November 29, 2020

Derrick Perkins: It’s a Family Affair

No one will agree more than Derrick Perkins, the first Para Dressage rider from the U.S. Veterans Assistance Program, that his support team behind the scenes is priceless

Derrick Perkins: It’s a Family Affair

His & Hers Online Extra with LA Pomeroy

No one will agree more than Derrick Perkins, the first Para Dressage rider from the U.S. Veterans Assistance Program, that his support team behind the scenes is priceless.No one will agree more than Derrick Perkins, the first Para Dressage rider from the U.S. Veterans Assistance Program, that his support team behind the scenes is priceless

As is his ‘home’ team: His wife, Karen, and their daughter, Jasmine Alexander.

“They’re not the least bit ‘horsey,’” he says with a laugh about the two most important women in his life, soon after returning home from the CPEDI3* qualifier at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, where he and Fourth Level-trained Gracias Juan, owned by Aaron Hansz, finished fourth individually.

“They endure me,” the 1A-rated competitor wryly jokes about the non-riders who love him despite his infinite pursuit of perfection on the dressage pyramid.

Married since June 2003, Derrick and Karen met on ChristianSingles.com. “We started talking. Met and went skiing. Then she moved out here (Texas). I’m from New York, she’s from California. We have an East Coast, West Coast relationship.

“It’s been a fun ride. I can coax her out to a show, especially when it’s someplace ‘exotic,’ like Rancho Murietta, plus when it’s in California, we visit her family.”

So who really holds the reins? Perkins is a Houston Stock Show and Rodeo belt buckle winner but his household isn’t much different from any other family riding out puberty with a 13 year-old teenager:

“When I’m home, I chauffeur her around. She’s the leader.”No one will agree more than Derrick Perkins, the first Para Dressage rider from the U.S. Veterans Assistance Program, that his support team behind the scenes is priceless

He will be competing next in the Houston area in four USEF-recognized shows before heading in June to Rancho Murieta for a CPEDI3* qualifier. “After that, we will regroup and prepare for the Houston CPEDI3* and Para Equestrian National Championships.”

To compete as a Para Equestrian and qualify to represent the United States at the 2016 Para Olympic Games in Brazil will cost approximately $300,000, made possible in large part by the support of riders and readers who, like Derrick, believe in the power of the horse. Join his ride for his country at: facebook.com/derrick/perkins.50, derrickperkins.com, and gofundme.com/kk6ous.

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