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First-year exhibitor finds success in horse shows

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

Albin – In the small town of Albin resides a quiet, young FFA member who found success as a first-year exhibitor of the Laramie County Fair Horse Show. Thirteen-year-old Reata Hoar is a junior high member of the Pine Bluffs FFA Chapter.
    “My ag teacher was the one who encouraged me to be a part of the horse show. He got me interested in horse program,” says Hoar.
    Hoar grew up on a ranch where they worked with cattle and trained horses. Her family’s continual work with horses rubbed off on her from a young age.
    “We have a picture of her on a horse in a diaper and a t-shirt,” says Hoar’s mother Samantha. “She has been roping a dummy since she was about four- or five-years-old.”
Rodeo success
    Around the age of nine, Hoar began competing in the Colorado Junior Rodeos. She is also a competitor in the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association.
    “In 2009, she was the Junior Circuit Champion in the Mountain States. She also lead the world in barrels. She missed the championship by only 200 dollars. She was named one of the top 20 under 20-years-old by one of the most prestigious barrel horse magazines,” adds Samantha.
    “I had a mare I was riding during that time that taught me a lot about how to ride. She helped me improve my riding style and helped me train every horse after that,” adds Hoar.
Training horses
    This young lady does a majority of the training on each of the horses she rides. However, she gets help and advice from many others.
    “I have gotten help from my mom, other people who have been around barrel horses, my horses, Lynn Smith [one of the best goat tiers], Jake Barnes, Laura Lambert, Trevor Brazile and many others,” Hoar notes. “It was really cool to get to meet these people and work with them.”
    After Hoar found a streak of luck on the paved road to rodeos, she found herself a little burnt out of competing. For the past few years Hoar has not competed in any rodeos.  
    “She was tying about 100 goats per day, and she just got burnt out. It has been a lot of fun to watch her do it again,” says Samantha.
    Laramie County Fair was Hoar’s opportunity to get back into the groove of things. It was a good comeback for Hoar, as she placed first in her classes for Quarter Horse mares, working cow, goat tying and team roping with the help of Chase Merrick. Hoar was the winner of a red ribbon for being second in her class for Quarter Horse mares 4-years-old and older. The third place ribbon was awarded to the cowgirl for her run in pole bending. In Western trail riding and reigning, Hoar received fifth place.
    “She is a very driven person. She will practice for six hours a day without anyone telling her to or helping her,” says Samantha.
The next step
    Helping Hoar reach these accomplishments were four saddled mares. Those four horses will travel with her to Douglas for the Wyoming State Fair as she competes with the best in the state.  
    “At county fair, you can’t ride a stud. Those are my main horses. I had to get all of my mares trained to the point where they could be in fair. I do the training on each of them. I didn’t have much notice, so I have been riding them every day for two weeks,” says Hoar. “I want to have these mares trained, so if I ever go to something like this again I have a good back-up team.”  
    Hoar also entered the baking portion of county fair. Her apple pie will be judged on Aug. 3, when the rest of the fair resumes.  
    “I want to keep going to county fair. Next year, I hope to have a steer to take,” notes Hoar with a smile from ear-to-ear.    
    In the next few years, one can bet that she will be working with her horses, especially that stud she is determined to train.
    “We will take Reata to the junior high rodeos next year, if she decides she wants to,” says Samantha.     
    Allie Leitza is an intern for the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to

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