The Petrasek Family
Talbot Run is a family owned and operated farm. Ann and Bob purchased the farm in 2004 and designed and built the “Upper Barn” with the attached riding arena. Ann and Bob are both retired educators employed by the Montgomery Count Public Schools – Ann taught middle school French for 34 years and Bob was a middle school counselor. Their vision was to create a happy and safe place where kids and adults could come to learn more about horses and riding. Their expertise in education and working with kids has helped them to create the unique program that is Talbot Run. Neither Ann nor Bob had horse experience as children but became connected to the equine world through their daughter Robin. What started as a “free” introductory lesson at Woodland Horse Center grew from riding lessons to Show Team to one horse to two horses to nine horses and a small backyard farm in Highland to Pony Club to a 147 acre boarding and lesson facility in Mount Airy. Ann currently is the facility program manager and teaches introductory lessons, orchestrates birthday parties and coordinates the unmounted instructional program.
The Petraseks live on site with their daughter Robin, their grand-daughter Lilia, Tyler, Harmony and Hallie the farm dogs, the barn cats and 45 horses. Please join us and enjoy the fun and learning that are a focus of our lives here on the farm!
Robin is the barn manager and lead trainer at Talbot Run. She is a USEF Silver Medalist and a FEI competitor in dressage and has ridden to Preliminary level in eventing. She is a graduate H in Pony Club. With a BA in Biology from McDaniel College and training in equine science and management from Maryland – she is the Talbot Run Barn Manager and full time trainer. She has had the pleasure of working with many different kinds of horses and students. She loves off the track thoroughbreds and has had many great experiences bringing them home and starting them in their sport horse careers. She focuses her teaching on the ideals of Pony Club, making her lessons fun and safe and geared towards preparing horse and rider to connect as well as compete in multiple disciplines. She is the head instructor for our Pony Club riding Center and has been the camp director at Talbot Run for the past ten years. She coaches her own Show Team that she takes to local horse trials, dressage shows and hunter shows. She teaches all levels of lessons and focuses on both jumping and dressage She has worked with Todd Bryan and Phoebe Devoe extensively over the past few years and has successfully earned her Bronze and Silver medals from USDF. Currently, she is competing on the FEI level Prix St. Georges in Dressage. She has also trained with Donna Ruth, Julio Mendoza, Steuart Pittman, Linda Speer, Beth Pickett, Rumsey Keefe, Kevin Bowie and done many clinics with Jimmy Wofford. She was also exposed to the Hunter/Jumper world in a big way when she groomed for Eamonn Hughes and his son Michael at the I Love New York Horse show in Lake Placid in 2009. While she still enjoys eventing, her real passion has turned to dressage especially Musical Freestyles. She currently has two great young horses who have wonderful potential. She breeds Hungarian Warmbloods as well, so there are always cute babies running around the farm!
Over the years, Robin has bred, trained and showed her home bred Hungarian Warmbloods – helping to rebuild this endangered breed. Currently she she is working with her first homebred Strider, a four year old – Farrah (Bazinga), three year old Sierra Mist and her 2016 colt, Kion (Bangarang) – a Hungarian/Akel-Teke cross and most recently in 2020 – DazzleLink – a Hungarian/Hanoverian colt.. Her current competition horse is a talented Hanoverian named Brisk – they are currently competing fourth level and Prix St. Georges. Brisk and Robin have earned their bronze and silver medals from the United States Dressage Federation. Brisk and Robin love choreographing musical freestyles and compete currently at third and fourth level. Her most recent is to the music from The Greatest Showman. Robin loves supporting John’s Hopkins by attending PVDA’s Ride for Life show every year.
Catherine Bayly attended a free introductory riding lesson in Silver Spring in 1991, walking and trotting an ancient, ornery, fleabitten gray, Pepper. Immediately, she became hooked, starting lessons that week. She spent the next few years showing Hunter Jumpers, later turning her attention to dressage, cross country, western riding, and horsemanship more broadly. After years of begging, working, instructing summer camp lessons, competing, and taking lessons, Catherine got her horse, Missy (- 1999). Catherine (and her sister, Marie) turned Missy around, with consistent riding and a compassionate, quiet equestrian spirit she carries with her today. As an older teenager, Catherine began riding at the Petrasek’s first farm, exercising and competing on Zingara and Dixie. (You can still visit those old girls in Talbot Run’s upper fields!) Off at college, Catherine became captain of the Gettysburg College Equestrian Team, where she competed vigorously for several years. Now, after college and graduate school, Catherine is lucky enough to live near and ride with the Petraseks again. She enjoys teaching her students the joys of riding and horsemanship, and watching them light up at first rides, first canters, and first jumps. When she’s not instructing lessons or teaching college English at the University of Maryland, Catherine can often be found chasing her daughters, Eleanor and Josephine, around the barn and in the ring.
Liane has been a friend to Talbot Run since the beginning and has taught hundreds of kids and hours of lessons here at the farm. On her lesson day you can always hear her in the ring – we are amazed by her stamina as she often teaches 7 or 8 hours in a row. Liane is a Pony Club alumni and founded the Burntwoods Pony Club. She is CHA certified and has years of experience in working with students in a variety of disciplines including dressage, show jumping and eventing. She loves to trail ride and cookies are her favorite. Unfortunately – we lost Ms. Liane in August 2020 – but she will always be a part of Talbot Run and the hundreds of students she taught to ride. Rest in Peace.
Mary is an international event rider who has competed through the two star level. She has been competing 17 years and has taken multiple babies up through the levels. She has worked with many great riders such as Jan Bunny, Sharon White, Jimmy Wofford, Vanessa Swartz, Frank weber and Susan Graham White. She has spent extensive training and working time with Olympian Stephen Bradley. Mary has been teaching horseback riding for 20 years – including years of teaching summer camp and children. She works students from beginners to Preliminary level event riders. Mary has been approved to move forward with her ICP Certification Level 2 in Eventing.
Mary has worked at both Laurel and Bowie race tracks as well as galloped race horses at private farms, and has worked with babies – breaking them for many disciplines. She loves riding and training and the smiles she sees on her students’ faces.
Mary’s daughter Maggie in front of Mary’s Equiery cover:)
Michelle started riding at the age of 9 at Talbot Run and has grown into an accomplished horsewoman, instructor and rider. Currently, she teaches some of our Pony Club lessons and has been a summer camp instructor for the last 6 years. She enjoys teaching beginners through learning to jump and is an excellent role model for our younger Pony Club riders. She also helps out around the barn whenever we need her. She started Eventing at age 12 and has been competing for over 11 years. She competed at USPC Championships for 5 years – 2 as a member of the Capital Region Show Jumping Team on Pay Day. She recently competed at the 2018 USEA Collegiate Championships on Talbot Run’s Mercedes – riding double clear and finishing on her dressage score. She became a member of the US Pony Club in 2008 at Waredaca Riding center and now continues at Talbot Run. She is currently a C2 certification for riding and has completed her HB in Horse Management – a huge accomplishment. She has recently completed her BS in Animal Sciences and Equine Studies at the University of Maryland. Michelle is a part of our Talbot Run family and we are delighted that she continues to give back to her barn – helping to manage instructional programming and care for the lesson horses. .