meet our coach

jenniferleepic.png

HEAD COACH JENNIFER LEE

lee@middleburgacademy.org

Jennifer Lee grew up riding ponies with her best friend through the woods of Virginia. With retired racehorse Meet the Challenge, a gift from the venerable Eve Fout, Coach Lee earned her “B”-rating with the Middleburg Orange County (MOC) Pony Club.

During college at St. Lawrence University, she rode on their Equestrian Team and after graduating, worked for Yale University managing and teaching in its riding and summer camps programs.

Coach Lee moved to Hong Kong in 1993 where she was hired by the Hong Kong Jockey Club’s retired racehorse retraining program. At that time she took on the diminutive You Bet, an American thoroughbred by Afleet. With the 15hh You Bet, Coach Lee broke Hong Kong’s ten-year standing Puissance record, setting a new record that still stands.

Coach Lee was named to Hong Kong’s international showjumping team, and represented Hong Kong in Taiwan, Thailand, Japan, India, and South Korea. She won an Individual or Team medal at all but one of the competitions she attended. At home in Hong Kong she competed in the FEI World Jumping and World Dressage Challenges and won the Hong Kong leg of the World Jumping Challenge three times.

With Hong Kong set to host the Equestrian events of the 2008 Olympics, Coach Lee paired up with the Australian-bred Mr Burns, a pet food factory rescue, retired racehorse turned Grand Prix jumper. Coach Lee was selected for sponsorship by the Hong Kong Jockey Club and took Mr Burns to Europe to compete. There, she and Mr Burns qualified for the Olympics and were named to Hong Kong's showjumping team. Unfortunately a lameness while in quarantine meant they couldn’t compete, and Coach Lee became broadcast commentator for the showjumping portion of the Games.

After the Olympics, Coach Lee was named to Hong Kong’s Asian Games Eventing team with Strong Scotch, a UK-bred thoroughbred that had raced and retired in Hong Kong. The team placed fourth, missing bronze by a fraction of a point. Following that, Coach Lee rode Tommy Kwan’s Magical Lot to Hong Kong’s “Eventing Horse of the Year” title.

At the showjumping qualifier for the London Olympics held in Aachen, Germany, Coach Lee placed third in the Group G Individual portion with her Holsteiner Carry Star.

Although she trained with George Morris and Katie Monahan Prudent early in her career, in Hong Kong she had to work problems out on her own, figuring out how to get the best out of retired racehorses. This led to her insightful way of teaching which gets to the root of how to achieve a horse and rider’s best showjumping round. Coach Lee has been referred to as an instructor “who thinks things through”.