by Christine HamiltonThe American Quarter Horse Journal
The plan worked. At the first of 2011, Alexis Parisek of Elgin, Illinois, was looking for a new horse.
“We actually wanted to move up a little and find one that I could win the world on,” Alexis said. “We” included Alexis’ parents, Jerry and Jackie Parisek, and her trainer, AQHA Professional Horseman Linda Crothers.
“We found (Slow N Natural) in January at the Tampa shows (Florida Quarter Horse Association Gold and Gulf Coast Circuits). And we tried him for a week, decided we wanted him and sent him with Linda for a few weeks…. I showed him again, and I brought him home and started riding him again.
A 2006 gelding by Natural Iron, Slow N Natural is the first foal out of Secret Lil (TB) by Cimarron Secret; the gelding was bred by Stanley and Susan Scott of Ocala, Florida.
“He’s just wonderful,” Alexis said.
Eventually, the two qualified for the 2011 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show in working hunter, hunter hack and equitation over fences.
“My trainer said why don’t you come along (to the Ford Youth World) and we’ll see what happens,” Alexis recalled. “We’ve been working really hard with the flatwork in the hunter hack, and it paid off.”
Alexis and Slow N Natural won the youth world championship in hunter hack August 11. They were also finalists in the working hunter finals August 10.
“It’s great! I was not expecting it,” she said. “He’s really green; we’ve only been jumping since January. It’s my first (Ford Youth World) Show.”
Alexis grew up showing hunters, and her parents “showed horses all their lives.”
“I hope to come back next year and work toward the equitation on the flat,” Alexis said, “and do more of the showmanship stuff, too, but still keep up with the hunters. (I’d like to) hopefully win again next year.
“I want to thank everyone (who helped me toward this win) – my trainer, my grandma and grandpa, and my mom and my dad.”
Alexis Parisek of Elgin, Illinois, and Slow N Natural are the 2011 youth world champions in hunter hack at the 2011 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show. (Journal photo)