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Shooting for Retirement: Jessica Amos & Flash Me A Wild Card take one last ride

Jessica Amos and Flash Me A Wild Card are aiming for one last memorable ride. “Joker,” a 2000 black overo gelding, is loping into retirement after the 2024 APHA World Championship Show.

“My horse is 24 this year, and although everything that he is telling me says he isn’t ready to quit, you never know when the last ride will be at this age,” Jessica said. “I’m doing this for us before he has to retire.”

The Stuart, Virginia, horsewoman and Joker share a unique bond, but it did not start out that way. At one time, Jessica even thought she might never ride him again—Joker became unpredictable in the pen, so she took a hiatus from competition. After a lot of rest, rehabilitation and nutritional therapy, Joker returned to his old self and seemed ready to get back into the game with Jessica, who calls Joker is her heart horse and best friend.

“My favorite thing about Joker is he gives 100 percent, no matter what,” she said. “You’re going on a trail ride; he’s going to get you from point A to point B. You go out in the arena, he knows what his job is, [and] he’s going to do the best that he can.”

While their favorite event is mounted shooting, the duo also competed in pole bending and barrel racing. They seem to do it all, but they aren’t alone.

“My parents haul me all over the country,” Jessica said. “Me and my mom drove out here together, [and] my dad flew in to make sure he was here for this. They’ve always supported me in whatever I wanted to do and helped me be the best that I can be.

“If we win, that’s a great added bonus. But I feel like if we can go out there and do our best, and just really appreciate each other for these last few funs; that’s a job well done.”


Article & top photo by Alison Chaney


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About APHA

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association. Since it was founded in 1962, APHA has registered more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses. Learn more at