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The Fair Flash

News, views and more from this year's Island County Fair

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Kaitlin and Hercules win big

August 20th, 2011 at Sat, 20th, 2011 at 7:59 am by Brian Kelly

Grand champions Kaitlin Ellerby-Muse and Hercules.

She didn’t see that one coming.

Kaitlin Ellerby-Muse burst into a wide smile as her name crackled through the speaker at the horse arena. She had rode her quarter pony Hercules to grand champion honors in the intermediate division for equitation (horsemanship).

“I was surprised,” Kaitlin said. “English is my better class. I’m better in English riding and I ride English more.”

A small fan club gathered as the 12-year-old rode out of the arena. As soon as she dismounted, Kate Sharkey scooped her with a nearly suffocating bear hug.

Though it’s been a big fair already for Kaitlin — she collected a bunch of blue ribbons in the Western category on Wednesday — she wasn’t expecting to do well Thursday morning. Hercules had a few frights the day before, she said.

“I was nervous about riding him. He was really spooky,” she said. “But he was really good today.”

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