Holly Pond’s Lexie Smith wins state racking horse championship

Lexie Smith and The Master Switch show off their prizes at the Alabama Open Horseman Association State Show in Montgomery. (Photo courtesy of April Smith)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Over the Labor Day holiday weekend, Holly Pond High School student Lexie Smith was named State Youth Racking Champion at the Alabama Open Horseman Association State Show in Montgomery, with her horse The Master Switch. Racking horses, bred from Tennessee walking horses, are known for their smooth and distinctive walking or trotting gait, on which they are judged in competition. 

To win a state racking title in Alabama is no mean feat, given that the state is headquarters to the Racking Horse Breeders’ Association of America, and home to the country’s largest population of racking horses, as well as the breed’s two largest competitions. Smith has won twice, this year and last, competing in six additional shows each time just to get an invitation to the state event.

According to mother April Smith, “This is actually her third year of going to state, and it’s the second year of her actually winning the big class for the big kids. We’re very proud of her. She worked hard in order to qualify. It’s a big responsibility, because not only does she have to work her horse and make sure he’s sound and ready to go to the show, she has to compete with other children to do the same thing.”

Lexie Smith is a student at Holly Pond High School, where she also pitches for the junior varsity softball team and has a no-hitter to her credit. She will return to the equestrian arena later this month, attending the Racking Horse World Celebration in Priceville, the world’s largest racking competition. 

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W.C. Mann