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Eight Year Old Winning Horse Shows

By Staff | Sep 29, 2010

Lara Ann Smith, age eight of New Martinsville, began riding and showingher pony, “Gypsy”,at age seven and has taken her passion for horseback riding to the next level at a very young age.

Under the training of Cori Schmidt, she had the opportunity to compete at the 42nd annual “All American Youth Horse Show” in Columbus, Ohio, this past May.

Lara Ann has competed at 14 horse shows, entering more than 100 classes since early May of this year.Along with her parents, Brian and D’Ann Smith, they have traveled throughout the Ohio Valley to shows in Barlow, Ohio, where she’s a member of the Ohio Valley Riding Association; Belmont County Saddle Club, near St. Clairsville; and Simmons Equestrian Center in Negley, Ohio, for the Pennsylvania Amateur Horseman’s Association Show.

Spending many Sundays in Marietta as a member of the Pioneer City Riding Club, Lara Ann will be recognized at the awards banquet in Decemberas Grand Champion in English Pleasure and Equitation classes, which are open to riders of all ages.

Lara Ann also earned many top placements and payback money at the Horse Shows held atWetzel County Town & Country Days and theMarshall County Fair. On Sept. 19, Lara Ann and her pony “Gypsy” were named “High Point Youth” at the Pleasants County Agriculture Fair Horse Show held in St Marys. There, she competed against all riders 17 years of age and under.

Lara Ann rides twice a day during the summer and evenings during the school year. She also enjoystrail rides with her dad.

Hard work and dedication, enduring 12-15 hour show days, and a willing and patient horse, have made her the rider she is.

Lara Ann, who hopes to be on the Olympic Equestrian Team, sends a specialthanksto those who ride with her, pick her up when she falls off, and support her in all her new adventures.

Lara Ann is the granddaughter of Neill and Ann Marshall of New Martinsville, Lyle and Janet Smith of McMurray, Pa., Sibyl Bradfield of Glen Dale and the late W.E. “Skip” Bradfield Jr. of New Martinsville.

She has anolder sister, Austin Schupbach of Pittsburgh, Pa., and an older brother, Zach Yost.