April 23, 2008

US event rider Darren Chiacchia, badly injured in a cross-country fall in March, has been discharged from his rehabilitation facility after making excellent progress.

He was discharged from the Buffalo facility last week, and is living with family members as he continues rehabilitation on an outpatient basis.

His family says that he is still unsteady but is able to walk on his own and "perform all his activities of daily living. Cognitively he continues to progress steadily, conversing in a logical and appropriate manner. Darren's neurologist indicated that his progress has been nothing less than 'super-human'."

Darren has visited his farm in Springville and is aiming to be back living and working there full time.

Olympic coach and Dressage rider Jane Savoie spent two days at Darren's farm teaching and motivating Darren's students. "I was delighted to lend a hand to Darren and his awesome, enthusiastic students! That's what I love about the horse community. When one of our own is in need, we're all part of the same family," Savoie said.

During his absence students are continuing to train and compete horses, and at the recent Florida Horse Park CCI, student Cristin Stoop led from start to finish in the Training Level 1/2 start three-day-event aboard Fiona Graham's Isengart, a five-year-old that Darren imported from Germany in 2005. Samantha Clark finished fifth in the same class aboard her own Asterion, a five-year-old by Windfall that she purchased through Darren. Megan Marinovich had a top 10 finish in the 1/2 star on Kosette, and a sixth place finish in the CCI**, riding her own Ahlerich.