TC Youth is proud to announce Sophie Dean-Potter, age 13, as our second recipient of the TC Youth in the Spotlight Award, sponsored by Equestrian Factory Outlet!Sophie has been riding and taking lessons since she was five years old. Both her parents are equine vets so she certainly was on horses much earlier than five and was destined to be rider.
Sophie started competing in local schooling shows but soon became interested in eventing and has competed there for the past three years. Although dressage is a big portion of eventing, it wasn't until the fall of 2010 that Sophie began solely training in dressage - and she has fallen hard.
Sophie has always strived to do her best in everything she does even at her young age. She is dedicated and independent. No help from Mom needed here! She loves the challenge dressage gives her and has an appreciation for just how hard these riders work to achieve their goals.
Sophie's current partner is a large pony named Obsidian who is a 16-year-old Welsh Cob cross. Obie is an absolute character! He was an A circuit hunter before Sophie owned him and has a reputation for being quite cheeky. He has taught Sophie so much but has not handed anything over to her. She needs to work for everything they do together. He is known in the barn as the "grump", but we know it's just an act!
Sophie rides five to six days per week and would like to ride eight days a week if only school and family time wouldn't get in the way! Sophie is training with her coach Karin Davis twice a week and still takes lessons with her eventing coach, Kirstie Freitag, weekly to keep up with her jumping.
In spite of all her time spent in the barn Sophie remains a top student and plans to go on to have a career working with animals, big and small. Due to the busy nature of her parent’s jobs, Sophie tries hard to have all of her school work completed before her parents are finished work and ready to take her to the barn.
Sophie takes her riding very seriously and constantly strives to better herself. After watching things like the North American Junior and Young Rider Championships, World Equestrian Games, Rolex and the Olympics, Sophie feels inspired to reach for the stars. She knows her partnership with Obie won't last forever but right now she can't imagine riding anyone else and is completely caught up in the moment with her best friend.
Sophie and Obie had a successful showing at the July 2011 Palgrave Dressage Festival, earning two first place ribbons in the FEI Pony division. In acknowledgment of receiving this award Sophie will be given a gift certificate and a beautiful jacket from Equestrian Factory Outlet!
The TC Youth in the Spotlight award has been developed to honor deserving youth for their outstanding contribution to the dressage community through volunteer work, their own accomplishments and successes and overall exceptional attitude.
For more information, including application forms for this award, please visit www.torontocadora.com