Horseback royalty crowned


Dakota Miller and Claire Ensign were both reluctant to take up horseback riding as children.

It’s a good thing family members talked them into it since the duo was crowned king and queen of horsemanship Monday evening at the Lorain County Fair.

Miller, of Nova, and his horse, My Daddy’s Redneck, almost didn’t make it to the competition due to a leg injury suffered by the horse. Earlier this year, the family received word the ailment had completely healed.

“I started riding when I was five and did showmanship stuff,” he said. “My mom was the one who encouraged me to get into it and said it’s a big part of country life. After about two years, I didn’t want to do showmanship anymore.”

When Miller was 12, he made the decision to go into competition. He is now 18 and a senior at the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center.

“Trainers started teaching me from the bottom and worked me up to where I am now,” he said. “I’ve had this horse for three years. We thought we weren’t going to be able to ride this year because of the injury. It was an old injury that had already been fixed up, but they thought it was going to bother her. The vet told us it was perfectly fine about six months ago.”

Ensign, a 16-year-old Elyria High School student, has been riding for six years and plans to become a nurse.

“My mom forced me into it,” she said. “Now I love it. I don’t know why I was so reluctant at first. I was just young and thought I had better things to do.”

She and her horse, Roanie, took in the moment in the center of the ring with family members.

“It feels great to be recognized like this,” said Ensign. “I was pretty bad when I started and my horse and I weren’t a very good team at first. It’s nice to see us grow together.”

Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.

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Claire Ensign thanks her horse, Roanie, for helping her be crowned queen of horsemanship Monday at the Lorain County Fair.
http://www.theamherstnewstimes.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/43/2017/08/web1_IMG_0037.jpgClaire Ensign thanks her horse, Roanie, for helping her be crowned queen of horsemanship Monday at the Lorain County Fair.

Dakota Miller was crowned king and helped his horse, My Daddy’s Redneck, recover from an old injury earlier this year.
http://www.theamherstnewstimes.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/43/2017/08/web1_IMG_0038.jpgDakota Miller was crowned king and helped his horse, My Daddy’s Redneck, recover from an old injury earlier this year.

By Jonathan Delozier

jdelozier@aimmediamidwest.com