A member of this team for more than 20 years, Lisa and Hap have quite a history. Together they have seen the world, literally. As with any great athlete, horses perform at their best when they are well cared for. Lisa has and continues to play a starring role in that scenario.
As a kid, Lisa always wanted a horse. She began riding lessons at an early age, had her own horse and practically lived at the barn. Lessons led to showing as a junior and then as an amateur. With a desire to stay close to what makes show horses successful, Lisa’s began her professional career as a groom over 30 years ago.
What makes Lisa smile about her job? Seeing baby horses move up the ranks, watching clients do well; showing, traveling and keeping the horses happy and healthy. And of course, “winning is always a great feeling.” When asked to choose a favorite horse in the barn, her response is “there are so many – it’s hard for me to name them all.”
jesus “chuy” huerta
Another intricate member of the team, Jesus, affectionately known as “Chuy” has worked with Hap for over 10 years and has been working in the horse show industry for more than three decades. He is an excellent and experienced groom for everything from the Hunter Derbies, to the Junior Equitation Finals, to the International FEI Grand Prixs. His expertise and skill are an invaluable asset to the HHS Team both at home and on the road. When asked what he likes about his job, Chuy claims “everything.”
Chuy not only loves the horses, the travel and the horse shows, he truly admires his boss. “There are so many funny stories,” he explained, “You know Hap, he’s always funny. You never know what he’s going to come up with. He gives you a hard time and jokes around, always makes you smile, but you never know when it’s coming.”
Trudi fletcher - ASSISTaNT trainer
Another long-term member of this group, Trudi has trained and worked with Hap for more than 30 years. She began riding with him at age 11, showed juniors until age 18, and then began her professional career remaining loyal to Hap.
Riding her first horse at the age of four, Trudi knew her destiny at early age. She explained, “I love horses so much; I love to show, and to teach, and watching the progression of the horse and rider.” Two horses that hold a special place in Trudi’s heart are Nouveau Riche (Richie) and Lorelei.
Trudi is not only an exceptional assistant trainer, but a very accomplished rider. As a junior, she was one of the top equitation riders in Southern California, and as a professional she has successfully piloted many of our young horses to Regional Championships and has even competed in a World Cup Qualifier.
Christine praefke - assistant trainer
Christine has been in the horse industry for over 25 years. For the last 10 of those years, she’s has been a part of Hap’s team. She keeps the operation running smoothly at home, while Hap, Lisa, Chuy and Trudi are on the road competing with clients.
Prior to her career at Hap Hansen Stables, Christine worked for and trained under some of the top riders in our sport, including icons such as Damien Gardiner.
She takes great pride in the development of the relationship, and improvement, of both horse and rider. “I love watching our riders’ relationships grow with their horses.”