Journal on the Road

2010 Ford Youth World — August 4

August 4, 2010

A wave of talent is coming to the amateur ranks.

Darcy Reeve (left) and Ali Papendick await the judges' final placings in western riding. It is the last year of youth competition for both riders. (Scroll down for more Journal photos).

Just look through the finals list of almost any class at the 2010 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show, and you’ll see familiar names of youth who’ve been competing successfully for a long time.

And for a surprising number of them, this is their last year to compete as youth; they’re moving on up to amateur.

Take Ali Papendick of Rapid City, South Dakota. During the 2009-10 show season, she also negotiated her freshman year of college at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. Yet she still managed to qualify for the Ford Youth World in showmanship, western riding, trail, horsemanship and hunter under saddle.

As of this posting, she made the finals in showmanship and western riding with Harley D Zip, winning the western riding world championship. It’s Ali and “Harley’s” incredible fourth back-to-back youth world championship in the class. Ali has the hunter under saddle prelims with Must Be A Detail to go; they are the returning 2009 youth world champs in the class.

“It feels great going out with a bang like this,” Ali said after the western riding. “It’s awesome. I’ve worked so hard all summer. To come back and win it again is unbelievable, and I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

But Ali’s just one in a class of several similarly talented, last-year youth. Multiple halter world champion Morgan Brehm of Lincoln, Nebraska, won the 2010 youth aged mares August 1 with Shez One Classy Kid.

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Individual gold medalist and member of the champion Team USA at the 2010 American Quarter Horse Youth World Cup Reed Kyle of Whitesboro, Texas, (the 2009 reserve champ in youth reining) took third in the 2010 reining finals August 2. Multiple western pleasure world champion Darcy Reeve of Garden City, Kansas, qualified two horses in the western riding finals, winning the reserve, won third in trail and has qualified for the western pleasure finals August 5.

Carey Nowacek of San Antonio, Texas, took her first youth world championship in the horsemanship finals August 2. A member of Texas A&M’s western championship team at the 2010 Varsity Equestrian National Championships, it’s her last year as a youth, too.

And we still have yet to see last-year youth such as multiple youth roping world champion Ryan Schroeder of Gainseville, Texas, who’ll be making his appearance later this week in tie-down, heading and heeling.

The list goes on and on.

Hopefully, we’ll see this class continue to compete as amateurs. At this point, Ali’s planning to for a year, but her studies in nutritional science, and possibly medical school, may become too demanding. But if she stays true to the “Horse Bug Bitten Rule” she won’t stay gone.

Do you know the plans of a talented last-year youth at the Ford Youth World? Let us know where they’re going and what they’re planning to do.

The American Quarter Horse Journal is in Oklahoma City for the Ford Youth World’s online coverage. Check out the slide show below (click on each photo to see the caption).

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