|Pat Mansfield – Owner and Manager
A Bit Better Farm is a dream come true for Pat. After being “horse crazy” as a child, but never having the opportunity to pursue riding, Pat got a rather late start with horses at the age of 40. Her passion has driven the creation of an enterprise based on the love of the Thoroughbred.
Pat feels there is no better reward than taking these beautiful creatures from a life at the racetrack, teaching them what it is to be a “horse,” and giving them a new start in a job they enjoy. She loves every minute of it and feels blessed to be given the opportunity come to the barn every day.
|Kim Keating – Assistant Trainer and Groom
There really is no need to welcome Kim, as she has been part of A Bit Better Farm’s family since it’s inception, having grown up in horses with Kelley.
After achieving her dream of completing a long format CCI* on “Riley”, Kim’s horse of a lifetime, she and hubby Matt started a family. Charlie (born in 2008) can be seen running around the farm and hanging around with Jona, Tate, and Tyler. Kim has taken on the roles of Assistant Trainer and Head Groom for Kelley. Anyone who knows Kim’s longing skills and obsession with clean tack and organization will understand what an incredibly valuable asset she is to our farm family.
| Ray Mansfield – Mr. Fix-It #1
Having been thrown into the horse world by his horse-crazy wife and daughter, Ray has done nothing more than embrace the new lifestyle with open arms.
A full-time dentist, Ray spends any moment not in the office at A Bit Better Farm. Restoring an old farm has given Ray a never-ending list of “to-dos,” but he tackles each project with enthusiasm. When not working, Ray enjoys hitting the trails with his equine partner, Flirt.
| Danny Williams – Mr. Fix-It #2
Unlike Ray, Danny Williams knew full well what he was getting into when he married Kelley!
Not a rider originally, Danny learned to ride and eventually went on to compete at the Waredaca Starter Horse Trials with his partner Frosty. When not chasing after their two boys, Danny can be found working alongside Ray in the “project du jour”.
|Tiina Gray – Morning Feeder Extraordinaire
Since moving to the new farm is 2005, Tiina (always accompanied by Lilly) has been an invaluable addition to A Bit Better Farm.
She ensures that each horse starts their day off well and, as you can imagine, they all look forward to seeing her each morning. Nothing gets by Tiina, as she notices every lost shoe, scratch, and bump. We don’t know what we would do without her, and hopefully we will never have to find out!
|Jona, Tate, Tyler, and Grace – The Kids
A constant presence around the farm, the kids are sure to bring a smile to your face.
Be it hanging in their many “forts” around the property, helping with the latest projects, or taking riding lessons, the kiddos can be counted on to provide super cute entertainment for everyone. Plus they help to bomb proof the horses! But in all seriousness, they are the sweetest bunch of munchkins around.
|Kim, Boni, Tyler and Grace – The Caldeiras
The newest house at the farm belongs to the other members that complete the family compound at ABBF … the Caldeiras.
Kim, Kelley’s sister, met Boni when he was instructing Kelley and Pat. They were married in 1999, and Tyler came along in early 2006. Kim, a published researcher at the University of Maryland, is our resident gardener and cook extraordinaire. Boni retired from the horses, went back to school, got his pilot’s license, and after a brief stint as an actuary, is now the top salesman for Cirrus Aviation. Boni can still be talked into coaching from time to time, and Kelley swears she WILL get him back in the saddle some day. A big welcome the newest member of the Caldeira family and the ABBF family; Grace Elaine Caldeira was born on March 13, 2012 and is a more than welcome addition to the family. She essentially has three big brothers to show her the ropes, and we have dubbed her the princess of ABBF.