Meet Nazareth’s “Whiz Kid” Elizabeth Hochmiller
Elizabeth Hochmiller tames a temperamental pony and rides to success in equestrian events.
Whiz Kid Facts:
- Name – Elizabeth Hochmiller, 16
- School – 11th grade, Nazareth Area High School
- Equestrian Riding
- Rides out of Bit-By-Bit Equestrian Center in Wind Gap twice a week.
- Has taught children at the Bit-By-Bit Farm Summer Horse Camp for the past four years.
- Has designed, made and sold jewelry to raise money for donkey rescue in 2009, but still makes jewelry for a hobby.
- Summer, 2011, Reserve Champion High Score Award in the mixed ages division at the United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Region One Junior Team Dressage Championships held in Leesburg, VA.
- Currently ranked 2nd Overall in the Itty Bitty Jumpers Division for the Bucks County Horse Park Thursday Morning Horse Show Summer Series.
- In 2009 & 2010, earned USEF (United States Equestrian Federation) High School Equestrian Athlete Program Letter.
- In 2009, Eastern States Dressage & Combined Training Association (ESDCTA)Year-End High Score Award Champion in the Starter Walk/Trot/Canter Division.
- In 2009, Northeast PA Show Series (NPASS) Champion in Starter Walk/Trot/Canter Division.
“Whiz Kid” Key To Awesomeness:
Elizabeth Hochmiller has been riding on a pony named Jimmy since she was 9. The horse’s show name is Daddy’s Dollars.
Equestrian riding not only takes talent and dedication but is an investment the whole family makes.
“People assume that only folks with money participate in equestrian sports – that is far from true,” said mom Lin Hochmiller. “Many are like us, saving and sacrificing other things to be able to afford to do this. Elizabeth understands this and is willing to make that sacrifice, which makes me proud of her.”
Elizabeth has spent countless hours not only practicing and training with her horse but caring for him as well. She and Jimmy have a special relationship based on trust. Jimmy was abused by a previous owner who had purchased him from an auction. Jimmy found his way to trainer Melissa Morehouse and she encouraged Elizabeth to ride Jimmy.
“Jimmy didn’t like kids at first,” said Elizabeth. “Eventually we bonded and he became used to me and listened to me. Every step we take is a big step for me and for him.”
Together, they have progressed as a team, building trust, speed and power as they compete in the Itty Bitty Jumper Division year after year. Jimmy is still not the easiest horse to ride because he has “a ton of different personalities” but Elizabeth relishes the chance to rise to the occasion.
With every challenge, she gains more skill in riding. “Now I can ride any horse,” she says.