Ashley Stout passed away on Thursday, July 11, 2019, following an accident while riding at Standing Ovation Equestrian Center (SOEC) in Halfmoon Township, Pennsylvania. Stout was 13 years old. In an interview with The Centre Daily Times, SOEC owner Adam Armstrong said, “Stout was riding her horse, Avant Garde, about 9:20 a.m. when the two were involved in a rotational fall. The horse landed on top of Stout, broke [his] neck and was euthanized.” Stout was transported by ambulance to Mount Nittany Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead, according to Port Matilda EMS.
Stout joined the USEA in 2016 and had actively been eventing for the last three years. In 2017, she won the Junior Beginner Novice Under 14 division at the USEA American Eventing Championships riding Deo Volente. The pair finished on their dressage score of 19.8.
Stout began riding Avant Garde in the spring of 2018 and the pair had zero cross-country penalties in their 15 USEA starts together. Avant Garde was a 7-year-old Westphalian gelding (A la Carte x Mensa) who evented through the Training level with Holly Payne Caravella before Stout purchased him. Stout and Avant Garde won the Junior/Young Rider Open Training division at the NJ Region’s Horse Trial in June and most recently finished second in the Preliminary/Training division at the Bucks County Horse Park H.T.
Stout was recently selected to ride on the Area II Young Rider Training Three-Day team traveling to The Event at Rebecca Farm later this month. She was also planning to groom for the Area II North American Youth Championships (NAYC) team. Information about her journey to NAYC can be found here.
The USEA Area II Young Rider program is promoting the use of the hashtag #ride4Ashley in Stout’s memory for the upcoming Championships and beyond.
The USEA sends its heartfelt condolences to Stout’s parents, Susan and Craig, family, friends, and connections.
Details of Stout's celebration of life have been released. Friends will be received from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. on Monday, July 15, 2019 at Koch Funeral Home (2401 S. Atherton Street, State College, Pa.). The funeral service will be at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at Good Shepherd Catholic Church (867 Grays Woods Blvd, Port Matilda, Pa.) with a luncheon to follow. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to the Area II Young Riders Program in Stout's name.
The 2020 show season has looked a bit different than any of us anticipated, and for many people season-planning was placed on hold. In an episode that was recorded before the COVID-19 pandemic, Nicole Brown and Diarm Byrne welcome international five-star eventer Will Coleman and British high performance veterinarian Spike "The Vet" Milligan to the show to discuss some of the considerations for planning your season from each of their unique perspectives.
Any riding exercise is about the art of the possible. This is especially true with jumping exercises, when a step too far will compromise safety. Exercises and a method should be developed progressively that build confidence and competence for both horse and rider, and in particular also allows room for error.
In the show jumping phase, where a ribbon can be won or lost based on a fraction of a second, it is important to understand the rules that determine how time is kept. After reviewing the rules concerning time and other show jumping penalties, one should also examine the rules that outline the faults incurred for each of the different types of penalties.
Sue Ockendon, organizer of the MARS Bromont CCI Three-Day Event and the FEI Eventing Nations Cup announced today that the event has decided to consider dates further along the calendar. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult for Bromont to confirm that it would be possible for competitors to travel on August 15-18.