Collecting Thoughts with Laura Graves

She needs little introduction. Before she was earning 80%+ scores in dressage, Laura Graves was a Boston-based hairdresser who took a chance on a once-in-a-lifetime horse. Now, the U.S. Olympic bronze medalist and FEI World Cup Dressage Final reserve champion has risen to the top of dressage aboard her Dutch Warmblood gelding Verdades and is dominating the sport. Graves is based out of CrossTies, LLC in Florida and competes at the most prestigious dressage shows with “Diddy” and trainer Debbie McDonald.

©AK Dragoo


Name: Laura Graves
Age: 29
Barn Affiliation: CrossTies, LLC


Do you have any nicknames? My family calls me Lou.

What’s your favorite barn hack (short cut)? There are no short cuts! Taking the time to do things correctly the first time is the best way to save time in the long run.

Who do you look up to? I look up to my coach, Deb McDonald.

What famous horse (other than your own) would you love to ride? It would be hard to think of one that I wouldn’t want to ride! I always find it very interesting to compare the way something looks to how it feels.

If you could have any super power, what would it be? My super power would be to not need sleep! I would get a lot more done!

What is the last thing you watched on Netflix? Bloodline.

Do you have any lucky charms? No lucky charms, just routines.

What’s your guilty pleasure? Wine and sweets.

What’s the first thing you do when you get home after a long day? Take off my boots and sit down with a snack!

What is one thing in your grooming kit that you couldn’t live without? A good curry comb.

If you weren’t in the horse industry, what would you be doing? I might like to own a little café or deli.

What was your worst fall off a horse? I fell off in 2009 and broke my back. It wasn’t necessarily a violent fall; I just landed wrong.

Categories: Collecting Thoughts