by Alexis BennettThe American Quarter Horse Journal
Dulce Smart Boomer and Mindy Barkemeyer
It's clear by the herd of people following Mindy Barkemeyer of Scottsdale, Arizona, after her world championship win in amateur boxing that she's well-loved by a huge support team.
Dulce Smart Boomer, aka “Clark,” has proven to be her superhero.
After coming back from a bout of lameness and overcoming the tiredness of a week of horse showing, the pair put together two nice runs to claim a title.
“My prelim run was amazing,” Mindy said. “We got up and schooled early, so I felt a little discombobulated in the reining. I marked a 213.5 in the reining. He’s such an amazing cow horse. When the cow came out, he pushed on us really hard and he never lost it. We marked a 225.5 on the cow so we led the prelims by nine points.”
But, this didn’t mean they were a shoe-in. The dry work could be clean, but the cow work adds an element that is sometimes beyond a horse and rider's control.
“So we came out in the finals, and I knew we had to give it our all. He gave me all he had and that’s why we call him my little superman.”
The 8-year-old gelding is by Dulces Smart Lena and out of Boomerita by Boomernic.
Clark was a gift from good friends of the family.
“My husband showed him as a 4, 5 and 6 year old, and I’ve loved him ever since,” Mindy beamed.
She said the only way she would show is if she could show Clark. And her wish came true.
“I don’t know how to thank somebody for such an amazing gift like that,” she said. “The only way I can think to give back to them is by our success. He and I are just with each other 100 percent. All the time, every day, we’re one and the same.”
She spends time riding every day with AQHA Professional Horseman Corey Cushing.
“My husband is a trainer, but being a trainer’s wife, you don’t get the same time as if you were to schedule a lesson,” she laughed. “I actually ride with a really good friend and our barn mate Corey Cushing.”
But, that doesn’t mean that her husband, AQHA Professional Horseman Brad Barkemeyer, is not encouraging of her showing.
“My husband is really amazing,” Mindy said. “And, he’s really a calm person. He’s really good about encouraging me.”
They met through horses and have been working together since they moved to Scottsdale and married.
Mindy runs the books, but her first priority is family and raising their two little boys, Bryce (7) and Zane (5).
“I am a mom first,” she said. “That’s what was so distracting in the prelims. They kept saying, ‘Hey mom!’ and I waved at them.”
She is very thankful of her friends, family and cow horse family.
“I want to thank my family. They’re all here – my husband Brad, my two boys, Corey Cushing. I have my dear friends from California, Steven and Trish Greenberg, who are family to us, more than just good friends. And, first and foremost, God…If it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t even be here. And, of course, all of my friends in the cow horse.”
It's your moment; make it last forever! Videos of individual runs and class finals from the AQHA World Championship Show are available for purchase at www.aqha.com/mymoment. Plus, you can watch AQHA World Show video footage 24/7. This new service is optimized for Internet Explorer 10, Safari and most mobile Web browsers.