The Driving Training Center
Don has been involved in the driving world for the last 20 years. He has been competing in Combined Driving, in the Northwest since it’s beginning here, 19 years ago. Don and navigator Lisa, along with his one of a kind horse Gem, won many Combined Driving events in the US as well as in Canada, through the upper levels, until her retirement in 1998.
After many successful seasons in Combined Driving as well as pleasure shows, Don decided to go ahead and train professionally, after the many requests to do so. He has been professionally training for over 12 years. As well as competing, coaching, training horses and officiating, Don has served in numerous capacities with national and local equestrian organizations and filled almost every conceivable position for horse competition management. This includes 2 years as Director of Equestrian Institutes Combined Driving Committee and a stint as an ADS Technical Delegate. In addition, he was responsible for establishing “Equifriends” disabled driving program.
Don and his wife Lisa own and operate the Driving Training Center in Snohomish, Washington along with the boarding facility French Creek Stables. They train all breeds and sizes of horses from Mini’s to Clydesdales. All horses are started with complete and gentle groundwork in a relaxed atmosphere, stressing safety and the driver/horse relationship.
Lisa, with 28 years of horse experience, is a valuable asset to the Training Center. Her ridden dressage experience, as applied to the driving horses, is one of the primary reasons the horses go on the bit, bend, and go round. With 16 years as Don’s partner and navigator in the driving competitions, she knows her way around a horse and carriage, but the time spent on the horses back in a training situation is what makes her shine.
Emma Dye has been successfully training and competing in Region 6 through Intermediare I. Her students, both children and adults, ranging from beginners to upper level riders. Emma’s individual, compassionate, positive approach to training is fun and inviting. For 20 years Emma Dye has trained and competed through the
F.E.I. Levels. She has earned many USDF awards for musical Freestyles, All Breeds, (American Saddlebred, Prix St. Georges) and a USDF Silver Medal. Emma is British Horse Society and P.D.I.A. certified. Ongoing education and continuing development as a trainer are priorities for Emma. She participates in clinics, both as a student and an instructor. This continuing education offers constant growth to her students and horses. Because classical dressage is so beneficial to all horses she welcomes all breeds. Her broad
training experience includes work over fences, starting young horses, behavior modification and change of careers.
USDF Silver Medalist Winner 1997
USDF Horse of the Year, 4th Level Musical Freestyle on Patron
Winner 1997 USDF Prix St. Georges All Breeds Award on My Privateer.
Trained with Debbie Dewitt, Miguel Roalo Duarte, Kathleen Raine, Steffen Peters, Henrik Johansen and Dr. Cesar Parra