About Vicki Kelley

Early Career

Vicki started her horse training career at the age of thirteen. She began gaining experience by riding and training neighborhood horses. At sixteen, she began to train various breeds at horse farms in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. One farm was a hunter-jumper stable and the other was an Arabian show and breeding farm.

For the next eight years, Vicki traveled up-and-down the West Coast from Canada to Mexico as an assistant trainer working with some of the top horse trainers in the industry.

First Stable

In 1982, Vicki established her own stable in Santa Rosa California. Her large farm housed fifty horses. Vicki focused on dressage as her primary discipline after years of successful competition in hunter-jumpers.

The first dressage horse she trained up the levels was an Appendix Quarter Horse she purchased as a two year old. She trained him to Prix St. Georges, attaining her USDF bronze and silver medals by 1989. Vicki’s success transforming this Quarter Horse gelding provided her with a large dedicated following in California. As a result of your show ring success, she had access to many top quality horses and serious dressage students, one of which went on to three young rider gold medals.

European Influence

In the early 1990s, Vicki and Sean began breeding and training Warmblood dressage horses to sell. However, Vicki wanted more quality bloodlines than was available in the United States. After selling one of her American-bred FEI dressage horses, she decided to travel to Germany to locate better quality horses.

Vicki traveled extensively in Germany, Holland, and France acquiring knowledge about European horse training programs. This European exposure gave her a much wider view of both the history and training techniques applied in dressage. Information mostly unknown in the United States at the time.

North Carolina Farm

After years of training and selling her own imports, Vicki and Sean decided to make the move from California to North Carolina to be closer to Europe and many of their East Coast horse buyers. A few years later after the market for high-end dressage horse sales softened, Vicki refocused her business back to private instruction and training at her beautiful farm in Pinehurst North Carolina. She enjoys continued success training horses and riders up the dressage levels.