AQHYA World Championship Show 2014
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August 1-9, 2014
Oklahoma City

2012 Youth World

Western Riding

2012 Built Ford Tough AQHYA Western Riding World Champion Taylor Searles and Flashy Attraction

2012 Built Ford Tough AQHYA Western Riding World Champion Taylor Searles and Flashy Attraction.

Flashy Attraction wins at his second world show for the Searles family of Arizona.

As Taylor Searles was waiting for the placings to be called in western riding August 7 at the 2012 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show, she and the last two competitors shared hugs. She, Samantha Bayer and Kaylee Mellott were good friends, and Taylor teared up a bit thinking about how amazing it was to share such a moment.

Her horse, Flashy Attraction, however, was tossing his head and pinning his ears at the other horses. “He’s like, ‘Come on, hurry up, let’s place this thing,’ ” Taylor said of the veteran show horse. “He’s just so funny.”

As it turned out, Taylor and “Ryder” were the last ones left in line with a score of 227.5 that earned them the gold trophy. Last August, Ryder and Taylor scored a reserve youth world championship in western riding, and at the 2011 Adequan Select World Championship Show, Taylor’s grandmother, Mary Lou Searles won her western riding class with Ryder.

No wonder, then, that the horse Taylor described as “Dennis the Menace” is a family favorite. Her parents, Jim (an AQHA Professional Horseman) and Deanna, are trainers who have worked with Ryder since he was a junior horse.

Katherine Tobin was his previous owner, and “I’m just so happy and blessed that she let me have him,” said Taylor, a 13-year-old eighth grader at Sonoran Trails Middle School in Phoenix.

Preparing for the western riding finals, Taylor said, “I just was praying and hoping that I could get this done. I rode and just kept on practicing and practicing, and it worked.” Show nerves plagued her earlier in the day, but as she was preparing to ride in, confidence in her horse took over.

“It was just amazing,” she said of her championship ride.

She planned to give Ryder “a lot” of his favorite Mrs. Pastures horse cookies as a reward, and she’s hoping special treatment like that will keep the 16-year-old gelding going strong for years to come.

“I’m definitely going to keep showing as long as he’ll let me show him.”