Reagan Campbell Many people take decades to find their true passion, something they focus on with veracity and laser-sharp focus, and many spend their entire lives without ever finding that one special thing. However, there is the rare minority that discover, very early in life, something that lights a fire and spurs them towards greatness. Reagan Campbell would fit comfortably in this elite fraternity.
Fascinated by horses for as far back as she can remember, she recalls fond memories of admiration from afar. “My grandmother used to take me to find pastures with horses,” she says, “and we would sit and watch them for hours when I was two or three years old.”
It wasn’t long before she made her way into the saddle, riding Hunter Jumpers, before moving to Saddlebred horses at age seven. At the tender age of eight, she began competing. Her proficiency at riding was apparent, even at such a young age, but she is quick to thank her family for helping her succeed.
“They have been extremely supportive,” she says. “My mom and sister went to all my practices. My mom mainly went to all the horse shows over the years, and my dad helped me pick out and buy my amazing horses.”
Over the course of her career, Reagan has ridden several horses, each propelling her from championship to championship, and she has warm remembrances of them all. Mystery Machine, her first competitive horse, was a great introduction to the competitive equestrian scene. “He took care of me and gave me a thirst for something more.” With him, she won her first world champion title. Her most recent companion, It’s Aerosmith, has continued the tradition. “He has taught me patience, courage, and about never giving up,” she explains. In the end, they all have left an indelible mark on her life. “It’s hard to explain in words really how much they mean to me and the life lessons that I have learned from each of them,” she says. “It’s a bond that only a girl and her horse can understand.”
In November of last year, Reagan rode in her last competition as a juvenile, winning both of her classes unanimously for an undefeated season.
Now, as an 18-year-old freshman at Ole Miss majoring in hospitality management, she plans to focus on her studies, but this is by no means a retirement. She explains that when balancing college and competition, you have to have a lot of energy. For Reagan, this comes easy as her passion for riding is so strong.
“These horses are in my blood,” she says. “I’ll be back!”