January 28, 2008

National Champion

A lot of great success falls under the radar of the big, local media outlets. Ian Barnard, for example, is a local kid from Kendallville who's now attending Purdue. But Ian and his horse, Beamer, are World and National Champions (pay site). Ian and Beamer won the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) North American Affiliation Championship last month. They also won National and World competitions in 2005 and 2006.
In horse competition circles in states like Oklahoma, Kentucky and Texas, Barnard is practically a star. His reputation is so well-known he was recently elected president of the National Reining Horse Youth Association, and will travel the country attending conferences and presiding over meetings with the association paying the travel expenses.

Winning the “triple crown” in horse reining is a rare achievement... The 2007 East Noble graduate credits his 7-year-old horse for the honors they’ve received.
“Consistency is the key in this sport, and Beamer has been great to work with,” he said. “He’s really a well-minded horse, easy to be around and his ears perk up when he knows it’s time to go to work.”

Reining involves guiding the horse through a rigid set of maneuvers, including roll backs, spins, sliding stops, lead changes, running circles and backing up. Riders must have absolute control over their horse.

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