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Issue #1 of Driving Digest debuted in September 1980. These early issues were printed entirely in black and white with a very straightforward design. It covered a wide range of content, from cattle drives, plowing contests, and draft horse shows to coaching at the Royal Winter Fair and the first world championships for four-in-hands in Europe. The sport of driving was relatively new, the American Driving Society (competition) was in its infancy, and members of the Carriage Association of America were busy buying and restoring antique carriages at a fast clip. Enter Driving Digest to bridge the gap.

In the late 1990s, ownership changed hands, and the publication moved from Connecticut to Ohio under the leadership of Thom Mezick. Mezick owned a printing company and previously had been the publisher of Dressage and CT. In 2008, Mezick hired me, Ann Pringle, to handle the editorial duties. I had recently retired after 20 years as the American Driving Society’s executive director and editor of their publication The Whip. Thank goodness that technology had advanced to the point that I could work from home and didn't have to relocate from my lovely home on the shores of Lake Huron in Michigan in the summer and horsey Southern Pines, North Carolina in the winter to central Ohio. Thom constantly talked about wanting to sell Driving Digest, and so we began negotiating. I thought he should just give it to me! Eventually, we struck a deal, and so in 2013, Pringle Publications became Driving Digest’s third publisher.

annpringleOK, so here I was – a woman in her late 50s suddenly a business owner – and a magazine publisher to boot! Everyone said print was dying. What was I thinking?

Driving Digest desperately needed a facelift, so that was the first thing I tackled.

Enter Linda Yutzy of the Infinity Design Group. I have known Linda for a long time. She competes with Dartmoor ponies and was eager to take on the challenge of redesigning Driving Digest. Now there are a lot of talented graphic designers out there, but working with Linda would be great. She knows carriage driving. I don't have to explain that ‘tandem' is the correct spelling for two horses driving one in front of the other. We were off and running, and finally, I managed to get a good night's sleep.

Just two years later, Driving Digest was honored with the American Horse Publication's (AHP) highest honor of General Excellence Overall Publication Winner in the 2015 AHP Equine Media Awards for material published in 2014. To be considered for this honor, Driving Digest magazine was judged against 36 other top-notch equine publications in the General Excellence category, including Paint Horse Journal, NRHA Reiner, The American Quarter Horse Journal, America's Horse, Equine Journal, EquiManagement, Untacked, Equus, and Western Horseman. The American Horse Publications Equine Media Awards are the ultimate honor in the equine publishing industry every year.

I was utterly blown away when Driving Digest was recognized as the Overall Publication Winner. It was like winning best picture at the Oscars. It continues to inspire our team to provide a publication that is General Excellence worthy every year.

quistMarcie Quist

Marcie Quist writes a regular column “An American Abroad” about living and driving her horses in Germany.

Marcie Quist began to drive horses and ponies as a young girl in New York City. Twenty years later she returned to carriage driving when she moved to Southern Pines, North Carolina and saw her first combined driving event at Yellow Frame Farm. Within three years she was driving at the Advanced level with her Thoroughbred stallion, Montana Light. When he retired, she bought her first Hackney horses and has had matching Hackneys ever since. She is a Licensed American Driving Society technical delegate, USEF judge and an FEI steward in driving. In the fall of 2018, she moved to Germany to work for the U.S. Army as an attorney representing injured American soldiers in the Army and Veterans Affairs disability process. This winter, two Hackney horses owned by Daphne White and Craig Kellogg also arrived in Germany to compete with Marcie in Germany.

johngreenallJohn Greenall

John writes a regular column “What’s Right with this Turnout." Each column features a different type of carriage, and he discusses the right way to turn it out – correct colors and appointments, correct harness for the horse or pony, proper attire for the driver, passengers, and grooms.

John has been involved with carriage driving for 45 years, making him one of the pioneers of this sport in the United States. John has done horse and carriage related work in over 45 states, and officiated at most of the major carriage shows in the country, is currently is a Registered judge in five of the six ADS judging categories, and is a USEF carriage judge.

John served as the vice-president and president of the American Driving Society as well as serving as chair of the American Driving Society pleasure driving committee and is past president of the Carriage Museum of America.

John’s driving experience has ranged from singles, pairs, tandem, unicorn, and four-in-hand. For many years he drove Morgans that he bred and raised, although John has owned, driven, and enjoyed many other breeds. He also has completed over 3,000 miles in distance riding and driving events, fox hunts, and is past joint master with North Country Hounds.

John is familiar with most of the large carriage collections in the United States and attends every public auction possible. His private collection of restored vehicles, along with harness and carriage related items, is the result of a lifetime of research and treasure hunting. John's primary area of expertise is in proper turnout of antique and traditional vehicles. Giving tours of his collection to historical groups and driving enthusiasts is a way of passing the traditions of driving onto others.

hardyHardy Zantke

Hardy writes a regular column “From Behind My Splinterbar." Topics often help drivers with dressage through a better understanding of the requirements, geometry, and how to communicate it all to their horses.

Hardy Zantke learned to drive horses as a youngster with draft teams at his grandfather’s drayage company in East Germany. He later had a formal riding education in the West German army. After emigrating to the U.S. with his wife Jutta, and settling in Torrance, California, they became one of the top competitors in combined driving in the U.S. in the 80s and 90s with their pairs of 17-hand bay Holsteiner geldings. They competed regularly throughout the entire U.S. and Canada and were the first alternate of the U.S. team at the 1993 World Pair Driving Championship. They imported two pairs as three-year-olds and brought them along to being long-listed with the USET. They also competed with a four-in-hand and reached the USET List of Developing Drivers with the team. Hardy retired from active competition in 2005. The Zantkes were co-organizers of the California Classic CDE from 1990 - 2000. 


Hardy is a retired transportation executive, has represented a German carriage manufacturer for many years, and is a well-known clinician. He is a licensed FEI Driving as well as Para-Equestrian Driving Judge, both on FEI 3* Level Three and actively judges here and abroad. He is an Honorary Director of the American Driving Society and served on many committees of AHSA, USET, USEF, and ADS. With his background as competitor, organizer, and judge, he served as chef d’equipe from 1996 to 2006 for 13 U.S. teams which brought home five medals. Hardy writes for various driving magazines, and his articles are published in Australia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Canada, and the USA.

dianemckayDiane McKay

Diane writes a regular column “Longears” about donkeys and mules and the people who drive them.

“I became a lover of horses at the age of three but fell in love with ‘longears’ about 30 years ago when there was a miniature donkey at the farm where I worked. I got my first one 19 years ago – a spotted miniature Mediterranean named Forrest Gump. Shortly after that, Forrest got a mini buddy named Maverick and later still came Pearl, my large standard female donkey. Pearl and Forrest both carriage drive but I do more with Pearl, including parades, as well as her work as a mascot to a local church and a political group.

“I live in the small town of West End, North Carolina, with my donkeys and a Tennessee Walking Horse named Charlie. Gardening and photography are also my passions, and when not working on a neighbor's horse farm as well as my own, I continuously strive to learn more about my interests.

“My carriage driving began about ten years ago when I started mini donkey Forrest to pleasure drive around the farm. I have shown Pearl in club schooling shows and the TREC organization events but currently, have been busy with freelance equestrian photography and writing for the local newspaper.”

Contact Details

Driving Digest Magazine
PO Box 120
Southern Pines, NC 28387

(910) 691-7735

Email: ann@drivingdigest.com

Disclaimer

Driving Digest is a member of American Horse Publications, a professional association serving the equine publishing industry. www.americanhorsepubs.org

Information on this site is provided by outside sources and is assumed to be correct. Driving Digest is not responsible for inaccuate information provided by outside sources.