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Trainer’s Corner: James Payne

July 5th, 2019 by Sophia Skeith

From Overbook, Oklahoma, James Payne has been operating his ranch and training for the public out of his own facility since 2008. After a long line of training reining horses for Dick Piper, he eventually fell in love with the cutting industry with the help of the Pipers and the spectacular horse Playgun!

Payne’s persistent attitude is what drives him to continue his hard work ethic in the pen. No-one would ride more horses every day than this gritty trainer. His primary training philosophy is to, “Be there everyday and grind, with a lot of repetition,”.

This is evident in his impressive results. James has been a multi NCHA Futurity Finalist, as well the 2012 NCHA Super Stakes Reserve Champion, the 2012 and 2014 NCHA Summer Spectacular Classic Champion, 2018 NCHA Summer Spectacular Open Classic CHAMPION riding PG Heavily Armed and the 2018 NCHA OPEN WORLD FINALS AGGREGATE CHAMPION on PG HEAVILY ARMED, to name some of many titles.

Three horses James owes his success to include Once in a Blu Boon, HR Playing Legend, and Sarenadual, which he recalls his most memorable success in cutting on. Of course his most recent wins on PG Heavily Armed join that list as well.

Overall Payne has won over $3.1-Million in total earnings throughout his career, with much more to come from this dedicated trainer.

Question & answer with James Payne:

What are your Top 3 horses you have trained? Once in a Blu Boon, Sarenadual  and HR Playin Legend.

What is your most memorable moment in cutting? “The first time I made the futurity finals. Winning my first major aged event on Sarendual because of the high calibre horses we were competing against.”

What is the biggest mistake you’ve made in cutting? “It’s not really a mistake, however I wished I had shown in the youth because there is a big difference between training and showing.”

What is your favorite quote? “The faster the cow, the slower you ride, the slower the cow, the faster you ride.”

What do you think is the biggest myth about cutting? “Don’t think that once you have had success int he show pen that you’re going to stay there, you have to keep grinding away and working at it.”

Click here to watch James Payne’s videos!


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