As we go to "press"... As we go to "press"... man, the era of social media is making that term redundant... Colleen Wallace and her great mare, Onetime Is Short, are sitting sixth in the 50,000 Amateur division of the NCHA World Standings. With 32 shows to their name and $19,903.67, the Canadian duo has had a commanding year, making the most of shows both North, and South of the border. Colleen and "Issy" are a favourite pair of mine to watch, and the 50 AM is an incredibly t
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
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
Slightly pin-eared, tail swishing around, pushy Canadian cattle shoving us back into the herd, but we're still out here doing the damn thing. Photo Credit: Roughstock Studio Cutting, it's the variables that get ya and make you question why we do this insanely expensive sport. Those variable that weasel into your brain and tap dance around in that category labelled "mental toughness." From questioning your physical and mental capacities, to questioning your horses abilities an
Krystal Meade was the Northern Alberta Reined Cow Horse Club's 2016 Green As Grass Rein-Box Reserve Champion with her horse, Herc. Photo Credit: Natalie Jackman/Have-Dog-Will-Travel Photography -------------------------------
When I dreamt up the “Influencers” series, I was thinking about people, horses and organizations that positively impact the horse industry. As many of you know, I am a huge supporter of beginner and novice competitors and I’m always on the lookout for
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'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
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
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
If you are a female, and you've entered a show pen before, this post will probably relate to you. I don't care if you barrel race, ride reiners, show cow horse, are on a drill team, you mounted shoot, or you show breed specific - ladies, let's get together and agree on one thing, sometimes it's tough to be a girl in the show pen, and there are many things that we go through as female equestrians that our male counterparts will never have to deal with. Some of them, can be dow
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
If you interview one Roberts (aka our interview last week, Stacey Roberts), you should probably interview the other. Meet Dustin Roberts - husband to Stacey, dad to Sloan, has some great one-liners, is an all-around nice guy, and oh yeah... can be a pretty tough competitor in the cutting horse pen. When I first met Dusty (... am I allowed to call you by your barn name in this post?!) I remember thinking he had nerves of fricken' steel. The guy used to ride broncs back in the
Stacey Roberts, Okotoks, Alberta, recently placed top five in Alberta in the 2,000 Limit Rider and also made the Okotoks Novice Challenge finals this year. Stacey has had her ups and downs showing in the 2,000 Limit, just like the the rest of us, but this year during the Okotoks Classic I remember watching her ride her gelding, Two Spot, like he was a damn Mercuria horse and thinking to myself, "this girl is going to do something big next year." She definitely has what it tak
I've shared so many of my ups and downs with ya'll, I thought maybe it was time to start exposing you to other "beginners" in the show pen. So keep an eye on the blog for interviews with riders that battled their way through the 2,000 LR, and beyond, in their first couple years of showing. Beginner's deserve interviews too guys!
First up is Cali Brandt, Vanderhoof BC. Cali and I go way back... on social media. When she purchased her first show horse, Star, a mare that I kne
A real photograph of Lady trying to deal with me as her rider I had a terrible show this past weekend, like all that talk of strong mental game, believing in your unicorn, and all that other glittery shit I preach... it disappeared. *Poof* Gone. I went to look for it directly before my first run on Saturday, but no surprise here, it was nowhere to be found. Pro-tip - you shouldn't go looking for your mental game, nor your glitter, as they are calling your name to walk to the
Lady trying to figure out why I'm constantly trying to turn her into a Donkey - Begin Scene - "I'm done. I hate this horse. I'm going to sell her." The rider exclaims, desperately waiting for some sort of unfounded praised to be hurled her way, or agreement that selling her horse is the right thing, so she can feel a bit better about herself. Her coach sighs heavily and slowly walks away from the immature beginner cutting horse rider who is approaching code red: full blown, i
Look at this rare photo of a cutting horse in its natural habitat Have you ever had a bad dream where a bad man in a ski mask sneaks up behind you, puts a gun to your head and screams, "GIVE ME ALL YOUR MONEY." That's literally how I feel every time I pay one of my entry fees. Except, the secretary of our association is like super nice and definitely doesn't wear a ski mask. I mean even though we're in the frozen arctic of Canada that would be super weird of her. BUT STILL, y
Nerves is such a big hurdle that so many beginners face. Cutting is literally a death trap for someone that experiences nervousness in sport. So many factors that can make you nervous. I mean, not that I EVER do this (me.. not me... nerves of steel over here ya'll, like super bendy, cheap steel, but steel all the same), but if you go to warm up your horse and you're already nervous about how they've been working that week. If you're nervous about your competition. If you're n