The Heritage Pony Program

Take an inside look at Heritage Farm's storied Pony Program, which has produced Champions for the last three decades.

Learn more about Heritage's championship preparation; their uniquely specialized staff; their past champions; and the role ponies play as teachers in a rider's development in this mini documentary.

Andre Dignelli's Heritage Farm has produced some of the equestrian sport's most decorated athletes, from Olympic silver medalist and former World No. 1 Kent Farrington to World Equestrian Games gold medalist Adrienne Sternlicht and five-star Grand Prix winner Lillie Keenan. "Success starts" at Heritage, who has also produced five USEF Grand Pony Hunter Champions and five winners of the USEF Pony Medal Final.

  • Catie Staszak
  • Victoria Sheehan
  • Victoria Sheehan
  • Catie Staszak
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature, Short
  • Runtime:
    9 minutes 27 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 1, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Catie Staszak, Victoria Sheehan

Catie Staszak:
Catie Staszak is a multimedia sports journalist, the CEO of Catie Staszak Media, Inc., and the color commentator and journalist for the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ North American League. Staszak has announced at showjumping events across the globe, and in 2018, she moderated at the FEI Sports Forum in Lausanne, Switzerland. In 2021, she received the inaugural AHP Equine Media NextGen Award for making “a significant impact in advancing equine media while upholding journalistic excellence, integrity, and trust in a competitive communications world.”

A competitive equestrian of more than 25 years, Staszak combined her two greatest passions into a career after graduating at the top of her class from the University of Miami with a degree in broadcast journalism in 2014. Staszak is ambitious and driven individual dedicated to going the extra mile to share compelling stories and increase the mainstream exposure of the equestrian sports.

Victoria Sheehan:
After more than 10 years working in TV and video production, the foundation of everything Victoria Sheehan has done is to do the story justice. From local news stations to universities, sports organizations and national TV networks, getting stories to shine or clients with style and flare is her specialty. Sheehan is a documentarian at heart, with a great passion for equestrian sports, as she continues to ride and compete. With her Rule 76 Productions, she has collaborated on various projects with Catie Staszak Media.

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Director Statement

Heritage Farm is one of the most storied programs in equestrian sports, and it's an incredible experience to see all that goes into running such a massive, yet detail-oriented operation. For Heritage, producing champions starts at a young age, and USEF Pony Finals is a critically important first championship for young, up-and-coming riders. Ponies play a unique role in a rider's development, doing all that top horses do—but, as trainer Patricia Griffith points out, "maybe a little bit more on their own." To have so much of Heritage's staff involved in this project made this project such a joy to work on. This was an educational experience and an honor to showcase.