If there’s a Wallowa County horseman’s hall of fame, Brianna Micka of Enterprise should be included. Micka, 15, and entering her freshman year at Enterprise High School recently cleaned up in 4-H equestrian events at the Wallowa County Fair, where she also qualified for Oregon State Fair competition in all horse show events, including dressage, as well as compete with a Presentation and livestock judging. She was also a member of the 4-H court.
Micka came by her talent through dedication and hard work. She’s competed in 4-H for six years and first started riding in Pony Club when she was six. Her dedication to all things equine lead her to ride at least four to five times weekly. She said joining 4-H gave her the drive to become a serious competitor.
The young horsewoman has many passions in life but the top two are her horses Rusty and Sophie. At the Wallowa County Fair, Micka competed with Rusty and won Reserve Grand Champion Showmanship, Grand Champion Western and English Equitation and Grand Champion Trail.
For Micka, the competition itself is the most rewarding thing about riding.
“For me, it’s all about the practice and going to a show. Seeing where you place and through your hard work how much you’ve improved is important,” she said.
She said that the challenges for her are maintaining consistent dedication to the sport in riding every day as much as she possibly can. She said she tries to keep her practices well-rounded in covering all her disciplines so that she doesn’t have a “weak” event.
One of Micka’s summer highlights was earning the 3-Step Dad Potter Certificate of Merit at the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show in June and again at the county fair. She also competed in gaming with her horse, Sophie, winning the pole bending and barrels events. Reining is Micka’s favorite competitive event while barrels is her favorite gaming event.
Although she also plays volleyball and basketball while in school, riding is her favorite activity by far. Micka works hard to maintain excellence in academia, sports and riding.
“I’m way more involved with horse, and it’s a huge part of my life, like it’s a part of me. I like sports, and my teammates and all that stuff, but I’m really bonded with my horse,” she said.
How does Micka find the time to be a serious horseman, student and athlete?
“You have to make time. It’s not going to happen by itself. You have to make a schedule -- that’s what I found out.”
What will Micka do to keep her aspirations up since competing so successfully going in to her freshman year?
“I’m going to state in a couple of days and hopefully getting some medallions, that’s my goal. After that, I plan to compete at bigger horse shows, farther away,” she said.