By: on Jul. 30th, 2021

Earlier this year, Patrick Boyle was welcomed as the new competition manager for the 2021 Pennsylvania National Horse Show, bringing with him a wealth of knowledge and years of experience.

Pat Boyle. Photo by Alden Corrigan

As the owner of Showplace Productions, one of the leading horse show management companies in the country, Boyle produces more than 30 hunter and jumper competitions every year at top venues across the U.S. He’s a U.S. Equestrian Federation  “R” judge, a USEF licensed-course designer, a trainer, a father and someone that the PNHS staff is proud to have on our team.

Get to know Boyle a bit better here in our recent Q&A!

Q: Why are you proud to be a part of the PA National Horse Show?
A: I think the most important part for me coming into this role is the belief that it’s one of those horse shows that we can’t let go away. I showed there as a kid; my daughter had success there. We want to keep this horse show and its tradition going forward into the next century for the riders that we have coming up. We’re losing a lot of the older, Heritage horse shows. For me, it’s about being a part of keeping the horse show going forward.

Q: What do you hope to bring to the horse show this year?
I want to try to have a bit of a different look and feel than how it’s been in the past. We want to maintain the tradition of the horse show, but I’ll probably bring a different flavor to it and a bit of what I like to do as far as the appearance of the horse show. 

Then from the schedule point of view, by having two rings, we’re going to be able to provide more options for exhibitors. We’ll have new age-group equitation classes, and rather than having one class each for the children’s  and adult hunters and jumpers, as well as the low junior/amateur-owner jumpers, they’ll each have full divisions with their own $10,000 classic. 

Photo courtesy of Pat Boyle

Q: What’s your earliest memory of PA National Horse Show?
I want to say 45 years ago I went to my first medal finals at Harrisburg. We didn’t have a horse that could compete there, and we didn’t have any money. I remember my dad leasing a horse from Colorado that didn’t do lead changes but at least I got to go and compete which is all that really mattered at the time. Over the next few years, we qualified for the Junior Jumpers and had my first taste of team competition which was a great experience.

Q: In general, what are you most proud of?
I would have to say that having the respect of my peers in the way that I approach managing horse shows or special events would be on top. I try to run shows from an exhibitor’s point of view and to try and think how I would like it when I would show up with all of my customers. I am also really into the esthetics of the show rings and the overall look of the facilities which I think I have a pretty good reputation for.

Q: What’s your favorite part of your job?
I love seeing the plan come together. It takes a long time to create a new vision or plan for an existing facility. It’s always a challenge to try something new because you never really know how it will be perceived, but when it works, it’s very rewarding.

Q: When you’re at home in Illinois, what’s a typical day like?
If we are not at a show here in Illinois, I am pretty much planning for the other shows coming up in the summer and fall. The Las Vegas National in November takes a lot of planning along with all of the shows we do here in Illinois. I am also involved with the Desert International Horse Park which runs November through March which takes up a lot of time as well. Basically, horse shows are a year-round job that never stops.

Q: Outside of horses (and if time allows) what hobbies do you enjoy?
I really enjoy getting out on the golf course and golfing with my wife. It helps give you at least four hours of not thinking about a horse show if you turn your phone off.

Q: What are your favorite sports teams?
The Chicago Bears, and we finally had a good draft and just maybe have a shot of having a real quarterback. With any luck they will be worth watching again.