Born in Queensland Australia on a small cattle farm, James’ lifelong passion for horses began when he was just six weeks old. From the family milking goat to his first pony to the first colt he started in his early teens, Dan’s hunger to learn about training and understand horse’s thinking patterns has only increased. After studying at Longreach Pastoral College, Dan began traveling the world to gain a better understanding of horses. From starting colts in Hokkaido, Japan to starting over 300 horses a year at Washpool Lodge, Australia to working cutting horses for trainer, Punk Carter, to learning Liberty training from world renowned Heath Harris to managing horses on a cattle station in Western Australia, Dan has studied with and learned from the best of the best. Dan has successfully competed in Dressage, Show Jumping, Eventing, Camp Drafting, Cutting, Reining and Colt Starting. Along the way James met his Quarter Horse stallion, Ari, Australian Stock Horse mare, Amelia, and Quarter Horse, Apollo, who were his first performance horses and remain part of the DDH Team today.
James is a two-time international World Champion Colt Starter, a multiple time Freestyle Reining Champion, a multi-discipline Crowd Favorite several times over and a Mustang Makeover finalist. From winning the “Way of the Horse” at Equitana Asia Pacific in 2008 to winning the coveted Road to the Horse International Cost Starting World Championship in 2012 to winning two consecutive Quarter Horse Congress Freestyle Reining Championships and earning Reserve Champion multiple times to representing Australia in the 2018 World Equestrian Games James continues to wow judges, fans, and audiences alike with his incredible training techniques, elite showmanship, and unique understanding of how horses learn.
In addition to competition, Dan has worked as an assistant trainer and Horse Master on multiple TV, film, and photography projects featuring his horses and their unique skills. From the fan favorite TV show, Heartland, to the 2016 Versace Spring campaign, to the Vogue 125th Anniversary to a feature in Country Music Weekly Magazine, Dan’s famous horses and elite horsemanship are in high demand.