Q&A with Todd Minikus on the Washington International Horse Show

Top grand prix rider Todd Minikus talks about what it’s like to compete in the nation’s capital.

Q: At the Washington International Horse Show, is it a problem to cope with the urban setting where horses are stabled on the street and the warm-up area indoors is small?
A: When you walk through the barn area, it’s easy to see the horses are comfortable. The size of the stalls is the same as any other show we go to. The [very small] warm-up area is more of a rider problem than a horse problem.

Todd Minikus and Bablou | Photo © Nancy Jaffer

Q:  Do you enjoy Washington D.C. when you’re not riding?
A: There are a lot of nice things to do in the city, and you have time during the day to do those things, which is rare for a lot of shows.

Q: Where do you go during the day?
A: I like all history, so going to everything from Ford’s Theater to the National Portrait Gallery, I’m in for it.

Q: Do you have a favorite restaurant?
A: Rosa Mexicano, across the street from the Verizon Center. The guacamole is awesome.

Q: How long have you been competing at Washington?
A: The first year I went, 1990, I won every class at the show. I won the President’s Cup that Year. There were 19 years between the first time I won it and the next time I won it [in 2009]. Washington is always going to be an important horse show to me.

Todd Minikus won the President’s Cup at the 2009 Washington International Horse Show riding Alaska | Photo © Nancy Jaffer

Q: How do you feel about the Washington International Horse Show as part of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League?
A: As far as a qualifier for the World Cup™, it’s a great show because it actually is indoors. When we’re qualifying for the [Longines FEI] World Cup™ Final, which is basically the world indoor championships, I think it’s absolutely important that we qualify indoors, not outdoors.


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