Kai Handt, owner and head trainer at North Texas Equestrian Center, Inc. (NTEC), has been competing and training horses for nearly forty years. A native of Kassel, Germany, Kai’s early training was based on the traditional German system, a systematic and disciplined approach to horse training. He received a rigorous and diverse education in the disciplines of dressage, show jumping and three day eventing while working with such well known masters as Hermann Schridde, Eugen Wahler, and Richard Krause.
An avid competitor throughout his adolescent and teen years, Kai was awarded his German bronze, silver, and gold medals before reaching the age of 18. After earning his Bereiter, FN license in 1981, he apprenticed at Nord Hessisches Lands Leistungszentrum fuer den Reitsport under Richard Krause. Kai then spent five years employed at Prestiges Verein fuer Reitsport which was, at the time, one of Germany’s most respected training facilities. Soon after relocating to the United States in 1985, Kai purchased NTEC. Over the last twenty years, Kai has built North Texas Equestrian Center into a well-respected boarding and training center and has become a leading importer of quality warmbloods for the equestrian disciplines.
Kai continues to be active in the show ring, although his competitive pursuits in recent years have been increasingly focused on dressage. Earning his USDF bronze, silver, and gold medals as well as his silver and gold freestyle bars, Kai competes and trains horses at all levels and is the winner of numerous regional championships titles each year. His riding pursuits have taken him to the highly competitive CDI venues of Pebble Beach Dressage, the Palm Beach Dressage Derby, the WEF Dressage Classic, the Kentucky Dressage Association Dressage Show, and Dressage at Lamplight.
Kai’s students are always top contenders for regional championship titles from training level through FEI. He has had USDF/Dover National Merit Award winners in the adult amateur division and currently has junior and young rider students who have competed at the North American Junior and Young Rider Championships, the USEF National Dressage Championships and the USEF Dressage Seat Equitation Medal Finals. In addition, Kai has sponsored and coached a para-equestrian rider, Jonathan Wentz with great success. Jonathan competed as a US team member at the 2010 World Equestrian Games, was the 2011 US Para Equestrian National Champion, and earned a spot on the US Paralympic Team that competed in London in August of 2012.