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Youth Spotlight: Shane Smith




(Editor’s Note: The following Q&A took place between the Walking Horse Report’s editorial director Sadie Fowler and youth rider Shane Smith.)

WHR: Tell us about yourself, and what the important highlights of your world are these days.

Shane:
My family and my horses are what is important in my world.  I would describe myself as a caring guy.  People tell me I have a big heart.  I like riding horses, dirt bikes, and 4-wheelers.  I don’t like going to school, but I like visiting with my friends as school.  

WHR:
How did you get started in the horse world and what has riding taught you?

Shane:
I was riding before I could walk. I would ride with my Uncle D. When I could sit by myself he would lead me all over the farm then at the horse shows in lead line. For my 4th birthday, I wanted to learn to ride by myself and Uncle D taught me to ride bare back. When I was 5, I started showing myself. I went to Jennifer Hankins in Paris and had riding lessons for about 6 months to learn some riding technique.  

WHR:
What is it about the walking horse that attracts you the most?

Shane:
I love horses and people. I get to talk to people from all over the United States. I like going to horse shows on the weekend my horse family.  

WHR:
Who is your favorite horse of all time? 

Shane:
My horse, A Stroke of Malibu, is my favorite horse that I have ever rode.  He died last Thanksgiving.  I love the horse Sky Doctor, Jazz Online, and Thanks for Cash.  

WHR:
What do you most enjoy about the industry in terms of the friendships you’ve made?

Shane:
I have met many friends that I only see at horse things. Jackson Hardin, Adam Mabry, and Zach Mabry are my best horse show friends.  I only see them at horse things, but we always have a good time.  Jackson and I stay together during the Celebration and go to the show together.  We always have a great time. I love talking to the adults also. Martin Cox and the Cottonwood crew, Jamie Tucker, Allen McQuerry, Allan Price, Sarah Burks, Van and Doug Stephens are some of my favorite adults to talk to at a horse show.  

WHR:
Who is your trainer and tell me what he or she is like?

Shane:
My Uncle D, Darrell Collins, is who trains my horses.  He taught me to love riding when I was a baby.  He would hold me and work horses on our farm.  He started taking me to show lead line when I was 2 and let me show by myself when I was 5.  

WHR:
What has been your most special moment in the show ring?

Shane:
My most favorite moment is when I won my first blue ribbon.  My most favorite overall time is when I got to show at the Celebration last year.  

WHR:
What’s your life like outside of horses?

Shane:
I love to ride motorcycles and 4-wheelers.  I am in 4th grade at Mt. Vernon Elementary in Kentucky.  I would love to be a vet when I get older.  

WHR:
What is one new thing you would love to learn?

Shane:
I would love to learn to be a better rider on the horses and on my motorcycle.  

WHR:
Who is someone you admire and why?

Shane:
I admire Martin Cox.  He is a nice fellow and he has a lot of nice horses.  

WHR:
If you could have dinner with someone famous, who would it be and what would you have for dinner? 

Shane:
I would like to eat dinner with Steph Curry.  We would have steak and ribs.  

WHR:
Who is your favorite American president and why? 

Shane:
My favorite American president is Donald Trump.  I just like him.  

WHR:
What is one piece of advice you’d give to someone brand new to the horse show world?

Shane:
One piece of advice is not to scream at a horse because if makes it worse.  Be nice to the young people.  Be happy for those that win; have good sportsmanship.  

WHR:
What is one of your goals for the upcoming year in regards to horses and beyond?

Shane:
I would love to win a Word Grand Championship at the Celebration.  I would like to race motor cross.  
 

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