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Meet the Member Lexi Sewell
story by Lindsay King
Bad luck does not keep 12-year-old Lexi Sewell from Lawndale, North Carolina, out of the rodeo game. A pasture injury left Kiss, her 18-year-old, black Quarter Horse gelding, with a slab fracture in April 2016. She borrowed Sosie, a 20-year-old Quarter Horse mare, from her godmother. “We just really clicked from the start.” They ran barrels in the Junior Southern Rodeo Association for half the season, winning two rounds of the finals. Due to an injury to her godmother’s backup horse Lexi had to give Sosie back. This meant she would be riding her pole horse, Jheza, who is exactly one month older than Lexi, until Kiss recovers. “She started riding when she could sit up,” said her mom Tatiana. In 2012, at the age of seven, Lexi rode in her first season with the JSRA. Her pony “Spinner” coliced and had to be put down half way through the season and she had to get on her mom’s old rodeo horse “Bear”, who was 26 at the time, to finish the year. Lexi made it to the finals in barrels and poles and placed in every go-round of the barrels, even won one. She runs both barrels and poles and is also learning to break-away rope. “I don’t really have a favorite event, it depends on the horse.” Her favorite accomplishment in rodeo is her ability to ride multiple horses and enjoy it. Her mom has helped her secure sponsorships with Total Feeds, Inc., Carl Ammerman Saddles and Resistol as their Resistol Ridesafe endorsee. An accident that should have left Lexi with traumatic brain damage was avoided because she was wearing her Resistol RideSafe. Last year she was picked by Resistol to be on a Chris Cox episode to promote the Resistol RideSafe. “They wanted to show kids that it is really cool to wear a Resistol RideSafe. They can be safe and still be in western attire. It was a lot of fun and I got horsemanship tips from Chris Cox too”.
A sixth grader at Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy, Lexi is planning to try out for the volleyball team next year too. She plays classical guitar and has taken piano lessons for the last three years. A triple-threat in music Lexi also takes voice lessons. Her favorite subject in school is science, she really likes chemistry. She aspires to become a vet one day after spending many days at Cherryville Animal Hospital when her mom worked there as veterinarian technician. “I helped them clean tables, hold puppies and kittens, put up supplies and even watch surgeries. I love animals and like the field of medicine.” She would like to spend a day with celebrity Zendaya because of her sweet nature and philanthropy efforts. Usually Lexi will turn on Pandora before a run, her favorite song right now is Little Do You Know by Alex and Sierra. Her family is gone almost every weekend for rodeos, between Lexi running barrels and her dad Tony announcing. He announces for various associations, including the JSRA.
She is the youngest of three siblings, Clinton and Candace. Lexi looks up to her parents who have taught her everything she knows. “I learned how to ride from mom who has competed in rodeos for years. She wants to keep competing in the Jr. SRA rodeos and eventually rodeo in college. “I like the people in the JSRA, everybody is really nice and helps each other. They always enforce the rules and it is fun.” Lexi is making strides on her pole horse in the barrels but is now able to long-trot Kiss. They will know in the next few weeks if she can start running barrels on him again. Lexi looks up to Sarah McDonald and Sherry Cervi. “I love how excited Sarah always is to talk to people and she is so nice. I love Sherry too! She is a great rider and so talented.” Lexi lives and rides by the quote: “three barrels, two hearts, one dream.”
“I think anybody that likes horses should try rodeo because it is awesome.”