CORRAL Celebrates Women’s History Month

To commemorate Women’s History Month, CORRAL Riding Academy is proud to celebrate the legacies of four remarkable women, spanning both past and present. This is a time to recognize and honor the significant contributions of women in the equestrian community. These women have had a profound impact on society, serving as role models to young people and inspiring them through their unwavering determination, resilience, and passion.

Caitlin Gooch

Caitlin Gooch, a North Carolina native, makes a positive impact through children literacy and equine activities. She first started out offering horseback riding lessons after the children she was working with found out she had horses. That later turned into a bigger purpose. As the founder of Saddle Up And Read and author of the Black Equestrian Coloring Book, Gooch is passionate about the history of the equestrian community and contributing to closing the gap.

Sarah Jiaya Rao

Sarah Rao represents Team China as a professional international dressage athlete. At age 15, Rao left China and moved to the UK to further her career in the equestrian world. Since practicing almost everyday for 10 years, Sarah has become an extremely successful rider. In 2023, she participated in the Asian games where her team scored silver for China. Rao also founded her own equestrian clothing brand: De Lunaria, which honors cultural heritage and encourages creative expression.

Kathryn Kusner

Kathryn “Kathy”  Kusner is known for accomplishing many firsts for women in the equestrian community. In 1962 (age 21), she joined the United States Equestrian Team and became one of the first women who rode for the team. With this team, she competed at three Olympics and won a silver medal for show jumping which also made her the first American woman to win an Olympic medal in an equestrian competition. Kusner also became the first licensed female jockey in 1968. Kathy is founder and chairman of the board of Horses In The Hood, a non-profit organization benefiting the inner-city community by providing lessons that teach skills and values associated with the care and riding of horses.

Diane Crump

Born in 1948, Diane Crump is best known for being an American jockey and skilled horse trainer. She has amassed over 228 wins in her career and was also the first woman to ride in a pari-mutuel race in the United States in 1969. After competing in this race, Crump was faced with extreme hostility because she was a woman, but she still reflects on this moment as an exciting opportunity. She went on to ride her first winning race two weeks later and later became the first woman to ride in the Kentucky Derby. Retiring in 1999, she now runs an equine sales business.

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CORRAL is a faith-motivated nonprofit that equips adolescent girls in high-risk situations through a long-term, holistic program of equine therapy and education.

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