Starr Llight

Photo courtesy of Ferrara Photography Inc./USEF Archive
(1995 – )
Owned by Leah Beth Boyd
Inducted: 2013
"Dynamic and a Diva" are the perfect words to describe Starr Llight. With Leah Beth Boyd in the stirrups,this Purebred Arabian mare ended up on top after the ride-off for the prestigious Open Purebred English Pleasure title on a Saturday night at the 2011 Arabian Horse Association (AHA) U.S. Nationals.

In doing so, the mare became the most winning Purebred English pleasure mare of all time and only the second mare since 1988 to win the prestigious title. What was even more remarkable was that at age 15, she was also the oldest mare, and second oldest horse overall, ever to garner the coveted award.

Upon her trainer Chris Wilson's recommendation, Boyd, just 14 years old, purchased the then three year-old mare in 1999 using money she had saved doing barn chores.

"I wanted to learn to start horses. Starr Llight was my first project. The plan was to train her up and sell her for a profit, " said Boyd. But even before Starr Llight's talent became evident, it was clear to Boyd that Starr Llight would not just be a cog in a business plan, but a life-long partner.

For someone who had never started a horse before, Star Llight was a difficult project. The mare would occasionally spend a month with Wilson, to help move her along, and slowly progress was made.

Boyd and Starr Llight first entered the ring at a Regional show in Illinois, competing in Country Junior Horse, an open division. The two did not place in the top five that day, but Boyd had accomplished her goal of training a horse and getting it to the show ring. The next year she went into training with Wilson to maximize Starr Llight's potential.

As a five-year-old in 2001, Starr Llight was Top Ten in two classes at Youth Nationals, as well as pregnant with her first foal. In 2003, after having her baby, and coming back to the ring as a seven year-old, Starr Llight won her first National Championship at Youth Nationals at Purebred Arabian Park.

Since then she has garnered eight National Championships, four National Reserve Championships & 12 National Top Tens, for a total of 13 Champions and Reserves in English & Park, Open and Amateur.

Nine of those victories were with Boyd, while two Championships and one Reserve Championship were with Boyd's students "“ evidence of a Champion spirit and her adaptability.

But it was with Boyd and Starr Llight that earned a place in the record books.The pair is the only Arabian horse/rider team to ever win a National Championship in the Junior exhibitor, the Amateur exhibitor, and the Open division

"As a team we won at Youth Nationals, US Nationals competing as an amateur and she made the jump to Open competition with me winning the Purebred Arabian English Open in 2011 garnering what is definitely her and my biggest win to date," said Boyd. That is before Starr Light was recognized as a 2011 Horse of Honor by the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF).

"She has a huge personality, making her feelings known through the look in her eye. She also has a huge heart and she loves performing. At the Arabian Horse Association (AHA) U.S. Nationals in October 2012, I took her out for a walk the day after arriving, she was snorting, jumping, rearing, clearly happy to be at the big show."

"She will be with me forever. For me she's the epitome of a once in a life-time horse," remarked Boyd. They have a new business plan now "“ producing some foals to carry on Starr Llight's legacy. No doubt this pair will succeed.