From a very young age, Michele knew that horses would be a big part of her life in some form or another. Lucky enough to have a mom who was passionate about horses, she started her career with her first pony, a P.O.A (Pony of the Americas) named Frosty. From there she moved on to showing Quarter Horses, where she had a successful youth career, winning several all-arounds, state year end awards, and a Congress top-ten. She knew then that she wanted to make a career out of horse training and coaching.
After graduating college with a degree in business, Michele went to work for her mentor and long time trainer, Gretchen Mathes. With the help of Gretchen and her business partner Gene Spagnola, Michele grew into a hard working, competent horse trainer. With Gretchen and Gene’s support, Michele leased some barn space and started Michele Carver Performance Horses in 2003. She grew her business into a strong, successful program specializing in youth and amateur all-around training and coaching. Michele bought her own farm in Broad Brook in 2008 where she continues teaching all levels of riding. She has trained and coached several superior event horses, regional champions, Congress champions and reserve champions and AQHA World Show qualifiers and finalists.
Michele learned from day one by her mother and carried on by Gretchen that the horses come first. Their care is her utmost concern. They are fed high quality hay and grain, are worked 5-6 days per week and are turned out on large grass pastures, something she feels is very important to their mental well-being.
Julie has been riding since she could remember. Her parents bought her her first pony at age five, and the rest is history. She started out doing 4H and open shows, winning many state and regional championships, and moved on to showing Quarter horses within a few years. She started her AQHA show career with TR Potts. Under his guidance she had a successful youth career, culminating in a 2011 Reserve Congress Champion in trail in her final year of youth competition.
From there she went on to the University of Connecticut where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Business. It was during this time that TR moved to South Carolina, and Julie began showing under Michele’s guidance. She soon realized that she wanted to make a career out of horse training and coaching, and became Michele’s assistant trainer.
Since then, Julie has become an integral part of the MCPH team. She has learned impeccable horse care from Michele’s program, and has become a competent and caring horse trainer. She especially enjoys the halter and trail events. Julie has continued her show career at MCPH, winning many state year-end and regional championships and coaching amateurs and youth to be equally successful. Julie has brought great depth to the all-around program as she has learned from many AQHA professionals including Jason Smith, Brett Clark and Gene Spagnola.