Wellington Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer Endel Ots has the secret sauce when it comes to bringing along young dressage prospects, and an undeniable talent for producing horses capable of competing in the international arena. Not only is Ots a star in the saddle, he is a skilled, sought-after clinician.
Denver rider Layne Stowell brought her 13-year-old Oldenburg gelding Rolex Tyme to train with Ots at his recent two-day clinic at Reverie Farms in Longmont, Colo. Not only did the pair make big strides toward their ultimate goal of competing at the Grand Prix level, Stowell was selected by Ots as the Most Improved Rider and was honored by Choice of Champions with a certificate and prize pack.
“She had a wonderful connection with her gelding, and it was very evident in her riding,” Ots said.
Riders who train with Ots walk away with a wealth of knowledge and brimming with positive things to say. “This is my first time working with Endel,” Stowell said. “I watched him in a demonstration ride at the World Cup and had always wanted to ride with him.”
Reverie Farms owner Nancy Davis and her daughter, Gaylen, who will graduate from high school a semester early and move to Florida to train with Ots, also rode in the clinic.
“Endel is just so brilliant with the horses; he gets what’s happening with the horse at any given moment and then he really makes you up your game,” Davis said. “I rode with him on Saturday and Sunday, and on Sunday my horse felt better than he ever had to me. I felt like we had taken six months of lessons literally overnight.”
Ots had a banner year in 2017, traveling back and forth from the United States to Europe to coach and train riders and horses. Recently, Ots’ seven-year-old Hanoverian gelding Lucky Strike won Reserve Champion in the Developing Prix St. Georges at the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Dressage Horse National Championships with Ots at the helm. This success extended an already notable show record, as they also qualified for these championships in 2015 and 2016, along with the FEI World Breeding Championships for Young Dressage Horses in Verden, Germany. Ots is now looking forward to the 2018 Small Tour CDI season in Wellington.
Originally from Wisconsin, Ots worked in the Chicago area for eight years before accepting a training opportunity with Hubertus Schmidt in Germany. From there, he went to Wellington and studied under Lars Petersen, yet another top trainer who had a great impact on the young trainer’s future and success in the arena. In 2011, Ots was alternate for the Pan American gold medal team for the United States. Ots currently operates Ots Dressage, his own training and sales business, in Wellington’s exclusive Grand Prix Village.