ACPS Awards

Debbie Busta Adult Amateur Scholarship

2023 Debbie Busta Adult Amateur Scholarship

Sharon Jantzen and Rosewood Whisper

2023 Adult Amateur Scholarship
Photo credit: Ashton Kingsley

Rosewood Whisper is my special gift pony. The West Coast Connemara Show has been a staple in my life for over 40 years starting with riding Charlene O’neil’s pony Fiddlestix Farms Ballingarry Rose. I then added my own Connemara, Bar Bar A’s Paddy’ Hoof Prince.

Even in the years without a pony to ride, I would still go to the shows with Charlene. Then, when I was pregnant with my second child, Charlene and I got a halfbred, Dreamer’s Kiss-Me-Kate. We of course then took “Katie” to the West Coast Connemara Shows. One year, my kids, I and Charlene all did something with Katie at the show. Even when Katie was retired, Charlene and my family would go and help at the shows. My boys would be the jump crew, my daughter a runner, my husband and I would lend a hand at the gate or wherever needed.

In 2019 the WCCS took place in San Miguel, not far from our home. My daughter, Charlene and I were there to lend a helping hand. Darian Hall of Rosewood Connemaras was the show manager and appreciated our involvement. A week after the show I got a call from Darian, “I want to give you a filly.”  After my initial stunned reaction wore off, I said, “Yes!”, then quickly realizing the financial commitment I said, “No!” Finally, I told Darian I would make it work.

Making it work is what we are doing. I keep Whisper at a friend’s backyard stable. My dressage instructor comes to me as I don’t own a truck or trailer. In the year and a half Whisper has been under saddle we’ve been to just a few local shows with the WCCS being the primary focus for now. Whisper and I qualified for the Regional Adult Amateur Competition at Training Level with all six of our rides at the two dressage shows we attended.

For the 2024 show season I plan to venture out a bit further, bumming rides from fellow dressage riders, and do some three-star dressage shows at First Level with the goal of getting to the CDS/USDF Regional Championships and starting our climb to the USDF Silver Medal. The scholarship will enable me to take more lessons and even plan for a clinic.

Wanting to give back as an expression of thankfulness for the gift of Whisper, I took on the role the of Internet Chair on the Board of Governors for the ACPS in 2021. On top of this I run SLO Horse News, and tutor a variety of students in Language Arts. I also serve on the WCCS show Committee and manage the Region X website.

About the Award

To recognize Adult Amateur riders of Connemaras. To recognize the spirit of volunteerism in the equestrian world which Deb Busta epitomized. To encourage riders to pursue continuing educational activities with their Connemaras.

  • Winners of the scholarship shall be awarded $500. $500

Annually, Michael Busta, Deb’ s husband, will be given the opportunity to provide matching funds

Donated By

Debbie Busta



Deadline: September 1
Send to: Committee Chair