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Shawn Flarida

Event in which you compete: Reining

Hometown: Springfield, OH, USA

Number of years riding: Since the age of four, earned first paycheck in 1981.

Career accomplishments to date:

  • Five-Time NRHA Futurity Champion
  • NRHA All-Time Leading Money Earner
  • NRHA three Million Dollar rider
  • Five-Time NRHA Derby Champion
  • Eight-Time All-American Quarter Horse Congress Futurity Champion

How you got started in your event: Older brother, Mike, was a reiner, and I followed in his footsteps. My dad, Bill, has been very instrumental in my career as well, taking me to shows since I was a kid. My dad still travels to nearly every show with me, and is a huge supporter of my career.

Length of time you’ve been sponsored by Ariat: Since April 2010.

Favorite Ariat product (by name): XR Pro full Quill Ostrich Boots.

Proudest career moment: Five NRHA Open Futurity Championships.

Tell us about your first horse: Pony named Tiny Tiny. My mom would have to chase her with a broom to get her to keep from running to the barn. She was a great friend, but very lazy.

You ride because: That is what I know and love. It brings me a lot of happiness.

If you weren’t a professional rider, you would be a: Professional Football Player.

Favorite mentor or idol growing up: My dad, Bill.

Favorite place to travel: Tennessee

Name one fun fact that people don’t know about you: I love the Dallas Cowboys, and I love watching the greats of any sport, like Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods.

Favorite way to unwind outside of the barn: Play with my three kids: Cody, Courtney, and Sam.

Good luck charm: A buckeye I keep in my pocket and rub for good luck. I always wear a green shirt when I compete, and I always hold my hat upside down so the luck does not fall out.