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Stephanie Rhodes-Bosch On the Eventing Fast-Track at 22


By Amber Heintzberger A


t age 18 Canadian Stephanie Rhodes-Bosch left behind her home, her family and her country. She packed up her belongings and her horse and drove


to Norwood, North Carolina to join the working student program at The Fork Stables. Her longtime friend and mentor Rebecca Howard had just become the trainer at The Fork, and Stephanie was following her dream of becoming a professional rider. A year and a half later Stephanie began working for


Canadian Team Technical Advisor David O’Connor. She still trains with David, basing herself out of Ocala, Florida during the winters and spending summers in Loudon County, Virginia.


Leaving everything behind to pursue her riding was a huge gamble, but one that paid off: only three years later, at age 21, she and Port Authority became the highest- placing horse/rider combination from North America when they finished ninth individually in the Three-Day Event Championships at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Kentucky. They were also members of the silver medal winning Canadian team. Today Stephanie and “Ollie” are pursuing the next big challenge: to represent Canada at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England.


Fun Beginnings Stephanie grew up in the picturesque Okanagan Valley of British Columbia, the oldest child of Jeffrey and Patricia Bosch, and began eventing at the age of seven with her first pony, Tequila Sunrise. “She was one of those quintessential first ponies who


went everywhere and did everything. As far as I know she was just pulled out of someone’s field and put into the lesson program at the riding school, which was how we met!” says Stephanie. Stephanie rode in the B.C. Young Riders program and


was brought along by several of the top event coaches in British Columbia. “The eventing circle in B.C. is a really fun way to grow up, going to horse shows and camping with your friends, starting the season with B.C. Young Riders camp every year,” she remembers.


Port Authority In 2004, as a teenager Stephanie bought her current mount Port Authority, affectionately known as “Ollie,” as a five-year-old prospect, hoping he could get her to the North American Young Riders Championships. “It was such a big risk for us—it was never supposed to have included all that it has brought her!” says Stephanie’s mother, Trish Bosch, a nurse who works nights and extra hours to help pay for her daughter’s riding. Port Authority is a British Columbia-bred Selle Français-


Thoroughbred cross. His grandsire on his father’s side is Galoubet and he is out of the Thoroughbred mare Jasmine. He was bred by Alice Arsenault and got his start at Jack Polo’s Maple Ridge Equi-Sport Center. Ollie was bred for Jack Polo’s granddaughter to ride,


34 September/October 2011 Left: Stephanie and Ollie in the warm up at the 2010 WEG.


Photo by Lisa Barry


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