Tie Brings Battle of the Sexes to Western States Mustang Makeover Adoption Finds Homes for 22 American Mustangs
Bertram, Texas, June 16, 2009 -- It all boiled down to the dashing cowboy and the dazzling cowgirl. After two days of go-rounds and stiff competition from 20 other trainers looking for their share of the $7,500 purse, Californians Katherine Cumberland of Santa Maria, riding Wendy, and Joel Sheridan of Acton, riding Lilly Bet, grabbed the attention of the judges in very different ways at the Western States Mustang Makeover in Sacramento, June 12-13.
In a finals competition featuring 11 formerly wild horses, Sheridan managed to grab the attention of nearly 5,000 spectators and judges Ken McNabb, Donna Synder-Smith, Tootie Bland and Tommy Garland with an original routine that featured a battle of the blades between Zorro Sheridan and an evil foe. Lilly Bet took the swordplay, as well as the noise of the crowd, along with small jumps and standing on a platform, all in stride.
Cumberland, though, a recent graduate of Cal-Poly with a degree in Animal Science, gave the crowd a lesson in horsemanship with Wendy, having perhaps the most correct routine of the evening when it came to lead changes, spins and variation in speed in her circles. Wendy worked quietly throughout the routine with a headset that would be the envy of a veteran horse, let alone one with only 90 days training. John Lyons, commentating from the arena along with two-time World Greatest Horseman Russell Dilday, complemented Cumberland on her riding style, saying she had the best conformation he'd seen for a rider.
Scores for technical merit and artistic merit are offered during the finals competition, and it was clear that Sheridan had won over the judges with his theatrics while Cumberland had them with style. The result was a mustang smackdown like none ever seen in prior Extreme Mustang Makeover history.
With 90 seconds to perform and music selection management's choice, Cumberland won the coin toss to perform first. The petite blonde urged Wendy along to the strains of the theme song to "The Sons of Katie Elder," working the four-year-old bay through rhythmic movement and showing the judges that the mare was hardly flustered at having to perform again. Sheridan followed to the rock beat of "The Great Adventure," by Stephen Curtis Chapman, moving Lilly Bet into her circles right away, while removing his jacket and spinning it around her head, followed by some solid stops and spins. But it was technical merit and grace that took the win for Cumberland and a first-place prize of $2,000.
"This mare has been the sweetest horse since the day I got her," said Cumberland. "I was able to get on her after only three days and from then on she was just so willing to learn what I had to teach her."
That willingness shown through during the adoption that immediately followed the competition, as Wendy was also the high-adopting horse at $4,000, while Lilly Bet adopted for $1,400. The second highest adopting horse went to Marley, trained by Greeley, Colo., horse trainer Randall Davis, who adopted for $2,200 and placed fourth in the competition. All 22 mustangs were adopted for an average of $1,100 per head.
The Mustang Heritage Foundation (MHF), in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), created the Extreme Mustang Makeover events to highlight the recognized value of American Mustangs through a national training competition. The event gives the pub l ic a unique opportunity to see the results of wild horses becoming trained mounts and then participate in a competitive bidding process to adopt one of these treasured animals. The purpose of the competition is to showcase the beauty, versatility, and trainability of these rugged horses that roam freely on public lands throughout the West, where they are protected by the BLM under Federal law.
Nearly 29,000 Mustangs roam federal and privately held contracted lands across the country. In order to manage the herds and maintain both land and herd health, the BLM oversees the adoption of wild horses and burros through public adoptions held throughout the United States. Since 1973, more than 219,000 wild horses and burros have been adopted.
1. Wendy, shown by Katherine Cumberland of Santa Maria, CA, earning $2,000 and adopting for $4,000.
2. Lilly Bet, shown by Joel Sheridan of Acton, CA, earning $1,500 and adopting for $1,400.
3. Kanterry, shown by Bob Britland of Galt, CA, earning $1,000 and adopting for $1,500.
4. Marley, shown by Randall Davis of Greeley, CO, earning $800 and adopting for $2,200.
5. Cowgirls Hotrodd, shown by Amber Bussell of Oakdale, CA, earning $600 and adopting for $1,650.
6. Wild Rose Mustango, shown by Krista Koenig of Paso Robles, CA, earning $500 and adopting for $1,500.
7. Kto~, shown by Mardi Radway of Roseburg, OR, earning $400 and adopting for $1,000.
8. Sangria, shown by Juliane Hanley of Fall City, WA, earning $300 and adopting for $1,100.
9. Abby Lane, shown by Gary Wedemeyer of Winton, CA, earning $200 and adopting for $500.
10. Bella, shown by Joe Weitekamp of Las Vegas, NV, earning $200 and adopting for $500.
Other Adoption Results
MissFire, shown by Jennifer Mothershead of Buckley, WA, adopted for $600.
Tonopah Ora, shown by Steve Bauhr of La Grange, CA, adopted for $1,000.
Slippery When Wet (Slipper), shown by Julie Baumann of Lincoln, CA, adopted for $700.
Tesla's Sweet Dream, shown by Julie Baumann of Lincoln, CA, adopted for $1,000.
Shekinah, shown by Destry Campbell of Alturas, CA, adopted for $550.
Monique, shown by Micheal Carpenter of Lincoln, CA, adopted for $950.
Acacia, shown by Stephanie Korhel of Maple Valley, WA, adopted for $400.
Payette, shown by Curtis Northrup of Alturas, CA, adopted for $500.
Chili Pepper, shown by Rob Radway of Roseburg, OR, adopted for $800.
Barbwire, shown by Carlos Talamantes of Oakdale, CA, adopted for $400.
Mustang Candy, shown by Gena Wasley of Roseville, CA, adopted for $1,800.
Ima Your Horse, shown by Susan Watkins of Sheridan, CA, adopted for $900.
Extreme Mustang Makeover Heads West 50 mustangs to be gentled for $12,500 purse
( Bertram , Texas , November 25, 2008) - When more than 5,000 enthusiastic fans lined up to witness the transformation of 25 wild horses in 2008, the Extreme Mustang Makeover became a highlight of the Western States Horse Expo and will make a return engagement with 50 mustangs June 12-14.
The Extreme Mustang Makeover has touched off a firestorm of new fans for America's iconic mustang as 50 trainers have the opportunity to build transforming relationships with the wild horses at they work to gentle each animal in approximately 100 days. The trained mustangs will be judged on conditioning, groundwork , and a "Horse Course" that requires maneuvers and includes obstacles found in trail and recreational riding situations. Now recognized as America 's definitive test of horsemanship, horsemen and women are invited to apply for a spot in the competition and must apply no later than February 1. Horses will be available for pick up March 13-14 at the Sacramento Horsemen's Association arena.
"We're finding new stars in the horse training world each and every time we host a Makeover," said Mustang Heritage Foundation Executive Director Patti Colbert. "With the ability to take a horse from a virtual clean slate, these trainers are able to use their techniques to demonstrate how a wild horse can be transformed into a willing partner. The best result from all of this is that the trainers often become students themselves as that wild horse allows that communication to happen. It is really amazing."
Horsemen and women can apply by visiting extrememutangmakeover.com and downloading an application or can call 512.355.3225 for an application.
Adoption of the gentled mustangs will take place June 13 and potential adopters can apply for the opportunity to be included in the competitive bidding process at the event with BLM personnel available to review and approve the application on site. In order to apply, applicants must be at least 18 years old, have no prior conviction for inhumane treatment of animals or violations of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act and be able to demonstrate that adequate food, water and facilities will be available to humanely care for the animal.
Adopted horses remain with the adopter for one year before "title" of ownership is provided from the BLM. For full adoption requirements and information, go to http://www.wildhorseandburro.blm.gov/adoption.htm
Additional Makeover events are being held in April at the Midwest Horse Fair in Madison , Wis. , and Ocala , Fla. , during Lynn Palm's Women LUV Horses event, as well as in August at the Wyoming State Fair in Douglas . Events in Tennessee and Texas are also on the slate.
The Mustang Heritage Foundation (MHF), in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), created the Extreme Mustang Makeover and Mustang Challenge events to highlight the recognized value of American Mustangs through a national training competition. The event will give the pub l ic a unique opportunity to see the results of wild horses becoming trained mounts and then participate in a competitive bidding process to adopt one of these treasured animals. The purpose of the competition is to showcase the beauty, versatility, and trainability of these rugged horses that roam freely on public lands throughout the West, where they are protected by the BLM under Federal law.
Nearly 26,000 Mustangs roam federal lands across the country. In order to manage the herds and maintain both land and herd health, the BLM oversees the adoption of wild horses and burros through public adoptions held throughout the United States . Since 1973, more than 219,000 wild horses and burros have been adopted.
The Ladies Take Western States Mustang Challenge
22-year-old Oregonian rides Mustang Dolly to the Win
Facing a crowd of more than 5,000 spectators as the first to go on a mustang with only 90 days training, one might think Corinne Elser of Burns, Oregon, would have been a tad on the nervous side. One might think it, but Elser sure didn’t show it as she took Dolly, a 2005 bay mare gathered from the Coppersmith herd management area, to the win in the Western States Mustang Challenge in Sacramento, Calif.
“This is totally awesome,” Elser shouted as she pumped her fist in the air at the conclusion of her run. “I’ve had an incredible time and this horse has been amazing,” she told well-known clinician Chris Cox in an arena interview.
A total of 10 American Mustangs from a field of 29 advanced to the finals of the Western States Mustang Challenge held during the Western States Horse Expo June 6-8. The Western States Mustang Challenge, which received national media attention from Fox News during the event, is the progeny of the highly successful Extreme Mustang Makeover held in September 2007. Challenge trainers had 90 days to gentle their Mustangs and the trained mustangs were judged on conditioning, groundwork, and a "horse course" that required maneuvers and included obstacles found in trail and recreational riding situations.
The Mustang Heritage Foundation (MHF), in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), created the Extreme Mustang Makeover and Mustang Challenge events to highlight the recognized value of American Mustangs through a national training competition. The event gives the public a unique opportunity to see the results of wild horses becoming trained mounts and then participate in a competitive bidding process to adopt one of these treasured animals. The purpose of the competition is to showcase the beauty, versatility, and trainability of these rugged horses that roam freely on public lands throughout the West, where they are protected by the BLM under federal law.
Go round judges included AQHA judge Suzy Jeane of Valley View, Texas, NCHA Hall of Famer and 2007 Extreme Mustang Makeover Champion Guy Woods of Pilot Point, Texas, and clinician and trainer Al Dunning of Scottsdale, Ariz. Matt Randall, DVM, of Peninsula Equine Medical Center in Menlo, Calif., evaluated the body condition of each animal. Following go-round competition, Dunning took the mike while “America’s Most Trusted Horseman,” John Lyons of Parachute, Colo., joined the judging team for the Finals event.
Elser and Dolly brought their “A” game to the Challenge championship, maneuvering through a series of obstacles as well as required exercises including stops, spins and circles. But as Elser nodded for a steer, the crowd leaned forward in anticipation of seeing what the bay mare could do with a hard-charging animal after only 90 days and Dolly did not disappoint. Taking the steer up the fence and across the back of the arena, Elser urged Dolly to turn into the animal, with the mare throwing her hindquarters into the ground while pushing her shoulder into the steer. “Man, you barely see horses with a year or two of training do something like that, let alone 90 days,” Dunning told the crowd.
Elser and Dolly marked a score of 269.5 out of a possible 300 to take the win. Judges score each maneuver, as well as score on technical difficulty, artistry and creativity, and then are able to add bonus points.
The crowd continued to be entertained by the remaining nine horses, hoping to exceed the bar set by Elser and Dolly. Trainers showed the mustangs’ many strengths – calm demeanors despite a cracking whip, riding bridleless and bareback, executing complex maneuvers and herding cattle. Taking second was Johnson Valley, Calif., trainer Joe Misner and the three-year-old bay gelding Laredo with a score of 249.5. In third place with a score of 231 was Tehachapi, Calif., horseman Matt Sheridan riding the three-year-old black mare, Luna. The appreciative crowds at the conclusion of the competition, however, offered the most enthusiastic applause, when four of the 10 trainers stood in the saddle as all 10 were presented for the last time.
Adoptions of all mustangs in the competition took place immediately following the finals, giving Elser only a few minutes to do the math as she went from accepting her $3,000 winner’s check from BLM California State Director Mike Pool and MHF President Paula Carr and then headed to the sale ring. As bidding climbed for the bay mare, Elser finally looked to the auctioneer and nodded her head, ultimately taking home her winning mount for $5,500. Laredo brought a $3,400 adoption price, while the striking black Luna brought $4,400.
The high-adopting horse, however, was fourth-place finisher Handy Hank, a three-year-old sorrel gelding adopted by trainer Madelyn Wagner of Valley Center, Calif., for $10,000. “I have always been a die-hard Quarter Horse fan,” Wagner told Cox in the arena, “but after this experience, I will never, ever breed another horse. I will only adopt Mustangs.”
The surprise of the evening, however, came when bidding for the mustang Outback Jack rose to $32,000 with the winning bid coming from Rick Anderson, of Perris, Calif., husband to Outback Jack’s trainer, Sandi. After a review, however, it was determined that the bid for the three-year-old sorrel gelding was actually $3,200, but the Anderson’s were determined to make their commitment stand, adopting the horse for that price and then contributing $25,000 to a trainer’s assistance fund to be developed by the Mustang Heritage Foundation.
“I was stunned,” said MHF Executive Director Patti Colbert. “This event, by far, topped all of the events we have produced, including the Extreme Mustang Makeover. The horsemanship we saw in California really brought a new level to this competition and then to have a gift made to the Foundation of this degree just brought to light the intensity of dedication we are seeing from these trainers who want to make Mustangs an in-demand breed and provide them with homes.”
Adopting prices averaged slightly more than $2,400 on 29 head with total funds of nearly $70,000 raised to support the Foundation and its programs.
About the Mustang Heritage Foundation
The mission of the Mustang Heritage Foundation and the goal of the Extreme Mustang Makeover are to increase the adoption of mustangs across the country. The Mustang Heritage Foundation created the Extreme Mustang Makeover event to showcase the recognized value of mustangs through a national training competition.
About the Bureau of Land Management
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is responsible for managing 258 million acres of public lands, located mostly in the West. Wild horses and burros roaming public rangelands are managed in a manner consistent with BLM's overall multiple-use mission, as set forth in the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976. For more information, visit wildhorseandburro.blm.gov or call 866-4MUSTANGS. Nearly 26,000 Mustangs roam federal lands across the country. In order to manage the herds and maintain both land and herd health, the BLM oversees the adoption of wild horses and burros through public adoptions held throughout the United States. Since 1973, more than 219,000 wild horses and burros have been adopted.