Get to know For Horses sponsored rider Abigail McArdle as she takes on the 2021 Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, with Plain Bay Farm.
Take a look at Abigail McArdle's resume, and you'll quickly discover an accomplished rider. At just 26 years old, McArdle boasts a decade of FEI results, from international Grand Prix wins to an individual gold medal from the 2012 North American Young Rider Championships.
But walk a mile in her shoes, and it will become apparent that McArdle's success has been hard-earned. At the 2021 Winter Equestrian Festival, McArdle gets in full days working for Adam Prudent and Katie Monahan Prudent's Plain Bay Farm, holding a variety or roles.
"We've got a lot of great horses right now. We have 19 in the stable here in Wellington," McArdle said. "I ride some of the sale horses, and I help with the clients. Right now, I'm also doing barn managing, some grooming—these clothes, they can do it all!"
McArdle has been a For Horses sponsored rider for the past four years, having joined forces with the company upon its entrance from Italy into the American market. At the time, McArdle had yet to be partnered with Chuck Berry 8 or her current top mount Victorio 5, horses that have made her a competitive force at the international level. Since signing on, both rider and brand have grown together.
"It’s been great to watch the brand develop, because it was a pretty new brand in the United States at the time," McArdle said. "I’d say now, they’re at the top. I see For Horses apparel all around the show in Wellington."
Known for its technical fabrics and signature FH stylized knee grip design, the For Horses brand is the creation of the husband-and -wife team of Giovanna Novello and Andrea Piovan, who unified their passions in equestrian sport and textile design to create the company in 2000. Based in the foothills of Italy's Dolomite Alps, the brand has grown tremendously in the U.S. For Horses competition and schooling wear, as well as the company's popular FH masks, are prevalent at events around the country.
"The clothes—first of all, they’re very fashionable," McArdle said. "They’re innovative. I love all the different styles of their breeches, and I wear a lot of the different jackets to show in. The colors are great. Every year, they come out with new fabrics, colors and patterns."
For Horses products are designed with horse and rider always in mind, with a focus on providing comfort and elegant style, while standing up to the demands of an equestrian's lifestyle. McArdle can attest, For Horses apparel supports riders as they put in the hard work required to succeed in the saddle, day in and day out.
"The materials are strong," McArdle said. "I ride upwards of eight horses every day, and they last. I can honestly say that they really last."
In McArdle, For Horses has found the ultimate ambassador, a role model for young riders looking to pursue top sport. McArdle enters the 2021 season with a strong group of horses that includes Victorio 5, owned by Victorio Equine Group, as well as Samuel Parot, Jr.'s I&H Boogy Woogy, who kicked off his 2021 season with a win in the $25,000 FLF Grand Prix in Venice, FL.
"I’m still riding Victorio, the stallion. You’ll see him come out later this season for some of the bigger classes," McArdle said. "Boogy Woogy is a fantastic gelding for the grand prix, and we have some nice young horses coming along that are for sale as well as some client horses."
While she loves the way her clothes look, feel, and wear over time, McArdle takes arguably greatest pride in the brand's accessibility to riders of all levels and backgrounds.
"Their price point is accessible for everyone—it’s not just the top tier of everyone," she said. "That’s important to me to be representing a brand like that."
There are more goals to achieve and horses to be developed; more designs to create and technologies to be discovered. But as rider and brand continue to grow, a shared focus on opportunity and chasing dreams remains.
"I was able to make the connection early with the brand. I feel like we’re a family," she said. "I hope that people look at me as someone who tries to represent the brand well. I work hard and can’t say that I always do the best, but I always try my best, and that’s important."
Get Abigail's Look:
Yakie Show Jacket
YAKIE is a classic, form fitting competition jacket for every rider who loves comfort in movement and elegance in the ring. The fabric of the For Horses jacket is designed to ensure maximum performance and comfort thanks to the high elasticity, breathability, silky feel, and lightness.
REMIE is a classic model with a mid-rise waistline and smooth back, flattering for all shapes and sizes. The uniquely tailored curved waistband allows for a comfortable fit, support and refined feminine look.
Affectionately called "FH”, For Horses is the union of a passion for the equestrian world and fashion. A great love for horses inspired the designer Giovanna Novello and her husband Andrea Piovan to create FH, driven by a strong generational know-how starting in the 1980’s by the Novello family who revolutionized dance, sport and leisure wear. Together they create sophisticated, elegant, unique tailored high-tech garments, entirely made in Italy. For Horses fits the equestrian lifestyle of riders all over the world.
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