A Jonathan Alder sophomore has qualified to compete in a world championship horse show in Oklahoma.
Brooke Bradley, 15, will take part in the 2015 Built Ford Tough American Quarter Horse Youth Association World Championship Show in the categories of hunter under saddle and hunt seat equitation. The show will be held July 31 to Aug. 8 in Oklahoma City.
“I was just in shock when they told me,” Brooke said. “I was just so happy, there’s no words to describe it.”
The girl will show her American quarter horse named Skips Midnight Ride. The 2011 chestnut gelding’s barn name is Ryder.
The Oklahoma competition is the pinnacle event for American quarter horse exhibitors ages 18 and under around the world. Riders qualify for the event by earning a predetermined number of points on the local level in classes representing halter, English and western disciplines.
More than 2,500 entries from the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Israel, Luxembourg, New Zealand and Venezuela are competing for championships in 35 categories at this year’s event.
A fan of horses and riding since the age of nine, Brooke was given her first horse at the age of 10. She’s been an avid rider ever since.
Her mother, Melissa Bradley, said despite efforts to keep school, friends and riding balanced, one seems to take priority over the others for Brooke.
“I’ll be honest with you, the barn comes first (for her),” Melissa said.
Brooke said balance is sometimes difficult to maintain.
“It does get tough at times,” she said.
Brooke recently began training with Jessica Daniels, an owner and trainer at JD Show Horses in Delaware County. Daniels will accompany Brooke to Oklahoma for the upcoming competition.
A year of training with Daniels put Brooke on another level.
“We have improved so much,” Brooke said. “It’s unbelievable.”
Ryder was purchased just last year, and Melissa said she is optimistic about her daughter’s abilities for the duration of her youth riding career. Brooke can compete in youth classes until she turns 19.
“They’re still a very new team,” Melissa said of Brooke and Ryder. “We’ve got great hopes for the future.”
Brandon Semler can be reached at 740-852-1616, ext. 1615 or via Twitter @BrandonSemler.