By Allison ArmstrongThe American Quarter Horse JournalApril 22, 2013
Although Jennifer and "Scooter" showed in seven classes at the inaugural Nutrena East Novice Championship, the Alabama horsewoman says showmanship is her favorite class. (Journal photo)
Jennifer Anderson and Scoot Otta Dee Way go way back.
In fact, they’ve been together “ever since ‘Scooter’ was thought about,” Jennifer told the Journal with a laugh. “I bred and raised him. My family even threw a baby shower for him.”
A 12-year-old bay gelding, Scooter is out of Jennifer’s first horse, CW Little Luck (by Quincy Go Lucky), and by Zacs Midnight Star.
Jennifer began riding seriously at age 15, when she conducted horseback trail rides on the beach, and continued to ride “any time anyone gave me a chance to.” As an adult, she began showing at AQHA shows in 2000, then took a break from 2005 to 2011 to have her children, ages 4 and 6.
Jennifer teaches full time as a faculty member in the College of Nursing at the University of South Alabama, in Mobile. To pay for her showing career, she also holds a part-time job, teaching online nursing classes with the University of Phoenix.
As one of her friends puts it, Jennifer is “a busy girl.”
In the midst of juggling two jobs and two kids, the Bay Minette, Alabama, horsewoman still finds time to hone her competitive edge with Scooter. The duo competed in seven events at the 2012 Nutrena AQHA East Novice Championship Show: halter, hunt seat equitation, hunter under saddle, western pleasure, horsemanship, trail, and Jennifer’s favorite class, showmanship.
“I don’t know why I love showmanship so much,” Jennifer says. “I just love it. It’s just my heart. There’s so much involved with you. You’re on the ground, instead of riding, and it’s all about your style.”
And at the inaugural Nutrena East Novice Championship, Scooter clinched ninth place in Novice amateur aged geldings with Jennifer at the shank.
When it comes to an extra set of eyes, Jennifer defers to the help of trainer Tara Schmidt of No Boundaries Performance Horses in Fairhope, Alabama.
“Jennifer rides at least four days a week,” Tara says. “She ought to be proud to have two kids, two jobs and still be able to ride and show. Jennifer is very dedicated and very focused.”
The American Quarter Horse Journal loves to feature the hard-working AQHA exhibitor, and In the Spotlight is the Journal’s fun new way to do so. Do you know a hard-working AQHA competitor who deserves some time in the limelight? Email AQHA Internet Editor Tara Christiansen at firstname.lastname@example.org to submit story ideas, then visit www.aqha.com/inthespotlight to view more In the Spotlight stories.
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