A Tribute to Remember: Freestyle Reining Makes History
October 16th, 2016Tweet
By: Barbara Aitken
Fredrick Win was born without a partial right leg. It’s a fact of life, not an excuse. Better yet, it inspires a drive to win.
Win was born in Burma, a country in Southeast Asia, and started to ride when he was 6-years-old. Traditional Trick Riding was his sport. It represented Burma’s military history going into battle.
When he was 18, Win decided to Jump competitively. At 23, he moved to the United States to attend Law School. “I stopped riding when I was in school, but education came first.” Win missed riding so as soon as he was financially able, he got a horse. “I was ready to ride again.”
He started competing in Dressage and participated in FEI Dressage. In 2013, AQHA invited Win to ride at the World Championship Show to demonstrate Para Reining. “I thought it would be boring,” remembers Win. Reiners are so small and I wasn’t used to that.”
Now, the words Win uses to describe reining are two—“happiness and thrilling”. Reining, which is commonly referred to as Western Dressage, came naturally to Win. “Of all the events I’ve done, Reining is my pick. I get to have a connection with my horse and the crowd.”
Win, who resides in Atlantic City, New Jersey, rides with Dean Brown of Santa Hill Ranch located in Campbell Hill, New York.
As for his Freestyle Reining Championship last night, Win said he grew up in a military family. “I could never wear the uniform myself, but I wanted to bring attention to the men and women who fought and continue to fight for our freedom.”
“I never knew that I’d win. I thought I would have a good ride and people might like it. I was shocked when I had a standing ovation.”
At the end of the day, Win wanted to thank the fans who supported him last night. “It makes me want to work harder. Nothing I did last night compares to what our troops do for us every day.”
The 2016 All American Quarter Horse Congress Freestyle Reining proved special to all in attendance. The event marked Win’s first time competing in the Congress class and the first time a para-reiner has ever competed in Freestyle Reining.