Collecting Thoughts with Bob Cacchione
Name: Bob Cacchione
Business: Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association
Bob Cacchione founded the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) in 1967 as a way to continue riding and competing while he attended Farleigh Dickinson University. Bob has been recognized for his commitment to collegiate riding and has been honored with the United States Hunter Jumper Association President’s Distinguished Service Award, the United States Equestrian Foundation/EQUUS Foundation Humanitarian Award, a Doctor of Humane Letters from Centenary University, and the American Horse Publications Equine Industry Vision Award. He is also Vice Chairman of the Gentlemen’s Committee of the National Horse Show. Bob splits his time between Fairfield, CT, and Wellington, FL, and during the academic year, he travels to IHSA competitions across North America.
THE FUN STUFF
Do you have any nicknames? It’s just Bob.
What’s your favorite barn hack (short cut)? I was a working student for Wayne Carroll at Secor Farms in White Plains, NY. I had a stallion named Battle Hymn that was wonderful and I qualified him in the amateur hunters for the National Horse Show at Madison Square Garden. I took care of four horses and I couldn’t ride until I finished up all my chores. I used to carry two buckets of water to save time. I knew that if I could finish a little bit faster, then I was allowed to ride.
Who do you look up to? Beezie Patton Madden and Peter Wylde. I’ve been inspired by them ever since they rode in IHSA and look at them today! If I’m at a show and they’re competing, I always root for them—I’m a big fan and supporter. They both won the Cacchione Cup, went on to win Olympic gold, and much more. It’s an honor to know them.
What famous horse would you love to ride? Beezie Madden’s great mount, Cortes ‘C,’ owned by Abigail Wexner. I saw him jump clear round after clear round. He was incredible.
If you could have any super power, what would it be? To be in two or more places at once. During the IHSA competition season, I’d love to be at all the shows, especially when it gets to Regionals, Western Semi-Finals, and Zones, the qualifying shows for IHSA Nationals.
What is the last thing you binge-watched? I went to a dude ranch in Missoula, MN, on vacation and I met Mark Harmon and Pam Dawber who were also vacationing. We had a lot of fun together. When I got home, I binge-watched NCIS.
Do you have any lucky charms? I always wear my IHSA pin on my lapel. Even when I showed at Madison Square Garden, I wore my IHSA pin.
What’s the most interesting fact about yourself? There are a few. When I was with Cartier, I went to the White House three times when President Reagan was in office. I also delivered a piece of jewelry and one red rose to Elizabeth Taylor. Her eyes were mesmerizing, they were violet blue. I was foxhunting in New Jersey, and behind me in the field, a woman was run off with and her horse slammed into the back of my horse. I was annoyed, but all was well and the horses were unhurt. The woman was apologizing when I realized it was Jackie Kennedy Onassis. We rode together for the remainder of the hunt. She was charming and lovely; it was a most memorable day.
What’s your guilty pleasure? Each year at IHSA Nationals, I shake the hand of every student that competes; I am in every award photo. It is a pleasure for me because I am so proud of all the young athletes and so proud to be a part of the organization. It is a pleasure for me.
What’s the first thing you do when you get home after along day?I am fortunate to live on the beach. After a long day when I get home, I go out on the beach and watch the sunset. If I get home later than that and the moon is up, it’s just great walking the beach.
What is one thing in your tack trunk that you couldn’t live without? A hoof pick, you can’t ride without it.
If you weren’t in the horse industry, what would you be doing? Making money.
What podcast is at the top of your playlist?I love Because of Horses. It’s a great one.