For 14 years, English riding enthusiast Sara Scharnowske owned warmbloods or off-the-track Thoroughbreds. But the Lebanon, Indiana, resident had always been interested in owning an American Quarter Horse.
Her big chance came when she read about a 7-year-old gelding named Handsome N Hot in the “Home For Every Horse” program on equine.com. A multiple futurity champion and 2007 National Snaffle Bit Association World Champion 2-Year-Old Hunter Under Saddle, he had placed in the top 10 at the Congress and boasted over $8,000 in NSBA earnings. Best of all, the sorrel son of Hot N Blazing stood a statuesque 17.1 hands tall.
“It was hard to find [a Quarter Horse] so big!” she recalled, explaining, “I am 6'1, so ‘Handy’ 's 17.1 height is amazing.”
In June, Scharnowske adopted the gelding from ReRide Quarter Horse Adoption in Marysville, Ohio.
Now, his new owner is planning to compete him next spring. “We had some setbacks when I first brought him home,” she admitted. “But with lots of corrective trimming and shoeing, supplements, chiropractor visits and TLC, you should see us showing soon.”
Meanwhile, Scharnowske adds, “We have had a fun and interesting time figuring each other out. I come from a hunter/jumper and dressage background, and he is a spur-trained AQHA hunter under saddle. Needless to say, his buttons and commands are pretty much the opposite of my training.
“So...many people at the barn had a laugh at our expense when I couldn't get him to trot! He was very forgiving and we now 'get' each other.”