Child Focus Staff Places 5th in APHA World Show
I have been around horses since I was 3 years old. I even fell off a horse the first time I rode, at that same age, but that still did not stop me. My grandmother bought me my own horse at the age of 10 and I started in the local 4H program. I was always learning and teaching my horses new things from a young age. I did take a brief break from horses in my late teens to early twenties, but that calling never went away.
I started breaking my own horses and having success on the local APHA horse circuit. APHA stands for American Paint Horse Association. It takes a lot of time, effort and practice to break, ride and show horses. I learned from some of the best in this field and took that knowledge and made it my own. The key to success is not always about winning, but having a bond with your horse and staying consistent. I was #1 in a novice division in the state of Ohio in 2000 and that pushed me to go even further. I became #1 again in 2008 and 2009 in a tougher division. We had purchased our current farm around that time, so I went back to work full time and also slowed down a bit on the circuit shows as I was tired and so was my horse.
During my “break”, I found a foal that I wanted to purchase to train for my next show prospect. He was all the way in Nebraska. In October of 2012, I traveled to Nebraska to bring home my little “Rocky”. Everyone around me thought I was crazy, but I always saw the diamond in the rough. We hit some major bumps in the road during his first 3 years so we got a late start of me breaking him out to ride. This past year was our first major year showing regularly. I always dreamed one day I would make it to the APHA World Show in Texas and this was my year. It was a long journey there and back but it was well worth it. We ended up Top 5 in one of our classes…..IN THE WORLD! What a dream come true for a girl and her horse she raised and trained from a baby!! Written by: Heather Strobl. Heather is pictured in pink with her horse, Rocky.