Born and raised in Trinidad, W.I. to British parents, I started riding at age 12 on ex-racehorses and rode anything I had the chance to get on. My parents owned a 100-acre estate, where they raised citrus, bananas, hogs, teak and ran a restaurant.
After high school, I went to England and studied for the British Horse Society exams in stable management, riding and teaching. Heavy emphasis was placed on our ability to convey information in our teaching as well as on being an effective rider and trainer.
I received my BHS Assistant Instructor certificate in 1973. I then began working with Arabian horses at Calverton Lodge, owned by Mrs. Joan Ratcliff, now a British Arabian judge. During this time I earned my certificate for breeding and stud management from the National Pony Society of England.
I returned to the West Indies and worked in Barbados; taking
rides out along the beaches and doing show jumping
on the weekends before returning to England to further my studies in Dressage. While in England, I earned my
British Horse Society intermediate teaching certificate.
In the fall of 1976, I moved to the United States, working in Spartanburg, SC and then in Ocala, FL. I actively evented for many years, and continued to study and improve my riding skills in jumping and Dressage.
For the past 20 years, it has been my pleasure to train Arabians, specializing in Dressage, Show Hack and Hunters. I have earned the Bronze, Silver and Gold Medals from the United States Dressage Federation for scores over 60% from First Level through Grand Prix. I am proud to say that all of those scores were earned on Arabians. I have over 90 Regional Championships and Reserve Championships, 27 National Top Tens, 5 Reserve National Championships and 9 National Championships to my credit. Many of my students have also achieved Regional and National honors. In 1996, 1998 and 1999, the Arabian Trust named me Female Dressage Trainer of the Year.
In 1998, I started Greta Wrigley Training (aka GWT), a training center specializing in Dressage with an emphasis on Arabians, Half-Arabians and the amateur rider. We individualize our training methods to each specific horse and rider, and try to make the learning process fun and informative as well as effective. Our philosophy is that dressage is designed not only to be competitive, but also to have a good time. Our show record speaks for itself – GWT students have won at all levels of competition from schooling shows to the national level and from Introductory to FEI levels.
In addition to our training activities, we have an active clinic schedule, with clinics located primarily in the Southeastern United States. We work with a wide variety of horses and riders from beginners to Pan-Am Games competitors. I have coached the entry in the 2003 Pan-Am games and the 2010 Central American and Caribbean from Trinidad & Tobago. Clinics are 45 minute private sessions where we teach horses and riders to improve their skills by breaking things down into small steps and then showing them how to put the steps together to achieve their goals.
Jacquelyn Finlayson, Assistant Trainer
Jackie has been working for GWT since 2008 and is the heart and soul of our program. A talented rider, Jackie is a recipient of the USDF Rising Star award, and she and her own horse, BB, have been competing at Training and First level with scores to the high 70s
Jackie recently made her debut at Prix St. Georges with Greta’s Aabracadabra, with scores in the high 60s. Jackie has ridden with clinicians such as Jennie Lorriston-Clark, Max Gahwyler and Sandi Chohany.
In addition to her work as Assistant Trainer at GWT, Jackie is a talented photographer and her credits include the cover of the Arabian Sport Horse Nationals Prize list (VMA Khapur Khopi, Centerline Sport Horses).
email: Gretajwrigley@gmail.com with any inquiries