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 age?
Rylan Davis, and I am 15 years old.
How long have you been involved with horses?
Since I was a baby.
Do you have a trainer?
Yes, Paige Wagter of Burkwood Farms in Blaine, Washington.
What’s the hardest part about owning or caring for horses?
Training your horse up to where you want it to be is the hardest part for me. It takes so much dedication and patience. My horse is talented but very quirky and hot-tempered.
What kind of riding do you do?
I ride English, and I do show jumping.
Tell us about your horse:
My horse’s name is Helios; he is a Swedish Warmblood and Thoroughbred cross. I’ve owned him for almost two years now.
What are your horse riding and training goals?
My goal is to ride professionally at the Grand Prix level. I would also like to have a training business.
Any accomplishments you’re especially proud of?
I have won four state championships, and last year I was the 2019 Junior Sportsman of the Year for Washington State Hunter Jumper Association.
What are some obstacles/challenges you’ve had to overcome with your horse training or riding?
Some of my biggest challenges have been my mom battling cancer for years and me trying to keep riding and affording lessons. I once had a terrible crash in the show ring that resulted in a rotational flip that ended the horse’s jumping career. I have also been run over by a horse before, which knocked me unconscious and put me in the hospital.
Name one or two of your heroes in the horse world – people you admire and respect. Why did you choose this person?
The rider I look up to the most in the horse world is McLain Ward. I have tried to base my riding and skills after his and have the same attitude and love for horses. I also look up to my trainer Paige Wagter because she dedicates her life to providing opportunities for kids and doing what is best for horses.
What is your dream career? Do you see horses in your adult life?
I see horses being my profession in the future. I want to train and ride horses professionally.
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.