As I type this the final shows of the 2018 season are underway, with November 16th being the cut off for weekend haulers attempting to make the NCHA World Finals. Hailey Schafer, of Arizona, has officially "made it", currently sitting sixth in the 15,000 Amateur class with $6,812 in earnings. No stranger to the Watt Arena, Schafer was Reserve Champion in the 2,000 Limit Rider in 2017, with the help of her great horse, Smart Chula Dual. Western Twist Media sits down with Haile
Another Canadian makes an appearance on Haulin' today! Amanda Smith is a consummate competitor, and the pairing of Amanda and her great gelding, I'm Short And Smooth, is always one of my favourite's to watch. Currently hauling in the NCHA 25,000 Novice Horse Non Pro, the pair are sitting 9th with $12,981 won in 24 shows. Since Amanda and I sat down for this interview she has headed South, making appearances in Arizona and Waco, and is well on her way to making NCHA World Fina
Tulsa Beck is currently sitting third in the NCHA 2,000 LR World Finals standings. Alongside the gelding, Mr. Willy Dual, Beck is making sure that her first year in the show pen is a big one. However, Beck is already "seasoned" when it comes to cutting horses, as she works for NCHA Hall of Fame trainer, Tim Smith. At Western Twist Media, we have a soft spot for haulers, but especially one's that are lopers too. We'll let Tulsa take over and tell you about her year, and her be
With the NCHA World Finals on the horizon, Madison Melasky of Groesbeck, Texas, is sitting pretty in the 15,000 Amateur standings. As we go to press, with thirty shows under her belt and $6,701 won, she has found herself comfortably sitting at third out of the top fifteen. Third is a familiar placing for Melasky who placed in the top three in the Senior Youth this year, finishing the year with 109 youth points on two horses DR Cuzin and Smarty's Star. We sat down with Melasky
It’s a question that’s been on my mind lately. Lord knows I’ve had the time to ponder it as i’ve gone down the road this year. I’ve walked to the herd more times in the past four months than I ever have in my life, and as it goes, after the dust settles on this year, it may be awhile until I walk to the herd again.
So, why cutting?
I guess we could start at the starry-eyed scrawny kid who loved horses for no explainable reason, except… she just did. Unlike s
As the race heats up for the NCHA World Finals, it is not uncommon to scan the lists of top 15 riders across all weekend classes and determine that a large majority are coming from one barn, Mike Wood Performance Horses in Scottsdale, Arizona. The barn churns out a record amount of world finalists every year, and for the last three consecutive years, the 2,000 Limit Rider World Champion has come from their barn. This year, it seems that Mary Penner is going to be able to cont
In 2016 Dannica Percevich and her horse Smooth (ImASmoothLittleCat) took home the title of Denver Nationals 50,000 Amateur Champions, fast forward to 2018 and she has her site sights on a world title.
Photo Credit: Ted Petit Photography What is your horses registered name?
I am showing 2 horses right now - ImASmoothLittleCat in the $15k Amateur and Wild Haired Lilly in the $35k Non Pro. How is your horse bred? Smooth (ImASmoothLittleCat) is sired by Smooth As A Cat and out of
Fun fact, I bartend a few banquets at a golf course every month. I started doing it for an old manager of mine from my serving days last summer and really liked it. It was super easy, great hours, super chill and I got to walk away with some extra money. It wasn't like my serving days when I would think about lighting myself, and all my customers, and everyone I worked with, on fire. :) So this summer when he asked me if I'd do it again, even though I didn't really have too,
Just riding a unicorn, thinking about how I'd probably sell my soul to the devil to do this everyday. Photo Credit: Callaghan Creative Co. Cutting. It sucks. Like, really sucks. I know, you are probably thinking the cows, the ridiculously expensive horses, the fact you need a trainer, the hauling, the cost...
Nope. none of that. Not this time around anyways...
*refer to all the old Beginner's post if you want to hear me whine about other reasons why cutting sucks*
I could tell you a Cinderella story, the trainers kid on her beloved aged event horse wins one of the biggest aged events in Canada, The Calgary Futurity Non Pro Classic. Yet I think it’s the struggle that makes the Cinderella stories all that more magical in the end, wouldn’t you agree? Emma Reinhardt and Miss Smoke Is Smooth had a year of ups and downs, and through the process learned what it means to become a team, stepping up to the plate, and what it takes to be a champi
I recently fell down one of those three hour social media rabbit holes and ended up listening to former bachelorette, Kaitlyn Bristowe's podcast, Off The Vine, with guest, Bachelor Host Chris Harrison. I'm not even a big bachelor fan, but yet, here I was, three hours later, giggling away with the two of them instead of working. It got me thinking.. if the cutting horse world had an edition of the bachelor, what would it look like? It would obviously be awesome but it would al
I'm going dark people. I'm shutting down the blog for a month.
Okay, I'm being dramatic, but I am going to stop posting for a little bit. I want to finish the website i've been working on for.. ya know.. a year and I want to re-evaluate my content and start publishing regular monthly series on more of a schedule. I've slowly moved away from telling the stories of celebrated competitors, and I want to bring that back into the fold, but in a different way. And, of course, I w
1. You head out for dinner with friends, and wonder if the Multiple Elastic Bands on your wrist are a socially acceptable form of jewellery 2. Leggings are a style of shotgun chap, not the tight yoga pant variety 3. What are "Show Saddles" and "Show Bridles"? If people mean that old Roo-Hide you use on atleast five horses per day at home then yeah, that's a show saddle because it made it to the show. 4. Herd-Side and Cow-Side make a hell of a lot more sense to you than Left,
As most of you know, I had to make the ultimate decision to put my show horse, turned broodmare, down this week due to kidney disease. I still don't quite have the words to sum it all up, but, oddly enough some words did come to me in the form of a poem. I used to write a lot of poetry, and I haven't for quite some time. In my last moments with Lady, I chose to braid and take off her tail myself. I pictured us standing in the Claresholm arena, which was where she showed her b
Bringing it back to the OG puking unicorn that started it all for The Beginner's Guide Here it is, a curated list of 6 resolutions for all you amazing novice competitors sparkle throwing, cow-cutting unicorns, out there looking forward to a successful new year in the show pen! 1.Thou Shall Not Switch Training Programs After One Bad Run I know... you bought this magical unicorn that used to mark 75's like it was easy with its previous rider. You spent a lot of money. You're he
A couple of firsts today! Raelene Paradis contacted me with a piece she had written about a topic pretty near and dear to my own heart, being a loper. I recently told someone that if I could lope, but ya know still pay my bills and buy my own property, I probably would for the rest of my life. I've never had a true guest post before, but I thought, heck - what's a better topic to have as a guest post than the ins and outs of being a loper in the cutting horse industry! Then I
Oh, you were starting to think I only interview Canadian riders these days? Who I, ahem, ...know personally. Well ya thought wrong! In honour of the NCHA World Finals having kicked off, and the first go-round of the 2,000 Limit Rider starting tomorrow (Wednesday the 29th), I asked Jameson Grimes if he'd be interested in taking part in the blog. Jameson is the Assistant Trainer at Mike Wood Performance Horses in Scottsdale, Arizona and he is currently number one in the world i
Cheylin Patenaude may be young, but she is fierce competition in the show pen. This year she made sure her presence was known by consistently topping the leaderboard at shows across Canada with her dynamic mare, Gracies Cat. Cheylin worked hard to rise to the top - showing her horse, helping out loping horses at shows, all the while still in school, and always maintaining a humble and kind attitude. When people say, "that's a good kid", I tend to think of Cheylin. Plus, her a
Meteoric. That's a word you could use to describe the year Kate Rusnack had in the 2,000 Limit Rider with her gelding, Bet This Cats Smart. You could also include words such as... awesome, tough-to-beat, and awesome to watch. This duo was undeniable from the minute they cracked out at their first NCHA show this spring. The pair warranted their fair share of hype from the get-go. Bet This Cats Smart is a bit of a celebrity in Canadian circles, having had a very successful aged
The nature of working for a horse trainer can often by physically, and emotionally, taxing. Physically, you're riding horses, you're cleaning stalls, you're on the road and often, you're far away from home. However, today this post is about the emotional side that I think every trainer, trainer's assistant, or loper has had to deal with atleast once in a life time... and that's saying goodbye to a good horse. What I mean by this is when a horse leaves your barn - it may be to