I am Leighton Eggersman Jones. Before I tell you about myself let me take you back to where it all began. I am five years old and my dad sets me on a pony at the fair. I instantly fell in love and as they say the rest is history. Fast forward a few years and countless riding lessons later to 1992. My dad has enough of hearing me beg for a horse to call my own. So, in an attempt to pacify me, he bought some property and two horses, one each for my sister and I. What he didn't know is that it wouldn't stop there. We soon wanted to show horses, which led to my dad boarding horses to help offset expenses. We started offering guided trail rides and riding lessons as well. By the time I was in high school I decided this was going to be my career. My parents were less than convinced. After graduating from North Augusta Senior High in 2001, I headed off to Estes Park, Colorado to work as a wrangler for the summer to prove I was making the right decision. I returned home with a greater enthusiasm. I started college at USC Aiken in the fall of 2001 to obtain my BS in Business Management while I worked the stables part time. I graduated in 2007 to begin managing and owning Palmetto Stables as a full time career.
I started out riding Hunter Jumper and later switched to barrel racing. I believe these two disciplines, as well as, training my own horses made me a well rounded rider and provided me with a great foundation for teaching beginner riding lessons. I rode competitively in the National Barrel Horse Association from 1998-2002. As much as I dreamed of becoming a professional rider it was not ultimately what I felt led to do. I decided to leave the competitive world and focus on teaching basic, beginner riding lessons. I love watching students learn to ride and grow in their horsemanship skills. The difference riding makes in their confidence and coordination still amazes me to this day. Seeing their excitement brings a smile to my face and much cherished memories of my childhood growing up with the wonders of horses. My goal is to train, teach, and educate students in the proper and safe way to develop a respectful relationship with horses while gaining valuable knowledge of horses.
I During my competitive run I am proud to say I had 15 World Championship Qualifications.
1997 Winter Classics 3rd Division Champion
1998 NBHA Youth State Champion 3rd Division 3rd place
1999 NBHA Open 3rd Division District Champion
1999 NBHA Youth 3rd Division 3rd Place
1999 NBHA Youth 2nd Division Reserve District Champion
1999 NBHA State Champion Youth 2nd Division 5th Place
2000 NBHA World Championship Qualifier 2nd and 3rd Division
2000 NBHA Youth 2nd Division Reserve District Champion
2000 NBHA Youth 3rd Division Reserve District Champion
2000 NBHA Youth 4th Division Reserve District Champion
2000 NBHA Open 3rd Division District Champion
2000 NBHA Open 4th Division District Champion
2001 NBHA Open 4th Division 3rd Place
2002 NBHA Youth 1st Division 5th Place
2002 Youth 2nd Division 4th Place
2002 NBHA Youth 3rd Division District Champion
2002 NBHA Open 4th Division District Champion
2002 NBHA Youth 3rd Division 4th Place