Through hard work, dedication, and the love for horses, local 4-Hers represented the State of North Carolina at the Southern Regional 4-H Horse Championships being held in Raleigh, last weekend.
It all started at the Northeastern District 4-H Horse Show that was held in Williamston, May 3-4, where these dedicated 4-H’ers had to qualify by accumulating points to be eligible to compete at the state level. The N.C. State 4-H Horse Show was held in Raleigh, July 9-13. Competitors who qualified came from five districts across the state to compete for the chance to qualify to participate at Southern Regionals. Southern Regionals is comprised of 13 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
According to Pasquotank County 4H extension agent Mason Lawrence, “Pasquotank County put their name on the map when the Double T Farms 4H Speed Team brought 4 competitors up through the shows to meet other champions at the Southern Regional Horse Show.
Nicole Franklin, riding Docs Smart Freckles and Danny Wallace, riding Roxy’s Little Ritzy Girl, dominated the competition at the Southern Regionals. These two competitors tied by points for High Point Reserve Champion in the Speed Division. The tie breaker was made by a series of qualifications which ,in the end, gave the award to Nicole Franklin.
Logan Stallings, riding Montana’s Whim (Lily) made it back to the finals in the Stake Race in the Speed Division.
Timberly Bedlow qualified for the Southern Regional Horse Show in her “Rookie Year” on the Speed team.
Bryan Stallings qualified for the Southern Regionals Horse Show in the Western Division where he participated in Pleasure, Trail, Horsemanship and Showmanship!
The following 4-H’ers competed and represented North Carolina.
• Nikki Franklin, 19, showing Docs Smart Freckles, a registered AQHA, became the 2014 N.C. 4H State Champion in the Senior Gaming Division. The gaming division consists of barrel racing, pole bending, and other fast pace events.
Winners are determined by the fastest time to complete an event. Nikki attributes her good fortune to consistent practice under the keen eye of her trainer, Terry Temple.
Nikki is currently a student at College of The Albemarle and wishes to complete her four year degree at North Carolina State University, in Animal Science and/or Medicine. She is a member of the Blue Ribbon Riders 4-H Club.
• Danny Wallace, 18, showing Roxy’s Little Ritzy Girl, a Quarter Horse mare, was the 2013 N.C. 4-H State Champion in the Senior Gaming Division and also qualified for this year’s Southern Regional Competition. Danny is also an officer in the 4-H program and serves as vice president.
He has been riding horses since he was eight years old at Double T Farms with instructor, Terry Temple. Danny’s dream is to become a firefighter and is working towards his goal at College of the Albemarle. He is also a volunteer firefighter. He is a member of the Blue Ribbon Riders 4-H Club.
• Logan Stallings, 10, showing Montana’s Whim, aka Lilly, also a Quarter Horse, qualified for Southern Regionals in the Junior Gaming Division in his first year of State Competition. Logan started his riding career at Double T Farms when he was five years old.
He loves the fast pace of barrel racing and has worked hard to improve his times. Miss Terry of Double T has taught him to bond with his horse and practice, practice, practice. He plans to continue his riding.
Logan’s future plans are to become a farmer like his father. He is a member of the Blue Ribbon Riders 4-H Club.
• Timberly Bedlow, 11, showing Thunder, an American Quarter Horse, qualified for the Southern Regionals competition in the Junior Gaming Division.
This is Timberly’s rookie season. She has transformed from a nervous rider to a competent, top rider in less than one year under trainer Terry Temple.
Timberly plans to become a veterinarian and hopes to complete her education at NCSU. She is a member of the Blue Ribbon Riders 4-H Club.
• Bryan Stallings, 14, showing RR Hold Your Bet, aka Elliott, qualified for the Southern Regionals in the Senior Western Division. This division requires horse and rider to perform in slow, collected manners with precision.
Bryan trains his own horse under the guidance of Terry Temple. Bryan aspires to become a veterinarian earning his education at NCSU.
He has been an active member of the 4-H Horse Program for over five years. He is a member of the Blue Ribbon Riders 4-H Club.
• Emily Eskridge, 12, showing Tempy a Quarab, a half Arabian/half Quarter horse, qualified for Southern Regionals and represented the state as its Reserve Champion in the Junior Gaming Division.
Emily has been riding and loving horses since she was four years old. She has been an active member of the Camden Silver Spurs since 2011.
• Samantha Ownley, 17, showing Hidden Treasure who was acquired by the local U.S. Equestrian Rescue League after being found at yard sale in a dog pen at two years.
Treasure became of member of New Hope Stables family in Hertford at age three. The horse is now 12 and has been a great teacher to many children as well as adults.
Samantha and Treasure will be represented N.C. as the Senior Western Pony Champion and will compete in the Hunt Seat Division. Samantha has been an active member of the High Achievers for the past 12 years and is currently serving as club president.