Road to the Horse 2018 was hosted by:
Born and raised in northeast Oklahoma, Matt West has always been fascinated with the cowboy lifestyle. After receiving a degree in agriculture from Northeast Oklahoma A&M and then attending Oklahoma State University, it was a dare that put Matt behind the microphone for the very first time. Since that time he has made a career out of announcing professionally and with his unique style and the blessings of some of the industry’s top professionals, he continues climbing the ladder of success. Beginning his career in amateur rodeo, West has since earned his PRCA card and continues to work various PBR events across the country and even in Canada. It’s his strong faith and continued family support that West credits for his quick success, but also notes that it’s his extended “rodeo family” and new friends he has the opportunity to meet along the way that keep him traveling and doing what he loves to do. Road to the Horse 2018 will mark West’s sixth year as the Host of Road to the Horse.
Meet Horseman’s Host Craig Cameron…
Craig Cameron has had a lifetime of education, learning from the greatest, most important teacher of them all – the horse. From working on the family ranch as a child to riding bulls in the PRCA, to becoming a world renowned horseman and horse trainer. Native Texan, Craig Cameron lives the Cowboy life everyday working thousands of horses, adding ample experience to his natural born ability to communicate effectively with the horse and people. Craig’s distinctive style, experience and passion led him to become one of the most recognized horseman in the industry today.
Craig Cameron is the author of two best selling Western Horseman books and for over a decade has been the host of the award winning series ‘RIDE SMART’ on RFD TV. Due to Craig’s love for the horse and passion for helping others, he has been recognized with many honors, including the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame, Hero’s Hall of Fame and two Silver Telly Awards, to name a few. Craig is the creator and founder of the popular Extreme Cowboy Racing and the Guts and Glory 100 Mile Ride for Special Ops.
Craig is the 2010 RTTH Colt Starting World Champion and has been a part of RTTH since its inception. Craig is honored and proud to be the Horseman’s Host of this year’s event. Craig lives with his wife Dalene and son Cole on their unique Double Horn Ranch in Bluff Dale, Texas where they host their premier Ride Smart Horsemanship Clinics. Learn more at www.CraigCameron.com.
On top of the scheduled on-the-edge-of-your-seat World Championship of Colt Starting action, fans enjoyed these entertainers:
Meet The One Arm Bandit & Co…..
John S. Payne, the notorious One Arm Bandit, was born to a rancher in the oil rich town of Shidler, Oklahoma on April 19, 1953. Ranch life with four brothers taught John to “Get out of the way or get run over.”
On June 12, 1973, while tearing a house down for his dad and thinking the electricity had been shut off, John climbed an electric pole to cut some wires. Problem was, he was wrong about the status of the wires, and 7,200 volts of electricity ran through his entire body for an unbearable 10 seconds. John remembers the electrocution clearly. He tried to release his grip, but could not. It burnt through his fingers on his right hand and he plunged 25 feet. The electricity grounded to the pole through his abdomen, leaving his intestines protruding. The voltage had also burnt his left thigh, exposing his thighbone from his knee. The doctors wanted to cut off John’s left leg but he told them, “I can’t ride a horse with one leg, and if I can’t ride a horse I don’t want to live.” The doctors did, however, cut off his right arm below his shoulder. After 5 weeks in the Tulsa Burn Center, John checked himself out and went home to start breaking a horse he had bought while in the hospital.
In 1975 John took a liking to Judy Crabtree and they married. John and Judy are now responsible for what is the most sought after gang in the rodeo world today, The One Arm Bandit Gang. The One Arm Bandit & Company has won the prestigious title of PRCA “Specialty Act of the Year” an unprecedented 12 times. Learn more at www.theonearmbandit.net.
Meet Holly Spears
Nashville Recording Artist, now based out of Northern, KY, Holly Spears is a small-town girl with big dreams. Her new single, Farm Girl recently reached #10 on New Music weekly’s Country Internet Chart and #10 on the NMW Main Country Chart. Spears has also reached #6 on the NMW Country Top 30 Indie Artists. Not bad for an Indie Artist who owns her own record label, Girl on a Mission Music, LLC.
Holly found her way into acting in a Western movie called Nail 32. She landed 5 songs in Nail 32. You can also find 5 of Holly’s songs in a movie called, Virtuous, that stars Erik Estrada. Holly has had 2 songs in TV commercials and several television music videos. You can also find many of her music videos on YouTube, including her John Denver cover of Country Roads, which is on its way to reaching 100,000 views. Make sure to check out her Farm Girl, Cowboy up, and Sunshine videos to see her horse, Pretty Girl. Holly Spears loves sharing her industry knowledge with the music students she builds into via the web or in her studio in Northern Kentucky. You can find her albums Boots and Bling, Heartache to Hope, Audience of One, The Songs of Christmas and Redemption Road, as well as her new single, Farm Girl on iTunes, her website and at her live shows. Keep up with Holly and her musical journey on www.hollyspears.com , Facebook @HollySpearsFanPage and Instagram under holly.spears.
Meet Epp Mevin Walls
Epp Mevin Walls is an award winning Christian country Singer/Songwriter with NewStep Records and co-founder along with wife Kathleen Walls of EMW Music Ministries.
Epp’s style of music is a driving new country/country rock sound, upbeat with a positive uplifting message. Epp and Kathleen travel extensively throughout the year sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ through music and personal testimonies, at many different events and venues such as Church Worship Services, special events, benefit concerts, festivals, retreats, and revivals. Epp and Kathleen also conduct Cowboy Church Services for rodeos and horse shows, IBRA events (International Barrel Racers Association) and the PBR.
Epp loves to share his music at Celebrate Recovery programs using his own personal testimony to encourage and support those who have decided to take that step which can change their lives forever. Epp has written three full length CDs, one which was awarded CGM Country Gospel Music Album of the Year in 2013. Epp has penned six #1 songs, as well as several top ten and top forty songs.
Epp and Kathleen live on a beautiful 130 Acre horse farm in Central Kentucky where they love living the country lifestyle and spending time with their horses and dogs as well as two very spoiled barn cats! Music is available on all the major music distributors online or go to www.eppmevinwalls.com.
I am a mother of three from Elizabethtown, KY. I am a graduate of the University of Kentucky. I worked in the country music industry in Nashville, TN, back in the 90’s but left to be a wife and a mother in Georgia. I returned to Kentucky in 2005. I ride and compete in Extreme Cowboy Racing with my three children, who are 18, 15 and 11. I have been honored to sing the National Anthem for the Extreme Cowboy Association’s National and World Championships on several occasions. I was honored as well to sing both the Canadian and American National Anthems at The Cowboy-Up Challenge at the 2014 Calgary Stampede in Calgary, Alberta. As an American, a mother, and the former wife of a Marine and police officer, I have a great respect for our country and the servicemen and women who protect her. I have not served in our country’s military, but when I sing our National Anthem, I sing it for those who have fought for her, who are currently fighting for her, and for those who will fight for her. I sing it because I am proud and thankful to be an American.
Whispery Pines Percherons
Sam and Kellie Rettinger, owners of Whispery Pines Percherons in Kingsville, Ohio, have been involved in the equine industry for their entire lives. Sam Rettinger grew up with draft horses and began driving and showing them at a young age. In addition to showing, Sam currently trains their horses to work at the couple’s farm and complete logging projects. Kellie Rettinger grew up riding and showing Quarter Horses in hunt seat, western pleasure, gaming, and cutting. After meeting Sam more than 13 years ago, she began to drive, ride, and show draft horses in saddle seat, western pleasure and Roman riding classes with Sam. The Rettingers bring their horses to several events each year to show in different hitch and riding classes. They also provide carriage rides with their Percherons for a variety of events including weddings, birthdays, hay rides, and winter sleigh rides. Learn more at www.WhisperyPines.com.
Valley View 6-Up Hitch
Johnathan Squibbs of Orwell, Ohio has been around horses most of his life thanks to his parents giving him his first horse at 2 years old. His passion for driving horses began at an early age, encouraged by his grandfather Ray Carlson, when he broke his fist team of miniature horses at 10 years old that were breed from his own horses at Valley View Farm. He has turned his hobby into a life long passion now running with his ever-growing herd of miniature horses and being the draft horse director at Lake Metropark’s Farmpark, a demonstration farm. Several minis bred and born at the farm make up the set of 15 miniature horses that are taken to local demonstrations and shows. He also uses the minis for everything from hauling hay to plowing their garden. Giving wagon rides it a must do event for many of John’s appearances.
For the most popular hitch, the 6-up, John has six jet black minis consisting of 5 geldings, a stud and a mare. In the front of the hitch are the lead horses Bud and Black Beauty. The swing team is a former wheel team, Treasure and Rex. In the wheel of the six is Duke and Thunder, the newest additions to Valley View Farm. Duke and Thunder came to the farm in October of 2017 and in November they went on to preform in Fantasia with the 6-up for “The Big and The Little” and Massachusetts Equine Affaire. We look forward to preforming at Road to the Horse as well as other events across the country in the year to come. To follow our mini’s big adventures and see what happens around the farm from day to day please like our Facebook page.
Second Hand Street Band
Established in 2015, the Second Hand Street Band is a collective of musicians from all over the US and abroad who were drawn to New Orleans, Louisiana’s rich music heritage. A collection of locals, transplants, and itinerants, this ensemble performs a concoction of traditional New Orleans jazz, funk, and other horn-driven musical styles. With over 40 regular members spanning at least 5 or 6 countries, the group is an ever-changing assortment of entertaining street performers, who all share the common goal of bringing music, comedy, and enjoyment to those around them.
This 5-piece ensemble is comprised of some of the longest-standing members of the band that have performed together for years in all variety of venues, from the streets of New Orleans to clubs, private events, and second line parades. With Adam Lessnau on trombone, Matt Thomas on sax, Jimmy Williams on sousaphone, and Moses Eder and Eli Lamb splitting the drums, you’re in for a great time and some amazing music!
Special Appearances by:
Trevor loves most to be working, roping and branding cattle in addition to developing bridle horses and competing in cow horse events. Growing up in Texas, Trevor always wanted to be a master horseman and a cowboy. To do that, Carter made an effort to learn directly from legends like Ray Hunt, Pat Parelli, Martin Black, Buck Branaman, Jack Brainard and Darren Simpkins.
Trevor and his wife Tara currently live in Clovis, NM with their toddler son, William. They raise, develop, and compete on their own horses, and train for the public. Not only do they travel all over the world to teach horsemanship clinics, they also open their ranch to dedicated students seeking to improve their own skills through an unparalleled horsemanship experience.
Trevor Carter competed as a Wild Card at Road to the Horse 2014 and Road to the Horse 2015. In the 2014 Wild Card competition, Trevor finished in fourth place behind Sean Patrick, Mary Kitzmiller and Wild Card Champion Jim Anderson. Trevor carter captured the Road to the Horse 2015 Wild Card title and made his way into the round pen as a competitor. Learn more at www.CarterRanchHorse.com.
Meet Antoine Cloux
Antoine was born in Geneva, Switzerland. He started a career as a semi-professional ice hockey player at age 16 along with riding horses part time, but was not entirely satisfied by the kind of horsemanship he was exposed to. During a trip to Wyoming in 1996, he participated in a Bryan Neubert and Buck Brannaman clinic that started a strong desire to learn this kind of horsemanship. He quit playing hockey and spent a lot of time in the US learning with different people like Destry Campbell, Richard Winters and Mindy Bower, but spent most of his time with Martin Black. Having a passion for horse cultures of the world, where people and horses still share their days working together with cattle, Antoine also traveled, studied and worked in Australia, Argentina and Brazil. When he came back to Europe he was one of the first to attempt to promote and encourage people to discover a different kind of horsemanship. This included the traditions of the vaqueros and working and training horses with cattle. A way different approach than what is common in a dressage/ jumping stronghold like in Switzerland!
In 2003 he translated Tom Dorrance’s book into French and since 2004 has been organizing clinics with Frank Dominguez, Martin and Wade Black in France and Switzerland. He also brings groups of riders to the US for ranch experiences. He now lives in Geneva, Switzerland were he starts colts and trains horses for polo, racing, jumping, dressage and other disciplines with is wife, Maud. Antoine Cloux competed at Road to the Horse 2014, and was our first competitor from Switzerland.
Meet Clinton Anderson…
Clinton Anderson is a clinician, horse trainer and competitor. He’s dedicated his life to helping others realize their horsemanship dreams and keeping them inspired to achieve their goals. He owns and operates Downunder Horsemanship based in Stephenville, Texas. The Downunder Horsemanship Method of horse training is based on mutual respect and understanding and gives horse owners the knowledge needed to become skilled horsemen and train their horses to be consistent and willing partners. Clinton instructs horsemanship clinics, presents Walkabout Tours across the country, produces a television show, hosts an internet TV website and is constantly creating comprehensive study kits and training tools to make learning horsemanship as accessible and easy as possible.