Born to a pair of horse veterinarians and growing up on a horse farm in Ramsey that’s been in the family for three generations, Brenna Voller has always loved horses.
Last month, her love for one horse in particular – an 11-year-old pinto named Zip to Texas – evolved into the sort of pride a mother feels when her child does well in school or on the playing field.
You see, Voller and Zip took home a world championship trophy when they competed in the June 11-23 Pinto World Championship Show in Tulsa, Okla.
“He was a very good boy,” Voller said last week, smiling as she brushed the pinto’s coat and prepped him for a post-tournament training run at Frost Training Stables in Loretto.
Voller, a 2010 graduate of Anoka High School, and Zip competed in the amateur Show Hack class of the world championships, practicing precision and expertise in three gaits: walk, trot and canter.
“You’re judged on how the horse looks and moves, how he responds, how well we communicate,” said Voller, who has been showing horses in competition since she was six or seven years old.
“I’ve never placed this well before, though,” Voller said.
Voller has competed in five or six shows every year since she was a child and also participated in five or six world shows during that time.
She began working with Zip about seven years ago and expects he’ll compete another year or two before retiring, according to Voller.
“Then he’ll be a pasture pet at home,” said Voller, whose parents, Kim and Kevin Voller, own and operate Trott Brook Horse Farm in Ramsey.
Meanwhile, Voller will continue to train and compete – even while she studies history at St. Olaf College, Northfield, and hopes to become a high school teacher one day.
“I love horses and I know I’ll always have horses in my life,” she said. “Now I have a world champion as one of my horses.”
To learn more about the Pinto World Championships, visit www.pinto.org and click on “world show” under the “events” tag.
Sue Austreng is at firstname.lastname@example.org