on a senior Nations Cup team someday and recalls her most memorable competition moment as her win at the 2018 USEF Talent Search Finals – East Coast aboard Great White. According to Farish, Great White, fondly known as Bruce, is full of personality and confidence, but he knows his job and becomes very serious in the ring. She enjoys watching Grey’s Anatomy and if she were not jumping, Farish would play polo. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Martin Fuch’s mount Clooney 51.
Coco Fath (Fairfield, Conn.) is a freshman at Cornell University and enjoys playing tennis, reading, and participating in her sorority at school. With some impressive international competitions under her belt, Fath seeks to jump at a higher level and continue her work with developing younger horses. One of her most memorable moments was winning the junior jumper division championship at the Devon Horse Show because, while it was not the biggest competition, it was unexpected and perfect thanks to her whole family and some friends being there with her. Fath describes her horse Scotty as sweet, kind, and his confidence and determination never waver. When not riding, Fath enjoys watching football, hockey, and Parks and Recreation. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Darragh Kenny’s mount Balou du Revention or Danielle Goldstein’s mount Lizziemary.
Sophie Gochman (New York, N.Y.) hopes to ride on more teams for the U.S. and is working towards competing at the three- and four-star levels, all while having fun with her horses. In 2019, Gochman secured four gold medals, two individual and two team, at the Prix des States, NAYC, and FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ Youth Final. Her horse, Bunny, is special to her because of the way she always tries her best, and Gochman believes she is the best horse in the world. When not riding, Gochman enjoys watching Netflix and getting some hard-earned sleep!
Alexandra Pielet (Highland Park, Ill.) is a freshman business student at Auburn University and enjoys playing tennis, working out, and spending time with her friends. Pielet strives to continue being a successful equestrian, moving up through the Grand Prix levels with her horses Helene VE, Hyperbolics, and Uxanna. So far, her most memorable moment was competing at NAYC with Helene VE. The pair did not have a rail over all five rounds and went on to win gold. Pielet describes Helene VE as very smart and always there for her as they grew up together from their beginnings in the children’s division. When not riding, she enjoys watching gymnastics and Grey’s Anatomy. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Simon Blum’s mount DSP Alice.
Emma Catherine Reichow (Menlo Park, Calif.) had a year ripe with top results in 2019, winning the USEF Talent Search Finals – West Coast, individual gold at Prix des States, and team silver at the NAYC. Reichow has ambitions to ride professionally and represent the U.S. in more Nations Cup competitions, at the World Cup Finals, and the Olympic Games. She describes her mare, Forever Alve, as having the biggest heart and being a true fighter in the ring. Reichow loves her horse’s big personality and constant desire to please. When not riding, she enjoys playing volleyball, watching Grey’s Anatomy, and spending time with friends and family. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Martin Fuch’s mount Clooney 51.
Isabella Russekoff (Greenwich, Conn.) has steadily risen through the youth jumping ranks and is currently competing successfully in U25 Grand Prix competitions and in the high amateur owner division. On track to graduate University of Miami in 2022, Russekoff has remained committed to actively competing while at school and has won several CSI2* grand prix classes while balancing her academics and riding career aspirations. Her goal is to compete successfully at the CSI4*/CSI5* grand prix level and to represent the U.S. on a senior Nations Cup team. Her horse, Balou’s Fly High, is a personable stallion who she credits with giving her valuable experience since their partnership began. When she’s not competing, she enjoys watching Gossip Girl or basketball and would love to try out playing polo when she’s not focused on jumping. If there was one horse in the world she would want to ride, it would be Darragh Kenny’s Balou de Reventon.
Alessandra Volpi (Woodside, Calif.) is a student at Stanford University where she is working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Science, Technology, and Society. Volpi hopes to compete on senior teams for the U.S. and compete at the FEI Jumping World Cup Final. Her most memorable competition moment was the Grand Prix at the Del Mar National Horse Show because the huge crowd and energy in the arena were unforgettable. Volpi describes her horse Taiwan as super competitive, a great fit, sweet, and a joy to work with. A dedicated student, Volpi spends much of her time out of the saddle on academics but also enjoys fashion, digital marketing, and watching football and baseball. If she could ride any horse in the world, she would choose Beezie Madden’s mount Darry Lou.
Gracie Allen (Moorestown, N.J.) is 19 years old and has career aspirations to represent the U.S. in international team competition, including on senior Nations Cup teams, and become the best possible horsewoman she can be. Allen won the prestigious NAYC Jumping Style award in 2019, and also earned a team bronze medal in the junior category the same year. She also was a part of the team that earned team silver at the 2018 USEF Junior Jumper Championships. Aside from her equestrian endeavors, Allen is passionate about music and plays three different instruments. Her horse, Horseware Rivage, has a relaxed and calm nature, and has a skin condition called vitiligo, which makes the hair around his eyes turn white. Her favorite equestrian memory to date is competing at the 2018 Devon Fall Classic Grand Prix, where her family and friends came out to cheer her on. If she could choose one horse in the world to ride, it would be Beat Mandli’s mount, Dsarie.
Catherine Kubiak (Lake Forest, Ill.) is currently 20 years old and competes in the high amateur owner divisions with her horses Huntington and Somerset. She has worked her way up through the jumping ranks and has competed successfully at the 1.40m-1.45m height over the past two seasons. She has competed at a number of top shows throughout the country, including the Winter Equestrian Festival, Longines Global Champions Tour, Great Lakes Equestrian Festival, and the Vermont Summer Festival Horse Show. A career highlight for Kubiak was when she won the High Junior Jumper Classic at Saugerties last year and also when she competed in her first grand prix this fall. Kubiak will be riding her horse Hungtington, who she described as very brave and kind. If there was one equestrian sport she would puruse outside of jumping it would be polo. Her favorite TV show is Below Deck.