Due South

I've been photographing and writing about equestrian sports practically since the time of Eohippus, originally for newspapers and now for a variety of magazines and websites. My resume includes coverage of nine Olympics and more than a score of World Cup finals. I’ve also written several books, including Riding Through with Olympic dressage medalist Debbie McDonald.

While I tend to focus on show jumping, eventing and dressage, I also do stories on hunters, equitation, reining, a little bit of vaulting, combined driving and any interesting features that come my way.

I'll let you know what’s happening on the other side of the border with observations and updates several times a month.

~ Nancy Jaffer

The Hampton Classic is an example of a Premier show at the highest level in the U.S. Photo © Lawrence J. Nagy

Making USEF Horse Shows Fit Their Designations

When you go to McDonald’s, you know what to expect. Ditto the mid-range Outback Steakhouse and the high-end Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. But at U.S. Equestrian Federation-recognized horse shows, the nomenclature doesn’t always reflect what’s actually on the menu. As exhibitors arrive…

Mary Babick, president of the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association and chairman of the U.S. Equestrian Federation’s ad hoc committee on the subject of requiring a SafeSport education rule. Photo© by Nancy Jaffer

The U.S. Equestrian Federation is on a SafeSport Mission

The day is coming, and probably soon, when everyone who belongs to the U.S. Equestrian Federation will have to participate in SafeSport training via a video. At the USEF Board’s mid-year meeting in Kentucky this week, president Murray Kessler told…

Boyd Martin prepped Olympic veteran Shamwari 4 (“there’s not a course in the world he couldn’t jump) going cross-country at the Jersey Fresh International for their trip to the Luhmuhlen 4-star. Photo© 2018 by Nancy Jaffer

U.S. Olympic Discipline Teams Building Competitive Strength as WEG Looms

Since 2004, U.S. eventers haven’t won a team medal in a global championships (an Olympics or World Equestrian Games, WEG, as opposed to the Western Hemisphere’s Pan American Games). That may be about to change, however. The 2016 Olympic eventing…

Moments such as this make memories of a lifetime for medalists at the North American Junior Eventing Championship CH-J 2-star, part of the Adequan/FEI North American Junior & Young Rider Championships presented by Gotham North in 2017. Photo by Taylor Pence/USEF

Championships for Younger Set Get New Life From U.S. Equestrian Federation

Reinvigorating the North American Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Championships was a key 2018 goal for U.S. Equestrian Federation President Murray Kessler, who announced at his organization’s annual meeting in January that he was determined to “elevate the importance of…

Mark Bellisimo in at the Tryon International Equestrian Center with the gladiator who is the symbol of Gladiator Polo, which will be held at the WEQx Games™ during the FEI World Equestrian Games™. Photo© 2018 by Nancy Jaffer

When is a WEG More than a WEG?

The eight disciplines of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ weren’t enough for Mark Bellissimo, the impresario extraordinaire of the Tryon International Equestrian Center, the Winter Equestrian Festival and so much more. Mark saved the 2018 WEG after financial problems short-circuited Bromont,…

McLain Ward, the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup Finals winner, was part of the panel that explored the future of show jumping during a presentation in Wellington, Florida. Photo ©Nancy Jaffer

Where is International Show Jumping Going?

It was quite a panel. The one and only George Morris. World Cup winner and Olympic medalist McLain Ward. Ten-time show jumping Olympian Ian Millar of Canada. Olympic course designers Leopoldo Palacios and Guilherme Jorge. Live Oak International Co-Chair Juliet…

Gazelle’s owner, Robin Parsky, celebrates with her husband, Gerry, after putting in the winning bid for her mare’s “grandchild” during the embryo auction at Live Oak International. Photo ©Nancy Jaffer

Embryo Auction Presents Chance to Get Good Bloodlines Without Spending a Fortune

Patient buyers looking for a bargain found their match in the Ocala Embryo Auction at Florida’s Live Oak International show last weekend. The concept takes some explaining. Luk Van Puymbroeck and his Flanders Foal Auction business partner, Gerald Lenaerts, offered…

USEF board member Tom O’Mara is heading a strategic task force on the fate of the organization’s drug testing laboratory. Photo© 2018 by Nancy Jaffer

U.S. Equestrian Federation Making Changes in Wake of Drug Testing Snafu

When the U.S. Equestrian Federation’s mantra of fair play and horse welfare got a double whammy in January from a mishandled drug testing process, the organization vowed to make things right and went into action on several fronts. It was…

Eventer Boyd Martin competing on Contessa at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Photo© 2018 by Nancy Jaffer

Big Names in Eventing Honed Dressage and Jumping Skills at WEF

We’ve all had those moments when we run into someone out of context (an acquaintance from home at a coffee shop in another town, a co-worker at a concert) and are startled because it doesn’t immediately compute. That’s what it…

Ian Millar riding Dixson on the vast grand prix field at the Palm Beach Masters. Photo© 2018 by Nancy Jaffer

Wellington Has Plenty of Horses to Go Around

It started as a way to keep a Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping qualifier in Wellington, Florida, when the Rolex-backed Winter Equestrian Festival had an obvious sponsor conflict. But in three years, a very special four-day show – the CP Palm…

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