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Ocheyedan teen earns POA High Point award

submitted photo Brent Reed, Ocheyedan, Iowa, is shown with his High Point saddle, a director's chair and two plaques he won at the 2011 International Pony of the Americas Show.

OCHEYEDAN, Iowa -- Brent Reed, senior at Sibley-Ocheyedan High School, set a record for himself this summer when he earned his first High Point Saddle award at the 2011 International Pony of the Americas Show in St. Louis, Mo.

What started as a breed for children, Pony of the Americas (POA), according to the club's website, has since evolved up to 14 hands in size.

Brent has worked with POA horses since he was 3 years old, said his mother, Lorrie Reed. For the past two years at the International Pony of the Americas Show, Brent teamed up with Lotta Dotta, a horse he leased from a former participant.

"He (Lotta) can catch on to anything," Brent said. "He's crazy."

Lotta's tricks include being able to do the hula, smile, bow and kiss.

This year, along with the High Point Saddle award, Brent won four classes at the show: English Equitation and Western Horsemanship in the 13- to 18-year-old boy division; Open Costume; and Native American Costume for boys 18 years and younger. As icing on the cake, he also won a sportsmanship award.

"He's had a good summer," his mother added.

For the Open Costume class, the Brent and Lotta added a Hawaiian touch to the performance. Brent was clad in a Hawaiian T-shirt and carried a surfboard while Lotta donned a hula skirt. At the end of the act, Lotta performed the hula.

"This is the first year I've had a pony that could do everything," said Brent, who also won reserve champion in five other classes.

Working with Lotta for the past two years has been a relatively easy task for him.

"He's very calm and does almost anything you want him to do," Brent added. "I work with him pretty much every day."

Earlier in the summer, Brent earned a High Point award at the 2011 Midwest Regional Pony of the Americas Show in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Horses have always been a passion for the Reed family. Brent's sister, Amanda Reed, was also a participant at the competition in St. Louis this year. Lorrie and her husband, Julius Reed, were with their children throughout the 10-day affair.

"We're not done for the year yet," said Brent, who will compete for the first time in the Reichert Celebration, another large-scale equine show in Fort Worth, Texas.

Brent, a member of the Minnesota Pony of the Americas Club, is hoping to ride Lotta Dotta for another two years and has plans to continue his passion after he graduates high school.