She was visiting a farm with a friend when Kim was introduced to the Paso Fino breed. “The gait is what I was attracted to at first”, Kim says. Following up with “They were so sweet and not too big. Even though they were smaller, they could do everything other horses could but with that smooth gait.” She fell in love with the Paso Fino breed and was all in after that. It was about a year and a half ago she began looking for a ranch closer to home. Kim previously had a riding accident and even though she had healed she needed someone to help her get back in riding shape, physically and mentally, but it needed to be close enough she could visit several times a week.
She found Spring Lane Ranch’s website, read the trainer’s bios, was impressed and scheduled her visit. “I was amazed. The grounds and the staff were the same as the website. Everything was so clean and organized, as well as how the horses were taken care of”, she shared. It didn’t take the ranch staff any time to love Kim like she loved her horses. Kim is always smiling and excited to be at the ranch and her sweet and funny personality just makes her a pleasure to be around.
In pure Kim fashion, when she made her choice to board at Spring Lane, she was all in! She brought two of her horses and purchased a lesson horse to help in regaining her confidence in the saddle. She also purchased a young stallion, and two young mares from the ranch for showing. “I love to get them when they are young, before they are under saddle. It’s not about winning; it’s about getting to see them develop and shine in the show ring. It’s about watching them grow up”, she revealed.
Trainer, Alex Zapata, says “Kim has improved so much. She has overcome many fears to the point she is able to ride two horses a day.” Kim’s returned confidence is a true statement of how much love she has for her horses and the breed. It’s never easy to recover from such a traumatic accident. “My trainer, Alex, has taught me in a year and a half, how to ride without anxiety from my accident, and how to stay on”, she laughs.
We’ve had the opportunity to share so many victories with Kim in and out of the showring, but I think the one she gets most excited about is the recovery of her horse, Electra. Electra had suffered an injury and when she came to us, Alex put her right into our conditioning program. Within 10 months, she was completely sound. “Electra’s treatment has been very successful. She is now in full training and is one of the horses Kim is taking to Spectrum”, Alex shared. To see both Electra and Kim injured, now recovered, confident and doing so well together as they ride in the arena, is the kind of story the month of February was made for!
Kim will be taking three horses to the Spectrum International Show next month in Tampa. Her horses brought home a lot of titles this past fall from the Grand National Show, and we can’t wait to see how everyone does at Spectrum. With Kim it’s not all about winning as much as developing a great horse. “I love all my horses”, Kim says, “and as long as they are happy that’s all I can ask for.”