BY TYLER BUI
If 14-year-old Lydia Howard looks outside her bedroom window, she gets to see what all equestrians dream of: Horses happily grazing in their paddocks. The young rider’s family owns Fox Meadow Farm, run by her grandmother and aunts—so she is always surrounded by horses, even at home.
Howard began taking lessons at age four and shortly thereafter began showing ponies in the Walk/Trot division. She now competes on horses and currently shows her equitation horse Charming Charly 5 in the 3’ equitation medals.
“Charly has been in the family for a while, ridden by my cousin and family friends before me,” says Howard. “We started showing in the 3’ equitation, including the THIS [Children’s] Medal in 2021, which I have continued to compete in this year. He is super sweet and very honest. Charly is very calm, but when I first got him he was very head shy. Working together, he’s gotten so much better about it, and I am just very proud of him for that. He’s shown so much more of himself in the time that I’ve had him, and it’s just really fun to see him express himself more.”
Howard loves the technicality that the equitation offers and hopes to soon compete in the 3’6” equitation medals as well.
“I enjoy the equitation, because you have to express more in your riding. You connect more with your horse, and you have to think more and be technical,” she says. “I love the THIS Medal because of the format. It’s so fun to compete and get a score. If you make it into the top four, you go back in and see how it plays out in the test. It’s really fun.”
Looking ahead, Howard hopes to continue her family’s legacy at Fox Meadow by becoming a professional and working alongside her family at the farm.