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Arabian days in Canada

Though his name might suggest otherwise, Captain Hook has been doing some wonderful things in 2013.

No, not the fictional man who serves as Peter Pan’s nemesis, but the horse named Captain Hook, owned by Sally Henry of Dickinson, who has spent the past year racking up regional and national dressage (an equestrian sport) competition accolades.

 Housed at Prairie Rose Training Center in Bismarck, Captain Hook is an Arabian pinto gelding who twice earned top honors this year in dressage competitions at the Canadian Nationals in August, an event put on by the Arabian Horse Association, bringing his career total of national championships to eight.

PRTC co-owner Karla Stanley said Captain Hook has a chance of advancing to Olympic competition.

“He’s starting to kind of knock on the door a little bit,” Stanley said. “He’s up at what we call the FEI level right now, which is a little below the Olympic-level Grand Prix platform, but he’s a very impressive horse. With eight national championships to his credit, Captain Hook is a very highly seasoned competitor.”

Along with Hook, Henry also has another Canadian national champion horse that trains full-time at PRTC in Déjà vu, an Arabian/Percheron mare. Henry keeps two other competitive dressage horses — a pinto Arabian gelding named Scrimshah and a pinto Hanoverian/Arabian stallion named Wolkenzorro — at her stables 12 miles east of Dickinson.

“I’m so proud of these horses and how well they have represented North Dakota in prestigious national competitions,” Henry said. “These are local horses and, no matter what your riding background or experience, I just want people to know that there are good trainers out there who are even willing to come to the Dickinson area to train. Dressage can yield big benefits. If we can do it, so can others.”

Karla and her daughter, Mimi Stanley, co-own PRTC and have trained 11 of Henry’s horses over the years. PRTC features an indoor arena and specializes mainly in English riding, along with classical and Western dressage instruction. PRTC offers instruction to riders across the Midwest.

“They have been my trainers for 20 years,” Henry said. “They’ve always done a great job with my horses and they’re great to work with.”

In dressage, horse and rider must correctly perform an increasingly difficult set of exercises, ranging from basic skills to complicated movements at the Grand Prix level, where horses appear to dance, according to a press release from PRTC.

Mark and Sally Henry are owners of Mark’s Tire Service in Dickinson.



Bryan Horwath
A Wisconsin native, Horwath has been covering news in the Oil Patch of North Dakota since 2012. Horwath currently serves as the senior agriculture and political reporter for The Dickinson Press and, despite the team's tendency to always let him down, remains a diehard Minnesota Vikings fan.
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