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.
All the major contenders passed the eventing final horse inspection at the Tokyo Olympics and will carry on to contest the show jumping phase in a few hours’ time.
The ground jury (Nick Burton, GBR, Christina Klingspor, SWE, and the U.S.A.’s Jane Hamlin) and vets only failed to accept one horse - Fantastic Frieda, ridden by Poland’s Joanna Pawlak, who had completed the cross-country in 41st place with a refusal and 25.2 time-faults.
The FEI has announced that the Swiss horse Jet Set, ridden by Robin Godel has had to be euthanized after pulling up extremely lame on the Sea Forest Cross Country Course during Equestrian Eventing at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on August 1, 2021.
In 2002, at the age of 15, I was at my Aunt and Uncle’s farm in Maine while Tremaine Cooper was there building some cross-country jumps. I helped him build a trakehner, not realizing that this day would set the course for my future. A few weeks later he called asking if I could help him at Millbrook Horse Trials. From there I helped Tremaine during most of my school vacations and throughout the summers. After graduating high school I kept at it never looking back. I lived the gypsy lifestyle for about six years going from coast to coast and event to event. In 2013 my wife Kathryn and I settled down in Lexington, Kentucky. These days I spend roughly 60-75 percent of my time on the road preparing events or building private schooling areas. I’ve had the privilege of being involved with some really great events around the states and have cultivated many friendships all over the country. In 2019 I was asked to be a part of Team Evans Olympic cross-country building crew. As I write this I am on my third trip to Tokyo. Here’s a day in Tokyo . . .
The British team cemented their gold medal position at the Tokyo Olympics with three magnificent cross-country performances, all clear inside the time. Added to that, their first rider, Oliver Townend, holds pole position individually after the dressage leader, Germany’s Michael Jung, picked up 11 penalties for triggering a frangible device.