The Northwest Horse Source is celebrating youth in action. Our newest column will feature and celebrate young equine enthusiasts from all over the Northwest who inspire, uplift, or just have fun with horses. The future of the horse industry depends on youth participation. We look forward to sharing their stories and adventures! If you are 18 years old or younger and would like to participate, we invite you to share your story here.
What is your name and how old are you? Lily Richardson. I’m 17.
How long have you been involved with horses?
I have been involved with horses since I was 5 years old. I started showing at age 6.
What kind of riding do you do? Do you have more than one discipline?
I compete in the all-around events. So, horsemanship, showmanship, hunt seat equitation, and trail.
What are some obstacles and/or challenges you’ve had to overcome with your horse training or riding?
When my horse Riley got injured, that was very hard for me. But he is doing a lot better now and will hopefully make it to the Youth World Show.
What’s the hardest part about owning or caring for horses?
Honestly, when they get hurt. It’s so hard to watch your teammate/ best friend be in pain and have to sit out!
Name one or two of your heroes in the horse world—people you admire and respect. Why did you choose this person?
Definitely my trainer, Paige Stroud, my mom, and my grandparents. I couldn’t have gotten to where I am today without them, and they have played a huge role in my life.
Tell us about your horses. Breed? Ages? How long have you owned them?
I have three Quarter horses, Riley, Waylon, and Dee. Waylon is my current show horse, and I’ve had him for four months. Riley is recovering from an injury, and I’ve had him for 3 years. Dee was my first horse, and I’ve had her for nearly 10 years!
What are your horse riding and training goals?
My number one goal since the age of 6 was to get on a National College Equestrian Association (NCEA) team. I’m very thankful to say that Riley helped me to accomplish this goal. I will be attending Oklahoma State University this fall!
Any accomplishments you’re especially proud of?
I am fortunate to have been able to ride and show so many different horses. I feel that this has helped me to grow as a rider and become more flexible.
What is your dream career? Do you see horses in your adult life?
I plan to major in psychology in college and hope to go into a career that deals with that.
Brandi Coplen has shown AQHA nationally as a youth and amateur. With a successful show career at top shows in the world, her focus is now on her twin girls’ riding. Passionate about youth programs, she sees our youth as the future and success of the industry. Brandi was an Area Director for the National Snaffle Bit Association and helped them promote the National Snaffle Bit Association Youth Smart Points program.
Brandi is a Realtor who partners with Tresie Weirsma as Windermere Equestrian Living’s The North Group, specializing in farm, acreage and equestrian properties. [email protected] or www.brandicoplen.withwre.com
Find out more at www.brandicoplen.withwre.com.