Hi my name is Paige I work at Stanford handling Communications, Websites and Social Media. I have a corgi named Raleigh and I ride horses.
2) But what you really meant to say was this:
Hi my name is Paige, I take care of all sorts of techie stuff for Stanford. But honestly I'd rather not be in front of a computer, but in the saddle. Did I mention I have a corgi, he is the best thing ever. No I don't race, yes I jump, yes I rodeo... Well no actually I don't rodeo I just am the pretty girl carrying a flag with a tiara.
I have two ponies, yes I am 23, yes I still call them ponies.
My old show horse Sugar Ray Knox, or Ray, who is essentially the horse version of a 40 year old gay fashion designer. We have won a billion World/National Championships (Ok like 5, close enough) he's 20 but every time I try to retire him he goes crazy, so he still shows for his sanity!
Then there is my reiner, sassy Princess pony, KSU Mighty Mouse, or Mouse. This time pony is applicable, she barely sticks at 14.3. Pretty much everything you assume by hearing that name is accurate. She is equivalent to Cady on Mean Girls, she thinks she is the bomb, but quite honestly when faced with detention she will begrudgingly give up her sassiness.
Mom found Ray through some sale postings with the American Paint Horse Association, he was coming off being 8th in the nation with his previous owner. We were looking for a youth how horse for me. When we went to try him I didn't like him, like at all. I wanted a 17 hand hunter not a 15'3 western pony. But we ended up buying him and winning state and national titles in both hunters and western so jokes on me!
Mouse was the opposite, pretty much completely and entirely loved her at first sight. I was taking a colt breaking class in college at Kansas State, there was this shaggy mousy colored little filly. I had no clue how at almost 6 ft tall I would even be able to ride something the size of large yearling, but I had to have her. Sick as a dog, in freezing cold, I went to the yearly auction. Walked in, grabbed a buyer's number, bid, signed the form, and walked away with my little pony.
5) What have you done together?
Ray and I have accomplished everything and anything a rider could ever hope for. Unanimous World Champions, numerous top 5 and 10 World Show awards, Nation leader in several categories, and Top 20 in the nation all around. I don't generally brag about myself, but I could tell you all day about how awesome my horse is. He is my one true love after 10 years together.
Mouse has been an accomplishment in her own right, different victories, but exciting nonetheless. She is the first horse I picked out myself. She was broke to carry weight but I put all the beginning training on her, taught her to spin, carry her body, move her hip shoulder anything I wanted. My trainer helped me with the sliding stop and flying change and really finish her out. Our hard work has paid off, in her first two shows she was top 20 at NRHA Rookie Day, and 3rd in the AQHA show at the Grand National.
6) Where are you going together?
Ray is going to get very fat and happy, as long as he wants. I am hoping I can show him a few more times as an Ammy. He just came off a year lease with a cute little one, the ended up 13th in the nation. Looks like he's still got it!
Mouse and I are prepping for our next rodeo queen pageant. Until I can afford to truly hit the reining circuit I am trying my hand at one of my lifelong dreams to compete as a rodeo queen.
7) How do you finance the addiction?
I work 6 days a week. My big kid job is communications with Stanford University. My weekend job is fitting little kids for their up down lessons at a local tack shop.
8) How often do you ride?
Currently my horses are at the ranch, so my riding is sporadic. But when my horses are with me usually I ride 6 days a week.
9) What’s the single biggest thing that helps you achieve your goals?
Tenacity. I am a hard headed stubborn person. Failure and losing are not an option.
10) If there was one thing you could say to people getting ready to join the ranks of riding (or re-riding) adults, what would it be?
Find a trainer you trust and take lessons. Regardless of how much you have or haven't ridden there's always something to learn. Also spend your money on the right things, a $5,000 saddle won't help you if you have a $500 horse. The show Rodeo Girls is absurd, but very accurate, spending $500,000 on a horse doesn't guarantee you will even stay on!
11) What are your horse keeping arrangements?
My horses rotate between the Stanford Red Barn and my parent's 10 acre ranch. Also I routinely send Mouse to my trainer in LA for tuneups.
12) What is/are your long term equine goals?
I always have goals... Ever evolving but completely serious. I generally don't ride just to ride. For now it is to win the Mother Lode Round-Up Queen and then compete for Miss Rodeo California. Ray and I have plans to do a bit more showing, but nothing serious. Eventually I would love to take Mouse to the NRHA Affiliate Finals. At some point I would like to own another hunter and go back to the hunter ring/jumping some.
13) Bottom Line:
Bottom Line, I am not typical to any one discipline. I love rodeo queening and I couldn't imagine doing anything else right now with my life. But rodeo to hunters, I love and do it all.
Strong legs, steady seat and soft hands win; from the roping box to the jumper ring it stays the same.
Thanks to Paige for participating! There are so many different equine outlets for the ammies among us and I love hearing about one that's so unfamiliar to me. It takes all kinds of awesome people and I love getting to talk to them. Are you an adult ammy who should be featured? Contact me through the comments or via email at hakuna.matata at gmail dot com!