Dakota Miller’s skills on horseback have earned him recognition for the second time in the past year.
Already crowned horsemanship king at the 2017 Lorain County Fair, the 19-year-old has now taken home Wellington 4-H’s Clifford Sheehan Senior Gymkhana Revolving Memorial Trophy.
The award is given for a unique combination of barrel jumping and pole bending as well as general horsemanship skills displayed at the fair.
On a scale of 100, Miller registered a 97.6 total score, outpacing his nearest competitor by two percent.
Miller, of Nova, made sure to thank his horse, My Daddy’s Redneck, for sticking it out through tough competition.
“It feels good,” he said. “It’s all about hard work and bonding with your animal. They have to want to push themselves along with you. Also, you have to practice every little detail that you possibly can. You’re a team. One shouldn’t do too much work while the other sits back.”
For Miller, the award carries an even more special meaning since it’s named after his uncle, Clifford Sheehan, one of Wellington’s most successful 4-H riders.
“To be up here carrying on what he did just means so much,” Miller said. “He worked hard and I want to do the same thing.”
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.