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© 2019 Meghan O'Donoghue Eventing. Site by Smith Equine Media, LLC.

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Meet Meghan

From Humble Beginnings

Hailing from the Southern Illinois community of Carbondale  (which is not exactly a hub for the sport of eventing) Meghan was born to equestrian parents Mark and Jill O’Donoghue who run a successful, but no frills boarding and training facility.  Though she was born with horses in her blood, and like all of her siblings given the opportunity to ride, Meghan has developed all of her own horses.

From a very young age Meghan was always willing to put in the hours to develop both her riding and horsemanship skills. At the age of three she was imitating the older girls in the barn,  grooming and leading her pony Mandy around the farm—a constant fixture in the arenas where her parents were teaching lessons.

When she was five years old, she was gifted a feisty paint pony named “Over the Rainbow” for her birthday.  It was Rainbow who ignited the competitive fire that is still burning fierce today.  A small pony with a fantastic jump albeit a bit of an attitude, Meghan gained invaluable experience bringing her along through the ranks.  By the time Meghan was a young teenager, her path was clear, and she spent most waking hours riding anything she could get her hands on.

Photo by Shannon Brinkman

Moving on and Up

Never having access to a horse with experience Meghan grew up producing horses for the sport. Not only has that experience been educational, but it has also made her results even more meaningful. Meghan’s drive to follow her dreams from a young age put her on a path that required professional education. As she reached her young rider ranks, she spent many summers at Jan Byyny’s Surefire Farm soaking up the life at a top eventing barn. That then led to a full-time position from 2009-2012, learning all the ins-and-outs of a professional barn and continuing her career to the CCI3star level. That experience taught her the importance of devoting herself to a program as she sought to become a true professional.

She then added to that experience by spending a year as a rider for Will Coleman Equestrian. During this time Will guided her to her first CCI4**** at the 2013 Rolex Kentucky three day event and first European three day at The Fidelity Blenheim Palace CCI*** in England. With top 12 finishes at both of these major competitions, she’s landed her name on the International training list for 2014. Her dream of representing the United States at a major championship will require a unique path of continuing education and acquiring and training horses to the top levels. This journey is supported by many horses and people, and as she chases the dream, she’s blessed for each and everyone of you!

Career Highlights
  • Named to the 2014 World Class List (Combinations that currently possess the ability to be competitive anywhere in the world)

  • USEF High-Performance Training Sessions with Olympic Coach David O’Connor 2013-2014

  • Developing Riders/Eventing 25 Program 2011-present

  • Awarded Jacqueline B. Mars International Competition and Training Grant

  • Assistant Trainer for Olympian Will Coleman

On the Record
  • 2019 Plantation Field International CCI4*-S— 4th

  • 2019 Great Meadow International CCI4*-S— 5th

  • 2019 Jersey Fresh International CCI4*-L— 3rd

  • 2016 Named to USEF High-Performance Spring Training List- Developing Rider 2017

  • 2016 Hagyard Midsouth Team Challenge CCI*— 1st 

  • 2016 Fair Hill International CCI 3*—9th

  • 2016 Fair Hill International CCI 2*—7th

  • 2016 Plantation Field International CIC 3*—9th

  • 2015 Rolex Kentucky 3 Day 4* Event—21st Internationally, 12th Nationally

  • 2014 Rolex Kentucky 3 Day 4* Event—17th Internationally, 12th Nationally

  • 2014 The Fork CIC3* —17th

  • 2014 Carolina International Advanced—9th

  • 2013 Fidelity Blenheim Palace International CCI3*— 11th Overall, Highest Placed First Time Rider

  • 2013 Rolex Kentucky 3 Day 4* Event—12th Internationally, 7th Nationally, Highest Placed First Time Rider

  • 2012 USEA Nutrena Top Advanced Adult Amateur Rider

  • 2012 Fairhill International CCI3* —12th, awarded Highest Placed Adult Amateur

  • 2012 Inaugural Recipient of the Essex Grant, USEA Convention Colorado Springs

Photo by Shannon Brinkman