In the Spotlight

New York's Julie Cole says her American Quarter Horse, Size Matters, puts a smile on her face each and every day.

By Becky Newell
The American Quarter Horse Journal
May 20, 2013

Julie Cole and Size Matters, Jeff Kirkbride photo

Julie Cole and Size Matters scored the youth 14-18 working hunter reserve championship at the 2012 All American Quarter Horse Congress in Columbus, Ohio. (Jeff Kirkbride photo)

Although quite proficient in hunter events, Julie Cole and her gelding, Size Matters, aren't afraid to slap on a western saddle from time to time. For their efforts – including 5 barrel racing, as well as 4 horsemanship points – Julie and "Elvis" (Natural Iron-Bostons Black Pearl by Boston Made) landed an AQHA Youth Supreme Champion award, a feat worthy of commending.

Nineteen-year-old Julie Cole just happened to stumble across the AQHA Youth Supreme Champion award while working toward her Youth Versatility Champion title. Julie of Burlington Flats, New York, and Elvis were competing at the 2012 AQHA Region Five Championship Show when Julie's friend mentioned the requirements for the Supreme award. Julie realized that she and “Elvis” had earned enough points to receive the award September 9, 2012.

Julie credits her successes in the show pen to her trainer, Jodi Pearsall, saying, “I know I would have never been able to accomplish this award or any other awards without the help of my trainer, Jodi Pearsall. She has always been there for me, encouraging me to chase my goals and never look back.”

And chase her goals she did.

Since June 2010, Julie and Elvis have been a team and have racked up some pretty impressive awards including Region Five youth all-around, Superiors in hunter hack and hunter under saddle, as well as year-end top 10 in working hunter, hunter hack and equitation over fences.

While going after her Youth Versatility Champion title, Julie also finished her AQHA Youth Champion title and was the reserve champion in the 14-18 working hunter at the 2012 All American Quarter Horse Congress. She also ended up with the youth all-around year-end title for the Empire State Quarter Horse Youth Association.

This was Julie’s last year as a youth and she says, “It was truly the best year ever, everything came together after a lot of hard work and dedication.” And, of course, she couldn’t have done it without Elvis. The sorrel gelding puts on his game face when it’s time to show, bringing a smile to Julie’s face every time.

“He always pulls through for me and manages to make me smile every day, whether it is a silly face he makes at me or a great course we completed together,” she says.

And just because this was her last year as a youth, that doesn’t mean Julie is done showing. She is looking forward to starting her amateur career with Elvis, saying he has a lifelong home with her. The team is considering taking it easy this year and just enjoying the time they have with each other. Julie is planning on finishing her college education at SUNY Oswego and is majoring in marketing, while trying to show Elvis as much as she can. She says she is going to be focusing on her education and working really hard to continue riding.

“Once I have a solid job farther down the road, I am sure we will be coming out again and I can see us heading to the AQHA Amateur World Show,” Julie says.

The American Quarter Horse Journal loves to feature the hard-working AQHA exhibitor, and In the Spotlight is the Journal’s fun new way to do so. Do you know a hard-working AQHA competitor who deserves some time in the limelight? Email AQHA Internet Editor Tara Christiansen at tchristiansen@aqha.org to submit story ideas, then visit www.aqha.com/inthespotlight to view more In the Spotlight stories.