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Sarah Hollis is the owner and head trainer of Tintagel Enterprises Ltd., a holistic equestrian facility that breeds Andalusians and Drum horses, and trains them for both riding and specialty media work.

While Sarah began her riding career at the age of three, riding Thoroughbreds and Saddlebreds in hunter and pleasure divisions, her interest soon turned to dressage.
Similar to her fine arts studies, dressage utilized elements of concentration and discipline.
The combination of technical knowledge and creative intuition required for both subjects
appealed to Sarah’s innate artistic sense, and her love of the sciences.

Art & Dressage – The Foundation

“Being a bit of a scientist I love getting the horse as bio-mechanically correct as possible. Dressage
combined my interests of fact based science with the freedom and expression of the art world, and that suited me perfectly.”

Basic dressage training provides the skills and foundation on which art can be developed. As basics are learned,
strength, poise, and musculature develop and provide the foundation on which movement can expand
and become more beautiful.

“It’s very similar to a musician who learns and perfects the scales. After all of those foundation skills become
unconscious and second nature then the artistic expression of those learned skills combine, often
in brilliant, unexpected ways.”

Similar to the dressage masters of France and Portugal, Sarah utilizes the classical approach to dressage
riding and training.  “Classical riding is bio-mechanically correct riding. A body is either working in
harmony with all of its other body parts or it’s not.” “Harmony is the end result and the beginning
point to everything -- To all interactions between horse and rider. Harmony is where partnerships develop.”

Partnership & Dressage Lead to Trick Training & Media Performances

In addition to the art of dressage, Sarah had been a fan of the circus arts, and the deep partnerships
that were apparent in the best trainers’ acts. “For (circus) tricks, and even more so for liberty work,
the horse must be paying close attention to you so that you can give a cue at a distance, with just a look,
or a hand gesture. The horse learns to understand and read your thoughts, and you learn to read his.
And because you are often working without tack you must have a trusting partnership - that partnership
is what keeps the horse ‘connected’ to you.”

Her own personal equine trick training career started when her veterinarian told her “you’d better
teach him tricks because he’ll never be good for much else”, referring to one of her old horses. That was
nearly thirty years ago. Over the years, Sarah has honed her skills and developed an array of tricks and
acts for her horses. Sarah has become known in the horse, fashion and entertainment industries for both
her equine media training expertise and for the consistency of her horse models’ and actors’ performances.

Tintagel horses have been seen and featured in many national media campaigns and publications.
These include an Annie Leibovitz photo shoot featured in Vogue (2008), a photo shoot by Steven Klein
for the Spanish fashion house Loewe, an ad campaign for Ralph Lauren, a TV commercial for
Morgan Stanley Bank, a promo spot for Animal Planet and many editorial spreads that have
appeared in Europe and the US.  Sarah’s horses have also been featured in several books, including
Dump Him, Marry the Horse, 101 Uses for a Horse, Horses and Heart of the Horse, a book comprised
almost entirely of Tintagel horses and shot in the Tintagel studios. A forthcoming book is
Pony Dances featuring Escorial.

Breeding – Andalusians & Drums

Sarah began breeding Andalusians in 1996 (she has been working with the breed for over twenty five years),
and has most recently added Drum horses to her breeding program. “Andalusians and Drums are crowd
pleasers and they always stand out.  Their look and flash make them naturals for media work. The athletic build
of both breeds make them very competitive in the show ring and strong contenders in all equestrian disciplines.”

The Tintagel breeding program is specifically geared towards producing Andalusians and Drums with great
athleticism, rare coloring and exceptional talent.   In fact, Sarah refers to her horses as ‘works of art’.
“They are masterpieces of athleticism, rarity and talent.  Tintagel horses are one-of-a-kind horses.”

The Tintagel Andalusians have placed in the top five at the National Championships, and have received
top honors for USDF (United States Dressage Federation) Dressage Sport Horse Breeding division’s year
end awards, on both the national and regional levels. Tintagel Drums are also competing in the
USDF DSHB (Dressage Sport Horse Breeding) divisions, with the Tintagel bred filly Sieglinde being
undefeated in her breed classes.

Tintagel = Total Horse Care

Sarah explains why she uses the holistic approach to breeding, raising and training all of the Tintagel horses.
“The holistic approach means looking at the whole horse. Is the horse’s whole life balanced and as
natural as possible? At Tintagel, all aspects of the horse’s life are examined.”

“I get the best health professionals to work on my young horses. Most people wait until a horse starts
training or they start having problems, to bring in holistic forms of health care like chiropractic
or acupuncture. I start all of that care from the time the horses are born, so they have the
best chance of never having problems in the first place.”

“At Tintagel, we integrate all aspects of horse care and training, so that we produce the healthiest,
happiest and most correct horse possible. A well balanced horse – mentally, emotionally and
physically, is a successful horse, and Tintagel produces successful horses.”

Associations/Affiliations:

Dressage:
USDF - United States Dressage Federation
            ~ All Breeds Committee Member
USEF - United States Equestrian Federation
            ~ Andalusian Committee Member 2005-2008
NEDA - New England Dressage Association

Andalusians:
IALHA - International Andalusian and Lusitano Horse Association
            ~ USDF liaison for IALHA 1999-2008
            ~ Board of Directors for the IALHA 1992-2001
            ~ Show Committee for IALHA 1996 – 2000
            ~ Magazine committee for IALHA 2005 - 2008
The Foundation for the Pure Spanish Horse
            ~ Advisory Board 2008- current

Drums:
The American Drum Horse Association
The American Shire Horse Association

 

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