About André

Andre is an accomplished dressage rider and has achieved the title of Brazilian National Champion in dressage on. He is also a dressage trainer for competition horses as well as a coach for riders in multiple equestrian disciplines. Andre is an approved breed judge for Lusitanos. He has his own training program for Lusitanos, Warmbloods and Friesians.

His passion for horses comes from his early childhood experiences when he was motivated by his parents and his uncle-who is one of the pioneers in the breeding of Lusitanos in Brazil-to become involved with the horses. As a young child, Andre would help and follow closely all the activities at the breeding farm Vale do Arete, which is located in Sao Paulo, Brazil. At this farm is where Andre started his early riding lessons under the tutelage of the Portuguese master, Orlando Faccada-who resided in Brazil.

Andre holds a degree in Agronomic Engineering by the São Paulo University (Universidade de São Paulo-USP). He graduated in 1997 and did a concentration of studies in nutrition, anatomy, and animal physiology. Even before completing his degree, Andre was invited by the university to lecture in the discipline of Equine Science and Management, and discuss the training and development of horses as athletes.

His career as an equestrian athlete started in the early 1990s, when Andre introduced the Lusitano breed in dressage competition in Brazil. The young rider achieved great success and earned several victories as well as all the national championship titles. In 1998, he was a member of the first approved group of Lusitano breed judges formed in Brazil under the Portuguese Studbook. He is also an “S” dressage judge in Brazil as well as a Portuguese Equitation and Working Equitation judge. He worked with the Brazilian Working Equitation committee and helped establish the rules and regulations of the sport in Brazil.

During the years, Andre improved his riding skills by spending time in Europe and training and riding under the most influential dressage trainers at that time such as Nuno Palma (Portugal), Guilherme Borba(Portugal), Michel Henriquet (France).

It was during this time too, that the horses bred by Vale do Arete (under Andre’s breeding selection program), started earning recognition and titles as breed representatives- in morphology classes, and in the sports of dressage and stadium jumping. Andre was immersed in the science of Natural Horsemanship, and incorporated this approach to the training routine of all the animals he was working with at Vale do Arete. His training program included some of the best horses being bred in Brazil by breeders like Top, Interagro, Retiro, Funchal, Ianonni, Videiras, Imperial as well as other excellent specimens of the breed.

In the early 2000, Andre spent time working and training in Germany, where he had the opportunity to be exposed to the best German breeding lines of successful horses, as well as top trainers. Harry Boldt, Kyra Kirklund and Klaus Bolkenhol are the major influences in Andre’s riding during his time in Germany.

Once back in Brazil, Andre continued to work on the breeding program at Vale do Arete, as well as the training program. He started horses under saddle, prepared horses and riders for competition, and assisted with the export of the horses bred at the farm. He was responsible for the export of the most important horses sent from Brazil and Portugal to the United States. He served as the professional dressage commentator for the Olympics and the W.E.G for the Brazilian ESPN TV Channel. Andre has also contributed his professional knowledge to several published articles, interviews and lectures at different publications and events.

Andre is responsible for the implementation of the Friesian Horse Studbook in Brazil.
Andre moved to the United States in 2019 and currently resides in the state of California. He is a sought after clinician, and provides clinics in dressage, classical equitation, and working equitation. He travels extensively through the Western states in the United States, as well as the countries of Canada, Mexico and countries in South America. He also consults, under request, in the purchasing contracts of special horses.

His dedication, keen observation, and deep-respect for the horses are what drives him to create a training session that generates a fruitful and rewarding experience for horse and rider, where a light, and yet effective approach, helps create an easy, harmonious and stress-free performance between rider and horse.