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Liz Atkins Prepares for George H. Morris Gladstone Program

Strategic Planning at Spring Spectacular Gets Horses Confident

Liz Atkins and Undine. Photo by Andrew Ryback

Wayne, IL – June 13, 2015 – Liz Atkins of Benchmark Stables in Hampshire, IL, was one of the riders chosen for George H. Morris Gladstone Program training session June 15-20th at Annali-Brookwood Farm. Coming off of a solid two weeks of showing at Showplace Productions’ Spring Spectacular, Atkins is ready for the challenge.
“I feel very privileged to have been accepted into this program,” said Atkins. “It's an amazing opportunity to get a week long school with George so I'm pretty pumped. I think the two weeks of Spring Spectacular were a good warm up to get my head working. I took a couple of lessons with Diane (Carney) before the show started, and she really got me in to a "student" frame of mind, which is the way I need to be thinking going into next week. I've been working alone since January of 2014, and it's really easy to just practice the things you're good at. It's nice to have someone like Diane challenge me and it will definitely be nice to have a week with George to continue to put a little pressure on me.”
Atkins owns, manages and trains at her Benchmark Stables. As a junior rider, she rode with many of the top trainers and won multiple championships with her horses. She attended Indiana University in Bloomington, IN and was a member of the IU Equestrian Team. Atkins graduated in 2007 with a Management degree and rode competitively as an amateur, moving up to the Grand Prix level.  She turned professional in 2014 and was named Top Young Professional Grand Prix Rider by USHJA.
“She is a dedicated, talented and brave rider,” said Carney. “It’s a pleasure to work with a professional who wants to improve and learn. Liz is willing to put herself out there which says a lot for her confidence and eagerness.”
During week 1 at Spring Spectacular, Atkins won a 7-year-old class on Rodeo VDL and also placed third on him in the Championship class. She also was consistently in the ribbons in the 1.30 division.
Week II, Atkins won a 1.30m class with her mount, Carletta, and was in the top 3 with her other rides, Undine and Esconial throughout the division.
Liz’s training program is designed around developing and challenging both horse and rider to achieve success at any level.  She especially likes to bring along young, green horses to the upper levels of show jumping.

Liz Atkins and Undine in the $35,000 Prix de Lexington. Photo Shawn McMillen.

“I've got a great group of horses right now and a lovely group of clients, so I'm very excited to see what the rest of the year will bring!” stated Atkins.
Benchmark Stables is a 20 acre farm located in Hampshire, IL (50 miles west of Chicago). The Atkins family purchased the farm in 2005, and built a top facility with multiple barns, riding arenas and turnouts. The stable is a state of the art facility with the following amenities:
  • 30 12×12 stalls with rubber mats
  • Keypad entry at front gate for security
  • Heat in all barns
  • 180×80 heated indoor arena
  • 225×160 outdoor ring
  • 6 horse Kraft horse walker
  • Automatic fly system in all barns
  • Several grass paddocks
  • Full service care option
For more information visit her website at


Benchmark Stables
13 N 200 Romke Rd
Hampshire, IL 60140