LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY—Chosen at random to participate in the University of Kentucky’s annual Valentine’s Day poll, freshman Colton Davies revealed a stunning bit of information to his fellow student surveyors. 

When asked what part of the University of Kentucky’s social scene most attracted Davies to the school, the notoriously laconic engineering major had two words for them: “horse girls.” 

Asked to elaborate, Davies, hands in pockets, took a deep, audible breath, and kicked at something invisible with his shoe. “This is Lexington. There’s a lotta’ horse girls here,” he said quietly. “I’m not a big talker, if you know what I mean. But as long as you don’t mind hearing about horses—their nicknames, their pasture habits, their likes and dislikes, their veterinary issues—horse girls aren’t so bad.” 

Upon further prodding, Davies revealed he dated his first horse girl, a dressage rider, in high school for more than a year. Since then, he said, he’s met several “nice, jumping-type girls” here at the University of Kentucky.

“At first, I didn’t know too much about horses, but my girlfriend makes it easy on me. I’ll just ask her, ‘How was your lesson yesterday?’ or, ‘What’s the plan for your next show?’ and she’s off. 

“I still consider myself a novice in the horse space, but I’ve learned a lot by listening,” Davies continued, noting that he now knows the difference between a standing and a running martingale, the different training levels of dressage, what a stifle is, what the best brands of helmets are, and why most boy horses are actually geldings, even though non-horse-people only ever talk about stallions. 

“When drunk friends at parties ask her if they can ride her horse someday, I’ll catch her eye, and we’ll just laugh, because they always ask her that,” he smiled.

“I’m not a chatty guy. I like it when somebody else fills the space. And, I guess, I’d rather hear about warmbloods than the Kardashians, or makeup contouring, or something like that.”

When a topic he’s not interested in does come up, Davies has a go-to topic changer.

“I’ll just say something like, ‘Did Petey enjoy his cool out today after your ride?’ And boom, she’s got a half-hour of material on nose boops, and how to take the best horse selfies. Then, she’ll pull out her phone, and scroll through 47 photos of her sitting on him while he’s laying down, and show me the saddle pad she’s buying him for Christmas, and we’ll watch 18 rounds from her last show.

Davies admitted he’s yet to determine what makes one hunter round an 84, and another a 70.

“I really don’t know what I’m looking at. But she likes showing me, and I don’t mind hearing about it.” 

Davies said he’s already made peace with the biggest reservation many guys have about dating horse girls—that he’ll likely always come second in the proverbial stable of her heart.

“It’s not so bad,” he said. “Everybody gets cookies at the end of the day.”