About Us - Meet the Team
Sara Schmitt Dressage, LLC is owned and operated by USEF ‘S’ Dressage Judge, Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer and international combined driver, Sara Schmitt. In July 2021, Sara relocated her training base to Riverfield Farm in Annandale, NJ. The facility offers 42 stalls, indoor arena with new sand and rubber footing and mirrors, large outdoor arena, grass driving arena, riding fields, and numerous turnout areas making it the perfect boarding and training environment.
Sara and her team are pleased to offer training and lesson packages in dressage and combined driving to students of all levels from beginner to Grand Prix. Trailer-ins are welcome. Sara also has a selection of quality horses for sale and offers her services to help you search for your next partner.
Photo by Regina Bann
Sara Schmitt - Head Trainer
Sara Schmitt is a Grand Prix dressage rider, trainer, instructor, USEF 'S' judge, ADS 'r' judge and international combined driving competitor. Sara has her USDF Bronze, Silver and Gold Medals and numerous regional and national awards to her name. She is recognized for her professionalism in the sport, her long list of accomplishments, and her proven ability to bring both horses and riders up the levels in dressage and driving. For over 25 years, Sara has trained horses and riders from the early stages through the FEI levels, many of them becoming competitive on the regional and national level. In 2015, Sara and her German Riding Pony HB Dschafar won the National Championship for Second Level Freestyle Open at the US Dressage Finals in Lexington, Kentucky. Sara and Jafar made their Grand Prix debut in July 2018.
In combined driving, Sara is a two-time USEF National Champion in the FEI Single Pony division and has represented the US at three FEI World Pony Championships. In 2014, Sara coached the bronze medal winning US team at the FEI World Para Equestrian Driving Championships for Singles in Sandringhan, Great Britain. With her New Forest/KWPN gelding, Kaboom, Sara was short listed for the US Team for the 2012 FEI World Singles Championships and the following year placed 8th at the US Dressage Finals for Grand Prix.
Sara was a 2011 recipient of the Major Anders Lindgren Scholarship Grant for instructors, awarded by the Dressage Foundation, which provided her with the opportunity to train with Belinda Nairn-Wertman in Ocala during the winter of 2012. In recent years, Sara has trained frequently with Pam Goodrich, Jim Koford and Lars Petersen as well as Charlotte Lassetter, Catherine Haddad-Staller, Jan Ebeling and Uwe Steiner.
Maggie O'Leary - Assistant Trainer
Maggie O’Leary is a USDF Bronze, Silver and Gold medalist with a Bachelor of Science in Equestrian Science, concentrating in dressage, from William Woods University. She is also a USDF 'L' Graduate and judges schooling shows around the area. Before coming to Sara Schmitt Dressage, Maggie worked for Samantha and Pierre St Jaques for two years at North Star Farm. She has also had the opportunity to ride with Pam Goodrich, Jan Ebling, Catherine Haddad-Staller, Claudio Oliveira and Jim Koford.
Maggie was invited to participate in the Platinum Performance/USDF FEI Jr/YR Clinic series for Region 9 with Jan Ebeling in 2010. In 2012, she was also one of thirty young rider professionals chosen to participate in the USDF Jr/YR Graduate Program, sponsored by The Dressage Foundation, in West Palm Beach, Florida. She is an active competitor having successfully shown a variety of horses from training through Grand Prix and teaches students of all ages from beginners to FEI. In 2018 she was Fourth Level Reserve Champion at the National Dressage Pony Cup with Full Mountain’s Melvin. In 2021 she qualified and competed Iron, a dutch harness horse started by Sara Schmitt Dressage, at the US Dressage Finals in Lexingtion, KY in Training and First Level.
Since joining our team in November 2015, Maggie has taken an interest in combined driving. At the USEF Preliminary Championships in 2018, Maggie won the bronze medal in the single pony division with Sara Schmitt’s morgan pony Chandler’s Creek Eclipse and in 2019 she was the USEF Preliminary National Champion in the single horse division with Sara Schmitt's dutch harness horse Goldwine of TVF. In 2018 she was also accepted into the USEF Developing Driver Program and has had the opportunity to work with Thorsten Zarembowicz, Tracey Morgan and Edouard Simonet.
Photo by Stacy Lynne Photography
We are looking for a working student! Opportunity for riding, lessons and competing. Housing an be arranged. Fun and friendly atmosphere!
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
Full-Time Barn Help
We are looking for a full-time barn worker 5-6 days a week. Work includes but not limited to stalls, water troughs, feeding, turnout. etc. Potential to work off lessons/riding. Contact email@example.com if you are interested.