Cody Patterson started off with humble beginnings in the horse business cleaning stalls for Phil Hanson Sr, from California (Futurity Champion Phil Hanson in Texas is his son). At the time, Hanson trained cutters but he also trained cow horses and made the Snaffle Bit Futurity finals a few times. Patterson always gravitated to the cow horse side of the performance horse world, appreciating the versatility of the sport.
Patterson has been learning his trade for the past 7 years working for other trainers including Shawn Hays. Two years ago he got his first training job where the buck stopped with him. “When you don’t have your boss or whoever there to kind of reach out to when you’re having trouble, you kind of learn to rely on what you’ve learned,” he said.
Patterson compared the time spent honing his craft to earning a masters or doctorate degree. “A lot of [us] have worked for people long enough that if we went to college we could have been doctors. We’d have enough information.”
After you’ve paid your dues, he said you have to trust in yourself and the knowledge and skills you’ve acquired. A trainer has to learn to think for himself and process what’s going on with each horse he said.
Patterson’s favorite part of cow horse is the versatility of the sport. While most of his show experience is in the cow horse show pen, he has competed in cutting and reining.
The best piece of advice Patterson has gotten so far is that it’s important to have somebody watch you or take videos of you. He explained this helps to be aware of the bigger picture you’re presenting. Patterson said someone once told him “the judge can’t see how it feels, so don’t let them know if it feels bad.”
Another wise piece of advice Patterson received is “don’t let 10 minutes of frustration cause 10 days of repair.”
Patterson’s career highlight so far has been the 2014 NRCHA World Finals where he was Co-Reserve Champion in the Limited Open Bridle on Trix Are For Nics.
Why do you use CHTO? “I think it’s kind of neat to see how other people go about doing things…I think we are all trying to figure out how to make things easier, we definitely make things harder on ourselves a majority of the time. It’s become a good resource. We all have friends we can go ride with…but I think [CHTO] has a good enough library that if… you have a problem you remember a video [CHTO] put up about this guy talking about this… it’s a good tool…”
Brought To You By: Pulse Vet