Riders 'root for each other'

August 05, 1997


Staff Writer

After one and a half years of preparing, cleaning and taking care of her horse, Sarah Shantz, 11, was ready for competition.

Shantz, of Sharpsburg, is a member of the Antietam Farm Red Ribbon Club.

She competed Monday in the English Horse Show. Her horse, MLF Topic Rose, is a 10-year-old Morgan, daughter of Tedwin Topic, a thoroughbred that recently died.

Kathy Shantz, Sarah's mother, said she is very modest.

"She loves that horse. She's at the farm from 10 in the morning to 6 in the evening everyday cleaning out horse stable and taking care of her horse. It's part of her 4-H project," she said.


Despite not having any competitors but members in their own club, the 14 members of Red Ribbon who showed their horses, brushed and cleaned their horses prior to the competition.

Although they compete against their friends, Michael Butts, Antietam Farms owner and trainer, said club members still have a lot of fun.

Butts, club leader for two years, said he started giving riding lessons, but the number of clients grew and grew. He said the kids approached him and Becky Madison, another club leader, about starting a riding club. Now the club has 34 members.

"This group enjoys showing. They root for each other," he said.

In Junior Showmanship, which is judged by how the horse listens to the exhibitor, there were five competitors.

Leslie Springer, 10, of Clear Spring, won first place with her horse Vonas Winnin Pepper.

Sarah Shantz won second place in the junior showmanship and Megan Springer, 14, won third place with her horse D.S. Augustus.

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