6th Annual Saskatchewan Equine Expo

 

SASKATOON, Saskatchewan – Prairieland Park organizers and the Saskatchewan Equine Expo committee would like to thank their partners The Saskatchewan Horse Federation and the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, along with all the sponsors, the media and volunteers who helped to make the 6th Annual Saskatchewan Equine Expo such an amazing success.
The 6th Annual Equine Expo achieved a record attendance with 11,725 people taking in the 4 day show.

The Saskatchewan Equine Expo showcases many elements of the Equine industry through demonstrations, clinics, competitions, awards and an industry trade show.
The Saskatchewan Equine Expo would like to thank their three incredible trainers for the entertaining performances, and congratulate Kade Mills from Sundre, Alberta on being named the winner of the NAERIC Trainer Challenge. Both Glenn Stewart and Dale Clearwater captivated the audience demonstrating their expertise in Natural Horsemanship demonstrations and a Working Cow Horse clinic this year.

Congratulations also to the winner of the Ultimate Cow Horse Competition, Geoff Hoar, Red Deer Country, Alberta. The Battle of the Breeds was a highlight for the audience watching 6 breeds compete in 4 events to determine the overall winner – Team Quarter Horse was awarded 1st place, followed by Team Arabian in 2nd place and Team Andalusian in 3rd place.
“The weather definitely cooperated with us this year and we are so pleased that the 6th Equine Expo again attracted such an enthusiastic and knowledgeable crowd”, commented Lori Cates, Agriculture Manager.

Canadian Supreme Turns 40!

Canadian Supreme action this week in Red Deer. Photo by Krista Kay Photography.

Canadian Supreme action this week in Red Deer. Photo by Krista Kay Photography.

The Canadian Supreme is marking 40 years, as it showcases and promotes the training traditions of the western horseman in the cutting, reining and working cow horse events. Offering $400,000 in prize money, the show has attracted nearly 600 entries from across western Canada and the northern U.S. states. The skilled competitors will be at Red Deer’s Westerner Park for six days of action, September 27th-October 2nd.

Red Deer area breeder and competitor Jim Dobler sees it as a key show for his business.

“For 40 years, it has been the fall showcase for really, really nice horses. I know many people that became Cow Horse competitors and even trainers, just because of coming to the Supreme,” said Dobler.

Innisfail trainer Geoff Hoar agrees.

“The Supreme is bigger than a lot of the shows we go to, and has a different feel. What I see, too, is that it shows off the sport to people who maybe haven’t seen it before. It gives exposure, and people may end up saying ‘that looks like fun, how can I get involved?’” noted Hoar.

Young trainer Travis Rempel brings over horses from his barn in Fort Langley, B.C.

“The Supreme was a huge career builder for me,” acknowledged Rempel. “It was somewhere to go that’s relatively close to compete against the best in Canada and from the northern U.S. That’s who you want to play against.”

“The Canadian Supreme is a show we believe has made its mark in the western horse world,” said Show Chairman Jeff Robson.  “As we celebrate 40 years, we want to give a big shout-out to our hard working committee members. Without their dedication, we wouldn’t have a show. They’re the backbone of it.”

“We’re so encouraged to see our sponsorship higher than ever this year, which is quite a feat given our current economy.”

Longtime exhibitor Dennis Nolin has stepped up to become the overall show sponsor this year with his company MTE Logistix.

Along with the exciting competitions, and the trade fair of horse-related products and services, a highlight is always the Saturday night feature performance. This year, a key component will be the induction of the Robson family into the Canadian Supreme Hall of Fame.

“The leadership of Dave Robson and his family is really behind the show’s great success,” related Les Burwash, of the Horse Industry Association of Alberta.

Dave Robson served at the helm of the show from 1982 until 2013, when his son Jeff Robson took over the leadership. Dave’s late wife, Val Robson, was a real spark of light for the show for many years, and son Kurt continues to be a big part of the show’s organization as well.

“The Canadian Supreme has been great for the sport, and that was our intention all along,” commented Dave Robson.

The one program change this year at the Supreme sees the Western Horse Sale on hiatus.

“It was a very hard fought decision to cancel it,” explained co-Sale Manager, Ron Anderson. “But we recognize the current state of the economy and the industry, and will review the fees associated with the sale, to reflect that for 2017.”

Replacing it on the Friday night will be the first ever Invitational Barrel Racing Trainers Challenge, where you can cheer on your favorite trainers or lopers as they tackle a barrel course for the top prize and bragging rights. Then it’s a ‘blast from the past’ with the fan favorite fence work done by some of the top trainers from years gone by, all as part of the 40th anniversary celebrations.

Once again this year, the public is invited to take in the show free of charge. The live webcast of the classes is back, which can be accessed, along with daily schedules, on the website www.canadiansupreme.com.

Cow Up on the Coast

Cayley Wilson

Cayley Wilson and Drivin Stylish were the Open Futurity Champions.

 

The saying goes, “There is a first time for everything” and in the case of the Cow Up On The Coast horse show it was an event of many firsts. This National Reined Cow Horse Association approved show was the first Futurity/Derby and Horse Show offered by the newest affiliate club, The Canadian Coast Reined Cow Horse Association (CCRCHA). The show held July 29-31, 2016, offered a full slate of classes for every level, great prizes, $15,000 in added monies, entertainment and even a sponsored steak dinner.

“We tried really hard to make this a fun show for everyone, from those new to cow horse, to seasoned competitors who wanted to try their hand at winning great prizes or testing out their futurity horses,” said Cayley Wilson the CCRCHA president. “Our mission, and reason for starting this affiliate club, was to bring more opportunities for cow horse enthusiasts to show their horses and grow the sport in our area. The Cow up On The Coast  Show was just the beginning of future events and efforts,” he added.

John Swales and

John Swales and Chics Made Me Do It in the Open Futurity.

The show was held at the Langley Riders Outdoor Equestrian Center, a small park-like facility just 40 minutes from the U.S./Canadian border. The facility gave riders a chance to show outdoors, camp, and sit along the banks of the arena while watching competitors and enjoying the beautiful weather. For some, it was their first time showing in an NRCHA approved event, others were debuting their three-year-old futurity horses, and for many spectators it was their first time seeing a cow horse event.

“I learned so much about cow horse”, said one spectator, “I had no idea there was a triathlon event like this for horses. These horses were amazing and so athletic!”
After the first day of showing on Friday, competitors were treated to a catered steak dinner and educational presentation by Dr. Ela Misuno of Vetoquinol and Zylkene, one of the show’s premiere sponsors. This gave competitors and family a chance to enjoy great food, learn about horse health, and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow riders. The entertainment on Saturday night was provided by fellow competitors,  who pulled out their lariats and participated in the steer stopping and team doctoring competition. These events seem to bring everyone together in a casual way.

“It was pretty fun watching!,” said Roxanne Sapergia as she surveyed from the grassy banks alongside the arena. An impromptu herding dog competition broke out as a few competitors took turns sending in their cow dogs to demonstrate their abilities in gathering and putting away cattle after each go around. Onlookers cheered, hooted and hollered as the dogs worked, and everyone enjoyed the evening’s events. “This is the best time I have had at a horse show in a long time” said Sapergia, who promised to come back next year for this event.

Bart Holowath and

Bart Holowath and SDP Blu Reys, the NP Derby Champions.

As with any show, sponsors and volunteers are the backbone for a successful event. “From donating cash, prizes, product, services and countless of hours of behind-the-scenes work, it took a village to make this show happen, for it to be so successful, and fun to boot!” said Katie Wilson, the CCRCHA treasurer and one of the powerhouses behind the event.

“We are very thankful for everyone’s support” she added, “I think this association is going to really grow the sport of cow horse in our area. This may have been our first show, but it is just the beginning of many more to come.”
Wilson also mentioned her hopes to ‘Co-Host’ a show next year with neighboring affiliate, The North West Reined Cow Horse Association. “It would be great to be able to draw more people from the US and make it a show that counts towards their World Show qualifications, too. It will give people a reason to come across the border to show in Canada and hopefully build more strength in our cow horse community.”

Mark Parson (right) accepts...

Mark Parson (right) accepts the reserve championship of the NP Derby from president Cayley Wilson.

The Association wanted to give a special thanks to Dean Tufton of DT Ranches for donating a breeding to his great Stallion, Hickory Holly Time and Chad Vanlandingham who donated a breeding to Spots Hot. These monies all went towards the payouts. The CCRCHA would also like to thank San Juan Ranch/Santa Cruz Animal Health for stepping up and sending not only cash, but amazing prizes and gift cards. Vetoquinol/Zylkene donated grooming bags filled with product, gave cash and sponsored the amazing steak dinner and presentation. Local Langley Realtor, Amy Brattebo reached deep in her pockets to help support the first show and get the association off the ground. Roger Brown gave not only his time, but his knowledge and expertise was, no doubt, an integral part of the smooth operations behind the scenes. Thanks to all who drove from far to support us at Cow Up On The Coast!

Said Wilson, “There are many, many others who gave support in so many ways. So from all of us here at the CCRCHA, WE THANK YOU!!”

Dale Clearwater.

Dale Clearwater.

Heather McLevin rides Have A Drink On Me in the NP Bridle Spectacular.

Heather McLevin rides Have A Drink On Me in the NP Bridle Spectacular.

Seth Abrahamson Level 1 Open Derby Champion aboard PG Thunderstruck.

Seth Abrahamson Level 1 Open Derby Champion aboard PG Thunderstruck.

Freeze Frame – Equipped to Work

Travis Rempel runs TR Performance Horses, based in Abbotsford, British Columbia, specializing in working cow horse, reining and cutting horses. He is charging onto the scene, claiming limited open and open victories in all three disciplines across western Canada. When Rempel steps into the show pen, he is there to win and these are the products he relies on to get him to the pay window.

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1.) HAT. “It is an American Hat Company straw. These hats look good, hold their shape well and are durable.”

2.) SHIRT. “This shirt is made by CR Ranchwear out of Texas. They are 100 percent handmade shirts, made in Texas. They have a really nice cut to them and nice patterns – really sharp and crisp.”

3.) CHAPS. “These chaps are made by Diane Olsen of Armstrong, B.C. They are a toast colour with tooled belt pieces. Diane’s chaps are super comfortable and look great.”

4.) BOOTS. “My boots are Tony Lama. They are kangaroo tops, which make them soft, comfortable and I like the look of the lighter bottoms.”

5.) BIT. “The bit in this photo is made by Frank Principe. It is a handmade cow horse bit with lots of tongue relief, balance and feel. Also, Frank does beautiful silver work. Horse really work well and take to this bit.”

6.) HEADSTALL. “By Cowperson Tack, I like their tack because it’s stylish and affordable.”

7.) REINS. “Romels by Steve Guitron. Well-built, affordable and durable for everyday use and showing.”

8.) SADDLE. “This saddle is made by Vaquero Saddlery. There aren’t many around here, but it’s a super soft, comfortable saddle and fits this mare great. A lot of feel to the saddle, I can really feel the horse under me when I ride in it.”

9.) CINCH. “By Weaver, it is an affordable wool cinch. I believe wool fleece is best for pads and cinches.”

10.) SHOW PAD. “This pad is made by Yucca Flats. Like all Yuccas, it has a great pattern and they always turn a horse out nicely.”

11.) UNDER PAD. “I use a Diamond Wool Pad Co. under my pad. I think soft wool fleece is the best thing to have on a horse’s back. It is the most comfortable for them and doesn’t burn or rub like rubber or hard felt can.”

12.) HORSE BOOTS. “I use polo wraps by Classic Equine, they are inexpensive and easy to keep white. When they are wrapped properly, they can supply good support for the horse’s legs. Bell boots and skid boots are by Classic Equine, I like their products because they are durable and tough.”

30 Years of Canadian Supreme

If there’s one enduring stream to what we’ve always strived for at the magazine, it’s championing the western way of life, and central to it, our competitive horse sports. This week, the pinnacle event for cutting, cow horse and reining happens at the Canadian Supreme in Red Deer, Alberta, running today through Sunday.

It’s tough to find a competition that has successfully showcased these three disciplines anywhere in North America, never mind one with the tenacious band of volunteers behind the scene, especially when you consider the factors that go into running a show of this caliber across three disciplines – the ground, cattle management and all of the various individual sport demands. Throw in a horse sale on the Friday night, a trade show, and special event on the Saturday night (by the way, Western Horse Review will be presenting a special award on this night, one close to our hearts!), and you can’t come away with anything but respect for the longevity and success of the event.

Core to the competition are the horses and people we’ve come to admire and look forward to cheering on each year. A decade or so ago, the organization gifted me with dozens of CDs of old photos. Since the event is just shy of 40 years I thought it’d be fun to look back at some of the highlights of the past sets of decades – 1985, 1995 and 2005. Enjoy and see you at the show.

2005. . .

trainers

paulismith jim&heather gary&dave brad&clay batty&hook

1995. . .

Bonnie Becker

Bonnie Becker

Gerry Hansma and Genuine Sand Flake.

Gerry Hansma and Genuine Sand Flake

Carl Gerwien and Got Pep

Carl Gerwien and Got Pep

Rick Hook and Genuine Ime Sure

Rick Hook and Genuine Ime Sure

1985. . .

Bill Speight and Lees Quest

Bill Speight and Lees Quest

David Hansma

David Hansma

Duane Latimer and Stylish Major

Duane Latimer and Stylish Major

Gerry Hansma and Docs San Badger

Gerry Hansma and Docs San Badger

Jason Grimshaw and Diamond Tiara

Jason Grimshaw and Diamond Tiara. Dave Robson presenting.

Jim Paradis and Fintry Mission

Jim Paradis and Fintry Mission

lestimmons_urbancowgirl_pres_1985

Les Timmons and Urban Cowgirl. Bill Collins presenting.

Canadian Supreme in Growth Mode

NEWS RELEASE

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Red Deer – It’s easy to say a long-standing successful show is ‘bigger and better’ each year, but it can be harder to achieve. Yet the Canadian Supreme has managed to do just that, in a time of economic uncertainty.

“Our entries have climbed ten per cent this year,” related Canadian Supreme Chairman Jeff Robson, about the event coming to Red Deer September 29th to October 4th. “We’ve got over 600 entries, with horses coming from as far away as Texas and California coming to compete.”

For almost 40 years, the Canadian Supreme has celebrated the equine disciplines of Cutting, Cow Horse, and Reining. All of the contests showcase the working cow horse of the western world. Trainers demonstrate how much these cow-savvy horses can learn, even at a young age.

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Another healthy growth sign for the Canadian Supreme is the addition of two new classes, to go along with the four added last year. All of them are designed to encourage newcomers to the sport to enjoy the thrill of competition.

“We reached out to competitors last year and asked them ‘what are other shows doing? Are we missing anything?’ They suggested we add more mainstream classes for less experienced competitors. We did, and have gotten a good response,” explained Robson.

As well this year, the Canadian Supreme debuts a bigger size for the main competition arena at Red Deer’s Westerner Park.

“This is a major step forward in both our development and in our partnership with Westerner Park,” stated Robson. “Expanding the cutting and cow horse arena to 110 feet wide and 226 feet long keeps us in step with the arena size competitors and their horses experience at other elite shows. This has long been a priority for the Supreme Board of Directors.”

Copy of Tyrell Smith & Okie Jo Wrangler action (650x433)

Last year, two of Alberta’s best in the western horse world managed to dominate their competitions at the Canadian Supreme, picking up both top prizes. Shawna Sapergia of Cochrane took two horses to the NRHA Open Reining Finals championship, splitting first with herself by posting two identical 147 point runs. Cayley based trainer Dustin Gonnet did much the same in the Open Classic Challenge Cutting Finals, when he rode two different horses to first and second place. Both those competitors will be back and eager to defend their titles. Others who are no strangers to the winners’ circle are Lacombe’s Brad Pedersen, Vince Kaglea of High River and Suzon Schaal of Calgary. Central Alberta’s own Kevin Baumann and Michelle Lund are hometown favorites, along with Geoff Hoar of Innisfail, Jim Dobler of Delburne and Bill and ElaineSpeight of Rocky Mountain House; while Dale Clearwater of Hanley leads a strong Saskatchewan representation. Keep your eyes on Clay Webster of Okotoks and young Austin Seelhof of Cochrane, as well as veteran Locke Duce of High River in the reining.

Friday night’s signature Western Horse Sale will see over forty horses offered, ranging from prospects to competition-ready mounts. More information on this year’s sale is available at www.thewesternhorsesale.com.

Cash and prizes totalling well over $410,000 will be paid out after the six days of competition, making the Canadian Supreme the event where every contestant wants to excel. For fans, it guarantees some exciting fence runs, daring equine dances with determined cows, and the sizzle of fast spins and sliding stops. Plus, the Saturday Cinch Night at the Supreme is back, with some of key Finals, as well as the popular Bridleless Cutting and last year’s big hit, the Team Doctoring contest. The Trade Show returns with a wide range of horse related and western lifestyle products, as well as western art. It opens daily Thursday-Saturday at 10:00 am. Best of all, admission to the Canadian Supreme is again free.

Enthusiasts can also keep up with the action thanks to the live webcast, which can be accessed, along with daily schedules, on the website www.canadiansupreme.com.

For further details contact Betty Kunka at 403-313-8673.

August in Photos

My Stable Life August in Pics

August. The month of horse shows and weddings. And ice bucket challenges, lol! I didn’t even have time to blink in the last 31 days. Our weekends ran nine-O. The first weekend was a horse show, followed by a wedding. Then a horse show, a wedding and finally, another horse show. However, it was a joyful, happy month and the two weddings I write about were for some of the most precious people in our lives. Here’s a photo summary of how August played out for me.

Breast Collar, My Stable Life

The beginning of August started with a horse show. It was my first time getting back into the pen after a 6- month hiatus. I love the cow horse folks and was happy to see them again. It was also lovely to feel the power of a cow horse underneath me again. Although I did have  a bit of a “hat issue” to start with…

K&C-Wedding

The following weekend was the wedding of some dear friends to us – Kirk Shaw and Crissy Santangelo. Kirk has been a beloved friend for many years, was the best man at our wedding and is also our farrier. Many of you may know Crissy as one of the hardworking gals behind the scenes of Silver Slate Arena (check out www.silverslatearena.com) Featuring a charming tiny white church, a long-stretch Hummer limo, black cowboy hats, hot pink dresses with cowgirl boots to match, horses for photos, and a fantastic gathering and pig roast at Silver Slate to celebrate with friends and family – this was one of the most beautiful western weddings I have ever had the pleasure of attending. Congrats to Kirk and Crissy and we wish you many blessings to come!

Photo by Judy Doiron.

I think all kids love cowgirl, Kelin Doiron. Mine certainly do! Photo by Judy Doiron.

Show-kids

The following weekend, we were right back at Silver Slate arena, but with horses this time. A number of other “horse show kids” were there as well and many of them contend in the Future Stars class – one of our all-time favorite divisions to watch.

Photo by Natalie Jackman, www.have-dog.com

Photo by Natalie Jackman, www.have-dog.com

Warm August weather provided an ideal chance to snap a few shots of our upcoming yearlings. Taking photos of youngsters is an exercise in patience but we’re certainly glad Natalie Jackman has the know-how and tolerance to work with us in this venture <smile.>

Calves

 

Almost immediately following that show, I’m sure you can guess… we hit the road for another wedding. This time, we headed for beautiful Kelowna, BC – to attend the wedding of my beautiful sister. Along the way, there are many fabulous tourist places to hit. This year, we stopped at D Duchman Dairy – a farm fresh dairy store that kids can delight in the animal interaction as much as they can the ice cream at the end! Featuring exotic animals like llamas, birds and goats, D Dutchman Dairy also offers a hands-on approach to their calf barn. We tried taking our kidlets over to the other animals but they kept running back to the calves! I guess, you just can’t beat an up-close and personal interaction with friendly Holsteins.

Albino Kangaroo

Our son petting an albino wallaby at Kangaroo Creek Farm in Kelowna, BC.

However, just when I thought we couldn’t top that experience, my sister took us to Kangaroo Creek Farm – a farm that been breeding kangaroos and wallabies for more than 20 years in Lake Country near Kelowna. This is an incredible experience – operated entirely on donations alone. Guests are invited to walk into the farm and see wallaroos (a type of kangaroo, not a cross between a wallaby and a kangaroo) and Bennett wallabies roaming about, freely amongst the people! The animals are so friendly and tame, kids and adults alike can walk right up to them and pet them or offer a treat provided by farm operators! The farm also features emu, peacocks, fancy chickens, goats, parrots, a baby albino wallaby (*see the albino mother my son is petting above), baby kangaroos and potbellied pigs. There are also a pair of capybara, the world’s larges rodent (up to 150 lbs.)

Baby-Kangaroo

 

And if you wait your turn, you can even have the chance to hold a baby kangaroo! This experience was worth posting a picture of myself (sans make-up) for…

Beach-chairs

We had one day of down time to visit with family and friends before the big day. But I definitely could have gone for a few more here… My sister Nicole and her husband choose a beautiful setting to host a wedding!

Next, it was on to the big day! Held at the historic Hotel Eldorado on the rooftop patio overlooking a marina, my baby sis and her new husband did a hilarious exchange of vows. My little family and I were truly honored to be a part of it and we watched with pride as she begins this new chapter in her life. The wedding was beautiful, the photos are insanely idyllic and the reception was all about the details. I should almost post a blog on that specifically <grin.> Congrats Nick and Jay – we love your dearly and thank-you for allowing us to be part of your special day!

Taylor

The drive to Kelowna also provided us the perfect opportunity to pick up the newest member to our animal family – meet “Taylor,” a miniature gray-dun Donkey. I’m sure there will be more adventures about this little guy to come.

Cow-nightThe day after we returned from my sister’s wedding (at 2:00 am, I might add,) we unloaded Taylor, doctored a colt that had become injured over the weekend and headed straight for bed. For the following evening, Clay was hosting a practice cow night for over 40 people at our place. Cow nights make for a busy schedule but a great opportunity to practice for upcoming events. On this particular evening, a crop duster was hard at work nearby. It’s that time of year.

Crop-Duster

As I’m sure you can guess, the very next weekend we were back showing horses at the Back On Track Snaffle Bit Futurity hosted by the Alberta Reined Cow Horse Association.

Phew! August was a busy month.

Photo by Natalie Jackman

My husband, Clay riding “Bob” in a powerful fence turn. Photo by Natalie Jackman, www.have-dog.com

 

 

 

 

 

Last Month in Pics & Schleich Winner!

July-in-Pics

If you caught My Stable Life’s post last week – Schleich Giveaway – you’ll know I have been remiss in announcing the winner of a Schleich Quarter Horse and western tack accessory outfit. I’m also a few days late posting my last month in photos – so I thought I’d do both with today’s post! July was an insanely busy month and labelled recently as the second hottest July our area has seen since WWII, there were many reasons to go on road trips or just get outside and enjoy the sunshine.

West Edmonton Mall, pirate ship

Checking out the pirate ship at West Edmonton Mall.

The month saw us in Edmonton to start and the kids and I had a great time visiting family and checking out the sights at West Edmonton Mall. The pirate ship and sea lion attractions are always big hits with my kids. I on the other hand, am just happy to get an opportunity to shop. At a place that is not strictly a feed store, lol!

The following week, we were back home in Calgary and took the chance to visit the Calgary Stampede. With all its new changes and as the first year to feature events inside the new Calgary Agrium Western Event Center, it was almost as though we were checking out the Calgary Stampede for the very first time. We loved the new midway created just for younger kids. And as that was located very close to Draft Horse Town, we spent countless hours meandering back and forth between the two.

Calgary Stampede, Calgary Tower

A team of Drafties set against the Calgary Tower in the backdrop.

Of course, the Agrium Ag-tivity in the City was a big hit too! With so many opportunities to get up-close and personal with life on a farm or ranch, the Calgary Stampede is a phenomenal educational opportunity for kids.

Alberta Chickens, Calgary Stampede

Agrium Ag-tivity in the City, Calgary Stampede

While we were checking out the numerous hands-on interactive activities, Dad meanwhile was watching the cow horse competition in the new Agrium Western Events Center. In between midway rides and trips to see the Draft Horses, I was able to sneak a glance of the cow horses too <grin>. And boy was the giant CERVUS screen located at the top of the arena a nice touch!

John Swales in the 2014 Calgary Stampede Working Cow Horse Classic.

John Swales in the 2014 Calgary Stampede Working Cow Horse Classic.

Watching all the events at the Calgary Stampede spurred a whole new spark for horses within our daughter.

Kids and horses

Our son on the other hand, was just happy to be helping Dad with the chores. Which is totally fine with us!

Helping-with-Chores

Following the Calgary Stampede, we received a letter from the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) this month questioning the registration – or more specifically, the markings – of a foal we have been trying to register for a long time now. Turns out, the  filly in question had a “white mark” on the right side of her neck. The AQHA wanted us to clip the horse in this area, right down to the skin and take another picture, so they could verify the color of her skin underneath.

When Clay and I looked closely at the picture that I had sent in electronically to register the foal, Clay realized she had a bite mark on her neck! (This is a detail I never even noticed during the online registration process). The AQHA in turn thought the white spot was simply that – an unusual white patch of white hairs on her neck and wanted verification. With a return phone call to the AQHA and some updated pictures showing the filly no longer has a white spot on the side of her neck, we were good to proceed with the registration process.

Good to know the AQHA takes registrations and markings very seriously!

penny-arrow

July also afforded us the opportunity to watch the High River Air Show. With stunts performed by the Canadian Forces Snow Birds, the SkyHawks parachutists and an appearance by an a CF18 Hornet – we were in complete awe.

High River Air Show 2014

Last month we also watched many of our neighbors haying their fields and we got busy securing our winter hay supply as well. The word on the street is that hay prices are going up everywhere. If you have a moment, drop me a comment in the comments section below – because I’m super curious to find out where hay prices are currently at!

Haying

And now my friends, I need to tell you who the lucky recipient of a Schleich Quarter Horse figurine and western tack is…!

When I asked readers to tell me about their favorite tips / activities to keep kids busy at horse shows, Aaron Lucas wrote:

We take our mini pony to the arena with us, our son just loves to brush her and pick up her feet…over and over! Daisy is such a good pony! When he is tired of Daisy, we take out his “dirt” toys. He will play for hours with his Tonka trucks in the roping box. I love it, because I can see him and I know he is safe while I get some horses rode. He also loves his Schleich toys, however he is only 2 and still loses little toys, so we only play with them at home for now! We would love to add to our collection… I say ‘we’ because I love them too!

Aaron – please email us at editorial@westernhorsereview.com with your mailing address and we’ll get your Schleich toys on their way to you!

Interviews – Dick & Brenda Pieper

Playgun, Pieper, Pieper Ranch

Brenda and Dick Pieper, with Playgun.

In my career, I have many perks. One of them includes the opportunity to interview people in the horse industry. People who making a difference. People who are famous. People who are exciting. And people who are just amazing with horses. In April 2008, I had the opportunity to visit Pieper Ranch in Marietta, Oklahoma. Pieper Ranch is home to the legendary Playgun and both Dick and Brenda are legendary breeders, riders and owners in the western performance industry. Here is the interview that resulted from that visit:

_____________

Q. Brenda, you are originally from Canada. When did you move to the States?

BP – I was born in Kitchener, Ontario. Dick was born in Ohio. I met him for the first time when he came to Ontario to compete in an AQHA show we were hosting. He was showing a horse named Mr Jim 45. It was a real boost for the reining industry in the province of Ontario. In that day, Mr Jim 45 was a really good reining horse. It was also a difficult era to make a living showing horses.

A couple of years later, Dick took a job with some folks around the Toronto area. He helped a lot of people. I knew him as a friend for 14 years before we ever were involved. We started seeing each other in 1986 and Dick was president of the National Reining Horse Association at the time. He had been since 1983 – the first year the NRHA Futurity paid $100,000 to the winner, when it was still held in Columbus, Ohio. 1986 was the first year the NRHA Futurity was held in Oklahoma City, so it meant we had to come to Oklahoma. Bob Loomis had moved here (Marietta) the prior year. He told us, “Bring your horses early to my place and that will make it handy to run back and forth.” We packed up four trailers, moved into Bob’s barn and went to work. We first arrived late in the evening and when we drove out in the morning from our hotel in Ardmore, I remember how beautiful it was down here. I loved it! We were able to purchase the ranch we live on today, in March of 1987.

Q. Both you and Dick have expressed that Playgun is the ideal horse to move the Pieper breeding operation into the future. You knew this from the moment you spotted him too. How could you both be so sure at the time?

BP – Looking at his conformation, you can see Playgun’s balance up close and from far away – it just hits you in the face. Dick and I are so fortunate that our eyes see the same things on a horse. I can’t think of one horse in 21 years that we didn’t agree on completely. Both of us had a very strong gut feeling when we looked at Playgun and got that “Wow!” feeling, as soon as we looked at him. His breeding is impeccable and his show and produce record have lived up to what his conformation and pedigree promised.

Q. Have you come across your ultimate broodmare yet?

BP – Oh lots of them! Many are our own and many are other peoples’ mares. There are many I look at that his me like Playgun did. Nearly all of our mares are like peas-in-a-pod. They’re similar to Playgun. They may be different sizes, but they all hold the same balance. It you apply that principle (breeding like-to-like) to your breeding program, your offspring are going to be very consistent as well.

What you can’t do is try to offset a flaw in one parent by going to the opposite extreme in the other. The best chance at consistency in the offspring is breeding like-to-like.

Q. Is there a horse from history you would like to ride?

BP – Many. But one that Dick and I both would like to ride is Miss Silver Pistol. She was so expressive, busy and frantic on a cow. Boy, it would be fun to try her out with today’s methodical approach to working a cow, with the Ferrari engine she had, speed expressiveness and big stop. Today’s cutters have to run and stop a cow more than they used to. Miss Silver Pistol always had the cow mesmerized in the center of the pen. It would be so cool to see if you could train that mare with today’s methods (end to end without letting her cow up so much), and having to show on today’s cattle – how great she would be now. Having had the opportunity to have that mare here at one point, studying her conformation and balance, I know she had all the great parts to be competitive today also.

Q. What has held your passion for the horse industry all these years?

BP – The pure, pure love of horses. We love the way they smell. Brushing them. Turning them out. The learning curve into cutting has kept our passion for the industry. Playgun has become the catalyst for our success in that industry. To have met all the people we have met, training, the pursuit of being able to do this event: Dick always had the passion, but Playgun was the ticket in. That horse made the relationships for us. He helped us meet the people.

Q. If you could sip coffee with anyone dead or alive, who would it be?

BP – I think it would be anyone who really loves horses. To talk and discuss and analyze horses. There’s such a huge list of people who like to do this! You get to Fort Worth and the person you look forward to sitting beside is the person you can do this with. Dick says he would love to be able to visit with Don Dodge for the same reason.