Paint Rider Reaches for the Stars in Kentucky
In the rolling fields of Kentucky, you expect to see Thoroughbreds of every color, but Sophie Click and Hot Wheels EHJ will be adding a splash of color to the monochromatic landscape during the Adequan/FEI North American Junior and Young Riders Championships presented by Gotham North. The premier competition for talented young riders age 21 and under takes place July 14-19 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. Sophie and “Wheels,” a 2003 chestnut overo gelding by Three Alarm Fire (TB) and out of High Mountain, will represent United States Eventing Association Area VII in eventing, a three-phase competition consisting of dressage, cross country and show jumping.
The equestrienne from Redmond, Washington, initially began riding Wheels for her mother after they bought the gelding two years ago.
“We actually bought him for my mom. He bucked her off at a clinic, so I rode him the next day,” Sophie said. “The clinician, Nick Holmes-Smith, said we were a really good pair and that I should ride him more. So I did, and now we’re at Young Riders again!”
Sophie and Wheels have moved up the levels together, and 2015 marks their second time to compete at NAJYRC. Wheels was originally competing at Training Level when he and Sophie teamed up; now, they’re competing at Preliminary, where fences can reach heights of 4 feet 5 inches and spreads of 5 feet 11 inches. Together, they have competed in some of the most prestigious events in the United States, including Galway Downs International Horse Trials and Twin Rivers Horse Trials. Despite their success, Sophie still has big goals in mind.
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