California Riding Magazine • July, 2011

Friesian Focus
Top breeding and show program
shows off beautiful new home.

by Pam Moss • Photos by Erpelding Photography

Gorgeous. Ambitious. Elegant. All of these just barely describe the new home of Friesian Focus, which was generously shared by owners Joan and Joe Fernandez and trainer Lance Bennett's delightful open house on Sunday, May 28. It was a sunny, breezy day and a good time to relax and take in the scenery on the way to the hills above Temecula. If you haven't been up there behind La Cresta on the Santa Rosa Plateau, it makes for a lovely drive and takes you back to a California that you may have thought was gone.

The beautiful new barn is an echo of the Mediterranean/European influence, designed with showing off the horses to their best advantage. The stable is laid out in a classical manner with a center courtyard with nine stalls on each side and all the appropriate features of a stallion training and breeding barn. The day was a perfect opportunity to experience the majesty and style of the Friesian horse with a musical dressage exhibition done with Monte 378 Sport, a recent stallion import from Holland brought in to complement the breeding program of Friesian Focus.

It was great fun to watch the guests ooh and aah over the two newly arrived (within the previous few days) Friesian babies with their mommies. I had no idea how cute even the babies are with their long legs and shiny onyx coats and fluffy tails. The breeding program seems to be in full forward motion and it has been and is the focus of Lance and Joan to breed and import only the best minds suitable for either riding or driving. The Friesian has come into its own in the last decade as a horse that has talent for all styles of riding whether it is saddle seat, dressage or driving.

Everyone was enthralled to see a demonstration of the two-in-hand driving, which is done in competition nationally and internationally by Joan and Lance. Costumed in the style of the days when carriages were our means of transportation, it was fun to experience and see the skill that it takes to have a horse go forward with the side traces, which don't bend, and what you have to do to have the carriage and horses go where you want them to and respond the way that you need them to.

With the music, food and atmosphere done in the manner that Friesian Focus is known for at the competition shows, it was a fun family afternoon. If you haven't been to one of these shows, by all means go and introduce yourself. The entertainment, décor and the elegance of the horses make shows fun again. At the open house they even provided an artist for the kids to have their faces painted with horsey images and every child there was excited to have it done.

Friesian Focus is all about the horse and they are very selective about the horses that they import, train, show and sell as they keep the bar high and set the standards for quality in the world of Friesians. They have specialized in providing the experience for these horses at shows and have achieved many national championships in the venues of dressage, carriage driving, long-lining and saddle seat. The stallions are all FPS approved Ster Stallions with Sport Predicate, denoting expertise in the show ring. They have a number of these fine, experienced horses for sale and are happy to present them to you and their new facility.

For more information about Friesian Focus, please visit or call 951-304-7945.