Healing With Horses

October 7th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Brad Langenberg

Horses have a way of touching our hearts in the darkest of times. The bond that can be created with a horse is true and authentic. Who isn’t touched by a nicker from their favorite horse? Or when the horse follows you freely? Many horse lovers use time in the barn as a therapeutic way of coping with whatever life throws their way.

People have been using the powerful bond with equines as therapy for addiction. They are forgiving, honest animals that bring so much joy to people. Whether it’s their incredible athletic ability, their personality, and/or that ability to connect with people, they touch us in ways that are hard to define and their impact can be life changing.

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Member Spotlight – Levi Price – Porter, OK

September 3rd, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Levi and Miss Cheekacat

Growing up rodeoing, Levi Price has always loved the western lifestyle. The summer before he started high school he got a job with a cutting horse trainer 10 miles from home. It did not take Price long to fall in love with the sport.

Later, he attended college on a rodeo scholarship at Conners State College where he almost finished his Animal Science degree. After college, he worked for Ed Dufurrena’s as his two year old trainer for more than two years in Gainesville, TX.

His favorite memory is the night Stevie Rey Von won the NCHA Futurity in 2015; he had been at Dufurrena’s for about a year. It was a great experience for Price to see the horse work everyday and watch it pay off claiming the coveted title. He said they were all very inspired to get back to work after that big night!

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Rediscovering The Will Rogers – The Difference A Door Makes!

September 3rd, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

“…this change was out of necessity. The summer show entries were up more than 30 percent, and we were obligated to find new ways to help accelerate the show’s pace…” said McCarthy.

Showing a horse in the famed Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum at Fort Worth, TX, is the holy grail of experiences for most cutting horse competitors. It’s a tradition that goes back some 54 years to 1967. Not only does the coliseum have legendary status, it’s an arena cutters’ love for the way it allows them to work cows.

Built in 1936, its design was ahead of its time. But it has not been without its faults. One of the greatest frustrations for riders has been the use of one gate to let in both the cows and competitors. This meant everyone was locked in the arena until each set had been completed which took approximately 90 minutes. It made a long day even longer and came with the danger of riders missing their run if they missed the gate.
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Member Spotlight – Katy Rosane – Reno, NV

August 9th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Katy and Kitty Hawks Marie Photo by Ann Mulchay Photography

Katy Rosane participated in the Reno Rodeo cattle drive three years ago and thought chasing cows was a blast. The following year she was preparing to retire and decided she wanted a horse.

She attended a clinic given by a cutting horse trainer. The clinic ended up being cancelled but Rosane was already there and got talking with the clinician. Keep On Reading!


Member Spotlight – Becky Calabria – Kaufman, TX

July 9th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Becky and Cat A Rally Photo by Suzanne Sylvester Photography

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.

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Trainer’s Corner – Todd Bimat – Arizona/Texas

July 9th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Total Earnings: $3,181,574

Todd Bimat learned about cutting from his dad. And at 17 years old, he went to work for Leon Harrell for a summer. He always wanted to be a cutting horse trainer and his love for the sport continued to grow as he gained experience. At 18 he went to college briefly but then an opportunity opened up when Harrell’s full time help got hurt. Bimat said he threw all of his stuff in his truck, headed to Harrell’s and never looked back.

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Start Up, Cut Up: How To Host A Cutting Show

July 7th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

A WCHA show at Ardmore, OK.

Have you ever wanted to host your own local cutting show? It might not be as daunting as you think. But whether it’s big or small, there are definitely some steps you need to take to make a show happen.

“It’s a simultaneous combustion that happens that lets you have a show,” said experienced show producer Dee McLauchlin. McLauchlin is a show secretary for multiple shows in Texas and Oklahoma.

“I have the world’s best sandbox and everybody comes and plays in it,” McLaughlin said laughing.
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Member Spotlight – Tricia Gilson – Sanger, CA

June 14th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Tricia and Rebellious Soul

It’s been 20 years since Gilson has had a cow horse in the Snaffle Bit Futurity. She is preparing for the Snaffle Bit Futurity this year on a horse named Rebellious Soul. The horse is special to Gilson because the foal is her youth horse’s great-grand-foal. Gilson competed in the reining arena for sometime and is finally ready to go back to the cow horse arena.

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Adapting To Unprecedented Times: Introducing The 6/7 Class

June 14th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Geoffrey Sheehan riding Hiss N Vinegar to a 228 to claim the Open 6/7 Championship.
Photo Courtesy of the NCHA

Necessity is the mother of invention, so when the 2020 NCHA Kit Kat Sugar Super Stakes was cancelled due to the COVID-19 shutdown, the Association got busy finding a solution.

While cutting is a fun recreation for many, for trainers, breeders and other professionals, it’s a livelihood. So the loss of a major show creates a big financial hole.

NCHA Director of Shows, Shianne Megel, said that the 2020 Super Stakes was the most discussed and researched topic the Association dealt with all year in 2020. After the 2020 cancellation, a portion of the Stallion and Foal funds were still available to be paid out to eligible horses.

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Craig Thompson – Buffalo, TX

May 10th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Total Earnings: $3,005,912

Two-time NCHA Futurity Champion, Craig Thompson, grew up showing cutting horses in the youth. His grandfather, Thomas Nichols, who was a huge inspiration to him, got him started in cutting.

In 1996, Thompson went to work for Kenny Pew Jr. in Brenham, TX. He then worked for Matt Gaines and with his assistant at the time, Clint Allen. Winston and Paul Hansma were living across the road at Bar H, so Thompson also spent time learning from them. He said the brothers were instrumental in helping his career.

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How You Can Stretch Your Equine Athlete For Improved Performance

May 10th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Veltri assessing a horse’s range of motion

Stretching before a big show or a hard training session is very important to keep muscles flexible, strong and healthy. Many horse owners already stretch their horse’s neck side to side with treats before a ride, but did you know there are more stretches you can do to keep your equine athlete performing at his best?

Equine Massage Therapist, Tiffanie Veltri likes to educate her clients on how to thoroughly stretch their own horses. These techniques help owners maintain their horse’s flexibility and make sure the key muscle groups are getting released.

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Trainer’s Corner: Rob Hodgman

April 6th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Total Earnings: $892,000 Aus

At 18 years old Rob Hodgman left home in Australia and traveled to California to ride reined cow horses. He returned home where he said the sport was more popular then and bought a cow horse. That horse did not like reining so a friend suggested he take it to the cutting futurity. He ended up winning the 1983 Australian NCHA Open Futurity on the horse.

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Member Spotlight: Samantha McPherrin & Suzanne Stilwell

April 6th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Samantha McPherrin & her mom Suzanne Stilwell

Samantha McPherrin rode a cutting horse for the first time in 2010 when she was working for a trainer. She had a blast and her mom, Suzanne Stilwell, also got into cutting at the same time.

Stilwell bought her first horse in 2010. Stilwell said Todd Bimat and Jose Mendez were a big part of how she got started in cutting.

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Buffalo: The Next Best Thing To Having Cows

April 6th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Buffalo getting a feel for the arena

They’re goggled-eyed, mop-headed, unbalanced looking creatures that can seem downright intimidating, but the ungainly bison can be a cutter’s best friend when it comes to tuning your horse.

With constant supplies of fresh cattle a fantasy for most cutters, buffalo are a much more affordable substitute. Unlike cows which sour quickly after being worked, buffalo can be used to train six to eight horses a day for a number of years, provided you handle them right.

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Member Spotlight – Andy Sutliff – Against All Odds

March 8th, 2021 by Sophia Skeith

Andy Sutliff and MK Smooth Texas

Submitted and Written by member Shelley Casciato

How can a guy attain what Andy Sutliff has earned with lifetime NCHA earnings of $47,630.00 and USCHA earnings of $17,964.00 while living in an English dominated area with no cows, no walker, just an indoor pen and a flag?

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