The Celebration of the Cowgirl at Road to the Horse 2017 has assembled the best of the best. Pulling the most elite equine professionals from various disciplines, together they will carefully evaluate each competitor to determine the next World Champion of Colt Starting.
The judging of Road to the Horse is based on specific colt starting criteria, while protecting the well-being of the horse. Judging considers that every horse is an individual and that there are many methods of horsemanship that are “natural” or respectful of the horse, its nature and how they learn. Judges watch and score every moment of interaction at Road to the Horse, it is not just the performance in the obstacle course that decides the next World Champion but every step and breath taken from beginning to end.
The Road to the Horse judges include Yvonne Barteau, Jack Brainard, Suzy Jeane, Dr. Jim Heird, Cody Lambert and Jeff Williams. Assisting the judges at Road to the Horse 2017 will be Judges Steward, Stormy Mullins.
Yvonne Barteau is one of this nation’s most celebrated riders and a lifelong horse trainer. She has earned her USDF Gold, Silver and Bronze medals as well as her Gold, Silver and Bronze freestyle bars. Her Business KYB Dressage has trained over a dozen horses to the Grand Prix Level and over 50 to Prix St George. In 2015, her Holsteiner stallion GP Raymeister, was named Most Winning Horse in USDF history. Yvonne Barteau has published two award winning books. Her recent release The Dressage Horse Manifesto is the second of two books she has authored on horses. Ride the Right Horse, examines the impact of human and horse personalities and how they work together. Yvonne and her husband Kim are based out of Maple Park, Illinois.
Trainer, Breeder, Judge, Leader, Teacher, Author, Mentor and Friend are all accurate labels of Jack Brainard of Tioga, Texas, long known for his contributions to the equine industry and his lifelong commitment to horses and the people who enjoy them. Jack Brainard has bred and trained horses for over 54 years and judged for a variety of national horse associations for over 40 years. A true veteran judge of colt staring, Jack Brainard has never missed a year at Road to the Horse. He has judged every competitor, at every event.
Dr. Jim Heird is Executive Professor and Coordinator of the Equine Initiative and holder of the Glenn Blodgett Equine Chair at Texas A&M University. Dr. Heird has an international reputation in the field of equine sciences. He has lectured on numerous topics both nationally and internationally. He has been a successful judging team coach, teacher, researcher and extension specialist. In 2017, Dr. Jim Heird was inducted into the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame.
AQHA judge and Professional Horsewoman, Suzy Jeane, has broken many barriers for women striving to be successful in the horse industry. Suzy was the 2005 Professional Horsewoman of the Year, and in 2000, she was the first female president of the National Snaffle Bit Association. Suzy has also shown two Reserve Congress champions in Western Pleasure. Suzy and her husband operate Down the Rail Farm, where they stand several of the top stallions in the nation including Zips Chocolate Chip, Radical Rodder, Chips Hot Chocolate, Radical Revolution, A Sudden Vantage, and Dress Western.
Cody Lambert is a Texas Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame inductee and ten time National Finals Rodeo qualifier in bull riding and saddle bronc riding. Cody started his professional rodeo career in 1980 and has earned numerous titles throughout his career. Cody was a PBR Co-Founder and qualified for the first three PBR World Finals. After the 1996 PBR World Finals he retired from competition and was awarded the PBR Ring of Honor, making him one of the first recipients along with Ted Nuce, Jim Shoulders and Harry Tompkins. Cody currently serves as Vice President of The PBR Board of Directors, as well as the organization’s Livestock Director.
Jeff Williams has been starting colts for numerous long-time clients that include the Haythorn Ranch, King Ranch, Beggs Ranch, Matador Ranch, Espuela Ranch, and the Muleshoe Ranch for over 20 years. Not only does Jeff Williams have an in-depth and lifelong understanding of the elements that create a perfect foundation for a developing colt, this is a cowboy who lives every day in the saddle.
For a complete profile on each individual judge. Click here.
If you’re a Road to the Horse addict, you’ve probably already got your bags packed and your ticket in hand… if you don’t, you need to get packing! For the last two years, the ‘Road to the Horse Thursday’ has been an equestrian star-studded kick-off for all Road to the Horse fans. Road to the Horse 2017 opens like no other equestrian event in the world with personal clinics from four past World Champions, equine celebrities, working dog demonstration, a drill team championship showdown and the very first look at the real stars of the show, the AQHA 6666 Remuda. On Thursday March 23, Road to the Horse throws open the doors to a weekend of mega proportions with the Celebration of the Cowgirl in unprecedented fashion. Festivities start in the beautiful Alltech Arena with non-stop action, education and excitement from 7.30am to 7.00pm!
“Go big or go home has been the battle cry of Road to the Horse for 14 years and this year we have blown the doors off with more equestrian celebrities than there are stars in the heavens! If you’re passionate about horses, you won’t want to be anywhere else on Thursday March 23” states Road to the Horse Owner/Producer, Tootie Bland. “When we said we’re celebrating the cowgirl in 2017, we weren’t kidding!”
Who better than the First Lady of Road to the Horse, Ms. Stacy Westfall, to start the Celebration of the Cowgirl with a once-in-a-lifetime personal Cupcake Breakfast on Thursday, March 23, 2017. All fans are invited to an up-close and personal experience with Road to the Horse 2006 World Champion, Stacy Westfall. Hear in her own words how she became the “The First Lady of Road to the Horse.”
Road to the Horse 2017 is excited to welcome back past Road to the Horse World Champions Craig Cameron, Dan James and Nick Dowers as they each host individual personal clinics, stuffed with knowledge, presenting fans with amazing learning opportunities from champions who wear the coveted Road to the Horse Gist Silversmith buckle. Barbara Cox will be joining our celebrities on Thursday. After having to withdraw from the main competition with emergency back surgery, this courageous and gutsy cowgirl is on hand to teach and inspire other cowgirls.
After a Road to the Horse Meet-and-Greet with celebrities and competitors Sarah Dawson, Kate Neubert, Rachelle Valentine and Vicki Wilson, fans will have an opportunity to watch the Double Dan Insider horse Woodford perform. We’ll then meet the stars of the show in our Splash of Panache, when we gallop the AQHA Remuda from the 6666 Ranch onto Road to the Horse dirt, for the very first time!
Road to the Horse 2017 tickets on sale now….
Sarah Dawson, Kate Neubert, Rachelle Valentine and Vicki Wilson have been announced as competitors at Road to the Horse 2017. Road to the Horse 2017 will return to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY, on March 23-26, 2017. Road to the Horse 2017 tickets are available online at www.RoadtotheHorse.com or by calling 877-772-5425. Follow Road to the Horse on Facebook for the latest information
About Road to the Horse 2017 (March 23-26, 2017 – Lexington, Kentucky):
A vision of Steven and Tootie Bland, Road to the Horse was created with passion and perseverance. Steven and Tootie were believers in a message they wanted to share with the world. The message: create a relationship which is based on a foundation of trust with the horse, and everything else can be accomplished. Fans at Road to the Horse, follow the journey and witness an accumulation of a lifetime of passion and knowledge be put to the test as elite clinicians from around the world face off for the coveted World Championship of Colt Starting title. Fans witness partnerships develop before their very eyes, they witness the setbacks and witness the triumphs, as competitors build a relationship with an untouched 3-year-old American Quarter Horse which will then be put to the ultimate test, where only one can walk away with the World Championship of Colt Starting title.
Sponsorship and Media opportunities available by contacting Tammy Sronce at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 940.859.6512.