Evie Bradford from Louisa Wins State 4H Championship

Written by Kate Besley

Evie Bradford from Louisa Wins State 4H Championship

For 4H horse riders, September is a golden month. Riders have participated in their club's activities, attended horse shows, and completed projects in anticipation of the "Big Show". September 14th through the 17th were the days of competition at the Virginia Horse Center in Lexington, Virginia. There were more than 400 horses, 4 days of shows in many different styles of riding, and 4H clubs who spent those days riding, caring for their horses, even decorating their horses' stalls.

Evie Bradford, age 11, daughter of Will and Shannon Bradford, also completed her 4H requirements to be able to participate in the state show. Her horse, Mac's Good Leaguer, (aka “Sam”) and Evie had put in many hours of riding and training with her trainer, Billie Jo Adsit from Adsit Training Center in Montpelier, Virginia. This was Evie's first year competing at Lexington. There would be 14 competitors in the Junior western pleasure group.

Evie at Virginia Horse Center

On Friday, the 15th, Evie won 1st place in Junior Western Pleasure, and 5th place in showmanship. Western pleasure is a riding “discipline” that involves synchronized movement of horse and rider in slow, deliberate steps. Showmanship is a discipline where the horse wears a halter and performs turns, walking and jogging while the rider walks on ground with the horse. On Saturday, the 16th, Evie won 7th place in horsemanship. Horsemanship means that the rider and horse follow a pattern. Evie also won 4th place in western pleasure. The points from Friday's classes and Saturday's classes placed Evie as the top winner. Evie received ribbons and a plaque which will later bear her name. She would compete in the Classics. The Classic classes were comprised of only the top riders from the previous 2 days of showing.

Evie at Lexington

The Junior Classic western pleasure class was held on Sunday, the 17th at 11:30. There were 4 junior western pleasure riders. This class is judged by 3 judges. Two of the judges are in the ring, and they pick the winners. A third judge is hidden and also picks a winner. Evie and Sam were placed 1st by all three judges. Evie received a plaque that will bear her name and an embroidered wardrobe bag for her achievement. Evie and Sam will now enter the 4H regional contests in Perry, Georgia next July 2018.