Plain Dealing Farm is the home of Linda Wachtmeister and her family. Linda has done amazing job restoring and preserving the property, which itself, is a piece of history. Plain Dealing Farm, located in Albemarle County, VA, is a rider’s paradise with well-equipped barns , run in sheds and a professionally designed cross country course. The 1000 acres of rolling hills boast ample pasture, forested areas, Thomas Creek, and a nine-acre lake is protected by conservation easements. Thousands of native trees and shrubs have been planted on the Farm to enhance its biodiversity, ecological integrity, and natural beauty. Organic growing techniques are employed in the hay fields as well as the flower and vegetable gardens. The riparian habitat along Thomas Creek supports an abundance of migratory birds, water fowl, amphibians, and other wildlife, making Plain Dealing Farm just as appealing to the naturalist as the equestrian. Her husband Robert, an avid sculptor, has renovated a garage into a small studio to work out of. Both Linda and Bob are working on constructing a studio they both can use in the backyard where it will be hidden by various shrubbery and bushes. Linda and Bob met thanks to art and with a studio to call their own they hope to dedicate more time to it while their children take over the reins of the equestrian side of Plain Dealing Farm.
In the early 1900s, the Farm was visited by President Theodore Roosevelt, who owned the nearby Pine Knot Farm. Roosevelt is said to have enjoyed listening to the birds sing, and hunting in the area. Linda ensured that what Roosevelt enjoyed most about the area would be preserved through the conservation easement with the Virginia Outdoors Foundation. Her commitment to preserving the area is further evidenced by her habit of purchasing adjoining properties to prevent them from being subdivided and developed.
Robert E. Lee came to Plain Dealing after the Civil War on his way to Washington and Lee, which was then just Washington College. His horse Traveller stayed in the little old barn.
Plain Dealing Farm’s Eventing History
It all began when Linda was introduced to the sport of eventing while visiting friends in Montana, and she dreamt of becoming involved in the sport someday. Once her family moved to Plain Dealing Farm she set out to make that dream a reality. At the time she had two young daughters who were horse crazy and so in 1996 she decided to hire someone to manage the farm, coach her children and start a low-key Eventing operation. That someone would turn out to be a young Kim Severson who had made the move to Virginia three years prior from Arizona.
Linda purchased Over the Limit for Kim and with “Jake” Kim won the Rolex Kentucky CCI*** in 1999 and was one rail away from winning her first 4* on him the following year. The pair also placed 2nd at the prestigious Blenheim CCI*** in England. Linda slowly expanded her string of horses, some of them imported and some off the track Thoroughbreds. Kim was competitive on almost anything she sat on (including winning at the novice level on Linda’s Fjords)!
Winsome Adante is the most famous of the horses that Linda owned for Kim. On his rise to fame Dan won the Radnor Hunt International CCI** in 2000 and the Blenheim CCI*** in 2001. With “Dan” Kim represented the USA at the World Equestrian Games in 2002 in Jerez, Spain where they won team gold and placed 6th individually, and in 2006 in Aachen, Germany. They also represented the USA in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece where they brought home the individual silver and team bronze medals. They are the only pair to ever win Rolex CCI**** three times, in 2002, 2004 and 2005 and they placed 3rd at the 2007 Badminton CCI**** in England. Dan’s incredible success had Kim ranked as the #1 F.E.I. rider in the world in 2004, and Dan got his own Breyer horse! Winsome Adante holds the record for most USEA points earned over his career, a record he still holds to this day. In 2008 Dan officially retired at Rolex after his brilliant career and now spends his days roaming his field happily at Plain Dealing Farm.
Other upper level mounts Linda owned for Kim included Royal Venture, who placed 4t h at Luhmuhlen CCI 4* in Germany in 2005, Silent Partner, Upper Register, He’s Got Rhythm, Choo Choo McGoo, Royal Bart, Oliver Edgecombe, and Kittengala. During her time at Plain Dealing, Kim introduced Linda’s daughters Lucia and Benita to eventing and over the years has helped Lucia rise to the Advanced level and Benita to Intermediate, with many wins and successes along the way. Kim has now gone out on her own but continues to teach regularly at Plain Dealing Farm and to coach members of the PDF team at events.