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A Short Story: Meet Omaha’s Sophia Welniak

Sophia Welniak competing and hugging a horse.
by Omaha Equestrian Foundation Team 

“When I get on a horse, all I can feel is my body and the horse's body coming together, as one,” says Sophia Welniak when describing her passion for horse riding. “You don't know a horse's first move unless you can control over them. So, that means you're in charge the moment you put your feet in the stirrups, until the moment you take them out.”

Welniak started riding at 8-years-old and fell in love with it. As an avid International Omaha attendee, she has been able to get a behind-the-scenes look and visit horses in their stall. “Everyone is so kind,” she says. Sophia hopes to continue to learn, improve her riding skills and begin competing in Grand Prix events in the next few years.

What advice would she give to others who have similar goals? “You need to make sure that if you mess up, you can't let that get you down,” she says,” because, in the end, not everything is going to be perfect”. Sophia believes that every mistake is a step on the learning curve to being a better rider and athlete.

Sophia would like to thank: her trainers, Melanie Wright and Sybil Greene, “for making all this happen for me, believing in me, their patience, mentoring me,” and Alex Korky “for never leaving my side.”