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Congratulations to the 2022 van Schaik Dressage Scholarship Recipient!

January 5, 2022


Cassandra Black and Hazelrun Fly On - Photo Courtesy of The Morgan Horse Magazine

The AMHA is proud to announce the AMHECT 2022 van Schaik Memorial Dressage Scholarship recipient, Cassandra Black of Douglass, Kansas.  Cassandra was chosen from a group of four talented candidates. Congratulations, Cassandra! 

Cassandra has been riding since she was a young girl. One of her first lesson horses was a Morgan named Court. He inspired her to join the AMHA Youth Program at age 12. Years later, she rediscovered the Morgan horse when attending the 2010 Morgan Grand Nationals to watch a friend show in Dressage. She had been riding Dressage since moving to Wichita, KS in 2000. Previously, Cassandra had been showing in rail classes as a young adult and felt that there had to be more to offer herself and her horses. Her Dressage journey began, and it offered what she was looking for. 

“Using the circle of energy to always encourage my horse was exhilarating,” said Cassandra. After achieving many Dressage successes by working with a trainer and training her Thoroughbred to Prix St George, she earned a USDF Bronze Medal in 2002 and Fourth level scores toward her USDF Silver Medal in 2003. Following a hiatus to have her two daughters, Cassandra returned to showing and in 2009 was ranked in the top 20 in the nation in the Dover Adult Amateur Medal for 2nd level on a Warmblood mare that she took from Training level to Second level. Cassandra said, “My circle has some wavy lines, false starts and pauses over the years but every circle comes back to the starting point and watching my friend show at the Morgan Grand National helped me see how much the Morgan offers the sport of Dressage. The willingness and trainability, combined with the compact size, forwardness, and ability to collect make the Morgan an ideal horse to take up the levels in Dressage.”

Cassandra currently competes with her Morgan mare, HAZELRUN FLY ON (Hazel) who is a true ambassador for the Morgan as a Dressage horse. They have been showing together since 2017 and because of a strong social media presence Hazel is now recognized when they attend shows and clinics in their area. “When I started showing Hazel,” said Cassandra, “she was the only Morgan showing in Traditional Dressage in the area. She stood out among the Thoroughbreds and Warmbloods that were showing and always attracted attention with her correct tests and fun personality.” This talented team showed at 2nd level in 2021, doing several USDF recognized shows and competed with a 2nd level Musical Freestyle at local schooling shows and at Morgan Grand Nationals this year.

The van Schaik Memorial Dressage Scholarship is awarded in memory of Dr. H.L.M. van Schaik who fought to preserve the classical art of Horsemanship in Dressage. To learn more about the scholarship and how to apply, please visit the website HERE

Thank you, Cassandra, and all our applicants, for your dedication to this beautiful and challenging discipline. You are awesome Morgan ambassadors, and we wish you the best in 2022!  Applications for the 2023 van Schaik Scholarship will be due by November 30, 2022.