We were really excited when we were able to get Dona Kay Rule and Phil Haugen together for episode fifteen. Both from Oklahoma, these two equine professionals have been longtime friends and both have had a hand in the journey of a very special horse named High Valor. This story is a great one and we appreciated having a hand in telling it!
Dona Kay Rule
While some may have not known who Dona Kay was until the 2019 season upon her first NFR qualification, she has been a long time extremely successful horsewoman, barrel racing producer, horse trainer, and business owner for many years! Hailing from the small town of Minco, OK in Central Oklahoma, she has qualified to the 2019 NFR at 61 years young on her great 10 year old gelding, High Valor, she is an inspiration to all of us! Valor was also voted the 2019 Purina Horse of the Year.
Valor’s professional career took off after an unfortunate accident leaving Dona Kay’s first string horse “Juice” injured, consequently putting Valor in the position to step up to the plate. Valor was bred and raised by Lana Merrick, additionally she sent him to Phil Haugen as a two year old to start and be trained. Lana sold Valor to Dona Kay when he was five years old, and Dona Kay has dedicated the past five years to training him, seasoning him, and finishing him on the pattern. The rest…is history! We wish Dona Kay the best of luck at the 2019 NFR and we will be looking for Juice in the grand entry.
These are the runs from Valor’s first big win in Waco, TX at the D&D Barrel Race with Juice winning 2nd!
Phil Haugen has trained over 1,000 horses for the public with a training career spanning over 30 years. Based out of Weatherford, OK, horses that have gone through Phil’s training program have exceeded earnings over $1M. One of those horses in particular was High Valor. “Valor” went through Phil’s training program as a two year old while he was owned by Lana Merrick.
Phil has developed a unique training style based on his experiences in and out of the competition arena. His training program is focused on those fundamentals and his keen understanding of how to progress a horse in its training while mentally keeping that horse in a trusting, secure and confident state of mind. Phil’s philosophy is to train through understanding and that starts with a simple, common sense approach. He does this by building a solid foundation to to help each horse reach it’s full potential by focusing on effective and proven techniques helping the horse understand the response you are asking for, which in turn builds their confidence and yields success.
Today Phil is still currently training for the public, keeps a full clinic schedule, and has started his own podcast; Be Your Best Horsemanship! It’s available across all podcast platforms.
Kassie Mowry is listed as the Top Rider of the Decade for 2008-2018 with earnings calculating over $2M, reported by Barrel Horse News. Among countless achievements, she is an NHSRA barrel racing champion, NIRA barrel racing champion, two time NFR qualifier, BFA Futurity Champion, BFA Juvenile Champion, and the 2019 Diamonds and Dirt Futurity and Slot Race Champion just to name a short few. We loved this episode getting to revisit some iconic horses in Kassie’s early career, Kassie’s involvement with Epic Leader , and her 2019 season which has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride. Kassie is as tough as they come and an extremely knowledgeable horse woman and there is a lot to be learned from this episode!
Despite battling two different injuries within a few months of each other, Kassie still has had a stand out year thus far, with the highlight being the Diamonds and Dirt Futurity. Out of the six horses she is currently competing on, they are all by Dash Ta Fame or Epic Leader. Below are their accomplishments at the Diamonds and Dirt Futurity where she won in total nearly $80,000 at the single event!
Can’t get enough Kassie? Check out her two part series we did in a previous season of Racer’s Edge on our YouTube Channel! As always, thank you for listening and you can find more episodes of the podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. We have two remaining episodes in Season 2 we are excited to bring you.
Episode 09 features the ever so talented, Britany Diaz! This 2X NFR qualifier and professional barrel horse trainer not only has a great breeding and training program with her husband Isaac (professional saddle bronc rider), but she is a new mom to daughter, Whitley Grace. We really enjoyed our visit with her and talked all things training, pedigree, and life in general. Britany radiates positivity and purpose and we know everyone can get something in this episode! Just a reminder that we are three episodes into Season 2 and our new episodes are released bi-monthly on Thursdays, check them out on iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts!
Britany grew up in rural Solen, ND on a ranch. Although her family didn’t compete actively in rodeo, she quickly took to it on a little mare named Nanny. Britany credits her foundation of barrel racing to going to Mary Ketchum clinics and learning from Lisa Lockhart whom she traveled with at the beginning of her career.
The start of it all for Britany and the horse she learned how to ride on
Bought for $800 at a dispersal sale in North Dakota
Trained by Britany at college in horsemanship classes
Had a foal at 4 years old and started her barrel racing career after
9X Badlands Circuit Finals Qualifier
Qualified for the NFR two times
3x Canadian Finals Finalist
2014 Reserve Canadian Champion
2014 Canadian Horses of the year, the first horse from the US to win this title
2016 ERA Top 5 finisher
Britany, Isaac, and the Fleck’s (Britany’s parents) have put together a great set of broodmares over the past seven years. Although Rootie doesn’t carry, she is flushed for embryos and they even have a full sister to Rootie added to their broodmare herd. The majority of their bloodlines goes back to the stallion, Texas High Dasher.
It’s always a fun time when we get to visit with Sherry and we hope you learn as much as we did from this conversation. Expect to learn tips for improving your mental game as we discuss stories from the rodeo road and the horses that helped Sherry become rodeo’s winningest cowgirl. Along with the podcast, be sure to catch today’s Racer’s Edge episode with Sherry Cervi on RIDE TV. It will first air Thursday, April 18 at 9:00 PM ET and 12:00 AM ET, so set your DVRs! If you’re on your phone, tablet or streaming device, use promo code “RACERSEDGE” for a discount on RIDE TV GO.
For those who don’t know, Sherry Cervi is a four-time world champion barrel racer, three-time average champion, and has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo a total of 19 times. Though the duo of Sherry and Stingray is well-known in the barrel racing community, many are unaware of the horses behind the success we see today. If you missed her the first time around, be sure to go back and listen to our Season One podcast with Sherry Cervi and Jane Fambro.
Carried Cervi to several PRCA wins her senior year of high school
Not only is Stingray one of the greatest barrel racing horses of all time, she is also a nice heel horse in the team roping
Key player in Sherry’s record-setting $3.2 million in ProRodeo earnings
Carried Sherry to 2010 and 2013 WPRA world titles
Voted Horse with the Most Heart in 2013, runner-up in 2010 and tied for the title in 2011
Go with you gut feeling
Don’t over-analyze the situation
Once you make a decision, stick with it. Never second guess yourself.
Be consistent as a rider
You can make mistakes and still be fast – don’t give up
Don’t let outside elements dictate your mental game
Worry only about the things you can control
Surround yourself with positive people
Set goals and stay hooked
If you struggle to stay motivated, surround yourself with people who push you
Prior to her runs, Sherry reminds herself to keep her mind in the middle and get her horse to the spot. Along with this, if she gets nervous, she wiggles her toes to relax her body and take her mind off of the stress involved with competition.
Listen to Sherry in this podcast to hear the funniest and strangest stories that have happened to her on the rodeo road. Once you listen to them, you’ll understand the importance of being mentally tough and having the ability to “stay hooked” regardless of the hand you’re dealt. In response to her stories on the road, Sherry’s advice to anyone listening is to lock things up while travelling. You never know who might take your saddle, your gold buckle, your video camera or even your trailer!
Thanks for tuning in to Racer’s Edge podcast on iTunes, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Don’t forget to follow and watch our episodes on RIDE TV as well. Stay tuned and follow us on social media to watch for upcoming Racer’s Edge content.
For those of you who listened to season one’s podcasts, welcome back! For those of you who are new, we welcome you too!
On this episode, join us as we meet up and visit with Lisa Lockhart. Lisa is a wife, mom of three and professional barrel racer. On top of her 12 National Finals Rodeo (NFR) qualifications, two NFR Average Championships and two Reserve World Championships, Lisa has won RFD-TV’s The American twice along with four Canadian Championship titles. If you know barrel racing, the name Lisa Lockhart should be more than familiar.
Something that makes Lisa unique from many is her ability to schedule time on the road with family events. Since the beginning, she has always put her role as a mother first and that makes her someone everyone can admire. Along with being mom to Alyssa, Thane and Cade, Lisa has also been the mother-figure to some pretty talented horses. She has always had a passion for horses, growing up riding her pony in the yard, and her connection with animals is evident. Listen to Lisa, Jeye and Hannah talk about life on the road, memorable moments, equipment, family, and the famous horses Lisa has rode.
Lisa’s first run on Louie at the 2018 NFR….the crowd erupted!
In this episode, we sit down to talk with barrel racers, Sherry Cervi & Jane Fambro. You’ll learn all about chickens (yes, you read that right), training barrel horses, their favorite equine products, time-management, motivation and the differences between traveling to futurities and rodeos. Along with this, you’ll be sure to get a laugh or two from a story involving the Racer’s Edge crew, Stingray and Pleasant Grove, Utah.
Sherry Cervi is a name that most should recognize. With four world titles, three average title wins at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo and 19 WNFR qualifications in the barrel racing, Sherry has proven her value in the barrel racing industry. Along with her WNFR successes, Sherry was also the first Women’s Professional Rodeo Association member to cross the 3 million dollar mark in earnings. More recently, Sherry was inducted into the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. Though she calls Marana, AZ home, she spends her summers at her family’s ranch in Wisconsin and recently purchased a property in Stephenville, TX.
Jane Fambro grew up in the saddle, training her first horse in the fifth grade. In 2018, Jane was the recipient of the DISH Back in the Saddle Award at RFD-TV’s The American Semi-Finals. There is no doubt she is an all-around hand, starting her first horse bareback in a halter as a yearling and ending up with a well-trained horse in the heeling, heading, breakaway, tie-down, pole bending AND barrel racing. Luckily for the barrel racing world, Jane moved in with Ryann Pedone when she went to college and decided she would take a shot at training futurity colts by the time the second semester rolled around. Since that decision, she has gone on to train several successful barrel horses that have gone on to win with other riders, a feat of its own. Jane is a UPRA Finalist, RFDTV The American Qualifier and three-time cancer survivor. She is the strongest person, most astute Horseman and motivation for us all to be better and do better. She sets a great example of humility and hope.
As promised in the podcast, here is the link to Business Insider’s article regarding the chicken referred to as, “The Lamborghini of Poultry.” Feel free to look up chickens in your area, however, as Jane has proven, there is no need to own a chicken to be successful in the barrel racing world.
Both Sherry and Jane will agree that there is great pride involved when someone else is able to win on a horse that you have trained. Along with this, if they had to choose between training and competing at futurities or rodeos, both would choose the rodeo path. Sherry and Jane both believe that ranching on horses at a young age teaches them where to place their feet and prepares them for pressure, resulting in a horse that can handle rodeo ground and atmosphere.
Jane believes it is important to have patience and use repetition when training a horse regardless of where the horse will be competing.
Sherry has full intentions of going the futurity route with her young horses, but every year she seems to get busy and ends up with horses that are not quite ready to hit the futurity road. Though some may try to rush those horses to get them prepared last-minute, Sherry chooses to take her time and have patience in order to achieve the end goal of having a solid rodeo horse.
GOALS, MOTIVATION & TIME MANAGEMENT
not a detail-oriented person,
used treatment time to sit down and set goals,
journals everything she does on each horse in a day,
believes that in order to be successful you need to use your entire day and plan your time if you can
“People think that success is based on talent. Success is based on principles. If you master the principles and execute them every day, you will be successful.” – Tyson Durfey
“If you’re dumb, you better be tough.” – Jane Quote
Writes motivational quotes in her planner
Has sticky notes with positive quotes placed in her home and trailer
Plans can change 100X in a day when you’re rodeoing so you have to be prepared for that
If you haven’t been somewhere or done something, ask for help from someone who has
If you are prepared to the best of your ability you have a better chance at success
Favorite Quote: “Go the extra mile, it’s never crowded.”
Cozi is a shared calendar great for keeping up with appointments or anything going on and lets you assign a specific person to it. Every person has their individual color, truly a Type A personality person’s dream. 🙂
In this Racer’s Edge podcast episode, we visit with barrel racing sensation, Hailey Kinsel, about rodeo, training horses and the “We Can Help” campaign. We learn something new every time we have the opportunity to speak with Hailey, and we hope everyone at home enjoys this episode as much as we do!
Hailey Kinsel has recently been referred to as “Barrel Racing’s Girl on Fire” and for good reason. In 2017 alone, Kinsel and her well-known equine partner, DM Sissy Hayday a.k.a “Sister” won the RFDTV American, the College National Finals Rodeo and qualified for the National Finals Rodeo where they set the new arena-record not once, but twice. This year, Kinsel has continued her success, winning San Antonio, the Days of ’47 in Salt Lake City, Utah, The Calgary Stampede and qualifying for the NFR in the coveted season leader position. On top of her success inside of the arena, Kinsel has also made it a goal to give back to those around her by founding the “We Can Help” campaign which you can learn more about below.
Both Hailey and her mom, Leslie, filled their WPRA Permits riding TJ
Purchased by Kinsel’s when he was 10 years old
Placed at Circle, Dillon, Evanston and Billings, MT, Stephenville, TX, Rock Springs, WY, and other rodeos.
Won Preston, ID
This year, Kinsel had the goal to be more efficient and make every run count better than it did in 2017. In order to do this, she had to decide which horse to run where, which rodeos to enter and which rodeos to skip. Factors Kinsel used to make this decision included ground conditions, added money, which horse the arena suits, the overall atmosphere, and if you could ride in the arena prior to the rodeo or not.
When it comes to training horses, many people are quick to throw in the towel. However, Hailey and Leslie have a goal of helping every horse reach it’s full potential. As a general rule of thumb, each horse they invest in spends 18-22 months in their program before any decisions are made.
In this Racer’s Edge podcast episode, featuring Ashley Nelson Schafer, we visit with horse trainer, Ashley Schafer, to follow-up on her upcoming Racer’s Edge episode. Expect to learn about some of the horses she has ridden, who she is outside the arena, advice on how to deal with set-backs, success in the futurity world, and a few of her favorite things.
Ashley Schafer is a well-known trainer in both the futurity and rodeo worlds. She gives a lot of credit for her success to her time at the Jud Little Ranch in Ardmore, Oklahoma training under Jolene Montgomery. After training under Jolene, Ashley trained for the Jud Little Ranch for one year as their main trainer before moving to Wyoming. Joe and Carla Spitz of Spitz Quarter Horses were some of Ashley’s first clients after going out on her own and brought her several horses to futurity, one of which being Freckles Ta Fame, otherwise known as CanMan. Since then, Ashley has gone on to train and jockey countless successful futurity and rodeo horses.
2018 Pink Buckle – placed in both rounds and the average as well as winning some open money for a total of nearly $15,000
Traits Ashley Looks for in a prospect: Natural Rate & Ability
The Cheerleader – “Salty”
Not overly smart, cute, athletic, happy, gets distracted, some things go over her head
Soft Ball Player – “Laramie”
Athletic, cool, level-headed, confident, not dramatic. Similar attitude as Jolene Montgomery – no drama and laid-back but when it’s game-time she gets serious.
Famed French Kiss “Sissy” – similar attitude to Joy Wargo.
Doesn’t show much emotion, is quiet, stand-off attitude at first but once you get to know her she will talk your ear off & you can always count on her to make the same trip.
Freckles Ta Fame “CanMan”
A sweetheart you can always count on to make the same trip. Theme Song “Stand By Me”
If you want to be around horses you must constantly work on being a better horseman! Horsemanship = key to success.
Go to clinics, read books, watch videos, whatever it takes
Work hard, stay dedicated, keep the right mental attitude, stay positive, keep emotions in check
Be specific with cues and consistent with those cues from home to public.
Don’t watch other people exhibition and change your method at the barrel race
It is OK to try new things but try them at home first
Keep expectations in perspective
Advice to Owners
Know your end goal & make sure you make your expectations are clear at the beginning
Find the right trainer for your personal goals and your horse
There are different kinds of trainers – be aware of that & send your horse to the person that will help produce the right end-result for you
The best futurity horses don’t always make the best rodeo horses and vice versa
Best way to success is clear communication
Your trainer will know your horse best… Trust your trainer when they think your horse should go to a vet or something should change.
Sometimes the horse you have won’t produce your desired end-goal, but this does not mean the horse is no-good, it just means the horse has a different path. Don’t give up on your trainer & trust their opinion.
Take Home Notes
Each horse is an individual & you cannot compare one horse to another
When training futurity colts you must take things day by day – don’t get ahead of yourself
Take the emotion out of barrel racing and learn to not take things personal when they don’t work out
Be prepared as much as possible in order to succeed
Stay positive, take deep breaths and go have fun
Visualize your run & know your horse
Be sure to tune into EP 02 of the Racer’s Edge Podcast here, iTunes Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or Spotify!
For Contact: Hannah Haugen, Public Relations Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org
Buying and selling horses…we’ve all been there. The love/hate relationship is very real. Rarely does it resemble a smooth, open highway, rather often times the process looks that of a narrow, Rocky Mountain pass.
When selling, it’s the stress of keeping your horse ready to show, the toll on your emotions, and the hardest task…finding the right rider and home with the best chance of success as a team. Buying’s difficulty is finding the horse that has all those qualities you have on your (let’s be real, most of the time unrealistic) mental “checklist” that is hopefully….in your price range. Like buying anything else these days, narrowing down the options can be overwhelming. After all, you have to take in factors like gender, age, pedigree, color, and how broke they are. Even if you find one right off the bat, it’s hard having the confidence in the decision knowing there are several more out there. What if you miss out on something!
This season’s two-part series with Jolene Montgomery has showcased what we felt was a much-needed tutorial on this ever so common transaction that supplies the oxygen to the main vein in our industry. With a repertoire a mile long, Jolene has trained and jockeyed some of the best horses in the business in the beginning of their careers such as JL Dash Ta Heaven, MCM Ima Sharp Guy, and JL Jamaican Me Rich to name a few. Although buying and selling horses isn’t the way she makes her living, along with her success in the arena as a jockey and trainer, she has gained expertise in the buying/selling process. She understands what a great relationship between horse and rider looks like, and we thought it would be fun to get her insight on the subject.
After all the hassle we go through, sleepless nights even, why do we do it? We would have to say because there is no better feeling than watching someone love and compete successfully on a horse you once owned and loved or that moment when “it clicks” with your new purchase and you finally feel like a team. You can look elsewhere, but there isn’t a better feeling!
Our advice: go through Jolene’s checklist and then go with your gut. Happy horse shopping! <3
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One of the best aspects of the equine industry is every person and business within has a unique story. Our friends at Oxy-Gen certainly have one to tell. Most known in the equine world for their advanced all natural supplements, Oxy-Gen paved the way in equine supplement technology crossing over science used in human athletic performance and adapting it to horses with the use of natural elements.
Dr. Jack McEowen created the original Oxy-Gen and Oxy-Max products after incorporating octacosanol into animal supplements. The substance was commonly known for its use in human athletes and is found naturally in plants. Octacosanol promotes stamina, endurance, and the building of muscles. Overlooked in the animal nutrition industry, Dr. McEowen saw an opportunity, and in 1997 the Oxy-Gen business partnership was formed with Beth Andrus with Meal and More Mills.
The first Oxy-Gen products were made for livestock; cattle, sheep, and goats. After meeting Marth Wright, Dr. Jack created Oxy-Max for horses and it has since been history. Allyson Hayes, head of the equine division, is a barrel racer with roots deep in the sport with the utmost passion for care and nutrition in barrel horses and at the age of 12 years old, had a significant role in Dr. Jack’s formulation of the Oxy-Boost. It would be almost fate that she would eventually run the equine division. The whole team at Oxy-Gen is extremely dedicated and passionate about their work and it is evident in their products and facilities.
The refreshing aspect of this company is it is a true piece of Americana. The company owns farmland they prepare, plant and harvest base ingredients which are made into your horse’s favorite the Oxy-Gen product. Everything made from start to finish is packaged, labeled, and shipped from under their roof.
Even more impressive, when it came time to update facilities, the company had saved enough money to pay for the new facility in cash. That is nearly unheard of in today’s economy. In our opinion, nothing beats a success story from hard work and perseverance and they are some of our favorite ones to share. Tune in Wednesday, July 12 at 8:00 PM Eastern on RFD-TV for more on Oxy-Gen’s story.