SIDNEY — The Barhorst family, of Fort Loramie, brought home several awards after showing five of their Belgian Draft horses recently at the North American International Draft Horse Show in Louisville.
The horses, owned by George, Ted and Don Barhorst, were shown Nov. 15 at the Kentucky Exposition Center.
Stallion CJ’s Wes Supreme took first place in his 3-year-old class and then won senior champion.
Mares BarB Fancy won first place in her 2-year-old class and then junior champion. BarB Lady took first place in the filly-full class and then won junior reserve champion.
Shown together at the show were broodmare Monica and BarB Lady. The two horses took first place in the mare and full class, Ted Barhorst said.
And finally BarB Mark took second place in the stud-full class.
All of the horses were shown by Mallory Puthoff and Amanda Schwieterman, daughters of Don and Becky Barhorst.
Draft horses are notoriously known as the biggest and heaviest breed of horses, weighing nearly a ton. Barhorst said, in 2016, they are known as “gentle giants” and people often mistake Belgian horses for the famed Clydesdale horses, which are both draft horses.
The North American International Draft Horse Show marks the last show for the Barhorsts’ horses for the 2019 season. However, Wes Supreme recently was nominated for the 3-year-old Merit award by the Belgian Draft Horse Corporation, Barhorst said. The top three stallions, within a five-state area, will be rated according to the most points earned at point shows. The winners will be awarded a gold, silver or the bronze award in February 2020.
Last year, Wes Supreme was awarded the Bronze Merit award for the 2018 show season.
During the summer months, the family stays busy most every weekend attending several shows and parades. This year they showed at six fairs. Barhorst said Wes Supreme also took reserve senior champion at the 2019 Ohio State Fair.
In August 2016, the Barhorst family was honored with 75 years of showing Belgian Draft horses at the Ohio State Fair. The award came after Ted, his brother George, nephew Don and their families have continued with the family tradition of showing horses that began three quarters of a century ago with his grandfather, Bernard Barhorst, on the family’s 240 acre homestead.
Six generations of Barhorsts have owned and bred draft horses on the family farm that was established in 1846. His family has 13 horses at the moment.
“There is no one else that has showed more than I think we have. And I had an uncle who never drove a tractor in his life. He just farmed with horses,” Barhorst said, referring to his uncle Joe Barhorst.
During shows, Barhorst said the horses are judged on conformation. According to Wikipedia, equine conformation refers to the “correctness of a horse’s bone structure, musculature, and its body proportions in relation to each other.” He said when they are showing a horse in a “halter class,” they decorate their tail and mane, “walk them a little distance, trot them and then set ‘em up” — meaning their front and back legs are in a certain position.
“We want to thank the entire Barhorst family and friends who helped all summer with the horses at the shows,” Barhorst said.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.