Mountain Thyme Training

Providing quality training for horse and driver

Client Success

In 2010, Jillian's client Laura Fasset and her morgan gelding  Yankee received Lorenzo driving competition champion novice single horse, reserve champion novice driver, and multiple local awards. Also they received the Barneveld novice champion for the entire Barneveld season. 

 In 2012, Laura and Yankee continue to clean up in the single horse two wheel division. At the Lorenzo Driving Competition, Laura and Yankee received the high point morgan, single horse 2 wheel vehicle champion, and reserve grand champion single horse. Congratulations to Laura and Yankee!

Our deepest sympathies to Laura on her loss of Yankee in early 2014...He will be missed.


In 2011, Jillian's client Sylvia VanDeusen's hard work with her mare Greystone Glory finally paid off.  Sylvia and Glory were Novice Single Pony Reserve Champions at

the Lorenzo Driving Competition. They were first in the working, reinsmanship, and second on the marathon. Congratulations to Sylvia and Glory!

 In 2012, Jillian competed Glory at the Lorenzo Driving Competition for Glory's first year in open. Glory was second in working and third in reinsmanship in a very tough division, and helped bring Angus and Jillian's first in the carriage dog class! A big thank you to Sylvia for letting Jillian show Glory.


In summer of 2011, Jillian began working with Klaas, an imported friesian owned by Wendy Wells. Jillian, Wendy and Klaas spent the winter/spring of 2012 training hard for Klaas's first show season.  At the Lorenzo Driving Competition in 2012 (his third show, first rated show), Klaas was in the single horse 2 wheel vehicle division. Klaas proved to be a steady horse as he placed second in working, second in reinsmanship, fourth in turnout, fourth in my route/your route cones, and third in town and country cones. Wendy and Jillian couldn't have been more thrilled! Thanks to Wendy for letting Jillian show Klaas.

In 2014, Wendy debut Klaas at her first time competing at the Lorenzo Driving Competition. They competed in the novice horse division, winning their reinsmanship class and in the top four in the rest of their classes. They finished reserve grand champion of the novice division. Congratulations Wendy and Klaas!


 In 2013, Hans Neudal and his standardbred Bill made their way to their first ADS sanctioned show, the Lorenzo Driving Competition.

They proved they were ready by placing first in working, second in reinsmanship, and fourth in my route/your route. They were Novice Champion driving horse and Grand Champion Novice Driver. Congratulations to Hans and Bill on an amazing show!

Jillian, Hans and Bill have been a team since 2011, working their way through the ranks and preparing for this huge success!




Jillian started working with Carol Ilacqua and her quarter horse gelding, Buddy, in 2012. Carol and Buddy had to work through some issues and gaining their confidence. With patience and time, Carol and Buddy made it through and went to their first show. While Buddy had shown before, this was Carols first time. 

 In 2013,  they made their way to the Barneveld Fall Driving show. Carol was first in reinsmanship, first in working, first in gamblers choice and second in my route/your route. They were Champion Novice Driver. Congratulations to you both on all your hard work! Shortly after the 2013 show season, Carol decided to retire Buddy and he is now a happy pasture pet on her farm.

 In 2014, Carol competed Jillian's gelding Nolan at the Barneveld Fall Driving Show. This was only Carols fourth driving show and the first time someone other then Jillian competed Nolan. Carol and Nolan were champion novice driver. Congratulations Carol and Nolan!

In 2014, Carol purchased a lovely haflinger geldng (New Level, aka Alex) as her new equine partner. In 2016, Carol and Alex's hard work paid off as they competed at the Lorenzo Driving Competition, kicked butt in their classes and placed Reserve Champion overall in the novice pony division.  


For the past three years, Jillian has been working with Sharon B. and her miniature ponies Munch (palomino) and Tucker (seal brown). Munch was trained by Sharon and Jillian has been working with the team on their fine tuning. In 2014, they went to place in the top three of their classes and also win a few cones classes! 

In 2016, Sharon and Munch participated in four of the CNY/WNY driving shows (Lorenzo, North Hampton, East Aurora, and Geneseo). They placed in within the top 5 of all their classes at these shows (most classes within the top three) which placed Sharon reserve champion VSE for the the high point year end award for competing at all those shows. 


Tucker started his show career in late 2014, and proved that with time and patience, he would make a cute driving pony! At the 2016 Barneveld Spring Show, Sharon and Tucker were champions of the VSE division. 

"Top Dog"

Jillian and her family's dog Angus (a 2004 west highland terrier) decided to try competing in carriage dog classes.

In 2009 they were second in the Walnut Hill carriage dog class, being an obvious crowd favorite out of twelve.

In 2010 they won the class at Lorenzo Driving Competitions carriage dog class, winning the hearts of everyone. 

In 2011, Angus won the hearts of the crowd at the Lorenzo Driving Competition. Angus was first out of nine other fellow canines. Angus went a few weeks later to Walnut Hill and was fourth out of twelve dogs.

 In 2012, Angus and Jillian did it again! They were first place at the Lorenzo Driving Competition's carriage dog class. Third year in a row!

Angus and Jillian are looking to continue their success and continue doing carriage dog classes. If you know of any different shows to go to that have these, please let us know! 


"Jill has trained my young Percheron to drive. She did a great job. Hanna was very green at everything when we got her. Jill was very patient with her and took her time with Hanna. She  has turned out to be very good at driving thanks to Jill's excellent  training". -Kathy Alter,

"Jill is a 4-star trainer and we feel so lucky to have found her!  She started my Gypsy mare from the ground and introduced her to driving.  Before long, my mare was driving with confidence!  Jill has the knowledge, natural ability, and talent to make it a positive experience for both horse and owner!  Jill is patient, kind, and definitely in the right line of work! I was very new into driving myself and Jill incorporated teaching me along with the horse. After training, Jill remains available to help you through whatever might come along once you get home. I recommend Jill highly and will definitely be using her skills again in the future!  Thanks Jill!!" -Sue Pierpoint, Creek Run Farm

"Jillian worked with me and my paint/pinto gelding Tommy Patch for several months. During that time she was able to give Tommy a strong driving foundation which has made him my "steady Eddie" for carriage driving. She was patient with both of us as she put us through the paces needed to establish him as a driving horse, and helped me to understand how to get the best out of him.
She came to several shows to coach and support us. She was very generous with her time and her encouragement, and shared her talent and skill with me, always being positive and direct in her critique of my driving skills.
While Tommy Patch was with Jillian, she made sure that he had excellent care.She is capable, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic in her work. Tommy Patch ended the year as 2011 Pinto Horse Club of New York State champion horse pleasure driving/ champion horse ideal driving and champion amateur horse reinsmanship. A big thank you to you Jillian." -Michael D. Bolde
"Jill, we are so pleased with Griffins progress. Too bad his weight doesn't come off as quickly as it went on! I will gladly pass your name along for anyone looking for a trainer.  You are so confident and quiet with the horses. They respect you and respond to you in a very positive way." -Vi Morris
"Jillian Gemmell is an excellent trainer of horses and people! She has many wonderful qualities including her quiet way with both. Jillian successfully trained our miniature horse to drive in a little under a month. And, while our 19 year old Morgan mare was not cut out to drive, Jillian would have persevered with her if we had all agreed it was a good idea. Jillian is like a walking encyclopedia and yet, is able to bring great information down to the level of the individual learner. She puts safety first and is an active learner herself. She instills confidence in her students through helpful pointers while nurturing independence in each. Jillian acknowledges that there's always room for improvement since no horse is perfect. She ties all of this together with just enough humor and fun to keep you and/or your kids begging to have another lesson!" -Monica, Aliza, and Sarah Willsey
"For the last several months Jillian has been a significant part in making a five year dream become a reality for me and my big white shire, Banner.  Though I have had several people offer to help me with this horse, no one has ever come through for me.  Jillian did more than just come through, she came in rain, sleet, snow, and wind - and together we found that Banner did have it in him to be a driving horse.  What I like most about working with Jillian is that she never shows judgment with the previous training that was done with Banner.  She is very supportive in the fact that I want to learn as much as I can and want to partake in the training as much as possible.  Jillian has a very relaxed personality and I feel that she truly enjoys working with me and my horse.  As well, she got results.  After three months of training the blind to lead the blind, she took Banner to her barn for a two week intensive session - and we are soon to, literally, be on the road with our new cart.  I would recommend her training methods and knowledge to anyone interested in having a horse trained, or anyone who is looking to learn more about driving personally.  She has given me (and Banner) so much confidence, and the opportunity to experience a new form of horsemanship." - Kara Burry, White Shire Farm

"Jillian Gemmell is amazing! Working with Jillian I have seen my friesian gelding, Klaas, mature into the most amazing horse. At his 3rd show of his lifetime (Lorenzo Driving Competition) Jillian brought home more ribbons than I could have ever dreamed possible. Second place in Working Pleasure! Who ever would have thought it possible. Thank you Jillian. Now that I am taking over the reins, I hope I can do half as well with him. I feel confident that I will be fine because not only have you taught Klaas well, you have taught me well too.You are the best!" - Wendy Wells

"Let me add my thanks to Jillian, first, for making my Glory shine. She only had about 3 weeks to get her "show ready". Never seen Glory work from the sidelines at a show. I loved it. Thanks to the fabulous support provided by Jillian's parents, friends, and fiance!! It was a great weekend. And Gus put the frosting on the cake!" -Sylvia VanDeusen