About Us
Trainer Karen Bessel has been riding since she was old enough to hold a handful of mane. Growing up at a family stable where training and showing Arabians was their passion, she got her first pony at the age of 4 and her own Arabian at the age of 10. Karen studied under a National Level Arabian Trainer for 10 years. Traveling to compete at Class A shows throughout the summer, training and trail riding in her free time, she worked to develop well rounded, happy horses.

Karen believes in building confidence and a willing attitude in her horses through understanding and respect, working to achieve winning rides through balance and communication. Whether preparing a horse and rider for the show ring or for trail riding, Karen’s focus is always on building a strong partnership between horse and rider.

Show Expertise
Karen is a very successful show trainer and has competed in multiple disciplines including In Hand,  Hunter Pleasure, Western Pleasure, English Pleasure, Judges Command, Equitation, Western and Classical Dressage. She had her start with  countless wins and grand championships showing Arabians in Western Pleasure, Saddle Seat,  Hunter Pleasure and Dressage. She has carried that over into the Morgan circuit competing successfully in all divisions adding National and World Titles to her resume. Most recently at the 2017 Morgan Grand National and World Championship, all of her horses placed consistently in the top 10 with BCT Gentlemans Foxy Lady bringing home the National Championship in Western Dressage and Reserve National Champion Western Pleasure W/T with her 9 year old boy Brody Bessel. Karen's students consistently place in the top ribbons as well. Lessons are one of Karen's passions and she strives to have every student and horse enter the show ring looking every bit the professional. 


Belle Cheval Training operates out of Pine Creek Stables in New Prague, MN. Pine Creek Stables is a beautiful Heated Facility offering all of the extras including a large heated indoor arena, beautiful big stalls, automatic purified water and the absolute best care. The horses of Belle Cheval Training truly know what a pampered life is. Owners and horses enjoy the climate control , especially through the winter months! Have your horse ready for show seasons by being able to keep it's training moving forward all winter long! 

Family Life
Family is the cornerstone of Karen’s life. She loves being Mom to her two delightful sons Ethan and Brody, and wife to her wonderful supportive husband Lee. For Karen, her family is her heart and the cornerstone for all she does.

"My goal at Belle Cheval Training is to build confidence in both riders and horses, making them partners. A confident horse is a reliable horse. Most horses want to please their owners and refusal to respond is more often due to lack of understanding or a physical issue than outright resistance. By building their confidence and making sure their bodies are at their optimal condition, they learn that they can do what is asked of them and become willing partners in whatever direction their owner wants to take them. At Belle Cheval, we work with all breeds and all riding disciplines to bring horses and humans closer together.”

-- Karen Bessel