One day, after watching her daughter cut, Becky Calabria thought, ‘I can’t sit in these stands anymore!’ She had a horse brought to the show so she could ride around and see her daughter compete. She then started going to the barn with her daughter to practice on a cutting horse. From that first time on a flag and cow, she decided cutting was the sport for her.
Calabria said she enjoys the team aspect of cutting: from the lopers that keep her safe to the trainer that helps her and her horse, as well as supportive barn mates and the turn-back help.
“You’re welcome to cut at any age. That’s what I like about cutting,” said Calabria.
Some of her best memories in the sport include the time she finished in the top 15 in the World in the $15K AM and the $35K Non-Pro in 2012. She said it was an intense and tough year but so rewarding.
Another achievement was when she showed in Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth.
“It did feel like participating in history. And I forgot to be frightened when I walked through that corridor and came [into the arena]. It was a moving experience and it led to me not being afraid. I lost my fear of showing. Walking in there for the first time was amazing [and a] privilege…And I made the finals on a horse I just bought.”
Calabria took a break from cutting for a few years to focus on her grandchildren. She said the horses and the people brought her back. “These horses are extraordinary. There’s nothing like it. I think they’re so special and they offer us so much of what they are and what they have.”
Why Becky Uses CHTO:
“Because your trainer is your trainer and not your babysitter. You can’t be learning 24/7 with your trainer…There was a point when I felt like I needed more. And then I discovered this resource that allowed me to hear about judging, hear about herd work, watch herd work, listen to [a different] perspective…If I can’t ride, I can tune in and I’m going to receive something that’s going to be meaningful and it’s going to be part of my learning experience. I was stunned [by the website] and I actually ended up binging everything that was online because I was struggling with rules. Struggling with judging and really struggling with herd work… It’s an extraordinary teaching tool.”