Halliday-Sharp prepares for busy winter with launch of Cooley Horses International

  • New venture selling specially selected Irish horses from the US
  • British-based Californian has relocated to Florida for the winter months

Professional equestrian Liz Halliday-Sharp has embarked on an exciting new venture this winter by crossing the Atlantic to launch Cooley Horses International in conjunction with Richard and Georgina Sheane.

Following a busy eventing season that has seen Liz compete across the UK and Europe, the British-based Californian will undertake the ambitious winter plan in partnership with Richard and Georgina of Cooley Sport Horses. In the coming months they will offer high-standard Irish-bred horses for sale in Ocala, Florida, with those chosen hand-picked for their talent and suitability. To ensure its smooth running, Liz will be based in Florida throughout the winter months before returning to the UK in May 2015.

“I am thrilled to be working with Cooley Sport Horses on this new venture,” confirmed Liz. “Our goal is to showcase world-class young horses, offer them for sale in the States, and to do so with an open and honest approach. The first flight of horses arrived last week and they have all settled in really well. After all the work and planning it is very exciting to finally be out here!”

The USEF High Performance Training Listed Rider can count on a highly respected partner for the project, with Richard having forged his reputation selling top-quality Irish Sport Horses and working alongside the world’s best riders and owners.

“Richard had planned to come to Florida with horses for some time and when we purchased the farm it seemed like a natural progression,” Liz revealed. “He is an excellent businessman, has a great eye for horses and, most importantly, is a very honest person. He’s found a number of good horses for me during the past few years so I have a great deal of faith in his judgement. Together, I hope that we can establish a successful and long-lasting venture.”

Richard is equally excited about the chance to work with Liz, commenting: “This is a great opportunity to offer top class Cooley Sport Horses to the American customer on their own soil.”

The first group have all been campaigned by Liz during the 2014 eventing season. The initial trio is made up of Chaco (Cooley Ground Control), Flynn (Cooley Cruise Control) and Joey (Cooley All Business).

As a professional equestrian, Liz is also relishing the opportunity to compete on home soil again during her stay in Florida.

“From a competitive standpoint I’ve been away from the States for 15 years,” said Liz. “As well as focusing on Cooley Horses International, this gives me a chance to properly reacquaint myself with the USA and to be a part of the eventing scene out here again.

“My end goal for this trip is to compete at the Rolex Kentucky CCI4* next April with Cooley (HHS Cooley) and Blackie (Fernhill By Night). I feel very lucky to have a few good horses at the moment, and this is a great opportunity to give it all we’ve got. Hopefully being over here will also give me the chance to have more training with team coach David O’Connor and to be in front of the selectors ahead of the Pan Am and Olympic Games that are coming up in 2015 and 2016.”

“I’m also hoping to find more owners and supporters to work alongside while we’re in Florida,” continued Liz. “I’ll be looking to teach, take in horses for training and sales, and essentially do the same as I have done in the UK.”

Those wishing to enquire about Cooley Horses International can find more information on the Chailey Stud Equestrian Centre website. Alternatively, Liz and Richard can both be contacted via email.